55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything

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Numbers can be very powerful. Even though a few bits of data cannot provide the full nuanced context about something, they can subtly change how we perceive the world. Random stats and facts are also one (albeit a slightly geeky) way to break the ice at social gatherings.

Redditor u/magica12 recently sparked an interesting discussion after asking the incredibly active r/AskReddit online community for their favorite true statistics that stun other people. We’ve collected some of the most interesting ones, and it’s quite likely some of them are going to be completely new to you, too, dear Pandas. Scroll down to see for yourselves.

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything Sharks have existed for longer than the North Star, by a considerable margin.

Not that sharks have existed for longer than the star was in position along Earth’s rotational axis. Polaris, the star itself, only formed 70 million years ago, whereas the first sharks evolved **450 million** years ago.

Also, sharks are older than trees.

CarnivoreDaddy , Jonas Allert Report

In real life, unless you’re a high-profile scientist, you probably won’t have the time or the resources to do research to confirm or deny any claims that sound iffy. It’s next to impossible to double-check every tiny little bit of info yourself. So, when it comes to determining whether or not a stat or fact is true or not, your best bet is to evaluate the reliability of the source.

First of all, focus on who’s making the claim. Consider whether they have any obvious biases. Think about their expertise in the area. Then, look at where they’re getting their data from. Are they the original researchers themselves, or are they simply referring to the data? Do they provide references for their claims, or are their sources something they might have (mis)heard or (mis)read years ago?

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything Water blocks more radiation than the same amount of concrete or lead. And coffee grounds can set off Geiger Counters.

Tmavy , David Becker Report

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything Joe Biden was born closer to Lincoln’s second inauguration than his own inauguration.

No hot take, no politics, no comment, just a wild fact.

halfhere , Ed Fr Report

If the person making the claim isn’t the original source, then there are a few other questions you ought to consider asking.

What organization or study is the claim they’re referencing from? Do the organization and researchers have any obvious biases of their own? Is the information up to date? Does the research account for any alternative explanations? Are there any obvious flaws that you can spot in the way the data was collected? 

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything 51% of all Americans aged 16-72 cannot read above a 6th grade level, which makes it impossible for them to educate themselves on their own, as they lack vital skills in the areas of cross-referencing information or even finding a particular piece of given information in a body of text.

You can send that [insert political party here] person as many links to articles to prove your point as you want. They literally will not be able to understand them.

Edit: what’s worse is that statistic is more than 20 years out of date and ~~education~~ classrooms have steadily been decreased funding since. The studies involved took place at the height of education in the US.

3shotsb4breakfast , Thought Catalog Report

If you happen to have a background in statistics or data analysis, you can also take a peek at the researchers’ methodology to make sure that everything’s sound. For example, you can look at the sample size they used and whether it’s big enough to come to any firm conclusions. On top of that, it’s vital to remember that just because some factors are correlated does not mean that they’re in a causal relationship.

Meanwhile, reality is very rarely black and white. It’s often nuanced, subtle, and complex. If the conclusions exaggerate one particular point of view, it might be worth reexamining the data, methodology, and any potential biases. Good science lies in replicating the results and withstanding the peer review process. 

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything For me its gotta be that hippos have a higher kill count yearly than sharks. Its a good example of confirmation bias, or at least as far as ive been able to tell. And i think its because pop culture has conditioned us to think of sharks as the one of the ultimate predators.

magica12 , Wade Lambert Report

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything If you took away Wayne Gretzky’s goals he’d still lead the NHL in points just on his assists.

ScSM35 , Markus Spiske Report

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything The largest air force in the world is the US Air Force.

The 2nd largest air force in the world is the US Navy.

CONFIGdotSYS , UX Gun Report

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything About half of social security disability applications are never approved. I work in healthcare and many people think if they just get an attorney their application will definitely be approved. The statistics show otherwise. https://www.ssa.gov/policy/docs/statcomps/di_asr/2020/sect04.html

4PurpleRain , Scott Graham Report

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything Not a statistics, but scales.

The distance between the lowest point in the ocean and the highest peak is less than the length of Manhattan.

If you put all the planets in the solar system and line them up side by side. They fit between the moon and the earth with room to spare.

Oracle5of7 , Martin Jernberg Report

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything There are greenland sharks up to 500 years old out there in the ocean. That means atleast one out there was born in the 1500s.

FlyingTiger101 , Colton Jones Report

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything If Kobe Bryant (RIP) took another 5000 free throw attempts and missed them all, he would still have a better career free throw percentage than Shaq.

scottcmu , Tom Briskey Report

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything The leading cause of death for pregnant American women is homicide.

Homicide leading cause of death for pregnant women in U.S.

Dolly_Dagger087 , Ömürden Cengiz Report

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything In a group of 23 people, there’s a 50% chance that at least 2 people in the group share a birthday. In a group of 57 people, there’s a 99% chance that at least 2 people in the group share a birthday.

snoozysuzie008 , Sergei Solo Report

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything A deck of cards can be arranged in so many different ways that every time you shuffle a deck, it’s (so statistically unlikely that it’s fair to say) impossible that any deck of cards has ever been in that exact order.

DayVDave , Crystal Berdion Report

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything One thing that only happened yesterday: The youngest F1 driver on the grid was born *after* the oldest driver on the grid got his first win.

_NAME_NAME_NAME_ , Brian McCall Report

There are more hydrogen atoms in a molecule of water than there are stars in the solar system.

xiphias__gladius Report

About 6-7% of all people throughout all of history have never died.

(simply because there have been about 120 billion humans in total since homo sapiens became homo sapiens… and there are about 8 billion alive now)

dumb_password_loser Report

The last survivor of the transatlantic slave trade died in 1940.

tremynci Report

55 Weird, Fascinating, And Hard-To-Believe Statistics About Pretty Much Everything If you took the Edmund Fitzgerald and stuck it nose down on the lake bed at the point it sank, over 200 feet of it would be sticking out of the water.

firestarter764 , Claudia Chiavazza Report

About 1 in 4-5 people under 65 in my city have a disability. Their jaws friggin *drop* but it’s data I pulled straight from the census.

BridgetteBane Report

Your foot is about the same length as your forearm

djc6535 Report

Wayne Gretzky was the fastest player to hit 1000 points. The second fastest? Also Gretzky, his second 1000 points was done in like 8 games more than his first.

igcipd Report

One of the first people who used a fax machine (or early version of what we know to be fax machines) was Napoleon

Dokmatix Report

Violet Jessop was a stewardess who survived both the Titanic, and on it’s sister ships, the Britannic and the Olympic. and on all 3 voyages, something went wrong.

– The Olympic, when it was struck by a torpedo. the ship survived and actually retaliated, striking head on into the German U-boat that fired on it.

– The Titanic when it sank from the Iceberg

– and finally , the Britannic when it sunk from an underwater mine, during WW1. She was serving as an on deck nurse.

The Olympic was the only surviving member of it’s liners, before being dismantled in the late 1940s.

EDIT: correction, the Olympic actually collided with the British warship HMS Hawke, when Jessop was on board. the U-boat incident happened after her service on the ship.

itsCS117 Report

Half of all the bones in your body are in you ankles, feet, wrists, and hands.

Gbrusse Report

Jim Harbaugh had more NFL rushing yards than Bo Jackson

oxwof Report

These are always my favorite threads, even if most of the informations been mentioned before. Just reading how people respond is more than enjoyable.

I_BK_Nightmare Report

The furthest any human has traveled away from the Earth is 280,000 miles (and back). Second furthest is 600 miles.

imsurethisoneistaken Report

People who grow up in inner city communities in Atlanta have higher rates of PTSD than soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.

IntrudingAlligator Report

The whole of South America is east of the state of Florida.

Gnome00 Report

I haven’t checked if it’s true, but I’ve read in a few places that in the US more land is dedicated to parking than to housing. If it’s true, it’s my favourite statistic, but it’s also extremely sad.

Ich_habe_keinen_Bock Report

The first person to make a commercial mobile phone call in the UK was Ernie Wise dressed in Lederhosen.

Richbr970 Report

There are more stars in the observable universe than there are grains of sand in all the beaches on earth.

Canucklehead_Esq Report


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