When you’re in the mood to play a song or two, you could grab a guitar or sit down at a piano. But for some Massachusetts residents, typewriters are the instruments of choice. The Boston Typewriter Orchestra was founded in 2004 and its members use old typewriters to produce unique sounds that they turn into music—they’ve even released an album. As typewriter musician Brendan Emmett Quigley explains, different typewriter models result in different noises. For example, “a Smith-Corona Galaxy 12 has a power space function that makes a nice metallic clang sound.”
On July 4, 2002, marathon swimmer Martin Steel began a journey in northern Minnesota that saw him making his way down the 2,348-mile Mississippi River in an effort to become the first person to swim its entire length. On September 9, he reached his goal, ending up in the Gulf of Mexico in Louisiana after an incredible 68-day journey. That’s about 34.5 miles a day!
Research conducted at the University of Vienna suggests that yawning may play an essential role in cooling our brains. But yawning to cool the brain is “not functional” when the outside temperature is as hot as the body, explained the study’s lead author Jorg Massen. And if you’re wondering: Yes, sleep deprivation does increase brain temperature, which could be a factor in why we yawn more when we’re tired.
The Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan in Yamanashi, Japan, holds the Guinness World Record for being the oldest hotel in the world. The hot-spring hotel sits at the foot of the stunning Akaishi Mountains and has been in operation since it was founded by Fujiwara Mahito in 705 A.D. Since then, it’s been in the hands of some 52 generations of the same family for more than 1,300 years.
The Vikings never warn stupid helmets with horns on them. That wouldn’t have been even the tiniest bit practical for fighting. That whole bit of nonsense started with a 1876 production of Wagner’s Ring Cycle, a German Epic Music Drama, composed by Richard Wagner.
Since the time of Aristotle, the fact that the Earth is round has been accepted nearly universally among European intellectuals. So, if you taught that Columbus couldn’t get financing for his voyage because people thought he was going to sail over the edge of the Earth, you were taught wrong. He actually had trouble getting financing because people thought the East Indies were way farther away than he figured, and they were right. Plus, Columbus was an idiot
The Roman Emperor Nero has a reputation for being an asshole, but he didn’t dance around like an idiot playing the fiddle while Rome was burning. In fact, that account is false on two fronts. First, Nero wasn’t even in Rome when the fire was going, and secondly, the fiddle didn’t even exist at the time.
In his earlier travels Polo had written he had eaten a food that was similar to lasagna. SO he knew what pasta was long before he ever stepped foot in China. The whole Story of him brining pasta back didn’t actually show up until the 1950s in the US. When a group of marketing people made the story up to get people to eat more pasta.
This was actually said by French philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau, who wrote it in his autobiography when Marie Antoinette was only nine years old.
Everyone has heard the story, seen the painting. Van Gogh was all butthurt over some chick, so he got loaded, choppped his ear off and mailed it to her. Yeah, that never happened. He did lose part of his ear however, that part is true. It was because he got in an argument with his roommate, and fellow painter Paul Gauguin, who took out a sword and chopped it off. Gauguin was a highly skilled fencer, so after he did his damage, the two made up the story to keep Gauguin out of jail.