The Day My Son Realized He Was Going to Die


“I don’t want to die!”

My son let his spoon crash onto the floor, his morning Cheerios spilling through the cracks of the hardwood, and cried in a painful wail. He was 4 years old, and he had just come face to face with the inevitability of his own mortality.

We’d let slip the secret that everyone dies one day. We’d just made a visit to his great-grandfather, who was being kept alive through an oxygen mask attached to his face, and we’d carelessly let the truth out.

“Even me?” our son asked.

We didn’t want to lie. “Not for a long, long, time,” his mother told him. “But – yes. Even you.”

Up until that moment, we didn’t really know if he understood what death was. He’d seen bugs get swatted and villains defeated on TV, and he’d even yelled out that he was going to kill the bad guys in a few rowdy play sessions — but we weren’t sure if he knew what any of it meant.

He cried for 10 minutes straight after he found out. It wasn’t like any tantrum we’d seen before. He shut down completely, dropping the food from his hand, and started wailing with more misery than he’d ever shown. It took 10 full minutes to calm him down enough to get him to curl into the fetal position in a bed, his mother’s arms wrapped around him, and he still wasn’t talking.

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10 Incredible Stories of Survival in the Arctic


Few people choose to live in the Arctic, but those who do stay close to communities and shelters that can keep them warm and safe. There are a few unlucky souls, though, who have found themselves stranded alone in the barren wilderness of the Arctic. Many of them die, but some have struggled through incredible hardships—and survived.

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10 Insane Values Held By The First Settlers of America


In 1704, an American girl named Eunice Williams was abducted by Kahnawake Mohawks. When her parents found her, they thought she would be relieved at the chance to go home to her family. Instead, she refused. Life, she explained, was better with her Mohawks captors.

Eunice wasn’t the only one who felt that way. Puritan life was harsh and difficult—and even stricter than you imagined.

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When Kids Think Work Is More Important They They Are


“Dada, The Monkey King is tied up!”

My son was updating me on the latest going-ons in the lives of his toys, and catastrophe was afoot. His beloved Monkey King had been captured and there was, he assured me, no escape. Even when I suggested that the other toys might come to the rescue, he shook his head. There was no way.

“They can’t save him,” he told me. “They’re too busy. They have to go to work.”

After work, he explained, his toys would have to clean the house and go shopping for groceries. They simply didn’t have the time in their busy schedules to rescue a suffering friend – and so they had no choice but to leave the Monkey King to die.

It was one of those moments in the life of a parent that are equal parts cute and soul-crushing. My son had been watching us and forming his idea of how the world worked – and he had accepted that people who work are so busy that they have to abandon their loved ones.

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10 Unsolved Mysteries That Have Finally Been Cracked


We’ve covered more than a few unsolved mysteries at Listverse. There’s an exhilaration in trying to piece together clues that have eluded detectives over the years. Some of the unsolved mysteries that puzzled us a few years ago aren’t mysteries anymore. Today, we’re going to revisit those mysteries and find out how the pieces came together when they were solved.

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10 Tragic Tales About the Madness of Nikola Tesla


Nikola Tesla had one of the greatest minds the world has ever seen. He developed the alternating current system as well as the Tesla coil and made some absolutely incredible advances in early wireless communication.

That mind, though, was also plagued with madness. Tesla has been called eccentric, but that hardly scratches the surface of his problems. He was, by all modern definitions, cripplingly mentally ill. Behind his genius was a man who struggled through intense delusions and compulsive behavior, a man tormented by his own mind.

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10 Insane Ways The CIA Drugged People With LSD


In the early 1950s, the CIA started a program called MK-ULTRA. Fearing that the Soviet Union was getting ahead in espionage, they investigated whether LSD could be used for mind control.

The existence of MK-ULTRA is fairly well-known, but most people don’t know just how crazy the details were. CIA agents did some absolutely insane things with LSD. It’s not entirely clear that the government actually learned anything, but they definitely got some incredible stories out of it.

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