current-events
News
U.S. Currency Depicts Lady Liberty as a Black Woman
This marks a first in the U.S. Mint's 225-year history.... READ ON
News
Nobel Peace Prize Goes to Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos
The announcement comes less than a week after Colombians voted to reject a peace deal.... READ ON
News
Meet the Only Afghan Woman to Run Afghanistan's First Official Marathon
How one young woman is blazing trails—literally and figuratively—in her home country.... READ ON
List
8 Ancient Writing Systems That Haven't Been Deciphered Yet
These scripts remain mysterious.... READ ON
Design
Detroit Teen Builds Wheelchair-Adaptable Stroller for New Mom
The 16-year-old made the stroller in his high school STEM class.... READ ON
Big Question
Why Don't Valentine Hearts Look Like Real Hearts?
Love is in the air today, and images of two-lobed hearts are all over everything: candy, cards, decorations, you name it. That the heart is symbolic of love and passion isn’t surprising. Ancient Greek and Roman thinkers, including Aristotle, thought the organ was the center of all emotions. Why the heart symbol you see everywhere in February doesn’t look anything like an actual human heart is a little less clear, though.The symbol goes at least as far back as the... READ ON
The Week
6 Surprising Facts About Airline Crashes
Last weekend's crash of Asiana Flight 214 has many fliers rattled. But knowledge is power.... READ ON
The Week
8 Other World Leaders Who Got Divorced in Office
Sometimes, love and politics don't mix.... READ ON
Big Question
What Does a Foreign Service Officer Do?
The unfortunate and untimely death of a young Foreign Service Officer in a suicide bombing on April 6 in Afghanistan’s Zabul province has drawn attention to the careers of U.S. diplomats.... READ ON
The Week
How a Gang of Pickpockets Shut Down the Louvre
French museum workers walk out as the home to the Mona Lisa is plagued by increasingly aggressive thieves... READ ON
Big Question
How Can US Citizens Legally Travel to Cuba?
Musical power couple Beyoncé and Jay-Z jetted down to a tropical and somewhat-forbidden destination last week for their fifth wedding anniversary: Cuba. Because of travel restrictions to the country, the couple’s trip raised the eyebrows of some U.S. lawmakers.... READ ON
History
Kim Jong-Un's Less Responsible, Disney-Obsessed Older Brother
In 2001 a different Kim was in line for the throne: Kim Jong-nam. But then he tried to visit Tokyo Disneyland...... READ ON
The Week
The Biggest Cyberattack in Internet History Happened Yesterday
A spat between a Dutch webhost and a spam-fighting organization is crippling the Internet.... READ ON
Big Question
How Do They Make the "Pope Smoke"?
When the Catholic cardinals meet to pick a new pope in the “papal conclave,” they’re sequestered in the Sistine Chapel so that their deliberations aren’t influenced by the outside world and that their ballots, burned after each round of voting, remain secret. Updates from within the conclave, then, come not from press conferences or the pontifical Twitter account, but the chapel’s chimney.... READ ON
History
5 Famous Filibusters
After a mere 13 hours Wednesday, Senator Rand Paul ended his filibuster against the nomination of John Brennan for CIA director. While the thought of more than half a day of nonstop speaking may make the glossophobes among us (consider my hand raised) blanch, it’s just a drop in the bucket for filibusterers. Here are five of the most famous filibusters in history—all of which are hours longer than Paul’s baker's dozen.... READ ON
Big Question
Why Did Eating Horsemeat Become Taboo?
Despite the notion of horses as pets and companions, horsemeat is widely and willingly consumed in countries ranging from Mexico to China to Italy. So how, exactly, did eating horsemeat become taboo for the rest of us?... READ ON

The "black box" on an airplane is actually bright orange so that it can be easily found among the wreckage if the plane were to crash.

NEWSLETTER
A super-skimmable daily digest.
©2016 Mental Floss, Inc. All rights reserved. Mental Floss® is a registered trademark owned by Felix Dennis. mentalfloss.com is a trademark owned by Felix Dennis.