Historians Share The Strangest Chain Of Events That Played Out In The Past
Historians have a frustrating job, presumably because there are so many people out there who seem pretty intent on repeating our history... which sort of goes against the very point in the first place.
History is also chockfull of chain reactions, some stranger than others, that shaped the world as we know it today. Quite a few were explored after Redditor unchainedrobots asked the online community:
"Historians of Reddit, what is the strangest chain of events you have studied?"
"President Andrew Jackson..."Giphy
"President Andrew Jackson was walking out of the Capitol Building with his buddy Congressman Davey Crockett. A man approached them, drew a gun, but it misfired. The man drew a second gun, which also misfired. Andrew Jackson, fairly old at this point, lifted his cane and began beating the would be assassin. Normally, people would react with "justice served," but Jackson was beating him so badly that Davey Crockett had to pull Jackson off his would be assassin, who was arrested shortly after."
"The would be assassin stood trial, represented by lawyer Francis Scott Key, author of the Star Spangled Banner, and was the first American to be found not guilty by reason of insanity."
"Pretty much the fall of the Berlin Wall. The USSR was already crumbling by this point and so they agreed to allow the wall to be opened for a bit. Well the guy in charge over in Berlin didn't really get the point across to the public very well and as a result everyone assumed that the wall was permanently coming down. This led to pretty much all of East Berlin flocking to the wall and demanding to be let through. The guards there knew there was no way to restrain all these people without a massacre occurring and the Russian government had no real way of easily fixing the huge mistake. And so the Berlin Wall fell, all because of a misinterpretation."
"The events that led and culminated in the War of the Bucket for sure. Essentially one Italian State who followed Holy Roman Emperor stole a bucket from another Italian State who followed the pope. War broke out, The papal state highly outnumbered the HRE state, but HRE state won. Then stole another bucket. Was a trip for sure when I learned about this one."
"They invented tonic water."
"British officers in India in the 18th century were eating quinine powder to help treat malaria. Quinine is so bitter on its own so they started putting it in their club soda to make it easier to down. They invented tonic water. Brought the water back to Europe and they started putting it in their gin. Hence, gin and tonic."
"Horses evolved in North America, spread during pre-historical times into Asia, and then later went extinct in North America. If things had been only slightly different, horses could have been native only to the Americas, or just completely extinct by pre-history. Not having horses would have made a huge difference to Asian & European history: no Mongol invasions, no European knights."
"This leads to..."Giphy
"Recent history but it still boggles my mind."
"Jeri Ryan gets cast on Star Trek: Voyager as Seven of Nine."
"Jeri Ryan divorces her husband."
"Her ex husband, Jack, with a really strong resume and a lot of money, announces a Senate campaign in the state of Illinois in 2004. His entry in the race is enough that it is now considered a tossup."
"Because both Jeri and Jack are public figures journalists push for their divorce records to be released and a major factor in their spilt was Jack's desire to have sex in public locations."
"Jack Ryan drops out and the GOP struggles to find a replacement."
"This leads to an overwhelming victory from the Democratic challenger, Barack Obama."
"The entire Obama presidency exists because some writers in the 90s wanted a Borg girl in their show."
"Probably how Pepsi..."
"Probably how Pepsi briefly became the 6th largest military in the world."
"In 1959, President Eisenhower wanted to show the Soviet Union how great America was, so the government set up an "American National Exhibition" and sent Vice President Nixon there."
"Well Nixon and Soviet leader Khrushchev got in an argument over Communism vs Capitalism. As it got heated the President of Pepsi stepped in and was like, "Bro Khrushchev, chill out, have a Pepsi."
"Khrushchev must of loved that, because then the Soviet Union wanted to permanently bring Pepsi over to their country. The problem is that their money wasn't accepted throughout the world. Instead, like true Russians, the Soviet Union traded vodka for Pepsi."
"This was all good until the late 1980s when their contract was going to expire and vodka wouldn't cut it for payment. So instead they traded Pepsi a ton of submarines and warships for 3 billion dollars worth of Pepsi."
"Sadly instead of terrorizing the seas and shooting harpoons at their enemies, Pepsi decided to sell the fleet to a Swedish scrap metal company."
"As a boxing historian..."
"As a boxing historian probably the story of an ancient Greek boxer named Kleomedes"
"Apparently while in the Olympic final, he killed his opponent by stabbing his fingers into his opponents chest, killing him. Which means he loses due to a strange and awesome rule was if your opponent was killed by the fight, he automatically won. So despite surviving the fight, Kleomedes is judged the loser. No glory or olive wreath."
"Returns home to Astypalaia and lapses into deep depression. Commits the the first mass murder of school children after punching a support beam so hard the school fell down. All the kids die. Angry mob forms to kill Kleomedes who takes shelter in a giant chest in the temple of Athena. Townsfolk storm the temple and try to pry open the chest. End up having to rip it apart board by board. But when they got it open there was nothing in it."
"Naturally the people didn't know what to make of it. So they send people to the oracle of Delphi. Who declared that Kleomedes was The Last True Astypalaian and that he be worshipped as a Demigod."
"That is how an olympic boxer became a deity of fertility after murdering a ton of kids."
"So in 1968..."
"Nixon created a chain of events that I find hard to believe."
"So in 1968 Lyndon Johnson is president, he's a Democrat, and the Democrats are having issues, the party is majorly spit up between segregation issues, and they hate the Vietnam war that the country is stuck in."
"Nixon starts promising to end the draft, and he also proclaimed that he had a plan to end the war."
"Just before the election that year, on Halloween, (a Thursday) LBJ gets on the news, and declares that the war is almost over, and peace is at hand. The North Vietnamese were participating in peace talks, and all war activity had been suspended. They left the peace talks because NIXON HIMSELF told them that if they kept the war going for one extra week, HE WOULD OFFER THEM A BETTER DEAL ONCE HE WAS IN POWER."
"So by Saturday, the North Vietnamese had walked out of the peace talks, and the war was back on. The election on the next Tuesday, went to Nixon, but barely. The war continued for another five years, and in that time 15k Americans died, as well as who knows how many Vietnamese."
"LBJ knew about it at the time, because he had wire tapped the South Vietnamese ambassador as well as several others, and felt he could not reveal the extent of the wire tapping that Americans were guilty of. Even if it meant Nixon got away with treason."
"And it does."
"So, the Han heard the Qin were fond of mega projects and massive infrastructure investments, so they found a hydraulics engineer and sent him over to sell them on an absurd canal idea; build a massive canal to use runoff water from two flood-prone rivers to irrigate worthless plains. Tame the rivers' flooding, irrigate wasteland, everybody wins! And in the Han's schemes, it's an absurdly large project that will keep the Qin diverted and invested for decades."
"And it does. Except about halfway through, the Qin caught on to this and confront their hydraulics engineer; Zheng Gou, presumably confronted with whatever creative thing(s) they do to spies and saboteurs, throws himself on Qin mercy;"
"Yeah, I'm a spy, yeah, it was to sabotage your efforts- but I'm really an engineer, guys, and this will really work, honest! Let me finish it, and please don't do that thing with the cheese grater-"
"The Qin, presumably, conclude they can always torture him to death later, and let him remain in charge of the project."
"And wonder of wonders, it works. Thousands of hectares or rich but fallow desert are turned into fertile farmland. Existing farmland is made safer by giving the flooding rivers runoff channels. The canal makes the Qin rich beyond their already immense wealth, which they turn to larger armies, eventually crushing the Han and (briefly) uniting China."
"We learnt about this is school: in the 1950s in Borneo they were suffering from an outbreak of malaria, so, with the help of the world health organization, they sprayed DDT all over the island to kill the mosquitos. But the DDT also killed the islands wasps which helped control the population of thatch eating caterpillars, thatch that people's homes were made of, and thanks to this, their roofs began to collapse."
"Many other small insects started to get affected by the DDT, which were eaten by geckos, the geckos developed a tolerance to the DDT but the cats who ate the geckos didn't, and the cat population started to die off. This led to the islands rat population increasing greatly. And that's the story of how an island with a malaria problem, lead to cats being airdropped into Borneo."
"A Chinese man wanted to create a potion to become immortal instead he accidentally created gunpowder."
"This is an older BBC series called Connections, with James Burke hosting and it is incredibly fascinating. You can watch most of the episodes on Youtube. It's kind of what you're asking about, chains of events throughout history. From the Normans horse stirrups to mine shafts to vacuums to telecommunications, all connected. I highly recommend anyone give this a try."
MP Noel Pemberton Billing
"In 1918, British MP Noel Pemberton Billing caused a major scandal when he accused actress Maud Allan, and Margot Asquith, wife of the previous Prime Minister, of being at the centre of a homosexual ring sabotaging the war effort. Evidence included Allan having performed in a play by Oscar Wilde, and Asquith having attended the performance. He presented his case in an article entitled "The Cult of the Clitoris", in which he claimed the exiled prince of Albania had a black book, listing all the blackmailed homosexuals in Britain."
"Maud Allan (who was in fact homosexual; Asquith was not) sued for libel, but lost. During the trial, one witness claimed to have seen the Albanian prince's black book, and claimed that the judge's name was in it."
The immovable ladder!
"The immovable ladder!"
"Guy leaves ladder leaning against wall of the church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem some time before 1728. A thing called the Status Quo happens in 1757 which means don't touch stuff on holy sites."
"Ladder is still there."
Fact will always be stranger than fiction.
Do you have similar experiences to share? Let us know in the comments below.
People Share The Weirdest Food Combinations They've Ever Come Up With
Why go spend tons of money on eating out when there are plenty of options at home that can constitute a meal?
Many people on a budget are very resourceful when it comes to food options that can be found in the back of their fridges and pantries–granted anything found hasn't spoiled.
You too can save your hard-earned money by manifesting your inner chef and creating palatable meals.
For those who've thought outside the box and put together a delicious concoction, Redditor wildwoodflower_ asked:
"What's a food combo you love that people think you're weird for?"
People slapped two ingredients together to come up with quick and easy masterpieces.
"Not me but a close friend: fried eggs with strawberry jam"
Crunchy And A-Peel-ing
"One of my grandmothers used to like stuffing a few pretzel sticks down a banana. Salt and the crunch with the banana is a surprisingly decent mix of texture and flavor. She called it 'Bananas with bones.'"
A Potent Combo
"I used to eat tuna and spicy v8 like every day my first year in college. It gave me some paint peeling gas that almost killed my roommate. 20 years later, I still get sh*t for that."
Pacific Northwest Delight
"Seattle dogs are my jam, hotdog with cream cheese and caramelized onions"
These basic ingredients can be the perfect foundation for anything cheap and delectable.
"So the general consensus here is peanut butter + anything."
British Savory Condiment
"Being British you can divide the country with Marmite with anything."
It's A Wrap!
"I like making PB&J with tortillas, I spread it on then roll it up, it reminds me of those Smuckers uncrustables but better."
Try Not To Sneeze
"Cottage cheese with a sh*t ton of ground black pepper mixed in, used as a dip for potato chips."
"Mmm it’s been too long since I’ve had this."
It's Their Jam
"Sausage McMuffin with hash brown and grape jelly."
"I assumed this was pretty common, but I have never come across another person who does this. most people think it's gross."
Two different snacks came together and delighted the palates of these Redditors.
Sweet And Savory
"Chili with a cinnamon roll."
Tasty And Tangy
"Brownies with orange juice."
"Also havarti cheese and corn (I was high when I discovered this)"
As a kid, my husband liked to eat sandwiches consisting of bologna and peanut butter together.
I winced, but he swears by it.
I just have to believe him because that combo doesn't make any sense to me at all.
But hey, to each their own.
People Break Down The Most Powerful Sex Symbols Of All-Time
The moment Marlon Brando took off his shirt in one of the early scenes of A Streetcar Named Desire, a sex symbol was born.
Brando is only one of a long list of icons whose improbable good looks have pegged them as legendary and timeless sex symbols.
It's arguably easier than ever for people, celebrities or not, to come onto the scene as sex symbols thanks to social media.
But how well we'll remember these self-promoted, arguably manufactured people remains to be seen, while we continue to be dazzled and entranced by the likes of Marilyn Monroe, Raquel Welch, Sean Connery, James Dean, and others decades, in some cases even centuries, after they came on the scene.
"Living or dead, who do you think has been the most powerful sex symbol the world has ever seen?"
The One Responsible For Starting It All
"Sigmund Freud's mother."- dreamwarrior22
Top Of The Liszt
"Franz Liszt, a 19th century Hungarian classical pianist and composer."
"Everything you've heard about obsessed fans of rockstars like Elvis or The Beatles was happening to perhaps an even greater degree a century earlier."
"People's obsession with him was so intense and so widespread that it was called Lisztomania and it was considered a genuine mental disorder."
"They threw underwear on the stage, they fainted just seeing him, they collected any scrap of anything he touched (some even wore his cigar butts as jewelry), and his shows caused full on riots."
"Both men and women were obsessed, common people as well as royalty, truly everyone."
"I remember hearing something about him playing for a Catholic mass at a cathedral in Rome, and got kicked out for making the nuns too horny."- paraworldblue
He Could Resist Anything, Except Temptation...
"How has no one said Oscar Wilde yet?"
"His grave was literally covered in lipstick kiss marks until they had to protect it."- LanceAlgoriddim
Age Could Not Wither Her
"Well, it's been about two thousand years and we're still talking about Cleopatra and her lovers, so I'm enclined to give her that."- emissaryofwinds
"I’m going to say whom ever inspired those Paleolithic Venus figurines."- Tricky-Engineering59
Extinction Be Damned!
"The turtle who single-handedly brought his species out of endangerment by having a f*ckton of sex."- abitsussyMarine Life Swimming GIF by Nature on PBSGiphy
Nothing Is Sexier Thank Kindness
"Paul Newman because of 'all profits to charity', $600 million so far."- tracyinge
Sexy, Or Sexist?
"Supposedly all the brothels in Paris closed on the day of his funeral."
"The prostitutes attended by the hundreds and draped their privates with black cloths as a sign of mourning."
"His sexy exploits include:"
"Having sex 83 times in the 4 months before he died at age 83."
"Having sex with over 200 women in 2 years."
"It was not unusual for him to have 3-4 different lovers in a day."
"For seven years he had a mistress he kept secret from his wife and a second mistress he kept secret from his first mistress."
"Had sex 9 times with his wife on their wedding night."
"She got pregnant 5 times in 8 years."
"He was married to his wife for 48 years til her death."
"Both had lovers outside the marriage."
"One of his mistresses was his unpaid 'secretary' and traveled with him for 50 years."
"He seduced his son's lover."
"His son said he didn't blame her for it."- heimdahl81Victor Hugo Pamela Chougne GIFGiphy
The Face That Launched A Thousand Ships
"Helen of Troy."- destro23
They Always Love The Drummer...
"Roger Taylor in Queen's 'I want to break free' video."- vickinga
"Medusa, she makes me so hard."- r4jmanSnakes Medusa GIF by PBS Digital StudiosGiphy
Everyone Could Just Eat Her Right Up...
"The green m&m."- Plenty-Row4359
No Matter What Name He Was Using...
"He will steal your girl, then steal her clothes, then steal someone else's girl in your girl's clothes."- LeChefK_Tang
Sexiness is in the eye of the beholder.
Though, anyone who doesn't think Paul Newman was the sexiest man that ever lived may need to get their eyes checked...
People Break Down How One Mistake Ruined Someone's Entire Life
We've all made decisions we regret.
Thankfully, sometimes these decisions result in little to no consequences or can be easily fixed with some time and healing.
In other cases, one error in judgment might have permanent ramifications: causing an effective end to a friendship, irrevocably damaging your financial situation, or even resulting in permanent physical damage.
In some more serious cases, these mistakes might even result in someone's life coming to an end.
All heartbreaking scenarios which could have been easily avoided with a little more care and consideration.
"Who destroyed their entire life by making one mistake?"
Check Your Surroundings First
"I once worked as a personal assistant for a person who broke his neck due to diving into snow that was a little too hard."-tubzz2
A Wasted Career
"Boban Jankovic, basketball player."
"Copied from Wikipedia : 'Janković thought he scored a basket on a drive to the hoop while being guarded by Panathinaikos player Fragiskos Alvertis'."
"'However, the referee Stelios Koukoulekidis, called an offensive foul on him'."
"'It was Janković's fifth foul of the game, which meant that he had fouled out'."
"'In reaction to what he believed was a bad call at a crucial moment of a very important playoff game, Janković slammed his head hard against the padded concrete goal post'."
"He permanently damaged his spinal cord and was unable to walk for the rest of his life'."- bryanmills33
NEVER USE YOUR PHONE WHILE DRIVING!
"Near me there was a serious traffic collision."
"Several cars and 2 trucks."
"3 people died when one truck ploughed into stationary traffic at around 50mph."
"The crash and resulting fire was so horrific 2 people were only identified by their dead dog on the carriageway."
"It was microchipped."
"It was on the BBC news and have been documentaries about it."
"The truck driver was on his phone."
"He was charged and is now in prison."- Tabby_Tibs
How Could It Have Possibly Been Worth It?
"That dude who ate a slug as a dare."- valcallis
Violence Is Never The Answer
"Respected cardiothoracic surgeon tells a guy to stop smoking right outside the hospital doors."
"Guy turns around and punches him a single time in the head."
"King-hit, or coward punched, whatever you want to call it."
"He falls to the floor and hits his head a second time."
"On life support for four weeks."
"Nothing left to save."- Reddit
You Never Know Who You Can Trust
"Years ago he started a trucking company with his best friend at the time."
"The HQ of the company was in a neighbor state, a six hours drive or about 40 minute flight."
"And for some reason, my dad just wouldn’t visit his company."
"Even with my mother pressing him to actually take care of his business, he would alway say he trusted his friend and since he only did the accounting for the company he only needed the reports his friend would send him."
"Long story short, his 'best friend' scammed him out a million bucks, driving both their company and my family to complete bankruptcy and f*cked off to live in some tropical paradise."- theapothecarium
Some People Get What They Deserve
"Dennis Rader, the BTK serial killer."
"He avoided arrest for 30 years, then, in an apparent need for attention, began writing to the police, basically mocking them for never having caught him."
"He asked the cops if they would be able to trace a floppy disk if he sent one to them."
"They said no."
"He sent it."
"They traced it."
"They arrested him and he's in prison for life."- President_Calhoun
There Are People Who Can Help You
"Doing fentanyl once destroyed my life for 3ish years."
"I was a complete shell and zombie. almost died too, overdosed 4 times."
"Lucky i got my sh*t together and will be 5 months sober in two days."- mission_mayhem
Some Risks Are Worth Taking
"I'm 49 years old, that context is relevant."
"When I was in college, a friend of mine started a company with a professor."
"This company was basically the first social network, I won't list its name here."
"This was in the early 90s."
"He offered me a job as employee number 4 or 5."
"I didn't know what the hell the internet was, let alone understand the concept of a social network."
"I knew he wasn't going to pay me much. I turned him down."
"Three years later, that company was sold for $190mm."
"They still only had a few employees."
"Every employee had equity and every employee made millions by age 25, including several other friends."
"I was a junior employee at an insurance company when I heard."
"Several of those people have gone on to very successful careers in technology and private equity."
"They were all basically set for life because of a quick decision they made at age 21."
"I've had an excellent career so far, I haven't 'destroyed my life'."
"But I think about this frequently."- hiro111
There's A Reason Stealing Is A Sin
"I knew of a girl who thought it was a good idea to steal a good sized amount of drugs from a guy she was partying with and then attempt to board a flight with it."
"She got caught by customs and ended up doing time."
Couldn't This Be Viewed As Self-Defense?
"Friend was having a beer in a tavern."
"Some guys came in and started messing with my friend."
"He moved seats twice and then got up to leave when one of the guys threw a punch."
"My friend threw ONE punch back and the guy he hit landed in the ICU and wasn't expected to live."
"Friend was sitting in jail waiting just waiting for the guy he punched to either die or recover."
"Turns out the guy he punched recovered."
"Friend took a reduced charge of aggravated assault...a felony."
"One punch."- Noelle305
Actions have consequences.
Though we all have some trouble controlling our impulses every now and then.
But sometimes a short pause and a deep breath is all it takes to prevent us from making a mistake we'd regret for the rest of our lives.
People Break Down How They'd React If They Couldn't Have Sex Anymore Due To Physical Or Mental Issues
Sex isn't everything.
But it can be something many of us take for granted.
But when it's gone... you notice.
Some move on, and some grieve.
And for many Redditors, this situation wasn't a hypotherical.
Redditor JeffLaRue wanted to hear how people would react without the possibility of sex, so they asked:
"What would you do if you couldn't have sex anymore due to a physical or mental issue?"
I personally wouldn't be thrilled.
But I'd find a way.
The New MeSad Sponge Bob GIF by SpongeBob SquarePantsGiphy
"I do actually (endometriosis). It's sometimes really sad, but you do other things with your partner, and try again to see if there's any improvement."
"I used to have a high sex drive, but due to the pain not anymore. My partner understands that and his one preoccupation is my health."
Likely be ok?
"My husband has stage 4 metastatic melanoma. He’s ok and will likely be ok but chemo/immunotherapy f**ked with his mojo. I’m good. We’ve found our intimacy in other ways like coffee together and just laughing in our car, our tv shows, etc.. I’d much rather have him with me than sex."
"Let's take a moment to appreciate that 'likely be ok' and 'stage 4 metastatic melanoma' can coexist in one sentence. Science, man."
"I was hit by a car and paralyzed from the chest down. I no longer have any sensation down there. Sucks, really. In some ways I think it is easier to get over not being able to walk, than losing sexual function. Unfortunately there isn't anything to do about it."
"I’m glad you’ve made it this far. I agree with you. My vehicle was rear-ended at a red light. I learned to walk again (so I’m doing amazing really!) but I can’t feel most of my bits, peeing is weird or doesn’t work, same with poo, one foot is constantly weakening, numbness, pins and needles, bolts of pain, constant throbbing, changes with the weather and activities, and really just keeps getting worse. Can’t work a full time job anymore. But the thing that’s the hardest to deal with is the neurogenic sexual dysfunction. It’s difficult as hell."
"The real question is, what would your SO do? We have been in this exact predicament for over 3 years now... It's like living with your best friend but every single day you watch a piece of your relationship die."
"Sorry for the over sharing. This one hits hard. Prostate cancer under 50 is considered rare."
"Although if caught early its very treatable. What they don't tell you is the cancer is transplanted into your relationship. For over 30yrs we had an amazing intimate sexual chemistry that was built around if one of us isn't into it then we won't do it. No fake orgasms, no birthday sex, no wearing each other down or giving in... just raw vulnerability and trust. All gone!"
MehAwkward John Krasinski GIF by Saturday Night LiveGiphy
"I would definitely miss it, but I'd manage."
Some people really don't care but did address the lack of intimacy.
A Mental NoNo No No GIFGiphy
"Honestly I’d be devastated. Not being able to connect in that intimate way with my partner would leave a huge gap in my mental well being. I know it’s not technically essential but it’s a massive part of a relationship and without that I would feel incompetent as a partner."
"I'd try other things to feel intimate with my partner. Like naked, but not sexual, snuggling. Or start up a hobby night where we spend quality time together. Maybe buy them a quality toy so they don't feel like they're missing out because of me 🤷♀️ But other than that? I'd just continue getting on with life!"
"Been dealing with an inflammatory skin issue that has prevented me from having sex with my partner for the last two months. It’s been a struggle, feels like my sex life is in shambles, and it’s driven me back into depression."
"Luckily my partner is incredibly understanding, but it has put a huge strain on the relationship. Trying to explore other forms of intimacy but she has a hard time receiving touch without it being a mutual experience.
"If this becomes a long term problem I don’t know how I’ll cope."
"I'm going to buck the trend and say that my life would be significantly degraded. I had a fairly low sex drive through periods of my life due to mental illness. Now, I am at my sexual peak and it's as if I'm seeing in color for the first time: I know how my body works, and what it likes, and I feel powerful and sexy."
"At this point, my sense of self and identity are linked to my ability to have sex. I felt very ugly and like I was only a mother for a while, and I feel much more like a woman and a normal person now. I could live without sex... but it would take me building myself up all over again and accepting who I am without that."
"It would probably devastate me, honestly. I was super overweight had very poor luck with women in my teens and twenties. I took control of my life, lost over 100 pounds and met my wife at 28. 8 years later we still have a very healthy sex life. She would understand but I feel as though it would bring up the feeling of inadequacy again."
Sex isn't everything, but it's important to many.
Hopefully everyone finds peace if this is a life issue being faced.