World’s Strangest

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Biking the Hiawatha Trail

When you read about the huge cost (in money and lives) of building railroads through the roughest parts of America, you have to wonder what it would be like to travel those routes. The guys at For 91 Days found out when they rode bikes on the 15-mile Hiawatha Trail in Idaho. The Hiawatha Trail opened [...]

Otter Solves Shape Puzzle

(Video Link)  Nellie is a sea otter that lives at the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium in Tacoma, Washington. She’s already a cup stacking master and has now moved on to a more complicated task: solving a toddler’s shape puzzle. I think this is how the Planet of the Apes story began. -via Daily of the Day

Cup-stacking Otter

(YouTube link) Nellie the sea otter lives at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium in Tacoma, Washington. The otters are given toys for entertainment and enrichment, and here you see Nellie stacking them back in order, after which she hands them back to her keeper. Before you know it, our factory robots will be replaced with otters, [...]

Brain Injury Turned Man into Math Genius

Genius: we used to think that you’re either born with it or not. But today, we learn that there’s another route to become a mathematical genius – being bonked in the head. That’s what happened [...]

Baby Leopard Loves Cuddles

(Video Link) A caretaker found just the right scratching spot to induce bliss in a baby leopard. This little one lives at the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium in Tacoma, Washington. -via The Uniblog

Paper Airplane Producers: Morning Types vs. Evening Types

The following article is reprinted from The Annals of Improbable Research. by David L. Dickinson, Dept. of Economics, Appalachian State University, and Todd McElroy, Dept. of Psychology, Appalachian State University People differ in their diurnal (time of day) preferences: some are morning-types and others are evening-types. These differences are explored in a unique experiment design in which [...]

Your Beards Are Invalid

(YouTube link) Neatorama has featured lots of very strange beards in the past, but this… this I’ve never seen. The audience at the 1991 Beard and Moustache Championship in Tacoma, WA, had a double-rainbow moment when competitor Dean Beacon revealed his entry for the Freestyle Beard portion of the contest. I think commenter moosewomb says it [...]

Our Readers’ Favorite Bookstore Cats (Volume Three)

Many mental_floss readers contributed to the list of bookstore cats we met in the previous four posts on the subject -and I certainly appreciate your help! However, many of those favorites don’t have a picture or biography on the internet. Here are some of the few left that do. Francis BookCourt is a small, independent bookstore in [...]

Which Makes You Crazier: Crack or Heroin?

Well, there’s a lively philosophical cafe house discussion and then there’s this fight to the death between two people high on their respective drugs. Oh, and crack won: Loniesh Veasey told Tacoma police she was high on crack cocaine when she argued with a friend, slashed her to death with a razor and swapped shoes with [...]

Bertucci Family Feud

Vito and Giuseppe Bertucci, father and son, living at 3,103, South Twelfth Street, Tacoma, Washington, were equal owners of their house. The son was married. A short time ago the house caught fire and, as a result, became in need of repairs. But here a hitch arose. Father and son could not agree upon just [...]