10 Facts that Sound Totally Made Up!

the moon is not that close
Zoom and the moon by CLAUDIA DEA licensed under CC BY 2.0

Have you ever come across a so-called ‘fact’ that turns out to be completely fake? Of course, you have, we all have. There are thousands of examples of completely false ‘facts’ out there. No doubt, they are fascinating but are utter nonsense.

Well, this article is not about those facts! It is about some of the weirdest, craziest facts that seem entirely made up. And there are tons of those as well. All the facts that follow are 100% real, verifiable and yet sound complete BS! So, let’s begin, shall we?

Hurricane by WikiImages licensed under CC0 Public Domain

1.Females hurricanes kill more than the male ones. Just try to remember the name of a hurricane. Go ahead; I’ll wait! Let me guess; you recalled Katrina or Sandy or Audrey, didn’t you? Well, as it turns out, there is a reason for it.

Hurricanes with female names are more devastating than the ones with male names. I know, this sounds crazy, right? But it is entirely true!

What makes this even crazier is the fact that the names are selected randomly from a list irrespective of size or location of the hurricane. So, there is no question of bias, at least as far as we know. While hurricanes with male names kill 11 people on average per strike, female hurricanes kill 59! [Source: economist.com]

saudi arabia jeddah tower
The Kingdom Tower by Maher Najm licensed under Public Domain Mark 1.0

2.Saudi Arabia imports sand! What is the one thing besides oil that you associate with the country Saudi Arabia? Sand, of course, right? The whole country is a desert. So, when I tell you that they import sand, you would not believe me. But it is true!

Turns out that countries like Australia and Germany ship tons of sand for construction to the country.

Now, there is a reason for this demand. The sand in the desert is too fine and can’t be used for construction. Hence, the country must import almost all the sand from other nations. [Source: bbc.com]

the moon is not that close
Zoom and the moon by CLAUDIA DEA licensed under CC BY 2.0

3.The moon is further away from the earth than you realize. Looking at the moon every night may give you a false impression about how far the moon is from the earth. Let me tell you; it is a lot farther than you think.

As a matter of fact, all the planets of the solar system can fit between the earth and the moon with some space to spare! [Source: slate.com]

It sounds crazy, right? Now with this information, just imagine what a feat it was for humankind to reach the moon back in 1969! Amazing, isn’t it?

roman gladiator
Gladiator by Rebecca Siegel licensed under CC BY 2.0

4.Romans used their urine to wash their mouths. Now, this one is disgusting, but true nonetheless! Ancient Romans were a genius civilization. They pioneered some scientific fields and helped to shape the modern world.

Now, as disgusting as it may sound, there are many benefits of urine. It contains Ammonia- a known antibacterial agent. So, whether the Romans knew the bactericidal powers of Ammonia or not, they sure knew the importance of urine.

As a matter of fact, they also used fermented urine for as mouthwash as well! It may sound gross for the modern times, but if you think about it, it is ingenious, don’t you think?

jupiter diamond storms
Jupiter by TBIT licensed under CC0 1.0

5.There are diamond showers on Jupiter. Diamonds are one of the rarest gemstones here on earth. But apparently, Jupiter has tons of them! As a matter of fact, when it rains on Jupiter, it rains, you guessed it, diamonds!

Now to the scientific truth behind the phenomenon. The atmosphere of Jupiter is rich in Methane. During electromagnetic lightning storms, the methane is converted to carbon. The extreme pressures turn the carbon to diamonds! [Source: bbc.com]

So, the next time you take a stroll of the galaxy, don’t forget to stop by the largest planet in our solar system to pick some bling!

Spine Cervical and Upper Thoracics by Michael Dorausch licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

6.Height and Gravity! Your height varies during the day. You are the tallest when you wake up and become shorter as the day progresses! I don’t mean you lose a lot of height as the day progresses, but it is measurable nonetheless!

The reason behind this bizarre phenomenon is the unique architecture of your spine. The bones of your spine (the vertebrae) are stacked on top of each other with a cartilaginous cushion in between called the inter-vertebral disk. [Source: verywell.com] As the disks are spongy, they get compressed during the day due to the weight of the spine, and you lose a few centimeters.

Astronauts who spend significant time in outer space without gravity can gain as much as two inches of height when they come back to earth. However, this gain is short lived, and they return to their normal height in a few weeks.

desert island
Island by Shazwan licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

7.The loneliest island! Would you ever dare to live on an entire island, alone? I know I won’t! There is an island in the South Pacific Ocean that has a population of one!

The island is called Alofi that belongs to the French Overseas Collectivity called Wallis and Futuna. Back in 2003, two people were living on the island. However, the 2010 census data shows that just one man is living on this 32-square kilometer island, alone! It is like the movie ‘Castaway,’ but the dude is living there out of choice. Bizarre!

Dhaka steamers (Bangladesh) by Ahron de Leeuw licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

8.Bangladesh has more people than Russia. Just think about this one for a moment. Russia is the largest country in the world. It has the as many as nine time zones and has an area that can cover the entire planet, Pluto.

On the other hand, Bangladesh is slightly larger than New York State. And yet, more Bangladeshis are living in the country than Russians living in Russia!

The population of Russia is about 143.5 million, and that of Bangladesh is 156.6 million. A whole 13 million more!

computer keyboard
Computer Keyboard by Marcie Casas licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

9.Most common words in the English language. The top 10 most used word used in written English are “the,” “be,” “to,” “of,” “and,” “a,” “in,” “that,” “have,” and “I.”

It may not come as a surprise, but get a load of this one, these ten words make up roughly 25% of any written text! [Source: businessinsider.com] So, if you take any written text- a book or newspaper, you will see that the frequency of these words is roughly 25%!

Now, go ahead and search for these words in this article, you will be amazed at what percentage you get!

the number 1
Number 1! by Dave McLear licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

10.The dominance of the digit ‘1.’ If you are preparing for a show like Jeopardy, mugging up random numbers can be very tricky. There are tons of random numbers of some significance. Significant statistical numbers such as the distance between cities or population of some town.

Now, logically, all these numbers are random, and there is no commonality between them, right? Wrong!

According to a mathematical study, the probability of a random, significant number beginning with the digit ‘1’ is 30%!

It goes against logical thinking, though. I mean a significant number can start with any digit between 1 and 9. And as the numbers are totally random, the probability of that number starting with any of these digits is 11.1%, right? But in reality, there is 30% chance that this number begins with a ‘1’.

So, you can comb through any set of random data- basketball averages, the number of McDonald’s in a particular area or lengths of rivers- there is a 30% chance that the number begins with ‘1’!

So, the next time you come across a ‘fact’ that sounds too crazy to be true, just remember, the truth can be as strange as fiction if not stranger! If you have any weird and wonderful facts, please share in the comments below!


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