Showing results for "mark schectman now i know"

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    • D-N-Nay

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 3 mins
    • Unabridged
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    In the fall of 1994, the United States was introduced to a new tool in the world of crime solving and prosecution – DNA evidence. The O.J. Simpson trial had captured the nation's – if not much of the world's – attention, and a large part of the trial's outcome hung on DNA. At the time, the use of DNA evidence was still emerging, and the science wasn't well understood – or trusted – by juries.

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    • A Stinky Suit

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 2 mins
    • Unabridged
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    Okay, before we start this one, a warning: the fact and story are from hundreds of years ago, and the sources at the time were mostly oral, so there's a good chance this is more legend than truth.

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    • A Strange Goal or Two

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 3 mins
    • Unabridged
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    The Persian Gulf Pro League is the highest level of Iranian soccer. The Iran Pro League, or IPL, as it is often called, dates back to 1970, but has been around since 2001 in its current form. The sixteen teams in the IPL play 30 games over the course of a season; each team plays a home game and an away game against the other fifteen squads. Teams earn 3 points for a win and 1 point for a tie, and the team with the most points at the end of the season is the league champion.

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    • Behold the Power of Cheese

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 2 mins
    • Unabridged
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    The French Alpine town of Albertville sits in the southeast of the country, near the border of Italy, and is home to only about 10,000 people. Like most French communities, the people of Albertville rely on cheese. But unlike most other French areas, cheese is more than just a snack or part of a meal for the residents of Albertville. It, quite literally, powers part of the area.

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    • Leave It to Beaver

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 5 mins
    • Unabridged
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    If you're a homeowner, having a river or pond run through your property can be pretty cool – it can turn a rather nondescript piece of land into something more interesting and, with proper upkeep and safety, something more fun. Of course, that's only true if the body of water was something you expected to be there. If, one day, you woke up to find your typically dry backyard more akin to a bayou – well, that's a problem.

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    • Which Little Piggy?

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 3 mins
    • Unabridged
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    People typically come with 10 fingers and 10 toes, but when it comes down to it, we tend to neglect the latter set. That may be because we can't do much with our toes, at least not intentionally. (Or, put another way, they're not nearly as useful as our fingers.) In fact, we don't really think much about our toes – they're just kind of there, hiding in our shoes, doing whatever toes do. And as it turns out, we're not really good at thinking about our toes, even when we try to. Just ask a team of researchers from Oxford University.

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    • How Long Is Groundhog Day?

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 6 mins
    • Unabridged
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    Today, the United States celebrates the fake holiday known as Groundhog Day. The tradition, which dates back to the 18th or 19th century, is pseudoscience, but probably the harmless variety. People gather around in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, waiting for a groundhog named Punxsutawney Phil to emerge. (And yes, there are other Groundhog Day groundhogs, too, but Phil's the OG, assuming the "G" stands for "groundhog".)

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    • The Science Behind the Slogan

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 2 mins
    • Unabridged
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    Morton Salt was founded in 1848, originally selling salt, but it morphed into a salt manufacturer in 1910. Its logo and slogan, developed shortly thereafter, are a little strange for a salt company, though. The slogan, "when it rains, it pours," seems like a bad thing – rain isn't the most pleasant of weather and a downpour is even worse. The logo doesn't help: it depicts a girl in yellow, holding an umbrella that is shielding her from the rain – but she's spilling the salt she is carrying under her left arm.

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    • The Queen's Flesh and Blood Insurance Policy

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 2 mins
    • Unabridged
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    There's been a hostage situation in the UK every year since the 1500s. Oh, and it involves the queen. Explore the Queen of England's 'flesh and blood' insurance policy, on this episode of Now I Know. Every May or June – depending on whether the United Kingdom is holding Parliamentary elections that year – both houses of Parliament assemble to be addressed by the reigning monarch. The event is rife with pomp and circumstance, as one would expect from a regal tradition dating back to the 1500s.

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    • Slaying the Silver Ball

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 3 mins
    • Unabridged
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    Learn about New York City's decades-long pinball ban – and resulting black market – on this episode of Now I Know. Fiorello LaGuardia was elected mayor of New York City in 1933, and, on January 1st of the following year, took office. One of his first acts as mayor was to crack down on mafia activity, especially mob-owned slot machines, seeing them as a direct line into the coffers of organized crime.

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    • Is Zero Odd or Even? How India Drove around the Problem

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 3 mins
    • Unabridged
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    Is zero odd or even? Find out how India drove around the problem on this episode of Now I Know. Zero is an even number. Let’s get that out of the way. But if that gave you pause, you’re not alone – it can be a little hard to internalize. That’s why Wikipedia has a surprisingly long entry discussing the subject and why, according to a study from the 1990s (as explained by the BBC), “people are 10% slower at deciding whether zero is odd or even than other numbers.”

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    • Cleveland's Pole Tax

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 4 mins
    • Unabridged
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    What scandal nearly cost President Grover Cleveland the election? Get the inside story on this episode of Now I Know. The Presidency of Grover Cleveland is already unique for the well-known reason that his two terms were not consecutive. Cleveland won the 1884 Presidential election by a narrow margin – less than a half a percent of the popular vote – and took the Presidency.

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    • Editing the Future in the Past

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 2 mins
    • Unabridged
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    There's a teensy problem with the Lincoln Memorial – one that spelling sticklers might have the biggest problem with. Explore this little-known fact on this episode of Now I Know. The Lincoln Memorial is one of Washington, D.C.’s top tourist attractions. The monument, erected to honor the 16th President of the United States, is a painstaking work of architecture and sculpture. It features a 19-foot high sculpture of Abraham Lincoln himself, and the attention to detail is breathtaking.

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    • Sound's Wrong

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 3 mins
    • Unabridged
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    In 2013, Mamoru Samuragochi was nearing his 50th birthday and was at the peak of his fame. A talented composer, Samuragochi was near the top of the list if you needed an original score for a video game and was widely regarded as a leading talent in the realm of digital composition. He was also well known for composing a symphony about the Hiroshima bomb, which quickly became one of the more popular classical music pieces in Japan.

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    • Gambling on a Stranger's Life

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 3 mins
    • Unabridged
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    In 1984, a Michigan man named Donald Magett won the big one – the Michigan Lottery's $1,000 Cash for Life scratch off game. He was 41 or 42 years old at the time, and while the monthly prize (paid in $12,000 annual chunks) wasn't quite "quit your job" money, it certainly sounded like he was on his way to financial security. Alas, that was not the case. In 2005, the U.S. Department of Labor sued Magett.

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    • Putting Your Vacation on Ice

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 3 mins
    • Unabridged
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    At 67°51' North latitude, the Swedish town of Jukkasjärvi is located within the Arctic Circle, which should give you an idea for how remote it is. Its Wikipedia entry uses more words to explain the origin of the town's name than it does the town's attractions, which is to say that there aren't very many of the latter. From April to November, probably the most interesting building in the town of about 500 people is an old wooden church dating back to the early 1600s.

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    • One of These Things Just Isn't the Same

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 3 mins
    • Unabridged
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    Sometime in the summer of 1933, a couple in Trinidad – it's unclear if they were ever married – went through a particularly nasty breakup. The woman, Caroline, believed her partner to be less-than-faithful; his reputation for philandering and carousing was more than she could handle, especially given that she had just given birth to twin boys six months prior. Caroline decided to return to Germany, where she – a practicing Roman Catholic – had grown up.

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    • Voltaire's Wager

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 3 mins
    • Unabridged
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    François-Marie Arouet, better known as Voltaire, was a French writer during the Enlightenment. Known for what would today be considered snark, he often made comments to which many would take offense. For example, in his 1764 treatise Dictionnaire Philosophique (which translates as Philosophical Dictionary), Voltaire quipped that "common sense is not so common." This smarter-than-thou attitude was a theme throughout his works, and, one would expect, his life as well.

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    • The Crack Tax

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 3 mins
    • Unabridged
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    Crack – a smokable form of cocaine which is all too common – is highly addictive and very dangerous. At $50 to $100 per gram on the street (that's a Google-fueled guess by the way; sorry if I have that wrong, but I've never been in the market for crack), it's also a lower-cost alternative to those cocaine addicts who need a hit but don't have the dollars for the straight, snort-able kind. Oh, and in most places, it's illegal – including in the United States, which includes the state of Tennessee.

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    • The $1 Health Care Plan

    • By: Dan Lewis
    • Narrated by: Mark Schectman
    • Length: 3 mins
    • Unabridged
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    It was June 23, 2011. A 59-year-old man named Richard James Verone was being held in North Carolina, unable to pay his $2,000 bond. He was awaiting his day in court – June 28th – for a crime he'd committed two weeks earlier. It was a smooth, calculated crime. On the morning of June 9th, Verone showered, ironed his shirt, and hopped into a cab to go to a nearby bank. He handed the teller a note with a simple demand: take some money out of the drawer and hand it over.

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