Not Going Anywhere

We usually think of Japan as a well-organized, efficient, and polite society.  That is except for August 12, 1990, when evacuation traffic for typhoon Winona mixed with traffic from people coming back from their summer holiday.  Due to their 18th century...

Boldly Go

Before the Mercury program began in 1958, doctors were worried about how our bodies would function without the gravity in which we had evolved for hundreds of thousands of years. What would happen with a circulatory system that was used to gravity working against it?...

Never Work with Children or Animals, part 1

  We’ve been filming animals as long as we’ve been filming ourselves.  The first movie to star an animal as the protagonist was Rover to the Rescue, all the way back in 1905.  Rover to the Rescue was a British silent drama directed by Cecil Hepworth,...

Feeling Salty

    In the ancient Ghanian empire, a drum sounds in the distance.  Traders go to the appointed spot. The people they are trading with have already gone, leaving their goods behind them.  This is the silent trade. The commodity that wait for them unprotected...

For The Last Time…

  Thanks to the members of patreon.com/yourbrainonfacts for choosing today’s topic, an option available to members at all levels, and most of our members are also getting their 25th-of-every-month bonus episode, with another to come every 10th....

Science Fiction Redux

Guest: Shawn Ennis from Stories of Yore and Yours As the spike in sales of neckties and golf-themed tchotchkes tells us, last Sunday was Father’s Day, and no, it’s not the day that sees the most collect calls all year. For one thing, it’s not 1987; who still makes...

We Can’t Have Nice Things – Advertising edition

  An ad agency in New York cooked up a novel campaign to advertise themselves to potential clients.  They mailed a top executive at each firm a stuffed toy...and a ransom note. The words, cut out of magazines and newspapers in classic ransom note...

Throw the First Stone(wall)

    In the early hours of June 28, 1969, New York City police raided the Greenwich Village gay club the Stonewall Inn.  Let’s set the scene. Gay clubs were much more than a place to get a drink or look for love. The 1960s, and the decades that...

Mishmash Mash-up

While preparing for a scheduled radio address from his vacation home in California, President Ronald Reagan announced, [clip].  It didn’t go out over the air, but someone had it on tape and slipped it out to the world. Even in the pre-Internet days, the Soviet Union...

Butter in the Bank 2

Odd Dad Out promo Proper preparation prevent poor performance.  You’ve got a first aid kit in your car, a little box of tornado supplies in the closet, canned goods in the pantry, a few thousand rubber bullets.  You don’t have that one? The London Metropolitan police...

A Girl And Her Camera

One of the preeminent documentary photographers of the 20th century, Dorothea Lange was born Dorothea Nutzhorn on May 26, 1895, in Hoboken, New Jersey.  Two events in her childhood would have a major impact on the trajectory of Dorothea’s life. Her father...

We Built This City

There is something in modern man that makes him look at society and say “I could do this better, but smaller, and over there.”  Few succeed in their vision. Although many utopian societies seem doomed from the outset, the Republic of Minerva was up against a unique...

Bird-pocalypse!

PROMO - The Short Stories of Augie Peterson The topic for today’s episode was voted on by our brainiacs at patreon.com/YBOF, though I almost ignored the poll results because someone in the comments thought I couldn’t make an episode out of the other topic, so you can...

Well-traveled Bodies

In the winter of 1976, the 6 Million Dollar Man tv show was filming in a haunted house in Long Beach, CA.  When a crew member went to move a garish-looking dummy to a different spot, the dummy’s arm broke off at the elbow.  It was then that the crew member noticed the...

Heard But Not Seen

The question pops up on social media pretty regularly: if you could give your younger self one piece of advice, what would it be.  Most people’s answers have to do with relationships or credit-ruining purchases. My advice to 7, 13, or 17 year old me would...

Earth’s Unsung-est Heroes: medical edition

When you think of world-saving heroes, obvious answers come to mind: Superman, Captain America, Randy Quaid’s character from Independence Day, the usual.  But there are real life people who have thousands, millions, and in one case a billion lives in the real world,...

Objection!

Content warning: This week’s episode references a lot of murders and crimes against the person.  A lot a lot. If that would bring you down, this would be an ideal time to go back into the vault for a second listening of an old favorite episode. On 27...

Career Critters

In 1971, scientists at the National Accelerator Laboratory (NAL) had a problem. The NAL's new Meson Laboratory was nearing completion, but the pipe work, through which subatomic particles would fly, was dirty.  It needed to be spotless to work properly. Someone had to...

We Can’t Have Nice Things: Vandalism edition

Picture this: You've got to cross the Neva River, but you don't make it to the Liteiny Bridge on time. As the drawbridge rises to the sky, so does an erect phallus that's painted on it. Plain as the nose on your face and the junk in your shorts, thanks to...

Black Sparrow and Buffalo Soldiers

Since colonial times, African-Americans have fought in America’s wars.  Every war, in fact. The first person to die in the Revolutionary war, Crispus Attucks, was black.  Black soldiers have put their lives on the line for a country that for centuries has...

Unkillable

Lachimann Garung was a member of the British-American army during WWII.  The trench he was defending came under attack by Japanese troops with grenades.  Garung caught and returned two, but the third one took off his arm. Whereas the average person would be down for...

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