5 Mysteries That Still Keep Me Up At Night

5 Mysteries That Still Keep Me Up At Night

Because sometimes we all need to stay up until 3 am reading about unsolved murders and serial killers that were never caught.


It's fun to lose hours of sleep researching mysteries that you know will never be solved. But the hard part is that sometimes you run out of stories to read, and suddenly you already know about every case in the articles you've read. Here are five unsolved mysteries to keep you well-entertained when you're supposed to be writing that paper or just getting a good night's sleep.

1. The Toynbee Tiles

The Toynbee Tiles are a series of mysterious messages found embedded in asphalt around various cities in the United States. While it is unknown exactly where or when they started showing up, they were first mentioned in the media in 1994, in The Baltimore Sun. Their messages are strange and seemingly nonsensical. Many of the tiles contain variations of the message "TOYNBEE IDEA IN MOVIE '2001 RESURRECT DEAD ON PLANET JUPITER." While multiple theories have been put forth about who has been installing them or what they mean, nobody has ever figured who created them or why.

2. The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann

Madeleine McCann was a three-year-old British girl who disappeared while on holiday with her family in Portugal. One night, her parents left Madeleine and her siblings asleep in their apartment while they were dining with friends at a nearby restaurant, checking on the children throughout the evening. At one point in the night, Madeleine's mother went to check on them, and discovered that Madeleine was missing. What ensued was an investigation that was not only horribly botched by the Portugese police, but led to the McCann's being accused of murdering their own daughter.

While the case has never been solved, many theories have been put forth, including that a local kidnapped Madeleine and raised her as his own, or that the McCann's accidentally gave Madeleine an overdose of sleeping medication and hid her body out of fear.

3. The Murder of Missy Bevers

In 2016, 45-year-old fitness instructor Missy Bevers was murdered inside Creekside Church in Midlothian, in the early morning. She had been preparing to teach a class at 5 am. The cause of death was puncture wounds to the head and chest. Police discovered surveillance footage of the suspect wandering the church in full tactical gear (you can watch it here if you don't value your sleep), holding a hammer that was presumably used to kill Missy.

One strange aspect of the footage is that the suspect is shown to have an unnatural posture when walking. Police could not determine whether this was intentional or due to some kind of disability or injury. Though police believe the attacker to be male, Missy's husband believes that the attacker was female and that the murder was committed out of some kind of personal grievance. Police investigations also revealed that Missy had financial troubles and was unfaithful in her marriage, but they could not establish a motive for her brutal murder.

To make things even stranger, Missy's father-in-law was reported to have brought a women's shirt covered in blood to the dry cleaner's, claiming his dog had been injured and gotten blood on it. The cleaners reported it to the police, and it was subjected to DNA testing. While it was ruled out, it was determined that Missy's father-in-law is roughly the same height and build of the attacker, and he remained a person of interest in the case.

The case is still unsolved to this day.

4. The Disappearance of Asha Degree

Asha Degree was a nine-year-old girl living in Shelby, North Carolina, who disappeared under mysterious circumstances on February 14, 2000. Coming from a close-knit family, she lived with her brother and parents, who did not allow a computer in their house specifically out of fear of internet predators. Asha was known to be shy around adults and scared of the dark, which makes what occurred on February 14 so strange.

In the early morning, while it was still dark and there was heavy winds and rain, a truck driver and motorist spotted Asha walking along the highway with a small backpack. The motorist turned his car around, concerned to see such a small child walking by herself at that hour, but then Asha ran into the woods and disappeared.

Her parents discovered she was missing later in the morning, and an extensive search quickly commenced. No evidence of her was found until a year and a half later, when her backpack was unearthed near the same highway she had been walking along.

While the circumstances suggest she had been running away, Asha was much younger than children who usually run away, and police could not find a motive for why she would do so when there was no evidence of abuse or dysfunction in her family. While the consensus seems to be that she was lured away by a predator, nobody has a solid theory of how somebody was able to lure such a quiet and cautious child away when her parents took extensive lengths to protect her and did not allow internet use in their house.

To this day, no further evidence of Asha's fate has been found.

5. The Dancing Plague of 1518

In Strasbourg, Alsace, of the Holy Roman Empire in 1518, around 400 people started dancing erratically, without rest for over a month, with some collapsing or even dying.

It began on July 15, when a woman, Mrs. Troffea, started dancing in the streets. This lasted for about four to six days. 34 others joined within a week, and within a month there were 400. Interestingly, most of them were reported to be women. City authorities tried to contain the situation, but to no avail. While city officials did not list the number of deaths, there is ample historical evidence to prove that this did in fact occur.

To this day, nobody knows exactly what caused the bizarre behavior, though it is theorized that it may have been caused by an outbreak of ergot poisoning, though this has since been discredited. Most simply chalk it up to mass hysteria egged on by superstition and rampant starvation in the area, making the victims more susceptible to irrational thinking and behavior.

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9 Reasons Crocs Are The Only Shoes You Need

Crocs have holes so your swag can breathe.

Do you have fond childhood objects that make you nostalgic just thinking about your favorite Barbie or sequenced purse? Well for me, its my navy Crocs. Those shoes put me through elementary school. I eventually wore them out so much that I had to say goodbye. I tried Airwalks and sandals, but nothing compared. Then on my senior trip in New York City, a four story Crocs store gleamed at me from across the street and I bought another pair of Navy Blue Crocs. The rest is history. I wear them every morning to the lake for practice and then throughout the day to help air out my soaking feet. I love my Crocs so much, that I was in shock when it became apparent to me that people don't feel the same. Here are nine reasons why you should just throw out all of your other shoes and settle on Crocs.

1. They are waterproof.

These bad boys can take on the wettest of water. Nobody is sure what they are made of, though. The debate is still out there on foam vs. rubber. You can wear these bad boys any place water may or may not be: to the lake for practice or to the club where all the thirsty boys are. But honestly who cares because they're buoyant and water proof. Raise the roof.

2. Your most reliable support system

There is a reason nurses and swimming instructors alike swear by Crocs. Comfort. Croc's clogs will make you feel like your are walking on a cloud of Laffy Taffy. They are wide enough that your toes are not squished, and the rubbery material forms perfectly around your foot. Added bonus: The holes let in a nice breeze while riding around on your Razor Scooter.

3. Insane durability

Have you ever been so angry you could throw a Croc 'cause same? Have you ever had a Croc bitten while wrestling a great white shark? Me too. Have you ever had your entire foot rolled like a fruit roll up but had your Crocs still intact? Also me. All I know is that Seal Team 6 may or may not have worn these shoes to find and kill Osama Bin Laden. Just sayin'.

4. Bling, bling, bling

Jibbitz, am I right?! These are basically they're own money in the industry of comfortable footwear. From Spongebob to Christmas to your favorite fossil, Jibbitz has it all. There's nothing more swag-tastic than pimped out crocs. Lady. Killer.

5. So many options

From the classic clog to fashionable sneakers, Crocs offer so many options that are just too good to pass up on. They have fur lined boots, wedges, sandals, loafers, Maryjane's, glow in the dark, Minion themed, and best of all, CAMO! Where did your feet go?!

6. Affordable

Crocs: $30

Feeling like a boss: Priceless

7. Two words: Adventure Straps

Because you know that when you move the strap from casual mode chillin' in the front to behind the heal, it's like using a shell on Mario Cart.

8. Crocs cares

Okay, but for real, Crocs is a great company because they have donated over 3 million pairs of crocs to people in need around the world. Move over Toms, the Croc is in the house.

9. Stylish AF

The boys will be coming for you like Steve Irwin.

Who cares what the haters say, right? Wear with pride, and go forth in style.

Cover Image Credit: Chicago Tribune

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From One Nerd To Another

My contemplation of the complexities between different forms of art.


Aside from reading Guy Harrison's guide to eliminating scientific ignorance called, "At Least Know This: Essential Science to Enhance Your Life" and, "The Breakthrough: Immunotherapy and the Race to Cure Cancer" by Charles Graeber, an informative and emotional historical account explaining the potential use of our own immune systems to cure cancer, I read articles and worked on my own writing in order to keep learning while enjoying my winter break back in December. I also took a trip to the Guggenheim Museum.

I wish I was artistic. Generally, I walk through museums in awe of what artists can do. The colors and dainty details simultaneously inspire me and remind me of what little talent I posses holding a paintbrush. Walking through the Guggenheim was no exception. Most of the pieces are done by Hilma af Klint, a 20th-century Swedish artist expressing her beliefs and curiosity about the universe through her abstract painting. I was mostly at the exhibit to appease my mom (a K - 8th-grade art teacher), but as we continued to look at each piece and read their descriptions, I slowly began to appreciate them and their underlying meanings.

I like writing that integrates symbols, double meanings, and metaphors into its message because I think that the best works of art are the ones that have to be sought after. If the writer simply tells you exactly what they were thinking and how their words should be interpreted, there's no room for imagination. An unpopular opinion in high school was that reading "The Scarlet Letter" by Nathaniel Hawthorne was fun. Well, I thought it was. At the beginning of the book, there's a scene where Hawthorne describes a wild rosebush that sits just outside of the community prison. As you read, you are free to decide whether it's an image of morality, the last taste of freedom and natural beauty for criminals walking toward their doom, or a symbol of the relationship between the Puritans with their prison-like expectations and Hester, the main character, who blossoms into herself throughout the novel. Whichever one you think it is doesn't matter, the point is that the rosebush can symbolize whatever you want it to. It's the same with paintings - they can be interpreted however you want them to be.

As we walked through the building, its spiral design leading us further and further upwards, we were able to catch glimpses of af Klint's life through the strokes of her brush. My favorite of her collections was one titled, "Evolution." As a science nerd myself, the idea that the story of our existence was being incorporated into art intrigued me. One piece represented the eras of geological time through her use of spirals and snails colored abstractly. She clued you into the story she was telling by using different colors and tones to represent different periods. It felt like reading "The Scarlet Letter" and my biology textbook at the same time. Maybe that sounds like the worst thing ever, but to me it was heaven. Art isn't just art and science isn't just science. Aspects of different studies coexist and join together to form something amazing that will speak to even the most untalented patron walking through the museum halls.

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