THE KNOWLEDGE FEED

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Why Are Flags Flown at Half-Staff?

Jason English

Happy Flag Day, everybody! Have you ever wondered why flags are flown at half-staff in times of mourning? What length of time is appropriate? How'd the tradition get started?

Find the Perfect Gift for Dad and Get 15% Off!

Jason English

Get Dad something fun for Father's Day. Head over to the mental_floss store, fill up your cart, and enter the code "fathersday" before checkout to get 15% off.

Morning Cup of Links: Gobar Gas

Miss Cellania

Gobar gas, a byproduct of the decomposition of cow dung, other waste, and any biomass, fuels villages in Nepal and many parts of Asia. The benefits go way beyond saving money and the environment.

The 5pm Quiz: Lifetime Movie or Megadeth Song?

Jason English

by Craig Dorfman Given their shared preoccupation with kidnapping, family dysfunction and untimely death, it's sort of surprising that Lifetime and Megadeth don't share more fans.

The Weekend Links: Sunday Edition

Allison Keene

Around 1959 in Notting Hill Tube Station, the passageways to the lift were sealed off for improvements.

Last Week's Most Popular Stories

Jason English

In case you weren't obsessively refreshing mentalfloss.com all week, here's what you

The Weekend Links: Saturday Edition

Allison Keene

From Jan I bring you your newest fascination: Cooking with Dog is a bizarre Japanese cooking show "˜hosted' by Francis—a seemingly sedated, tear-stained poodle who kindly translate

Win a mental_floss t-shirt!

Jason English

Take today’s a Google a day challenge! Once you’ve gotten the answer, e-mail me the name of the actor who most frequently played today’s answer on Saturday Night Live.

The Late Movies: Japanese Game Shows

Miss Cellania

In the US, there are game shows and there are variety shows. In Japan, the two are often blurred, as the goal is entertaining the audience more than winning a competition.

What's the Deal With the Black Box?

Matt Soniak

I have spent my life on Mars, in a cave, with my fingers in my ears. What, pray tell, is a flight

David Byrne on How Architecture and Music Interact

Chris Higgins

Here's a bit of nerdy awesomeness for your Friday afternoon: David Byrne (of Talking Heads) gives a TED Talk about how different rooms (performance venues) affect music.

Borneo's Wildest New Wildlife

Jill Harness

Borneo is the world's third-largest island and its biodiversity is so amazing that Adam Tomasek, the environmentalist leader of WWF's team for Heart of Borneo region, estimates that "o

Your Company's Strangest Rules and Regulations

Jason English

Every Friday, I post a series of unrelated questions meant to spark conversation in the comments. Answer one, answer all, respond to someone else's reply, whatever you want. Very casual.

Making Pasta in Kabul

Ransom Riggs

You may remember friend-of-the-site Afghanistan Sam, an American expat living in Kabul whose guest-blog from a few years back about how to buy, butcher, and spit-roast a sheep for one's girlfrien

The Weird Week in Review

Miss Cellania

Police Chase Elephant Through Zurich Swiss police are not accustomed to a chase scene like this. An elephant named Sabu led them on a chase through the financial district of Zurich last weekend.

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