Category Archives: People

The Man Who Was Too Sexy For Hollywood

While the entertainment industry has never exactly been a bastion of diversity, fascinatingly, a century ago in fledgling Hollywood, during the so called “Yellow Peril” era no less, one of their most bankable heartthrobs and one of the highest paid actors of the age was a Japanese man- Hayakawa Kintarō, better known by his stage name, Sessue Hayakawa. Born in […]

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How Did the Whole Stan Lee Cameo Thing Start? (And the Hilariously Awkward Way He Convinced His Future Wife to Go Out With Him)

UrselD: How did the Stan Lee cameo in the Marvel movies thing start? Born Stanley Martin Lieber almost a century ago in 1922, the man who would become far better known by his pen name, Stan Lee, was born into a family of very modest means with Stan, his brother, and Romanian immigrant parents sharing a single room apartment in […]

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Who was “Murphy” in “Murphy’s Law” and the Amazing Dr. John Paul Stapp Who Gave Us the Expression

The universe has been finding ways to mess with people long before Edward A. Murphy uttered his famed statement in the aftermath of Dr. John Paul Stapp strapping himself onto a rocket powered sled. One of the earliest instances of this “law” being stated explicitly happened in 1877 where Alfred Holt, in an address to the Institution of Civil Engineers, […]

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The Surprisingly Badass Life of the Inventor of the Saxophone, Adolphe Sax

The favoured instrument of the likes of Lisa Simpsons, former President Bill Clinton, and the co-author of this article and founder of TodayIFoundOut, the saxophone has variously been described as everything from “the most moving and heart-gripping wind instrument” to the “Devil’s horn”. Rather fittingly then the instrument’s inventor, Adolphe Sax, was a similarly polarising figure and led a life […]

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That Time a Guy Cornered the Liquid Soap Market by Sneakily Buying Nearly Every Hand Soap Pump Available in the World

Robert R. Taylor is a name you’ve probably never heard before. But this serial entrepreneur made his mark on the world of business by coming up with several products you are almost certainly very familiar with. Today we’re going to talk about, on the surface, the most boring of those- liquid hand soap. Something you can thank Mr. Taylor and […]

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The Badass Story of the First Helicopter Pilot to Receive the Medal of Honor

While it might seem a little odd at first glance, it turns out the first helicopter pilot ever to receive the United States’ prestigious Medal of Honor, John Kelvin Koelsch, was born and and mostly raised in London, England. Considered an American citizen thanks to his parentage, Koelsch moved back to the US with his family in his teens, and […]

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How Peanuts Became the Defining Comic Strip of Our Time

Today, Snoopy can be found on coffee mugs, greeting cards and blimps, and even has his own amusement park. But Charlie Brown’s lovable black and white spotted dog wasn’t always mainstream. In fact, when the comic strip first appeared in the 1950s, the dog and his Peanut friends were considered, to quote Time Magazine’s David Michaels, “the fault-line of a […]

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The Curious Case of the Isdal Woman

The following is an article from Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader Sometimes the most intriguing whodunits aren’t found in mystery novels, they’re found in real life. Take this curious case, which has puzzled investigators for more than 40 years. COLD CASE One chilly afternoon in November 1970, a father and his two daughters were hiking up a remote, rocky hillside overlooking […]

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Who was the Red Baron?

It was a century ago when famed World War I German fighter pilot Manfred von Richthofen was fatally shot out of the sky. Yet, his nickname – “Red Baron” – remains part of American vernacular. Charles Schulz’s comic strip character Snoopy famously took on the Red Baron in his imaginary air battles aboard his doghouse, often yelling “Curse you, Red Baron!” […]

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Forgotten Heroes: The Accidental Farmer

The following is an article from Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader Bob Fletcher was an agricultural inspector working in California’s Central Valley in the early 1940s. He might have stayed one, too, had the outbreak of World War II not changed everything. INFAMY Shortly before 8:00 a.m. on the morning of December 7, 1941, Japanese military forces attacked the U.S. naval […]

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On The Far Side

For 15 years, Gary Larson took millions of readers over to the “Far Side.” Using anamorphic animals, chubby teenagers, universal emotions, a simple drawing style and a really bizarre, morbid sense of humor, The Far Side became one of the most successful – and praised – comic strips of all time. But like many cartoonists, Larson has remained rather elusive. […]

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Saddam Speaks

The following is an article from Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein was big news from the 1980s through the 2000s. But it wasn’t until years after his death that the world got to hear his story in his own words. DEBRIEFING THE DICTATOR Saddam Hussein (1937–2006) became the president and dictator of Iraq in 1979—a position he […]

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