56 Fascinating Facts You Might Not Know From The ‘Today I Learned’ Online Group

If an apple a day keeps the doctor away, does learning new facts each day keep boredom at bay?

Alright, I promise I’m not writing a Doctor Seuss-esque story here. But if you’re interested in learning something new, you’ve come to the right place! We’ve got a brand new list of facts from the “Today I Learned” subreddit that will give you something fascinating to talk about at your next dinner party.

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Be sure to upvote the facts that you learned from this article, and feel free to share anything else you’ve recently found out in the comments below. We’re never too old to learn something new, so if you’re interested in continuing your education after finishing this article, you can find some of Bored Panda’s previous “Today I Learned” pieces here, here and here!


TIL the pet food company Chewy sends flowers and a card when a customer’s pet dies. They will reimburse the purchase of unopened food and suggest it be donated to a shelter. They also offer the option of talking to someone about the grief of losing a pet.

Image credits: marmorset


TIL that Steve McQueen had a habit of demanding free items, in bulk, from studios, when doing movies, it was later discovered that these items (like electric razors and jeans) went to Boys Republic reformatory school, where McQueen had been, as a teenager.

Image credits: Ryan_Holman


TIL During the 2000’s, Google, Apple, Adobe, Intel, and several other mega corporations had a mutual agreement not to hire each other’s employees in order to keep salaries low. This led to a 400 mil class action lawsuit.

Image credits: knight54

Here at Bored Panda, we’re big fans of the Today I Learned subreddit. And clearly, many other people are too. This online community that is dedicated to sharing “interesting and specific facts” about things that people recently learned has over 29 million members. With so many members sharing a wide variety of fascinating facts, there are no limits to the wealth of information we can harness from this page. We are dedicated to being lifelong learners, and if you are too, you’ll certainly enjoy this fun fact filled list.

While memorizing facts might not be the best way to learn if you want to master a subject or skill, it can be a great jumping off point. According to psychology teacher Marc Smith, “Knowing facts helps us to place other problems into context and access higher order thinking skills. If the facts we have memorized are accurate and accessible they can be used in order to give context to other situations, if we cannot recall these facts we are unable to place new problems into context.”


TIL Sugar does not cause hyperactivity in children. This myth is based on a single 1978 study; no subsequent study has shown a relationship.

Image credits: rirold


TIL David Copperfield was once robbed at gunpoint — but successfully performed an illusion to convince the robbers his pockets were empty when they weren’t.

Image credits: MississippiJoel


TIL since its premiere in 1987 the show Unsolved Mysteries has helped locate half of the wanted fugitives it has featured, reunited over 100 lost loves and freed 7 prisoners who were wrongfully convicted. An additional 260+ cases involving murder, missing persons and fraud have also been solved.

Image credits: GoodSamaritan_

Marc notes that not all learning should be centered around simply memorizing facts, but it should not be completely disregarded either. “Memorizing facts can build the foundations for higher thinking and problem solving,” he notes. “Constant recitation of times tables might not help children understand mathematical concepts, but it may allow them to draw on what they have memorized in order to succeed in more complex mental arithmetic. Memorization, therefore, produces a more efficient memory, taking it beyond its limitations of capacity and duration.”

We all know that it would be impossible to learn everything there is to know about the world, or even most subjects. But our brains are hungry for knowledge, and the more that we soak up, the better off we will be. We can better relate to more people and better understand this complex world we live in if we know even a tiny bit about a wide variety of things.


TIL that Ben & Jerry’s employees are entitled to 3 free pints of ice cream every day.

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TIL Oscar the Therapy Cat accurately predicted 25 deaths. After this the staff started notifying family members of residents to come say goodbye if Oscar was curled up next to them.

Image credits: Excivious


TIL some insomniacs may have nights of “sleep misperception”, where it feels like you were awake all night but you actually slept for hours.

Image credits: xxdoomkitty

We are naturally curious beings. As children, we seek to soak up as much information as we possibly can, but somewhere along the way, we sometimes lose this spark. Negative experiences at school or having teachers that suck the life out of every lesson can make us believe that learning is boring. But that’s simply not true. Learning can be about anything! So if you are passionate about playing guitar, writing poetry or woodworking, you still have to dedicate time to learn about those things. But I bet you don’t dread the hours you get to spend educating yourself on those topics because you do it by choice. That’s why “Today I Learned” is so great. Nobody is forcing members to be there or share facts; everyone just genuinely wants to. And when we’re interested in learning, we are much more likely to retain what we’ve read. 


TIL Wheat and Barley were ancient Egyptian pregnancy tests. A woman would urinate on bags of barley and wheat and if they sprouted, she was likely pregnant. A 1963 study found that this was accurate ~70% of the time.

Image credits: aspersnickety


TIL NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar agreed to appear in the movie “Airplane!” on the condition he be paid $35,000.. the exact price of a rug he wanted to purchase.

Image credits: TonyT074


TIL that Pope Innocent VIII was breastfed while he was on his deathbed, as that was the only thing he could eat or drink.

Image credits: TheGeminiWolf

If you need some motivation to help you understand why we should never end our education, we’ve consulted this article from Genashtim. The first reason they note for how learning continuously benefits us is that it helps us generate new ideas. A body in motion stays in motion, and a brain in motion does just the same thing. When we stimulate our brains with new ideas and new information, we are hungry for even more. It is great for us to be exposed to new ideas and new facts all the time. Even if you don’t realize it while reading through this list, you’re giving your brain an even bigger appetite for knowledge!


TIL that there was a 60s band named Nirvana that tried to sue the 90s band for having the same name as them. They wanted to cover them after that, but the project was scrapped due to Kurt Cobains death.

Image credits: biggestmemelover


TIL that Ticketmaster was caught recruiting resellers to scalp its own tickets.

Image credits: kellenbrent


TIL certain species of wild oats are able to walk. They have a pair of ‘legs’ called awns which flex and make the seeds crawl around, to find an ideal place to plant itself.

Image credits: Azmaeth

Learning also helps keep our passions alive. It can be easy to become stagnant or forget how much you enjoy certain hobbies or activities, but there is always more to be learned! It is silly to assume that we know all there is to know about anything, and especially when it comes to topics we are captivated by, we should never want to stop learning. This also helps us in our social lives, as we’ll never run out of things to discuss. If you meet someone who has very different interests than you, you can still find common ground if you know even a tiny bit about their passions. The more you know about, the better you can relate to others and find ways to connect and relate to them. So in a way, today you’re also learning how to be a better friend!


TIL in an effort to protect her son and daughter from falling under the sinister charms of Charles Manson, Angela Lansbury relocated her family from LA to Ireland. Describing Ireland as “free from bad influences”, she then refused work to better support their recovery from heroin addiction.

Image credits: Unlucky-Pomegranate3


TIL in 1912 4 yr-old Bobby Dunbar disappeared, was found eight months later in Mississippi with a couple that refuted that it was him. Courts ordered the boy to live with the Dunbars. 100 years later DNA verified that the boy was Bruce Anderson and had been wrongly identified by Dunbar’s parents.

Image credits: Bdub76


TIL the vocals for the Gnarls Barley song “Crazy” (2006) were recorded in one take. Not only that, it was the first time singer CeeLo Green ever tried singing the lyrics. The song topped the charts in many countries and peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100.

Image credits: big_macaroons

We should never underestimate the power of learning, even when it comes to how it can benefit our health. Learning new skills has been linked to various mental health benefits, including lower rates of depression and anxiety, higher levels of optimism, self-esteem and life satisfaction and greater abilities to cope with stress. It can also help prevent or delay age-related mental decline, such as Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Perhaps learning a new fact a day can actually keep the doctor away after all. 


TIL Emperor Hirohito of Japan was given the original print of the Disney short Lambert the Sheepish Lion, after it was learned it was his favourite Disney film.

Image credits: LoneRangersBand


TIL TGI Fridays stopped requiring employees to wear flair after Office Space came out and customers began making jokes about the flair.

Image credits: DavidAssBednar


TIL the car coordinator of Once Upon a Time in Hollywood managed to locate the exact 1959 Ford driven by the Manson Family, but a replica was used instead because the idea of having the real Manson car was considered too creepy.

Image credits: beansandrice96

As kids, many of us tried to rush through our education to move onto the next stage of life, but the reality is that life itself is a constant form of schooling. Iulian Ionescu wrote in his blog post “The Simple Answer To Why You Should Never Stop Learning”, “Everyone wants to be finished with school so that they can start their ‘real’ life. I think that’s a distorted view. Life doesn’t consist exclusively of your skills, knowledge, and wisdom. There are vast parts of your character that you don’t even touch in school. For all intents and purposes, you are not a fixed person. No matter how much you’d like to think that you are finished growing, time will change you. Events will change you. The world will change and evolve around you.”


TIL traffic roundabouts, compared to intersections with stop signs or signals, have 37% fewer overall collisions, 75% fewer injury collisions, and 90% fewer fatal collisions.

Image credits: PianoCharged


TIL In 36BCE, Roman statesman Marcus Varro wrote about germs, describing “minute creatures which cannot be seen by the eyes, which enter the body through the mouth & nose & there cause serious diseases”. The germ theory of disease would not be widely accepted for another 1,900 years.

Image credits: nerdy_subha


TIL that the geologist Michel Siffre spent 2 months underground without time cues to study how his body clock adapted, repeated the experiment for even longer on himself and more subjects, and discovered that their bodies tended to switch to a 48-hour clock. In one case, one even slept 34 hours.

Image credits: ShabtaiBenOron

As my mother used to ask me every afternoon upon getting home from school, “What did you learn today?” Hopefully many things already! Keep upvoting the fun facts that blow your mind, and feel free to share even more in the comments. We can never truly be bored, pandas, if we’re always expanding our knowledge. And if you want to read some more articles featuring fun facts from “Today I Learned”, you can find several more here, here and here!


TIL After traveling more than 1 billion miles, a Japanese spacecraft brought 1,500 grains from an asteroid back to Earth in 2010. It was the first time samples from an asteroid had been brought back to Earth.


TIL In the 18-1900s dueling scars were a prominent feature of German officers and academics. The scars were symbols of courage and also showed one was “good husband material”. Some would even make their own scars by cutting themselves.

Image credits: jamescookenotthatone


TIL Marjoe Gortner is an Evangelical preacher who decided to pull the curtain back on the scams he and other preachers used. He invited a crew to film behind the scenes as he revealed tricks of the trade and the sacks full of cash he earned nightly. It won the ’72 Academy Award Best Documentary.

Image credits: Bluest_waters


TIL Caffeine is a banned substance by the NCAA. A urinary caffeine concentration exceeding 15 micrograms per milliliter (corresponding to ingesting about 500 milligrams, roughly 6 to 8 cups of brewed coffee, two to three hours before competition) results in a positive drug test.

Image credits: TexasBogart


TIL Mel Gibson originally intended for The Passion of the Christ to have no subtitles, despite the film being entirely in Latin, Hebrew and Aramaic.

Image credits: Old-Association700


TIL that US Navy sailor’s love of ice cream in world war II was so great that in 1943 the navy purchased an ‘ice cream barge’ to act as a mobile ice cream making factory for sailors and marines. The barge was capable of producing 10 gallons of ice cream every 7 minutes.

Image credits: je97


TIL When the printing press made its debut in Europe in the 15th century, thousands of old texts were ‘recycled’ for use as binding material for newer books. In 2015, researchers at Leiden University started using an x-ray technique to reveal these texts. Some are up to 1,300 years old.

Image credits: nerdy_subha


TIL Teddy roosevelt, who is thought of as the national park man, is actually the National forest man. During his presidency he founded 5 of 63 US national parks. As for national forests, he founded 150 of the 154 US national forests!

Image credits: NationalParkFan_


TIL about Giles Corey, who was accused of witchcraft during the Salem trials. He used a legal loophole and refused to plea, which meant he couldn’t be tried. He was then tortured to death, but still refused to plea, allowing his children to claim their inheritance.

Image credits: TheAnswerToYang


TIL the US didn’t have the $15m to pay France for Louisiana, so they financed it through banks in London. Napoleon had made the deal with the US to fund his war against Great Britain and Europe. Britain allowed this deal to go through only because they didn’t want France to have their NA territory.

Image credits: Gagarin1961


TIL Boeing built an entire fake town on top of their Seattle area factory during WW2.

Image credits: sniperx1010


TIL the British had a secret WW2 plan called Operation Tracer to leave behind an observation post if the Germans captured Gibraltar. Six men were to be sealed inside a hidden chamber to observer the harbor and Strait of Gibraltar. They would have had 7 years of supplies and bicycle-powered radios.

Image credits: Bandit_the_Kitty


TIL in 2014 a drum of radioactive nuclear waste burst when workers used organic kitty litter to absorb the volatile chemicals. The cleanup cost was estimated to be $600mil+.

Image credits: OctagonCosplay


TIL The Fairey Swordfish biplane was considered out of date by 1939 but was effective throughout WW2. Swordfish sunk more enemy tonnage than any other plane, sunk numerous U-boats, disabled the Bismarck, and remained in use into 1945.

Image credits: jamescookenotthatone


TIL that the Watergate scandal began when burglars acting on behalf of the Nixon administration broke into Democratic campaign headquarters. They were caught because their lookout (posted in a hotel next door) was watching “Attack of the Puppet People” on TV and didn’t notice the police arriving.


TIL that in 2005 burglars stole $71.6 million from a bank in Fortaleza, Brazil by setting up a fake landscaping company near the bank and digging a 256ft tunnel beneath two city blocks to the bank over 3 months. Neighbors noticed vanloads of soil removed daily but assumed it was business-related.


TIL Physiologist Giles Brindley, in 1983 presented his treatment for erectile disfunction by injecting himself before his talk and dropping his pants to show the crowd of urologists.


TIL that Nosferatu plagiarized Bram Stoker’s book Dracula. Stoker’s estate sued them and attempted to destroy all copies of the film, but at least one copy made its way to the US where Stoker’s book had already become public domain. For this reason, it survived and circulated as a cult classic.

Image credits: TheOmnihil


TIL Abraham Lincoln signed the bill creating the Secret Service on April 14, 1865, the day he was assassinated.

Image credits: Avalon336


TIL Sonora Carver, one of the first female horse divers, went blind from retinal detachment while diving with her horse, Red Lips, at an Atlantic City show in 1931. Despite her permanent injury, she continued horse diving for another 11 years.

Image credits: The_Ry_Ry


TIL about Melanie Martinez, a Louisiana native who had five separate houses destroyed by five separate hurricanes: Betsy (1965), Juan (1985), George (1998), Katrina (2005) and Isaac (2012).

Image credits: big_macaroons


TIL The night before Emperor Hirohito’s surrender broadcast army officers launched a coup. The officers occupied the Imperial Palace trying to destroy the Emporer’s surrender record and assassinate officials. The plan failed when the record was smuggled out and the military didn’t support the coup.

Image credits: jamescookenotthatone


TIL that the line “You gotta keep ’em separated” in The Offspring’s song “Come Out and Play” came from when singer Dexter Holland worked in a biology lab. He had two steaming flasks of liquid that weren’t cooling off when placed next to each other, so he thought, “I’ve got to keep ’em separated.”

Image credits: beansandrice96


TIL about bank robber and kidnapper Vassilis Palaiokostas who is known as the “Greek Robin Hood” for giving away most of his stolen millions to the poor. He escaped by helicopter from the same maximum security prison twice while serving a 25 year sentence and remains at large despite a €1m bounty.


TIL about the McTrain, McDonald’s attempt in the ’90s to turn dining service cars on German trains into mini restaurants. The cars had deep fryers, coffee machines, soda fountains, water heaters, and a 269-square-foot kitchen.


TIL that Michael Jackson’s Thriller album was the best-selling album in the U.S. for 2 years straight, sold 32 million copies worldwide by 1983, and was certified 34x Platinum by the RIAA in 2021, making it one of only two albums to ever get more than 3x Diamond certified.


TIL that during the looting of the Chinese imperial palace at the end of the 2nd Opium War, the British soldiers took a Pekingese dog to gift to Queen Victoria. She named it “Looty”.

Image credits: AccessTheMainframe


TIL World War II codebreaker Dilly Knox used to solve coded enemy messages in the bathtub and persuaded his superiors to have a bathtub installed in his office in the cryptanalysis section of the British Admiralty.


TIL about the famous American novelist Winston Churchill who was the reason why the British prime minister referred to himself as Winston Spencer Churchill. They met on occasion, but gradually Spencer Churchill’s rise to power steamrolled the American into obscurity.


TIL Throughout its history, Jerusalem has been destroyed at least twice, besieged 23 times, captured and recaptured 44 times, and attacked 52 times.


TIL that the dogs in competitive agility don’t rehearse the course ahead of time. The courses are randomized at each competition, and the trainers (without their dogs) only see the layout beforehand on the same day. When the dog runs the course they are literally seeing it for the first time.


TIL General Hancock chose to sacrifice an entire regiment to save the Union Army during the Civil War. The 1st Minnesota Infantry Regiment, 250 men, was ordered to charge a brigade of roughly 1200 men. They suffered a staggering 82% casualties; the largest loss by any surviving U.S unit in a day.

Image credits: ChronosBlitz

Source: boredpanda.com

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