Whether you can talk or not: palms up means supplication


Today's John Tierney-authored Findings column discusses the evolution and significance of the upturned palm and its variants--the shrug, the downturned palm, etc: That simple gesture, the upturn

Jason English

Update: Check out the official mental_floss Facebook

120 Minutes Archive

Chris Higgins

In middle and high school, I used to sit up late on Sunday nights to catch the best show on MTV, 120 Minutes.

129 cats just wasn't enough

Ransom Riggs

The title of this video, as per YouTube, is "Crazy Russian Lady Owns 130 Cats." That really says it all.

How Not To: Build an Inland Sea

Maggie Koerth-Baker

When Life Gives You Massive River Flooding, Make Lemonade In a fit of early 1900s nature-subduing enthusiasm, the good people of California decided to turn Imperial Valley (a desert) into a vast agri

The mental_floss award gets named!

Mangesh Hattikudur

BREAKING NEWS: After reviewing all 360+ award names, and debating vigorously over which one was the so-called flossiest, we've finally (FINALLY) made our decision.

Ugly Jugs

Miss Cellania

Last week at the Presurfer I saw a video of Alabama potter Jerry Brown making a jug.

Fried Coke (and other fried things inspired by Texas)

Mangesh Hattikudur

CNN is reporting that deep fried lattes, fried chili pie, fried banana pudding and fried guacamole are all highlights set to premier at this year's third annual Big Tex Choice Awards contest.

Tuesday Turnip

David K. Israel

It's time for another whimsical Tuesday Turnip search wherein I type a random phrase and we see what kind of interesting factoids "turn-up." Today I typed in "comprised less tha

Not tennis: the best cities for singles


Thank you, Forbes, for your annual reports on the state of the "singles" nation; the 2007 edition is here!

Square America

Chris Higgins

I'm fascinated by vintage photos, occasionally buying a few and wondering at the stories behind them.

Totally inappropriate coloring books

Ransom Riggs

It wasn't long ago that we reported on a flurry of overtly political kids books -- like Help! There's a Liberal Under My Bed!

Strong like bear?

Mangesh Hattikudur

Maybe my memory for this sort of thing isn't that good, but aside from some photos of Kennedy with his shirt off (yachting in the Vineyard, or something), I can't really remember any pics of

Does Pavlov Live on in DJ Casper? Convince Me I'm Wrong.

Jason Plautz

Though it may seem ridiculous, I've had a theory for a long time that the best modern example of Ivan Pavlov's work is a line from DJ Casper's dance hit "Cha-Cha Slide." The

The Ugliest Cars

Miss Cellania

Business Week reports on a survey done by Hagerty Insurance that ranks the worst car designs ever. Here are the results: 1. AMC Pacer 2. Yugo 3. Ford Pinto 4. Pontiac Aztec 5.