22 Things I Learned This Week That Sound Fake But Are 100% True

Posted on May 1, 2021

Would you believe me if I told you the oldest water ever discovered is 1.6 billion years old?

5.

Goosebumps are typically an involuntary reaction that’s triggered by such things as temperature or emotion. For some people, however, it’s not involuntary at all. There’s a phenomenon called Voluntarily Piloerection where a very small percentage of people can actually give themselves goosebumps on command. Some estimate that only 1 in 1,500 people possess this mysterious ability — do you?


Taken By Roberto Gomez / Getty Images

6.
The Kowloon Walled City, which was demolished in 1994 to make room for a park, was once the most densely populated place on Earth. Upward of 40,000 people, crammed into roughly 200 tightly packed towers, lived within an area that amounted to little more than a city block. It wasn’t just a living space; it contained bars, restaurants, brothels, slaughterhouses, factories, and much more. Because it was built around an old Qing dynasty fortress, the British government — which ruled over Hong Kong at the time — had no jurisdiction over the Walled City, making it a completely autonomous and lawless enclave:

An aerial photo of the Kowloon Walled City, Hong Kong taken in 1989. [1942 x 1466] from
HistoryPorn

8.

This is Martin Laurello, who had various stage names such as “Revolving-head man,” “the Human Owl,” and “Bobby the Boy with the Revolving Head” due to his very unsettling ability to turn his head 180 degrees. He was also allegedly able to sip this beer with his head turned around:


John Phillips / The LIFE Picture Collection via

Here’s the caption that Getty provided for this photo: Revolving-head man Martin Laurello, turning his in complete opposite direction as he take a glass of beer fr. a bartender, which he is able to drink while maintaining this freakish position at party held for Robert Ripley’s oddities.

9.
In 1961, Gus Grissom became the second American ever to go to space on a flight that lasted only 15 minutes and 30 seconds. As the capsule plummeted back toward Earth and landed in the Atlantic Ocean, everything was going exactly as planned — that is, until the escape hatch blew open way earlier than expected. The capsule filled with water and sank, and Grissom nearly drowned in the process. The Liberty Bell Capsule spent 38 years on the ocean floor, at a depth of 16,000 feet (4876.8 meters). In 1999 it was salvaged and restored, and it’s currently on display in the National Air And Space Museum in Washington, DC:

Gus Grissom’s Liberty Bell 7 Mercury capsule, lost in 1961 in 16,000 feet of water from
submechanophobia

11.
You’ve of course heard of Alexander Graham Bell and Thomas Edison, but you may not have heard of Lewis Latimer, one of the first Black inventors in the United States. Latimer was a brilliant inventor in his own right whose contributions helped catapult Bell and Edison into the pantheon of great American inventors — only, Latimer was self taught because he didn’t have the same access to education as these other two did. Thomas Edison’s lightbulbs, which he patented and claimed full credit for, had one major flaw: they would blow out almost immediately. It was Latimer who found that carbon filaments would last longer, a discovery that would revolutionize the world:

Lewis Latimer. His story needs to be shared. from
Damnthatsinteresting

14.
Michael Collins, who was a part of the historic Apollo 11 mission that put humans on the moon, died this week at the age of 90. Though Collins never got to step foot on the lunar surface, he played a pivotal role in the mission’s success. In his memoirs he described what it felt like to be all alone in the Columbia as it orbited the moon. His isolation was intensified during the blackouts he’d experience when he’d pass over the far side and lose all contact with his crew and mission control, writing, “I am alone now, truly alone, and absolutely isolated from any known life”:

Apollo 11 Pilot, Michael Collins has passed away today. While Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong were on the moon, he was in the Command Module orbiting the moon for 28 hours, alone. Rest In Peace Michael Collins, you continue to inspire the younger generation to pursue a job in the space industry. 🚀 from
interestingasfuck

16.
The steppe bison was an ancient bison species that’s been extinct for many thousands of years now. There used to be so many of them that researchers are finding more and more of their bones every single year — oftentimes when they’re hoping to find something a bit more exciting. Blue Babe is a mummified steppe bison that was found almost perfectly preserved. It was discovered with gashes in its back left by a lion, though no flesh was missing, which means it didn’t become that lion’s meal:

Blue Babe, a 36,000 year old mummified steppe bison found in Alaska in 1979 from
interestingasfuck

And last but not least…

Want to see what I learned last week? Click here to find out. And click HERE to see what I learned in April.

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