The US Navy has a tradition that no submarine is ever considered lost at sea. Subs that don’t return, including 52 lost during WWII, are considered “still on patrol.” Every year at Christmastime sailors manning communications hubs send holiday greetings to those listed as still on patrol.
When the Japanese emperor announced Japan’s surrender in WW2, his speech was too formal and vague for the general populace to understand. Many listeners were left confused and it took some people hours, some days, to understand that Japan had, in fact, surrendered.
Gilberto Baschiera, an Italian banker, is considered a modern-day Robin Hood. Over the course of 7 years, he secretly diverted 1 million euros to poorer clients from the wealthy ones so they could qualify for loans.
In 1714, a Norwegian captain and an English captain had a 14-hour long ship fight. Afterwards, both ships were badly damaged and the Norwegian captain was running out of ammo. He sent an envoy to the English ship, asking if he could borrow some of their ammo. They said no.
Robert Downey Jr. only got clean because his girlfriend (now wife) saw him on drugs, then gave him an ultimatum of quitting or losing her. He stopped at a Burger King on the coast and threw his drugs in the ocean. She is now known around Hollywood as “the Miracle That Saved Robert Downey.”
Up to the early 1970s, credit cards were reserved for men, women could get a credit card if their husbands cosigned on the application. The Equal Credit Opportunity Act (1974) made it unlawful to discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, or marital status.
There is a town in Japan that is filled with scarecrows. Basically the entire town has left or died and this woman has filled this tiny town with handmade scarecrows.
In the 1870s, the city of Liège, Belgium hired 37 cats to deliver mail. It was unsuccessful.
To celebrate selling it’s one billionth song sold, Steve Jobs personally called the customer to inform him he’d won 20″ iMac, 10 fifth generation iPods, and a $10,000 iTunes gift card.
After returning from WWII, over 1 million black americans were denied the benefits of the GI bill for free education and low rate home loans.