Every now and then, a fact or two you come across may strike you as bizarre and you’ll feel the need to share it with a friend. It’s either the opposite of what you were expecting that fact to be, or so deep into strange territory that it will seem incredible. Either way, we decided to put together a top of the top 10 weird facts you probably had no idea about until now. You can browse it just for fun, or it may open up your appetite for a lot of diverse reading topics, and it will also provide you with great conversation starters for almost any social occasion. Enjoy!
1. Light doesn’t travel with the speed of light
We know, this is a total shocker since it’s so counter-intuitive! According to Nature, the speed of the light can vary, and the slowest speed of light we’ve ever recorded was 38mph. The conventional ‘speed of light’ remains set only for measurement purposes.
2. During WWII, a British Submarine Kept a Reindeer on Board for 6 Weeks
The name of the reindeer was Pollyanna (it was a female reindeer), and the crew of the HMS Trident shared their already crammed quarters (there were 56 men on board of the submarine) with the reindeer for 6 weeks. The reindeer was a gift from the Russians, the then-allies of the British troops. At some point, she ate a navigation chart, but the submarine managed to make it back home nonetheless.
3. A Family of Blue-Skinned People Lived in Kentucky for Many Generations
The Fugates of Troublesome Creek were known in their region for their unusual blue skin. Later research on their DNA revealed that this coloring was due to a genetic condition, which made their blood not carry oxygen properly. The photo above is colorized (the original was black and white), but you can tell how strange the family looked. This is easily in the top 10 weird facts you’ve ever heard of, right?
4. Melting icebergs and glaciers sound like a fizzy drink
The sound made by a glacier or iceberg which is melting due to warm weather is a distinctive noise resembling a freshly poured fizzy drink. The sound is actually called ‘bergy seltzer’.
5. The Top of the Eiffel Tower Leans by 7 inches due to the Sun
In hot days, under the sun’s rays, the top of the Eiffel Tower gets so heated that the metal quasi-melts and makes the top part of the tower lean away from the sun by as much as 7 inches. Of all the weird facts we present here, we bet this makes you feel the most unsafe, if you were to visit Paris anytime soon.
6. A song started playing in 2001 and will finish playing in 2640
Known as the longest musical performance in history, the song is John Cage’s Organ / ASLSP (as slow as possible), and the playing of it takes place in Halberstadt, Germany, at the church of St Buchardi. The song, played by the church’s organ, started on Sept. 5, 2001, and the last time a note changed was in October 2013. The next time a note will change will be in 2020 (yes, the song’s performance is really that slow). How’s that for weird facts?
7. The biggest snowflake in the world had 15 inches
The largest snowflake in history (at least, the largest ever measured) span across 15 inches, and even got its own Google Doodle at some point. That’s one big snowflake!
8. There are around 60,000 miles of blood vessels in a human body
If scientists took out all the blood vessels in an average human body and connected them end to end, they would have enough material to go across the world more than twice.
9. Powerful Earthquakes shorten Earth’s day
Each time there’s a really big earthquake, the Earth’s axis is permanently displaced a little, shortening the length of one day as experienced by the planet. The earthquake which took place in Japan in 2011 robbed us of 1.8 microseconds, and the 2004 Sumatra quake took off 6.8 microseconds from each day.
10. People have an unique tongue print
Just like fingerprints, tongue prints are unique to each person. Thankfully, no law requires us to allow the collection of our tongue prints in addition to fingerprints.