TIL Hippos sleep underwater even though they breathe air. They automatically close their nostrils and surface to breathe every 3-5 minutes. This all happens unconsciously, even in their sleep.
TIL: The aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth has a reverse osmosis system capable of producing more than 500 tonnes of fresh, drinkable water from sea water per day.
TIL inventor of the Murphy-Bed, William Lawrence Murphy (1856-1957), created his first hide-away bed as means to convert his one-room apartment into a parlour, specifically to host the company of his future wife. It was considered inappropriate at the time to for a woman to enter a man’s bedroom.
TIL Switzerland has 7 simultaneous “presidents”, each with equal power. Every year they rotate control of 7 federal depts & who acts as “head of state” (e.g. when dealing with other countries). They come from various parties — right now it’s 2 conservatives, 2 liberals, 2 socialists, and a centrist
TIL Gordon Ramsay has 16 Michelin Stars. Only two chefs have ever earned more.
TIL Swedes have a national weekly eating plan. Thursdays are traditionally pancakes and split pea soup.
TIL that when Hattie McDaniel became the first black person to win an Academy Award (for her performance in “Gone with the Wind”) in 1940, she was seated at a segregated table at the side of the room
TIL In 2019, a potato chip factory in Hong Kong found a World War I grenade in a shipment of French-grown potatoes, just as the potatoes were going through their processing machines.
TIL that Confederate soldier Willis Meadows survived a shot to the eye at the battle of Vicksburg. 58 years later, he randomly almost choked to death in his own home until he coughed up a 1 ounce bullet. It was the same one that lodged into his head years earlier.
TIL researchers were able to predict whether or not a couple will stay together with extreme accuracy based on one partner’s reaction to things that excited the other. For example, if a wife says “look at that beautiful bird” and the husband blows it off, that’s a strong indication they’ll divorce.