World’s Strangest

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Happy Canada Day! What is Canada Day?

Happy Canada Day! On this date in 1867, the nation was officially born when the Constitution Act joined three provinces into one country: Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and the Canada province, which then split into Ontario and Quebec. However, Canada was not completely independent of England until 1982. The holiday called Dominion Day was officially [...]

Hot Enough For Ya?

(YouTube link) In other words, stay away from Virginia! Then again, this is one instance where you’d be glad that the weatherman turned out to be wrong. From the news team at WTVR CBS 6 in Richmond, Virginia. -via Metafilter

The mental_floss Guide to the NCAA Tournament: The South

We’re going region by region, giving you one fun fact about each team in the tournament. (1) Kentucky Kentucky got its royal blue team color from a piece of clothing. In 1891 the school needed a set of team colors before a football game against in-state rival Centre College. After some debate, the students settled on [...]

The New Hipster Cities of America??

There’s a new-ish blog on the scene here in Austin called Culture Map, which I’ve been enjoying very much during my stay. The blog actually started in Houston and was so successful there that it’s journeyed up to Austin and now has its eyes on spreading into Dallas and beyond. There was a fun post [...]

Ferret-Down-Trousers – Something That I Hoped Wasn’t Real

From the Yes, This Really Happens Department, I bring you the terrifying sport-slash-torture-ritual of Ferret Legging, also known as “put ‘em down” and the much more descriptive “ferret-down-trousers.” Yes, folks, here’s how it works: you get yourself some ferrets, you open your trousers, and you place the ferret in the trousers. The [...]

Elizabeth Van Lew: An Unlikely Union Spy

Among hundreds of women who acted as spies during the Civil War, Elizabeth Van Lew stands out as one of the most effective. She was a prominent member of Richmond society who opposed both slavery and secession, but kept quiet among the fervent Confederates around her. Van Lew and her mother volunteered to care for [...]

Snake Sneaks Into House In Used Chair

You might want to thoroughly inspect any piece of used furniture before you bring it into your house. You never know what could be hiding inside. Richmond, Virginia man learned that lesson early Wednesday morning when a snake apparently slithered out of a chair he received nearly a week earlier. Barrett Edwards tells CBS 6 he was in [...]

Mega Earthquake and Tsunami

“QUANTUM SHOT” #684Link – article by Avi Abrams Help Japan now. Donate at Google’s Crisis Response Center. We’ve briefly touched on this topic in Future Plate Tectonics, yet with another huge wake-up call earthquake (and continuing swarm of smaller quakes) in Japan, we feel we should cover this kind of apocalyptic natural disasters more broadly, as well [...]

The mental_floss Guide to the NCAAs (The Southwest)

We may not be much help in filling out your bracket. But throughout this week we’re going to bring you a _flossy take on March Madness: one interesting fact about each of the 68 teams in the tournament field. Let’s kick things off with the Southwest region. (1) Kansas began playing basketball in 1898, shortly [...]

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Edgar Allan Poe

You’ve read Edgar Allan Poe’s terrifying stories. You can quote “The Raven.” How well do you know the writer’s quirky sense of humor and code-cracking abilities, though? Let’s take a look at five things you might not know about the acclaimed author, who was born 202 years ago today. 1. He Was the Original Balloon Boy You [...]