World’s Strangest

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7 Giant Fences Dividing Good Neighbors

The existing 650-mile fence along the U.S.-Mexican border has been a hot political topic in the States for the last few years, and with the Republican primary campaign in full swing, it’s making headlines again. Already, Michele Bachmann has promised to build a “double-walled fence” along the entire 2,000-mile border, while Herman Cain has said [...]

Buried MiG-25 Foxbat Jet

While searching for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, US Forces found some pretty interesting things in the desert, like this MiG-25 Foxbat interceptor. It was hidden underground with its wings removed. Military personnel dug it up by hand in 2003 and transported the jet to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio for examination. Eventually, [...]

5 Tyrants Who Died Relatively Peaceful Deaths (and 5 Who Weren’t So Lucky)

According to Herodotus, when the Athenian lawgiver Solon visited Croesus, the fabulously wealthy king of Lydia, Croesus — showing off his riches and sumptuous palace — asked Solon who the happiest man in the world was, arrogantly assuming Solon’s answer would be the king himself. But the king was disappointed and angry when Solon named [...]

13 Peaceful Protests and Whether They Worked

© Julie Dermansky/Julie Dermansky/Corbis The Occupy Wall Street demonstrations have been going on for over a month. From one side, we hear that the occupiers are a bunch of naive kids who need to change out of their hemp ponchos and take a shower if they want to be taken seriously. Others say the demonstrators are [...]

Pentagon Racked $720 Million in Late Fees

Think that your overdue library book’s late fee was bad? Well, that ain’t nothin’ compared to what the Pentagon paid in late fees in returning rented containers … The Pentagon has spent more than $720million [...]

5 More Animals That Romped Through New York

An escaped peacock from New York’s Central Park Zoo found perching on Fifth Avenue window ledges drew attention—and international headlines—from news crews, bird watchers and well wishers last week. The now-famous cerulean fowl, which eventually returned to the zoo on its own, got us thinking about a handful of other animals that have taken unexpected trips [...]

Message in a Bottle

When Josh Baker was 10 years old, he dumped an entire bottle of his mother’s vanilla extract down the sink. He then wrote a quick note that said, “My name is Josh Baker. I’m 10. If you find this, put it on the news. The date is April 16, 1995.” He stuffed the note inside [...]

What’s Going on in Yemen?

In Spring of 2010, Haley Sweetland Edwards took us on a tour of Yemen for the Spinning the Globe section of mental_floss magazine. Here’s her explanation of the current situation, followed by an excerpt from last year’s Yemen feature. © YAHYA ARHAB/epa/Corbis Yemen is the poorest nation in the Arab world. It’s economy has flat-lined. It’s facing [...]

Alkali Metals vs. Water

LinkScroll down for today’s pictures & links. Alkali Metals vs. Water Alkali metals can be cut like butter but they positively hate water… Do we even have to say, do not repeat it at home? Link Today’s pictures & links: Playboy’s Land Yacht! What a design… Why didn’t they make it? It would fit perfectly with the “1980s Decade of Excess”. [...]

Seawise Giant: You Can’t Keep a Good Ship Down

We’ve all heard of the Titanic and the Exxon Valdez. The story of the tanker than was once known as the Seawise Giant is much less familiar, although it’s every bit as memorable. The largest ship ever built—she was nearly twice as long as the Titanic—actually sank, only to rise up from the ocean floor [...]