World’s Strangest

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The Story of the Keep Calm and Carry On Poster

(Video Link) A simple phrase, topped with the crown of King George VI. Since its rediscovery twelve years ago, the Keep Calm and Carry On poster has become a popular symbol of courage and resolution. Now learn the story behind the poster and its rediscovery in an amazing bookstore in northeastern England. -via Nag on the Lake

7 Other Famous Abbeys in England

The most famous abbey in England right now is not actually an abbey at all — it’s a castle. Highclere Castle is the stand-in for Downton Abbey, the eponymous location of the mega-popular British series about an upstairs-downstairs household in the early 1900s. While Downton might be the only abbey about which people in the [...]

The Traveling Lakes of Antarctica

When Douglas MacAyeal at the University of Chicago gave undergraduate science interns the boring task of digitizing satellite photos of Antarctic lakes, little did he know that he would stumble upon a neat geographical [...]

The Bush Family Posing on an Elephant in 1964

<p><img src=”http://www.mentalfloss.com/blogs/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/bush-family-on-an-elephant.jpg” alt=”" title=”bush-family-on-an-elephant” width=”570″ height=”489″ class=”alignnone size-full wp-image-93674″/></p> <p>OK, it’s a statue. But it fooled me long enough to start searching for other pictures of future presidents posing with extra large animals. Unless someone has a good pic of young Grover Cleveland with a rhinoceros, I guess I’ll shelve the idea.</p> <p>Here’s the caption from the [...]

Another Royal Wedding

Video Link This one took place in 1923. You might recognize the happy couple – they were recently the subject of an Oscar-winning movie. Yup, that’s Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, AKA the Queen Mother, and Prince Albert, Duke of York (the future King George VI). Via Lil Blue Boo

When Political Conventions Go Wild: Four Knock-Down, Drag-Out Convention Floor Fights

by Brendan Spiegel 1. The Convention Turned Klanbake For Americans accustomed to today’s tame, scripted political conventions, the 1924 Democratic Convention went down more like a taping of The Jerry Springer Show. On one side was New York Governor Al Smith, supported by urban, Catholic voters who favored his efforts to repeal prohibition. On the other side [...]

Stop: Stammer Time!

I haven’t seen The King’s Speech yet, but this rap video makes me want to run to the theater. In this two-minute video, rapper Dan Bull remixes video from The King’s Speech with audio from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Aire, Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro, and Bull himself rapping as King George VI. You’ve never seen royalty [...]

A History of Stuttering in the Movies

The new movie The King’s Speech is about George VI and his problem with stuttering. The film is being hailed for its sensitive portrayal of stuttering, which is relative to the quite insensitive way previous movies have presented the disorder. The movie, as formulaic in its way as Rocky or Rudy, is buoyed by its good [...]

$50 Challenge Winner: Congratulations, Allison Young!

It took Allison Young all of five minutes to correctly answer the ten questions in our $50 Challenge. Congratulations! She’s won a shopping spree in the mental_floss store. And this month’s random t-shirt winners are Ryan Pelster and Meri Beck, who also had all the right answers. I’ll be in touch about your prizes. 1. [...]

The $50 Challenge!

Here are ten questions that you’ll need the latest issue of mental_floss magazine (or some crazy good luck) to answer correctly. The first person to submit the correct answers for all 10 questions to flossychallenge@gmail.com wins a $50 gift certificate to the mental_floss store. And we’ll award free mental_floss t-shirts at random to three other [...]