81 Fun Facts That’ll Make Everyone You Know Say “I Never Knew That!”
1. German chocolate cake is named after a guy named Sam German, not the country.
3. The creature that kills the most people every year isn’t snakes, sharks, or even other humans — it’s the mosquito.
5. “What in tarnation?” is literally just another way of saying, “What the hell?”
7. There’s an island in Japan you can visit that’s inhabited only by friendly bunnies.
9. The last letter added to the English alphabet wasn’t Z — it was the letter J.
10. In 1518, a “dancing plague” took over the town of Strasbourg, France.
11. People wore fake moles (or “beauty patches”) made of velvet, silk, or mouse skin in the 18th century as a fashion statement.
12. Before the invention of color TV, 75% of people said they dreamed in black and white. Today, only 12% do.
13. A female architecture student prevented a Manhattan skyscraper from collapsing in the 1970s when she caught a massive design flaw.
14. It’s illegal to own just one guinea pig in Switzerland because they get lonely.
15. Wombat poop is cube-shaped.
16. The British royal family isn’t allowed to play Monopoly.
17. Popcorn wasn’t always a beloved movie snack — in fact, prior to the Great Depression, movie theaters hated popcorn.
18. Paper bags aren’t any better for the environment than plastic ones.
19. In the 19th century, experts warned women about a disease called bicycle face, which meant getting stuck with the awkward faces they made while biking.
20. Until the 1980s, it was illegal for a woman to drive a car down Main Street in Waynesboro, Virginia, unless her husband was walking in front of the car waving a red flag.
21. The voice of Mickey Mouse and the voice of Minnie Mouse got married IRL.
22. A can of Mountain Dew can dissolve a mouse 😳.
23. For a short time, the planet Uranus was named…George.
24. Movies have to clarify that they’re fiction because of a 1930s lawsuit that traces back to none other than Rasputin.
25. Iceland has an elf whisperer who inspects construction sites before anything gets built to make sure no elves are hanging around.
26. In the 1920s, women in several US cities organized Anti-Flirt Clubs in to combat catcalling.
27. Toilet seat covers are basically pointless.
28. There is an island in the Bahamas that’s inhabited only by swimming pigs.
29. Richard Nixon once smuggled a suitcase full of weed through the airport for Louis Armstrong.
30. Ancient Greeks came up with the idea of cyclops after they found a fossil of a mammoth, and had no idea what it was.
31. There are 70 (!) ingredients in a McRib sandwich.
32. There are lower-case numbers in addition to lower-case letters.
34. For a brief time, Melbourne had the best name on the planet: Batmania.
35. In 1981, a black lab named Bosco was elected honorary mayor of Sunol, California.
36. Lego is the largest tire manufacturer in the world.
37. A “buttload” is a real measurement of weight.
38. 4% of the sand on Normandy beach is made up of shrapnel from D-Day that has broken down.
39. If someone gives opinions on topics they know nothing about, they’re an ultracrepidarian.
40. Canadians say “sorry” so much that The Apology Act was passed in 2009, declaring that an apology can’t be used as evidence of admission of guilt.
41. Amelia Earhart and Eleanor Roosevelt once ditched a White House dinner party to go on a joyride flight to Baltimore.
42. There’s a high school in Minnesota that gives service dogs yearbook photos.
43. Most American movie villains have British accents because we associate them with having high intellect and low morals.
44. Earth used to be covered with giant mushrooms that were 24 feet tall and three feet wide, instead of trees.
45. Mother’s Day was quite literally invented to be anti-commercialism.
46. There’s a sexual phenomenon named after President Calvin Coolidge.
47. The logo for Chupa Chups was designed by Salvador Dalí.
48. Modern thong underwear was introduced by Fiorello LaGuardia, the mayor of New York City.
49. The Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia, has so many cats on its grounds that it employs a “Press Secretary to the Cats.”
50. A writer predicted how the Titanic would sink in 1898, 13 years before it was even built.
51. There’s a town in Poland where everything is decorated with paintings of flowers.
52. There are trees that can grow more than one kind of fruit, and they’re called fruit salad trees.
53. “Horizontal refreshment” was 19th century slang for sex.
54. In Queensland, Australia, it’s illegal to own a pet rabbit unless you’re a magician.
55. Elizabeth Jennings Graham did what Rosa Parks did, but a century earlier on a New York City streetcar. Her eventual lawsuit led to the desegregation of New York’s public transit system.
56. Sea otters have a pouch under their forearm to store their favorite rocks.
57. T-shirts were originally marketed to unmarried men who didn’t know how to sew buttons back on collared shirts by themselves.
58. Prior to the 20th century, squirrels were one of America’s most popular pets.
59. All colors of Froot Loops have the same flavor.
60. April 18, 1930, was such a slow news day that at 6:30 PM, the BBC’s radio announcer said, “There is no news.”
61. Before the 1800s, people had a “first” and “second sleep.” They would sleep 3-4 hours, wake up for 2-3 hours to do some type of activity, then go back to sleep until morning.
62. Cows have “best friends” and get stressed when separated.
63. Ketchup was sold as medicine in the 1830s.
64. Robert Todd Lincoln, Abraham Lincoln’s son, was in close proximity to three out of four presidential assassinations.
65. If you’re being violent or drunk in Japan, police will get a futon and roll you into a burrito.
66. All mammals take about 12 seconds to poop, regardless of size.
67. Miami is the only major US city founded by a woman.
68. The story you’ve probably heard about lemmings jumping off of cliffs to their deaths is FAKE.
69. Anxious travelers can play with mini horses at a Kentucky airport.
70. In 1965, a patent was filed for a “birthing apparatus” which would spin pregnant women around at as much as 7G until their baby was flung out from the centrifugal force.
71. A cat co-authored a physics paper in 1975.
72. Cornflakes were invented to prevent masturbation.
73. When the University of Nebraska plays football at home, the stadium becomes the state’s third largest city.
74. Shaggy from Scooby Doo’s real name is Norville Rogers.
75. Every year on Aug. 5, the Mars Curiosity rover sings itself a sad, solitary “Happy Birthday.”
76. There are turtle tunnels in Japan to save them from being run over by trains.
77. Snakes can belch fire.
78. “She sells seashells by the seashore” was written about an actual person named Mary Anning.
79. Mr. Rogers announced that he was feeding his fish on every episode of his show because a blind viewer once asked if they were okay.
80. Red Sour Patch Kids are the exact same candy as Swedish Fish, just with some sour sugar sprinkled on them.
81. Baby puffins are called pufflings.
More trivia and fun facts: 9 Books That Actually Helped Me Win On “Jeopardy!”