Safety Dance
11 Dec 2019
Billie Jean
06 Dec 2019
Cup 'O Noodles
05 Dec 2019
Clive James
28 Nov 2019
27 Nov 2019
Marlboro Man
12 Nov 2019
James Cagney
08 Oct 2019
Tiger Woods
03 Oct 2019
Historical Events  General
Historical Events  General
Uncle Sam's hat

I want YOU to remember my original hat

MMDE: Uncle Sams hat had vertical red stripes

Current: Uncle Sams hat was white with no red stripes

The famous poster showing Uncle Sam sternly declaring "I want YOU for U.S. Army" aimed at recruiting service personnel is 100 years old now.

Do you remember what color his hat was? The poster shows the top half being purely white, and there are other images of the time showing this, but checking everywhere today shows it has wide vertical red stripes against this white background.

The poster style proved so sucessful it was repeated, with suitable variations, many times elsewhere - for exampel, the mustached Lord Kitchener British one of 1914.

Historical Events  General
War of the Worlds radio broadcast

Epic trolling?

MMDE: The War of the Worlds radio broadcast caused mass panic

Current: The War of the Worlds radio broadcast caused very little panic

The 1938 radio transmission of Orson Wells' "The War of the Worlds" was a classic in broadcasting history.

It's famous (or is that notorious?) for the supposed effect it had on many who heard it. The story is it caused mass panic, overloading the police and emergency services as people really believed they were under attack. However, there is doubt today that this was the case, and evidence it was in fact all whipped up by the press at the time to sell more newspapers.

The broadcast itself is as enjoyable today as it was back then, with a commanding peformance by Wells. It formed part of an American drama series "Mercury Theatre on The Air", and was part of the Halloween episode on October 30, 1938. 

Historical Events  General
Serving US Presidents shot and killed

Where were you when you didn't hear about it?

MMDE: 2 serving presidents shot and killed

Current: 4 serving presidents shot and killed

Ask people how many US Presidents have been shot and killed whilst in office and most people will respond with 2 - Lincoln and Kennedy. Some remember Reagan being shot but he wasn't killed.

They might be experiencing a Mandela Effect, however, because the records today showing it was 4 comes as more than just a suprise - they are sure they would have heard this before. As with many other Mandela Effects, it's more than just happening to miss this fact their entire life - it's as if it changed for them suddenly.

Worth noting is the well-known list of co-incidences with the Lincoln and Kennedy assasinations - but that's for another time!

Historical Events  General
Marie Celeste

The most famous ghost ship of all time

MMDE: Marie Celeste

Current: Mary Celeste

In 1872 an American merchant ship was found adrift near the Azores Islands. It was deserted and waterlogged, and appeared to have been drifting for many days. When the ship was inspected, it was found the last log entry was 10 days earlier with no mention of any unexpected events. Food and supplies were plentiful, there were many valuables left onboard and even partially eaten food on the tables, suggesting it was not pirates or lack of supplies which caused the sudden disappearance of the crew.

Over the years many myths built up over this story, ranging from aliens abducting the crew to sudden vortexes appearing from a parallel dimension.

The biggest mystery to many however is the name of the ship - was it the Marie Celeste or the Mary Celeste?

Records today show it as the Mary Celeste, but there is even more to this than at first appears... 

Historical Events  General
The Storming of the Bastille

How many prisoners released?

MMDE: Hundreds of prisoners freed

Current: 7 prisoners freed

It's a common notion that the French Revolution was started when the angry mob stormed the Bastille, freeing all the prisoners held there by the evil ruling monarchy so they could join their ranks and take over the country. That's partly true - but how many prisoners were freed? The image of thousands swarming out, cheering on the revolutionaries is a popular one, but history is showing this isn't the case, as in fact there were 7.

The Bastille was a large, imposing fortress which was also used as a weapons and ammunition store. This made it a target for the revolutionaries, but it's role as a symbol of the tyrannical royal family, which often imprisoned people there with no trial, was clearly of great importance too.

Historical Events  General
James Bond

How many lines?

MMDE: Always one vertical line

Current: Sometimes two vertical lines

Some are saying it was always written with one vertical line, some with two and some with both.

The origin of the vertical line is an interesting story itself. Originally, the US used Spanish Peso, which was written P with a supercripted "S". Writing PS so many times caused them to merge into the S with a line though.

Sometimes, however, it appears with 2 vertical lines, but there's no doubt the single line one seems dominant - just take a look at your keyboard, for example ;-)

There is a variation of the origin story which is simpler. It just says it originated by writing U directly over S, cutting out the bottom of the U. This would result in two vertical lines. Even more curious is the UK pound symbol is sometimes seen with two horizontal lines, and sometimes with one...

Historical Events  General
Statue of Liberty

On which island?

MMDE: Statue of Liberty is on Ellis Island

Current: Statue of Liberty is on Liberty Island

Even the official, current references to this one are causing confusion.

There are two national monuments right next to each other - one is the Statue of Liberty, the other is Ellis Island. Ellis Island forms part of the Statue of Liberty National Monument.

There is another island next to Ellis Island called Liberty island.

OK so far? The problem is, many swear The Statue of Liberty was on Ellis Island. Some also swear it is in New Jersey - which it is, because the state line runs through the center of New York harbor and Liberty Island just falls on the New Jersey side of it. Clear?