The Original Color of Ballet Shoes

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Ballet shoes and tights were originally created only in pink in an attempt to match the skin color of ballerinas who wore the apparel. Because ballerinas now run the gamut of a wide array of skin tone, hue, and color, bronze and brown ballerina slippers have become available. Prior to this, ballerinas would commonly use makeup and other aids to color their shoes

Ancient Egyptian Afterlife Beliefs of the Underworld

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The ancient Egyptians believed that if a body was properly preserved, the soul would recognize it later on in the underworld allowing for reunification. It was believed that when a king died, they would be united with the sun and became merged into one being, the sun god. On the day that a king passed, it was believed that said king would have to journey into the underworld and pass 12  gates, 1 for each hour of the night. It took purity, magical knowledge, and strength to pass from one level to the next. During the first dynasty pharaohs took with them weapons and treasure as well as food, wine, and beer, and perhaps most surprising, sacrificed servants. Archeologists believe that servants were killed so that they could serve the pharaoh in the afterlife. The servants were buried near the pharaoh so that they would be close by when needed. The pharaoh Djer (pronounced “jer”) was the last pharaoh to practice human sacrifice. Djer had 300 subsidiary burials, many of whom were sacrificed intentionally, but some who are believed to have been family and close friends who had already passed and had their bodies relocated to the site at which Djer was buried

Edward “Blackbeard” Thatch’s Ship the Queen Anne’s Revenge

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Edward Thatch, commonly referred to as “Blackbeard”, was most likely born in Bristol, England. Thatch’s ship was christened “the Queen Anne’s Revenge” and was originally a French ship sailing under the name “La Concorde”. When captured, Blackbeard freed the crew of La Concorde unharmed but took the ship as plundered loot found upon the high seas

Steve Jobs’ Back Dated Stock Options Scandal

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Steve Jobs was accused of back dated options trading, in which stocks could be purchased from Apple at previous price points which had since passed (e.g. purchasing 100 shares of stock for $100 at the January 2010 price point, when those same stocks were worth $200 because the actual date was July 2010). Jobs did this to give his key people stock options which were so enormous in value that these employees would never even consider taking their talents and skillsets elsewhere. Back dating is legal, if properly reported within official corporate records. After the backdated stock options scandal was exposed by various media outlets, 200 U.S. companies came under investigation for doing the exact same thing. Jobs escaped any wrongdoing by effectively throwing Apple’s CFO Fred Anderson under the bus, a person who was instrumental in the hard fought come back of Apple. Anderson was forced to resign and pay back restitution to the sum of $3,600,000 ($3.6 million) in penalties. In reality, Anderson explained this process to Jobs, and Jobs fully understood the implications, yet chose to place blame squarely upon the Anderson with the rationale that a CFO must oversee all practices related to accounting within a corporation. It was estimated at the time that had Jobs gone to prison for back dating, Apple would have dropped in value by $22,000,000,000 ($22 billion)

Chinese New Year Traditional Fireworks Display

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500 years ago during the Ming dynasty, a blacksmith came up with a cost effective way to display a fireworks show during the Chinese New Year festival by spraying molten metal onto and alongside a wall, an incredibly beautiful, yet dangerous feat to pull off. This process is referred to as “dashuhua” (pronounced “dash-ooh-wah”). The metal is 1600 degrees Celsius which means it is literally in a liquified state. The dashuhua master traditionally wears a straw hat and sheepskin coat for protection. There is currently only 1 dashuhua master left in the world, a person who is a 14th generational master. This master has 2 daughters, neither of whom want to learn the craft, so theoretically, after this master passes away, the tradition will die out

Weight Loss During Periods of Starvation or Fasting

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1 in 210 obese men and 1 in 124 obese women will lose weight following restrictive caloric diets. That is a failure rate of 99.5% for men and 99.2% for women. These values are even lower for those suffering from morbid obesity. Studies have demonstrated that 4 days of continuous fasting does not drop basal metabolic rates, rather it increases metabolic rate by approximately 12%. This mechanism is purposely designed by evolution because a metabolism which slows down greatly due to gaps in finding food, would cause lethargy and eventually death to the organism. Animals are programmed to increase metabolic rates during periods of starvation as a way to ensure the body continues to forage and hunt for food. Whilst fasted, the human body first burns glycogen found within the liver, then moves to body fat and muscle, and then finally more essential parts of the body like tissues and organs when all other resources have been exhausted. Fasting increases weight loss by 6x in comparison to caloric restriction

The Colossal Nomura Jellyfish

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Nomura jellyfish are colossal in size, weighing up to 450 lbs. and measuring 12’ in circumference. Nomura jellyfish directly follow and stalk their prey just as box jellyfish do, with a single Nomura jellyfish able to consume an entire Olympic swimming pool sized body of water filled with zooplankton within 24 hours. When both male and female Nomura jellyfish are attacked, both instantly release all of their sperm and eggs, producing and scattering millions of possible future offspring. This is why despite being killed in the hundreds and thousands by fisheries on the open seas, Nomura jellyfish continue to thrive and dominate much of the ocean. Currently, it is unclear to scientists where Nomura jellyfish originate from