Ketchup was sold in the 1830s as medicine. In 1834, it was sold as a cure for an upset stomach by an Ohio physician named John Cook. It wasn’t popularized as a condiment until the late 19th century.
Ray Bradbury wrote the first draft of Fahrenheit 451 on a typewriter in UCLA Library’s basement that cost 10 cents for 30 minutes. 9 days and $9.80 later he had a short story titled ‘ The Fireman’ that was later expanded into Fahrenheit 451.
During WW II, Allies suspected that the Germans were using the Leaning Tower of Pisa as an observation post. Leon Weckstein, a U.S. Army sergeant sent to confirm this. But he was impressed by the beauty of Tower and thus refrained from ordering an artillery strike, sparing it from destruction.
GM recalled 800k cars in 2014 for faulty ignitions. The cars would shut off while being driven which meant drivers lost power steering/brakes, and the airbags wouldn’t deploy. They knew about the problem since 2005 but never fixed it because it would be ‘too expensive’. 124 people died.
During the Great Depression, banker Mark Welch Munroe convinced struggling families in Quincy, Florida to buy Coca-Cola shares that traded at 19 dollars. Later, the town became the single richest town per capita in the US with at least 67 millionaires.
Environmental activist Julia “Butterfly” Hill lived in a 1500 year old California redwood tree (known as Luna) 180 feet (55 mm) off the ground for 738 days in order to prevent it from being chopped down by Pacific Lumber Company. She successfully saved the tree.
People with dementia think that stuff like a black doormat isn’t a doormat, but a deep hole in the floor. Due to these visual perception problems, people with dementia avoid stepping the doormat, and this is sometimes used to keep them from leaving their care facilites.
Boris Mikhailov, captain of the USSR hockey team, was offered a $1 million contract to leave Russia in 1980 after the Miracle on Ice. However, he declined as the KGB was standing next to him when the offer was made.
In Milwaukee, it is a Christmas tradition to eat raw ground beef and onions on rye bread.
The vast majority of “Push to Walk” buttons at intersections and “Close Door” buttons in elevators are disabled and only exist to give the illusion of control. In NYC, less than 10% of walk buttons are still even connected to the power grid.