The term balls out originally referred to behavior of the speed governor on a steam engine, which is not how I would have thought the term originated at all.
I found this out from the Common Descent podcast, a podcast about paleontology. One of the podcasters was using the change in meaning of balls out as a way of explaining how something used for one purpose such as feathers as a means of insulation can be used for something else, such as feathers for flight.
The Very Hungry caterpillar was originally supposed to be titled A Week With Willy the Worm and was supposed to be about a bookworm. Eric Carle's publisher suggested that he change the title character to a caterpillar. Eric Carle agreed as it allowed his character to become a butterfly at the end.
May be verified in the No Such Thing as a Fish Podcast #91
The idea that the Great Wall of China could be seen from the moon originated in a Ripley's Believe it or Not cartoon from the 1930's. The fact that the Great wall of China cannot be seen from space without the aid of a telescope is a matter causing great consternation to the Chinese space program. may be verified in the No Such Thing as a Fish Podcast Episode 90
Otters were sacred to the Zoroastrians. The punishment for killing an otter was the loss of all property and land and to have one's daughters given to godly men.
In order to atone for killing an otter one had to fulfill up to 18 possible tasks including kiling 10,000 frogs. 10,000 snakes. 10,000 worms, 10,000 corpse flies, 10,000 tortoises, 10,000 ants, submitting to being whipped 10,000 times and carrying 10,000 loads of wood to a sacred site.
May be verified in the No Such Thing as a Fish Podcast
Playboy was the first magazine to be printed in braille. (It may have been part of a group of magazines like National Geographic to be converted to braille by the Library of Congress simultaneously.) It had no 2D pictures or even descriptions of images. Some congressional representatives tried to have the magazine defunded due to its printing dirty jokes.
I was listening to the Daily Show and Trevor Noah made a joke that Joe Manchin was so mysterious that he'd be the first living person to be contacted via a seance. I learned earlier this week that this wasn't true, that during World War I families used Ouija boards to communicate with members who were serving overseas. No, you're right it doesn't make sense. One of the panelists felt sorry for the Doughboy who comes home to find that his grandmother isn't talking to him because "he" said something rude via Ouija board.
Trevor Noah also showed the clip of the man capturing an alligator with a garbage pail. He made the joke that I independently came up with and have been posting in comments that he feels sorry for the sanitation workers who will make the next pick up at that residence
Slash from Guns and Roses is a big dinosaur fan and visits the local natural History Museum whenever he's on tour.
May be verified in the Podcast Probably Science #434. One guest, David B. Lyons, invented the term "Yacht Rock." The other, Jesse Case, was the musical director for Second City ETC when I saw a show there in 2019.