Ghost Writers: The Surprising Names Behind 10 Famous Works

Ethan Trex

Wish someone would give you a little respect? Want to keep the French from colonizing Central America? You know what song and what doctrine to turn to, but do you know who actually wrote them?

Twitter's Twaggies

David K. Israel is the first start-up I've ever, er, started up that's made it out of the incipient early BETA test phase and has actually brought people joy.

Odds/Ends: Name the MVPs! (And Other Contest News)

Jason English

Help us out! I saw on ESPN this morning that LeBron James became the sixth reigning league MVP in the four major sports to leave for another team after the season.

Where is Old Jersey? (and 6 other "˜New' location origins)

David K. Israel

I grew up in New Jersey... exit 4, to be more precise. But it wasn't until I left home that I actually started to think about the original Jersey, off the coast of France.

Watercooler Ammo: The Marathon in the Hospital Hallway

Jason English

Mangesh and I have a daily newsletter (well, Monday-Thursday). Many of our subscribers were kind enough to share yesterday's edition via email, or on Facebook and Twitter.

Outlaws as Folk Heroes

Miss Cellania

Nineteen-year-old Colton Harris-Moore was arrested in the Bahamas Sunday after a two-year run from the police.

The Number of the Day: 4

Colin Patrick

Joan Ginther of Las Vegas has won over $1 million in the Texas Lottery 4 times.

Brain Game: Drive My Car

Any Beatles fans in the house? These fictitious automobile-related phrases are actually anagrams of song titles by the Beatles.

Morning Cup of Links: Extreme Caving

Miss Cellania

It takes a real passion for your work to descend into the deepest caves of the world. James M. Tabor not only has the passion, but he communicates it well to those of us here on top of the earth.

The Late Movies: 11 Unusual Competitive Eating Contests

Erica Palan

Nathan's Hot Dog Eating contest was held over Fourth of July weekend on Coney Island. This year, long-time title-holder Joey Chestnut consumed 54 hot dogs and buns, winning the competition.

The Quick 10: 10 Unexpected Secret Service Duties

Stacy Conradt

Being a Secret Service agent isn't as action-packed as they make it seem in the movies.

Why Do Soap Operas Look Different From Other TV Shows?

Matt Soniak

Soap operas, "soaps" or "my stories," as many a grandmother has called them, are dramas presented in a serial format on daytime television or radio.

How One Man Gamed "The Price is Right"

Chris Higgins

Have you seen The Price is Right? I watch it at the gym, during the day, because I don't need to hear the sound to figure out what's going on.

Reminder: Help Us Decide Where to Go!

Jason English

As Will mentioned earlier this month, we're hitting the road this fall to spread the word about our latest book and new game. If you'd like mental_floss to make a trip to your town, email

5 Alternative World Cup Tournaments

Rob Lammle

The melodic tones of the vuvuzelas have faded, marking the end of yet another exciting World Cup tournament.