Best Facts of the Month - Page 9

Agriculture got started because people wanted more booze!


Most of you might think that agriculture was developed since mankind was looking for a way to generate more food for himself and everyone in his specie.

WRONG!

According to some historians, it is believed that humans developed agriculture so they could make more alcohol! It is believed that humankind's first encounters with alcohol were an accidental fashion; however, once they got familiarized with the effect, they went into the pursuit of frequent intoxication.

According to McGovern, a historian, long before the invention of the wheel, an ancient Chinese civilization were brewing a type of mead with an alcohol content of 10 percent. Also, along with some colleagues, he has discovered that several civilizations would harvest grains and plants that went along with alcohol!

Even if you don't drink, thank alcohol for uniting people throughout history and hence making them create a better world for everyone!

(Source)

There's a man whose brain sees numbers with shapes, colors and feels. He can recite over 22k digits of Pi!


Savants are fascinating to observe because their brains are so incredible. While completely incapable of performing some tasks, they are so incredibly amazing at doing others that it has captured worldwide attention.

Daniel Tammet is one of these savants, who claims that numbers result in an emotional result in each person. For example, he claims each positive integer up to 10,000 has it's own shape, color, and feel. The number 289 is extremely ugly, while 333 is strangely attractive. Pi he describes as beautiful. 9 is large and towering, while 25 is fun and would be invited to a party.

This may sound bizarre to most of us, but to a savant it makes perfect sense. Tammet currently holds the world record for reciting the most digits of pi at 22,514, and taking only a week per language, learned Romanian, Gaelic, Welsh, Icelandic, and six others!

(Source)

Billionaire Chuck Feeney donated most of his fortune anonymously.


You probably hear all the time about rich people graciously donating their fortunes to the less fortunate. But, Chuck Feeney likes to keep his charitable efforts under the radar. Last year, the foundation Feeney created, the Atlantic Philanthropies gave $450 million in grants around the world, more than any US charity except the Ford and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundations.

Feeney has actually worked very hard to disguise his identity, wealth, and generosity. Atlantic does not appear in the annual rankings of the biggest American philanthropies because it was set up in Bermuda. Feeney himself owns no homes, but stays in apartments around the world rented by the foundation. He flies coach and rides the subway. His five children worked summers as waiters, hotel maids, and cashiers! More of Feeney’s secrets are exposed in the source!

Some awesome lists!

The handshake holds a lot of meaning--and history.


Fist bumps, head nods and secret hand maneauvers crowd the way many people greet each other these days, but nothing beats the good, old fashioned handshake.

Though it may feel like a way to assert your dominance when you squeeze the other hand as hard as possible, it actually originated from a very peaceful gesture in a tumultuous time.

The first time a handshake was documented appears on the Kalhu monument, which shows the Assyrian king, Shalmaneser III, and Babylonian Marduk-zakir-sumi, shaking hands in public to show friendship between the nations.

It's believed to be practiced all the way back to the 5th century BC in ancient Greece. Archeologists have found pottery with soldiers shaking hands in many of the ruins.

The thought behind the handshake was as a gesture of peace and trust. A soldier would present a hand that doesn't have a weapon.

Today, handshakes mean many things other than an almost universal greeting. They now convey anything from congratulations, to respect, to a binding agreement.

(Source)

A handkerchief saved George Bush from a grenade!


By now, George Bush is probably an expert on having stuff thrown at him. On May 10th 2005, Vladimir Arutyunian stood for hours in Freedom Square in the centre of Tbilisi waiting for USA President George Bush and Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili to speak. 

When Bush began speaking, he threw a Soviet-made RGD-5 hand grenade, wrapped in a plain red handkerchief at him. It landed 18.6 meters from the podium, near Saakashvili, his wife, Laura Bush, and other officials. 

However, it failed to detonate because as Arutyunian pulled the pin, it hit a girl, cushioning its impact and the red handkerchief prevented the striker lever from releasing. 

A security guard quickly removed it, and the two presidents learned of the incident at the next rally. Arutyunian was arrested later arrested and sentenced to life in prison.

(Source)

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