World’s Strangest

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11 Reasons Athletes Change Their Names

Lakers star Ron Artest made waves this summer when he announce he was changing his name to Metta World Peace. Although it’s one of the more extreme moves, it’s far from the first time an athlete has adopted a strange name. Here are 11 great (and not-so-great) reasons athletes make the switch. 1. To get more [...]

The Incredible Food Pyramid of Michel Lotito

You don’t get the nickname Monsieur Mangetout (“Mr. Eat Everything”) without earning it. Over the course of 40 years, Frenchman Michel Lotito ate an estimated 9 tons of metal. In his youth, Lotito suffered from pica, a mental disorder in which people compulsively eat non-food items such as dirt and plastic. (Lotito’s condition was first diagnosed [...]

Ambigrams and Upside-down Heads

Sam “No Nickname” Saxton makes vertical ambigrams with illustrations that read the same whether you hold them right side up or upside down. He’s given the treatment to presidents, pop culture figures, and even Star Wars characters! Link

The Quick 10: 10 Celebrities Who Used Childhood Nicknames

Having a rather straightforward name like Stacy means I’m not really subject to a lot of nicknames. Stace is pretty much it, although a select group of friends call me Stac (back in note-writing days, a spelling-challenged friend who meant “Stace” actually wrote “Stac” – I know, it’s a fascinating story). These 10 people presumably [...]

How the Big 12 Schools Got Their Nicknames

Much of Big 12 country is farmland, which is evident in the original nicknames of many of its teams. From Bears and Buffaloes, to Cyclones and Sooners, here are the stories behind the nicknames of 11 of the current Big 12 schools. (Nebraska was covered with its future Big Ten brethren last week, while Pac-10-bound [...]

How the Big Ten Schools Got Their Nicknames

From Badgers and Boilermakers to Hoosiers and Hawkeyes, the Big Ten Conference boasts an interesting set of school nicknames. Here are the stories behind the monikers of the conference’s 11 teams, as well as future Big Ten member Nebraska. Illinois Fighting Illini According to the University of Illinois archives, the first documented use of the term [...]

Origins of SEC School Nicknames

Top-ranked Alabama visits Arkansas on Saturday for a heated Southeastern Conference football battle between two schools with a couple of the more unique nicknames in college sports—Crimson Tide and Razorbacks. Here are the origins of the nicknames for all 12 teams in the conference, including Commodores, Volunteers, and pairs of Bulldogs and Tigers. Alabama Crimson Tide Hugh [...]

How the 10 Schools in BCS Bowls Got Their Nicknames

If the BCS rankings factored a school’s nickname into its formula—and Texas quarterback Colt McCoy’s final pass of Saturday’s Big 12 Championship Game had fluttered in the air for one second longer—Alabama would probably be playing the TCU Horned Frogs in the national championship game. As it is, the Crimson Tide will square off against [...]

The Origins of All 30 NBA Team Names

The Hornets were supposed to be the Spirit, while the Grizzlies were almost named the Mounties. Why is a team in Los Angeles nicknamed the Lakers, and what’s a team called the Jazz doing in Utah? As the NBA season tips off tonight, here’s the story behind the nicknames of all 30 teams. Atlanta Hawks In [...]

What’s With the Uniforms? The Stories Behind the AFL Throwbacks

The eight charter members of the American Football League are celebrating the 50th anniversary of the league’s launch by wearing throwback uniforms for select NFL games this season. At various times before the AFL merged with the NFL in 1970, the Titans played in New York, Tennessee and Kansas City’s current franchises were in Houston [...]