"The book you hold in your hands is not intended as a mere collection of amusing anecdotes. It is a book designed to instruct, and to inspire the young with an earnest desire to acquire knowledge. It is a book which should be read by every boy and girl who has ever been called upon to make up his or her own mind about anything. The book you hold in your hands is a book that will teach you how to think. And it is a book which will show you how to think clearly and well."

That was how the introduction to the weathered, beated tome I was holding in my hands started. The dust of centuries had settled on its cracked leather covers and fell in a torrent when I opened it – and, as a constant reminder of the book's age, clumps of the disgusting stuff still hid in the cracks and recesses.

But what caught my eye was the bookmark somebody had put in years ago. It was a typewritten list of fifteen facts that went like this:

Thomas Jane executed Jimmy Kimmel Live, Punisher style.

Despite its name, Jimmy Kimmel Live! hasn't actually aired live since 2004. CRACKED.COM The show began pretaping episodes after censors were unable to properly bleep a swearing rant from actor Thomas Jane, who was dropping unsanctioned f-bombs.

Vulture 

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New Yorkers partied so hard they burned down City Hall.

New Yorkers were so excited about the first transatlantic telegraph message that they set City Hall on fire. GRACKED GOM Celebrations turning destructive are not just for big sports matches, or new. Fireworks honoring the success of the laying of the transatlantic telegraph cable set a fire at City Hall, leaving it severely damaged.

Wired 

The last meal in prison was a way to not get haunted.

The death row last meal started as a way to deter ghosts. CRACKED COM The traditional Last Meal on death row didn't begin as a final compassionate act for the condemned, but as a way to bribe their ghost to not haunt the executioners.

History Now 

Wives park their husbands in front of retro game consoles in this Chinese mall.

There is a mall in China that offers husband storage, where wives can leave their husbands. CHANE CRACKED.COM The Global Harbour mall in Shanghai has erected a number of glass pods, equipped with retro video games, for wives to leave any disgruntled husbands that don't want to be dragged around the shops.

BBC 

A legal disagreement was solved with arm wrestling.

Two CEOs arm wrestled over copyright infringement. GRACKED.COM Instead of going to court over a copyright infringement dispute, the CEOs of Southwest Airlines and Stevens Aviation challenged each other to an arm wrestling duel. No lawyers were ever involved, and the men honored the outcome of the match.

NPR 

Don’t be afraid to flick your cigarette butt into a puddle of gasoline.

Unless conditions are absolutely perfect, it's virtually impossible to ignite a pool of gasoline with a cigarette. CRACKED.COM Researchers tried 2000 times to ignite gasoline with a cigarette, and failed 100% of the time. Gasoline is dangerous due to the flammability of the fumes, not the liquid itself. When gas goes up in flames, the fumes from the liquid are the main burning agent.

Science ABC

You’ll never guess who banned human zoos first.

Human ZOOS were first banned in Europe by the most unlikely historical figure. CRACKED.COM Human zoos, a popular attraction in Europe where exotic peoples were paid to be on exhibit for onlookers, with recreated habitats and shows, were first banned by Adolf Hitler. Belgium was the last to ban them, in 1958.

BBC 

We are all turning into people-jerky.

You are born wet and steadily dry out as you age. CRACKED.COM A newborn human baby is 75% water, adult men are about 60%, adult women 55%, and elderly people are roughly half.

NPR

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