World’s Strangest

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Scenes From the 1908 London Olympic Marathon

In honor of today’s Olympic marathon, here’s a look back at the origin of the race, plus an explanation of the whole “.2″ business. Olympic Marathon, 1908 London Games/Getty Images In 490 BC, a soldier named Pheidippides supposedly ran from the battlefield at Marathon to the city of Athens to alert the troops of a Greek victory. [...]

5 Olympians Who Sold Their Gold Medals

You wouldn’t know it with all of the hype surrounding the Olympics right now, but there are things more important than winning a gold medal. Just ask these athletes, who had good reason to sell their hard-earned precious metal. 1. Mark Wells, U.S. 1980 Hockey Getty Images You might wonder how an Olympic athlete could part with any gold [...]

5 Olympians Who Sold Their Medals

You wouldn’t know it with all of the hype surrounding the Olympics right now, but there are things more important than winning a gold medal. Just ask these athletes, who had good reason to sell their hard-earned precious metal. 1. Mark Wells, U.S. 1980 Hockey You might wonder how an Olympic athlete could part with any gold medal, [...]

Link Latte 185

#185 – Week of August 2, 2012 What if other planets orbited the Earth? – [fascinating video] Science Fiction writers Predict 2012 from 1987 – [interesting] Moon Hanging Down Tower Bridge in London – [cool pic] Letter that Started “2001: A Space Odyssey” – [vintage, cool] Truly Enormous Ship: Blue Marlin – [wow tech] Cool Sculptures made from Twist Ties – [...]

11 of the Craziest Events in Olympic History

Olympic history books are filled with stories of amazing individual performances and team achievements. But from poorly conceived competitions to spectators attacking the judges, a lot of crazy stuff has happened along the way. 1. Killing Animals Causes Horror, Fainting Live Pigeon Shooting, 1900 Paris Olympics Live Pigeon Shooting was the only time in Olympic history when [...]

How Much Gold is in a Gold Medal?

On our last semi-regular “Ask Matt” day, reader Mel asked, “Are there standards for just how much gold is in those gold medals these Olympic athletes are getting?” Getty Images The amount of gold in medals is indeed regulated, and there’s a lot less than there used to be. The prizes awarded at the Olympics have varied over [...]

11 Notable Medalists in the Olympic Art Competitions

We’ve been taking a look back at the fine art competitions that originated in ancient Greece and were revived as part of the modern Olympics from 1912 to 1948. Here are a few of the more notable medalists over the years. 1. Baron Pierre de Coubertin The founder of the International Olympic Committee and the man [...]

From 1912 to 1948, Art Competitions Were Part of the Olympics

Over the next two weeks, we’ll take a look back at the fine art competitions that originated in ancient Greece and were revived as part of the modern Olympics from 1912-1948. International Olympic Committee, 1896/Getty Images French aristocrat and educationalist Pierre de Frédy, Baron de Coubertin (seated, at left) was the man primarily responsible for reviving [...]

Dietribes: I Can Haz Cheeseburger

• Various dictionaries trace the first mention of the hamburger to 1889 as a “hamburg steak.” Or was it 1884 in the Boston Journal? Maybe, according to an entry in ”American Gastronomy” written by Louis Szathmary in 1974, the hamburger’s opening performance came in 1836 on a Delmonico’s menu. Regardless, it seems that this wholly [...]

Alligator Guitar

Rhinehart of Athens, Ohio sculpts and paints beautifully eccentric but fully functional guitars. Many are shaped like fish, the rear ends of horses, birds and dragons. This alligator is a lap steel guitar: Modeled on the Fender 8-string Stringmaster and Deluxe steels featuring 2 pickups with volume, tone, and blend for dialing in the perfect tone [...]