World’s Strangest

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The mental_floss Guide to the NCAA Tournament: The East

We’re going region by region, giving you one fun fact about each team in the tournament. (1) Syracuse Syracuse’s colors were originally pink and blue, but the class of 1890 changed it to orange. A member of that class explained the switch at his 50th reunion in 1940: “What kind of ‘whoopee’ can be made with [...]

The New Hipster Cities of America??

There’s a new-ish blog on the scene here in Austin called Culture Map, which I’ve been enjoying very much during my stay. The blog actually started in Houston and was so successful there that it’s journeyed up to Austin and now has its eyes on spreading into Dallas and beyond. There was a fun post [...]

Pilot Locked in Bathroom Causes Terrorist Scare

The airline industry will have to put together a new set of procedures to cover the event of a pilot getting stuck in the toilet. A Delta Airlines flight from Asheville, North Caroline to New York City was the scene of a security alert yesterday. While the pilot was in the lavatory, the door latch [...]

The Flying Flivver:Henry Ford’s Attempt to Make Us All Pilots

“Mark my words: a combination airplane and motorcar is coming. You may smile, but it will come.” Auto magnate Henry Ford earned his fair share of ridicule in 1940 when he made that boisterous proclamation. The flying car may still be coming, but it’s certainly taking its sweet time. Seven decades later, there’s still no sign [...]

Rubber Chicken Launcher

I can’t find much information about the contraption pictured above, but I gather that an artist in Asheville, North Carolina made a machine that launches rubber chickens a considerable distance using a motorcycle engine. The video shows him firing the chickens at what appears to be a sculpture made of boxing gloves. Image Link, Image Link, [...]

The mental_floss Guide to the NCAAs (The Southeast)

We may not be much help in filling out your bracket. But throughout this week we’re going to bring you a _flossy take on March Madness: one interesting fact about each of the 68 teams in the tournament field. Tonight we’re tackling the Southeast region. (1) Pittsburgh graduated its first female students in 1898. Sisters Margaret [...]

11 Clever and Creative Gingerbread Structures

A gingerbread house is a delightful combination of food and art. Some bakers go way beyond the call of duty in their holiday creations and deserve to be seen even years after the gingerbread is dismantled (or eaten). In this list you’ll see houses, mansions, skyscrapers, pop culture recreations, and even math! 1. Falling Water This gingerbread [...]