Tupac studied ballet and was in his high school’s production of Nutcracker.
Ikea uses 1% of the world’s wood to make its furniture.
Einstein’s brain was about 10% smaller than that of the average human.
I learned these and about a hundred other mind-blowing facts from a podcast I got into beginning last summer: Part-Time Genius (“PTG”). The hosts, Will “Will” Pearson and Mangesh “Mango” Hattikudur, describe PTG as “their newest adventure, built on the premise that learning is much more fun when it doesn’t feel like a chore.” While, I haven’t fact-checked any of their content, they seem trustworthy given they are also the brains behind Mental Floss.
Will and Mango tend to publish shows three times a week, with longer format episodes bookending a shorter listicle format in the middle. They periodically bring guests on their show, typically authors of new books or hosts of new shows from their parent company How Stuff Works. At the end of most episodes, the two hosts hold a “fact-off” – nerdy version of a rap battle – and the winner takes home a trophy.
After listening to a couple of dozen fact-offs, I began keeping track of the trophy winners for absolutely no reason. A few weeks ago, I noticed they had crossed the 100-mark; by my count, 119 in fact. So, as I heard their recent episode on avoiding writer’s block, I thought, why not dust off the blog by putting together an easy piece? I decided to look at who is winning the PTG trophy race and it turns out:
Mango (57 trophies) leads Will (53) just by a hair, with producer Tristan (3) and lead researcher Gabe (2) rounding out the frequent winners’ list (Others, typically guests, earned the remaining 4 trophies).
In fact, he took the lead from Will for the last time in August last year, and has never looked back. Looking closely, however, turns out Will and Mango are neck and neck in 2018 with 26 each, so Mango’s lead is a carryover from last year. Keep it up, PTG folks! Will Will close the gap? Will Mango kick it into the next gear as he did in the home stretch last year? Will Tristan emerge in a dark horse t-shirt and win uninterrupted for the rest of 2018? Who knows, but at least it got me writing, again!