In 1912, a tailor named Franz Reichelt jumped to his death from the first deck of the Eiffel Tower while testing out a homemade coat parachute--an invention he'd been working on with dedication. After telling authorities he would first test it with a dummy, Reichelt insisted on being the guinea pig himself. Unfortunately, his contraption failed him and he plummeted to his death. During John F. Kennedy's presidency, his mother asked Nikita Khrushchev to send her an autograph--a request which JFK later scolded her for making without consulting him first. Understandably so; as the mother of the head of state, such requests from her could be interpreted in various ways, even though she was simply trying to collect signatures. “The Empire Strikes Back,” widely considered one of if not THE best Star Wars movie ever made, almost didn't make it into theaters at all because George Lucas put the screen credits at the end rather than at beginning as was customary. Because of this decision that preserved dramatic opening sequences but broke protocol concerning where credits should go, Lucas was fined $250,000 and a movie that would make cinematic history nearly got pulled from theaters. 

Soju must be sold at $1 a bottle, so everyone can afford it.

South Korea's national drink has to be sold at $1 a bottle. CRACKED.COM Soju is a clear alcohol, typ- ically made from rice or barley, with an alcohol content of about 20% and a government-mandated price of about $1 per bot- tle, so all citizens can af- ford it.

NY Post

A fat king started the trend of leaving the bottom button of a suit jacket undone.

The trend of leaving the bottom button of a suit undone started due to a fat king. CRACKED.COM In the early 1900s, King Edward VII grew too fat to fasten the bottom button of his waistcoat and jacket. To not offend the king, those associated with him started doing the same.

Art of Manliness

Confucius' family tree has two million branches.

Confucius' family tree is the longest recorded extant pedigree in the world. GRAGKED.COM There are 2 million regis- tered modern descen- dants, with major branches in Korea (where his family was invited in 1351) and Taiwan (where family members fled during the Chinese civil war).

How Stuff Works

Picasso was a real piece of shit to women.

Pablo Picasso demanded his mistresses to be submissive and shorter than him. CRACKED.COM Не thought women were either goddess- es or doormats. Dora Maar, one of his lovers, called him an extraor- dinary artist but mor- ally worthless.

Vanity Fair

7-year-olds were fined for not wearing caps in 16th-century England.

Working-class British men wore a flat cap in the 16th-century because it was the law. CRACKED.COM A 1571 Act of Parliament, designed to stimulate wool consumption, penalized non-nobles over the age of 6 a fine of three farthings a day if they weren't wearing a woolen cap.

Independent

A samurai made goldfish available to the general public to help his clan pay off their debts.

A samurai named Yanagizawa Yoshisato helped his samurai clan pay off their debts by selling goldfish. CRACKED.COM Не took his best goldfish breeders over to the town of Koriyama, so that they could use its plentiful wa- ters. His clan made gold- fish more available to the general public and not just the rich.

Metro Classic Japanese

Saudi Arabia’s royal family is worth trillions.

Saudi Arabia's royal family has a net worth of $1.4 trillion. CRACKED.COM This makes the family roughly 16 times as wealthy as the British royal family, which has a net worth of $88 billion.

CNBC

Clara Ford didn’t drive the Ford Model T.

Henry Ford's wife Clara drove an electric car and refused to drive the Ford Model T. CRACKED.COM Eco Queen Clara drove a 1914 Detroit Electric. The Detroit models could run 80 miles on a single charge, with a top speed of about 20 mph.

Clean Technica

Oxpeckers may be a bigger parasite than the bugs they eat.

Oxpeckers are technically parasites themselves. CRACKED.COM The small birds were once thought to be helping ante- lopes and wildebeest by eat- ing ticks. It was later found that these birds open wounds wider and drink the blood of their hosts.

Oxford

Celine Dion really didn’t want to be on the Titanic soundtrack.

Celine Dion wanted no part in singing the hit Titanic song My Heart Will Go On. CRACKED.COM She only did so after her manager/husband con- vinced her that it would benefit her career. Her song went on to win the Grammy Award for Re- cord of the Year.

Billboard

One of a starfish’s arms can override the others.

A starfish does not have the capacity to plan its actions. GRACKED.COM If one arm detects an attractive odor, it be- comes dominant and temporarily overrides the other arms to initi- ate movement towards the prey.

Invertebrate Zoology

Wal-Mart loses 1% of revenue a year through theft.

Wal-Mart loses around $3 Billion a year to theft. WAL MART SUGACTION GUARANTEER GRACKED.COM In 2015, $3 billion dollars lost due to theft constitut- ed only 1% of Wal-Mart's $300 billion revenue. They use image recognition technology to reduce theft in self-checkouts using AI technology.

Query Sprout

FedEx was told to stop dealing drugs in 2014.

The DEA told FedEx to stop catering to a list of drug dealers, but refused to say who was on the list. FedEx SXY-704 COTA fedex.com Express 01 8000 110 339 953590 CRACKED.COM FedEx was charged with distribution of controlled substances and a conspira- су to distribute misbrand- ed drugs in 2014 and they pleaded not guilty, as they had no way to tell who was on the DEA's list.

eTrucker

A Chicago hotel has no check-in desk and an automated “comfort assistant.”

The Virgin Hotel in Chicago has no check-in desk and guests get their room keys from a vending machine. VIRGIN HOTELS Virgin 203 HOTELS GRACKED.COM The personal comfort assistant app named Lucy can order more pillows, control room temperature, and со- ordinate messages with hotel staff.

Virgin Hotels

George Lucas almost got “The Empire Strikes Back” removed from theaters.

The Empire Strikes Back was nearly pulled from theaters because of the placement of screen credits. GRAGKED.COM George Lucas put the credits at the end of the movie, which was rare at that time, to preserve the dramatic opening sequences. Lucas was fined $250,000.

The cinema of George Lucas

JFK’s mom used her connection to the presidency to get autographs from heads of state.

JFK's mother asked Nikita Khrushchev to send her his autograph while her son was president. GRAGKED.COM After the incident, John F. Kennedy asked his mother not to contact heads of state without asking him first.

Yahoo

Franz Reichelt had his first and only coat parachute test in 1912.

A tailor jumped to his death in 1912 trying out a homemade coat parachute. CRACKED.COM Franz Reichelt jumped off the first deck of the Eiffel Tower while test- ing his invention, after telling the authorities he would first test it with a dummy.

Atlas Obscura

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