World’s Strangest

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The Tatra T87: Streamlined, Fast and Mostly Unknown

“QUANTUM SHOT” #800 Link – article by Mike Gulett Designed to resemble the German Graf Zeppelin dirigibles We wrote about Tatra’s streamlined cars before (also see other aerodynamically shaped cars in our older article). We received quite a good response, asking us to continue this series. Today we feature The [...]

A Brief History of Olympic Defectors

Getty Images For some athletes, the Olympics aren’t just a competition: they’re a chance to escape oppression. Earlier this week, seven of Cameroon’s athletes disappeared from London’s Olympic Village. The week before, three runners from Sudan’s Olympic training squad filed for asylum in Britain. Here’s a look at some other Olympic defections. 1948 Summer Olympics: London Marie Provaznikova, [...]

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 [...]

The Schindler’s List Typist

The man who typed up Schindler’s list and helped to save the lives of 1,200 Jews during the holocaust has died in Germany. Mietek Pemper was 91. Born Mieczyslaw Pemper in 1920 in the Polish city of Krakow to a Jewish family, he was imprisoned at the Nazi concentration camp Plaszow, where he worked as the [...]

The Fall of the Wall

The following is an article from the book Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader Plunges Into History Again. The East German government called the Berlin Wall “the Anti-Fascist Protection Barrier.” But the machine guns along its length were pointed inward, toward East Berlin, not outward. Shortly after midnight on August 13, 1961, the city of Berlin was cut [...]

More Not-So-Famous Christmas Firsts

We featured a few holiday firsts last year, and have since dug up a few more to further clutter your mind in between shopping trips. First Rockefeller Center Tree In New York City, the holiday season officially kicks off each year with the ceremonial lighting of a towering Norway spruce in Rockefeller Plaza. Decked out with some [...]

How Do Countries Choose Which Side They Drive On?

Chaos has descended this week on the tiny Pacific island of Samoa after government officials decided to force the entire nation to switch sides of the road on Monday. While Samoan officials insist there have been no accidents as a result of asking drivers to switch from driving on the right side of the road [...]

Why Don’t We All Drive on the Same Side of the Road?

Yesterday, the residents of Samoa began driving on the right side of the road instead of the left. This is the first major switch since the 1970s, when Ghana, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone made the change. Randy James of Time magazine has an article exploring how different nations came to use different sides of the [...]