We’ve all heard the adage “you’re more likely to get struck by lightning than to win the lottery.” Sounds grim. Apparently, it’s also more likely that you will die on the way to buying your lottery ticket than actually win the lottery.
Of course this all depends on your mode of transportation to buy the ticket and the characteristics of the area where you buy it and even your demographics. It is true that you are more likely to die in a car accident than win though. The gist is that it’s very unlikely that you will win the lottery.
Some other things that are more likely than winning the lottery? Dying from flesh-eating bacteria, dying from a bee sting, becoming a movie star, dying in a bathtub and having identical quadruplets.
When jellyfish are in the water, they can be a bit intimidating. Their tentacles can pack a painful electrical shock. However, once they wash up on shore, they are anything but intimidating.
It turns out that jellyfish are 98% water. Most are transparent and bell-shaped. If they end up on the beach, they will most likely evaporate in a few hours and mostly disappear.
Jellyfish also don’t have brains, bones or a heart. They do have rudimentary sensory nerves though.
If you’re ticklish, you know the automatic laugh response that occurs when you are tickled. This can range from giggling to uncontrollable shrieks of laughter. However, your body is actually responding with panic and anxiety.
This is actually the body’s defense mechanism. It is believed that the response is meant to protect you from dangerous things on your skin, such as poisonous insects. The body needs to react quickly to this unanticipated touch and does so with a panic response.
Yawning is a reflex of simultaneous inhalation of air and stretching the ear drums followed by an exhalation of breath. It is linked to tiredness, boredom, overwork, stress and lack of stimulation. In humans, yawning is often triggered by others yawning around you.
In this way, it is contagious. Interestingly enough, this contagiousness has also been observed in chimpanzees and dogs. So why is that when we see those around us yawning, we too want to yawn?
Some studies have suggested that infectious yawning developed to keep groups of animals alert. The increase of oxygen to their brain will help ready them for action. Other studies have suggested that yawning is associated with the cooling of the brain.
Have you ever closed your eyes, rubbed them and seen stars? Or at least little pops of light? It turns out that those pops of light have a name: phosphenes.
They are a phenomenon characterized by seeing light without light actually entering the eye. This rubbing mechanically stimulates the cells of the retina causing this effect. Sometimes, these phosphenes can still be seen for moments after you open your eyes.
Meditators have also reported experiencing phosphenes, and they have actually been known since antiquity. Ancient Greeks described them. Other reasons people ‘see stars’ are because of sneezing, coughing, blowing your nose or receiving a blow to the head.