10 Facts You Never Knew You Wanted To Know

10 Facts You Never Knew You Wanted To Know

You never know a fun fact about otters could save you
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1) Barbie has a full name, a family, and a background

Barbie's full name is Barbara Millicent "Barbie" Roberts. The first doll was described as a "Teenage Fashion Model." Her parents' names are George and Margaret Roberts.

2) Mouthing the word "Colorful" looks like mouthing "I love you"

I grew up knowing "Olive oil" looked like "I love you" but I guess this one is true too. Disclaimer: I am not encouraging nor endorsing the use of this phrase to avoid uncomfortable situations in any way, shape, or form; in other words, don't shoot the messenger.

Speaking of which...

3) The phrase, "Don't shoot the messenger" dates back to Greek play writes and Shakespeare

The phrase (in various forms through the ages,) was used in the play Antigone by Sophocles, by Shakespeare in Henry IV, Part II and in Antony and Cleopatra.

4) The first man to survive falling over Niagara Falls in a barrel died of a freak accident

Bobby Leach was the second person to go down Niagara Falls in a barrel, and the first to survive it. Despite surviving the treacherous feat, Bobby ultimately died from slipping and falling on an orange peel (or banana peel, that's up for debate). After slipping, his injured leg became infected; his leg was amputated, and he died from the procedure two months later.

5) Sea otters sleep holding hands

Otters hold hands while they sleep so that they don't float away from each other. Even though humans (usually) don't sleep on floating water, we can take this as a reminder to hold on (figuratively or literally) to those who mean the most to us, and remember to tell them we care. Who knew humans could learn about love and life from otters?

6) Leonardo di Vinci could write with one hand while drawing with the other

They just don't make 'em like they used to, huh? If he doesn't impress you, I don't know what will; it might just be time for you to invent a way to be better.

7) The longest traffic jam in history lasted for 12 days, and was 62 miles long

The Beijing-Tibet Expressway near Beijing, China was not the place to be in August of 2010! What is reported as the longest traffic jam in history lasted for 12 days, and spanned 62 miles. Web reports from the time claim that the average car speed was about 2 miles per day! Our commutes don't feel so bad anymore, now do they?

8) In Paraguay, dueling is legal as long as both participants are registered blood donors

If you're going to duel, ensure that someone benefits from the bloodshed? At least something good will come out of the duel, I guess (though donating blood somehow seems more efficient).

9) Russia did not consider beer an alcoholic beverage until 2011

Before 2011, anything with less than 10% alcohol was considered "foodstuff." Recognizing beer as alcohol has come with more regulation as well; its sale is being regulated in the same way as spirits. Beer has become increasingly popular over the years, with advertisements suggesting it is a healthier alternative to spirits.

10) The hummingbird weighs less than a US penny

Puts carrying around a few extra cents in perspective, doesn't it? It's pretty amazing that something that weighs so little can have such powerful wings, and yet, we strong humans, who are capable of lifting heavy weights, can't fly...

Cover Image Credit: Mother Nature Network

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

Cover Image Credit: wordpress.com

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5 Best Quotes By Kate Chopin

"The voice of the sea is seductive, never ceasing, whispering, clamoring, murmuring, inviting the soul to wander in abysses of solitude."

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Rising to prominence during the Progressive Era—a time in America where women were often discouraged to read and write, or disengage with literature of any form due to the asinine, yet widely accepted sentiment that words on a page would drive the female conscience insane -- Kate Chopin is widely hailed by historians and scholars as one of the most iconic forerunners of the feminist movement that came to the dominate the early 20th century through her short stories and novels that have been on the receiving end of timeless praise.

Although she did not receive any accolades for her works, nor as much recognition in comparison to better known female authors during her time such as Edith Wharton -- who became the first female novelist to win The Pulitzer Prize -- Kate Chopin's legacy endured to serve as a rallying cry, and inspiration for several female contemporaries who to, have now ascended to their rightful places among the highest echelons of American Literature. Names that include Zelda Fitzgerald (wife to famed novelist F. Scott Fitzgerald), Gertrude Stein, and Willa Cather to name just a few.

Here are five of the best lines delivered through the words of one alone, which came to be the words of many:

1. "She wanted something to happen - something, anything: she did not know what."

We all dream of being something, of going somewhere. But often it lies beyond the reach of words, as an imagination uncapsulated by a camera or a picture frame. As a place we have not been, cannot go, and will never be.

2. "Perhaps it is better to wake up after all, even to suffer, rather than to remain a dupe to illusion's all one's life."

To keep it real is to keep it painful. But through all the falls, the bruises, the scrapes, and the tears, there may linger at the end if for a moment, only for a moment, a painlessness many have conned themselves into believing it will last forever.

3. "The voice of the sea is seductive, never ceasing, whispering, clamouring, murmuring, inviting the soul to wander in abysses of solitude."

The sea, the water which covers crevices, valleys, and deeps yet unseen and unperceived is a place of much wonder and much fear that roars beneath the crash of its waves against one another, and the rocks that await upon the shore. But through the beat of its torrential drum, it remains a place for the solemn, and the alone. A place for those to wonder as they wander alone in their solemnity.

4. "She was becoming herself and daily casting aside that fictitious self which we assume like a garment with which to appear before the world."

To grow up is to shed the cocoon woven from expectations others expect of us to confine us, and to emerge, and ascend towards expectations we have set for ourselves.

"... but whatever came, she had resolved never again to belong to another than herself."

As we embark on the travail that is life, there may come times where many will tell us we belong to something, or nothing. But as such despairing words calmer against our eardrums, seaking to breakthrough to invade, to infest our psyche, we will always belong to ourselves.

Forever a voice of empowerment as she was then, Kate Chopin reminds us -- through her novels and short stories that have been but a glimpse of her enduring resilience and courage -- that regardless of what or who we are, and where we come from and where we seek to go, we always belong somewhere.

A place that lies beyond many seas of many seductive whispers and whispers. A place where awaits to embrace us -- one none other than ourselves. Enveloping us in our arms like currents which surround us as we descend, and then arise in place where we may wander in solitude.

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