Select Page
Summer Not-busters

Summer Not-busters

Making a movie is a difficult, time-consuming, and expensive propositions.  While some projects come together naturally, others seem to have tragedy, misfortune, and just plain bad luck heaped upon them.  Horror films are fertile ground for apparent curses and it a...

read more
Typo Negative

Typo Negative

 On July 22, 1962, at 9:21 AM, NASA launched the Mariner I space probe to great fanfare.  Less than five minutes later, the mission was “forcefully aborted.”  According to NASA, ““The booster had performed satisfactorily until an unscheduled yaw-lift maneuver was...

read more
Be a Sport

Be a Sport

Mutaz Barshim of Qatar and Gianmarco Tamberi of Italy had been friends for a decade since meeting at the world junior championships in Canada.  Their track & field careers had paralleled each other, including potentially devastating ankle injuries.  At the 2021...

read more
Pow Wow and Chow Chow

Pow Wow and Chow Chow

Journey with me now to southeastern Pennsylvania, the area around present-day York and Lancaster, for this topic voted on by supporters at patreon.com/yourbrainonfacts, where you can get swag and bonus content and you totally should.  My name’s...   BEAUTIFUL...

read more
Everybody Complains about the Weather

Everybody Complains about the Weather

In 2008, China began to assemble banks of artillery around Beijing, 6,781 artillery guns and 4,110 rocket launchers.  Thousands of civilians, many of them peasant farmers without military experience, were enlisted to man the gun.  The government was concerned about...

read more
Project Pigeon and Acoustic Kitty

Project Pigeon and Acoustic Kitty

Of all the lives risked in WWII, were those of thousands of dogs, used for everything from guard duty to pulling sleds.  And they almost had a particularly awful purpose on the ironically named Cat Island, if one Swiss expat had gotten his way.  William A Prestre...

read more
I Think That I Shall Never See

I Think That I Shall Never See

In 1999, Nicola Strickland went on a holiday to the Caribbean island of Tobago, and strolled the beaches looking for shells and corals in the white sand, when she came upon a tree dropping green fruit that looked much like small crabapples.  Strickland had a munch of...

read more
Unsolved Poisonings

Unsolved Poisonings

Between April 1928 and March 1929 three people from the same wealthy London family died in mysterious circumstances.  The first to die was Edmund Duff, who complained of nausea and leg cramps after eating his dinner.  Ten months later, his sister-in-law, Vera Sidney,...

read more
Name, Rank, and VIN Number

Name, Rank, and VIN Number

The phrase “e-car” these days is shorthand for electric car, but in 1955, it was the working name for a car that was going to shake up the mid-range luxury car market -- fancier than most Fords, cheaper than a Mercury.  It had a unique vertical grill, teletouch drive...

read more
The Game of Life (and Death)

The Game of Life (and Death)

Sports today are tame by history’s standards. Ancient societies didn’t seem to think twice about spending blood and lives in the pursuit of great athletic entertainment. People have been hacked, poked, drowned, punched, cut, smashed, and skied to death, all in some of...

read more
Endlings 2 – Animals

Endlings 2 – Animals

The tiny mouse-sized pygmy tarsier is a nocturnal primate native to Indonesia.  They’re not monkeys, but prosimians, like lemurs.  They have big eyes like a Furby, but are only 4 inches long, and most of that was tail.   Precious little was known about them, as they...

read more
Throw the First Stone(wall) Revisited

Throw the First Stone(wall) Revisited

​Pride goeth before the fall.  Except in Atlanta, where they hold it in October.  On the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots, and just in time for Pride Month, NYC officials announce that a monument [will be erected] to honor pioneering LGBTQ activists Sylvia...

read more