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  • Hi I'm John Green, welcome to my Salon. This is mental_floss on Youtube. Gerald Ford,

  • first named Lesley Lynch King, Jr., was a male model for Cosmopolitan and that is the

  • first of 45 facts today you're going to learn about US Presidents.

  • To stay fit, Herbert Hoover and his personal physician invented their own sport-- Hooverball. Why

  • haven't you seen highlights on Sports Center? Well, mostly because Hoover's Presidency was

  • a failure in every regard. Also the game was a cross between volleyball, tennis and dodgeball,

  • except much more terrifying because it was played with a medicine ball.

  • Speaking of Hoover and sports, young Herbert was manager of the football team at Stanford.

  • But he was a little bit Holden Caulfield about the gig: At the first Stanford-Cal game in

  • 1892, for instance, he forgot to bring the game ball.

  • Noted pugilist Teddy Roosevelt said he cut back on boxing in the White House because

  • it was "rather absurd for a president to appear with a black eye or a swollen nose."

  • Equally absurd? Throwing a Swiss minister to the floor during a Judo demonstration.

  • Which Teddy also did. At a state luncheon. Even though Switzerland is neutral.

  • Incidentally, during his inauguration Teddy Roosevelt wore a ring that contained an honest-to-god

  • lock of Abraham Lincoln's hair. Which becomes slightly less weird when you know that:

  • In 1865, six-year-old Teddy Roosevelt watched Abraham Lincoln's funeral procession in New

  • York City, and apparently left impression.

  • And speaking of Lincoln's hair, it was amazing. When historians talk about how remarkable Lincoln was as a

  • man, a president and a vampire hunter, but they rarely mention that he could do this

  • WITHOUT product.

  • And he could rock more than one look too.A reporter once described his mop as "Wild

  • Republican hair." I'm guessing Republican hair used to be a lot wilder and crazier before

  • Dwight Eisenhower ruined the whole thing with his baldness.

  • Ulysses S. Grant was once arrested during his term in office on speeding charges. The

  • President was pulled over and fined $20 for exceeding the Washington speed limit... on

  • a horse!

  • But that was hardly the most serious of equine crimes: Franklin Pierce, our handsomest president,

  • was arrested during his first year in office for running over an elderly woman with his

  • horse. A scene I will now recreate with Franklin Pierce being played by a monkey and the old

  • lady being played by Smurfette. Oh come on...That was terrible,Franklin Pierce!

  • Anyway, charges were dropped due to lack of evidence/him being President.

  • Speaking of horses, Bill Clinton is kind of a Brony. When he appeared on Wait Wait...Don't

  • Tell Me!, Bill aced the three questions about My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic.

  • By the way, we learned on a visit to the Clinton Presidential Library that his cat almost had

  • his own Super Nintendo game called Socks the Cat Rocks the Hill.

  • Richard Nixon proposed to his wife, Pat, on their first date. Pro tip: that is not a good

  • idea. Then he obsessively pursued her for two years until she finally said yes. Also

  • not a good idea.

  • But it's weirder than that because to spend time with her in the interim, Nixon acted as Pat's

  • chauffeur, driving her on dates with other guys...that's not creepy...

  • But perhaps creepiest of all was his favorite snack: cottage cheese with ketchup.

  • President, Warren G. Harding bet a priceless set of White House china on a poker game

  • and lost...not the only example of corruption in his administration.

  • In 1988, George H.W. Bush briefly considered naming Clint Eastwood as his running mate.

  • Instead he chose Dan Quayle.

  • Van Buren's autobiography fails to mention his wife.

  • In 1965, President Lyndon Johnson issued the first Medicare card.

  • The recipient? Harry Truman.

  • Speaking of Truman, for his birthday in 1947, Harry's pals had a bowling alley installed

  • in the White House...but he hadn't bowled since he was 19.

  • He also, contrary to popular belief, never granted clemency to a turkey. Several history

  • sites claim that Truman was the first President to pardon a Thanksgiving Day turkey. But the

  • Truman Library can't find any "documents, speeches, newspaper clippings, photographs,

  • or other contemporary records" tying him to the custom.

  • According to their research, the one time President Truman was given a live turkey for

  • the holidays, his family did what people expected them to do: they ate it.

  • So, who was the first president to give a bird a pass? JFK. In 1963, Kennedy announced

  • he wouldn't eat the turkey he'd been given. Instead, he sent it to a farm upstate where

  • it had plenty of space to run and play and gobble and contemplate what it's country had

  • done for it.

  • The first to host an Easter Egg roll on the White House lawn? Rutherford B. Hayes.

  • The first to host a prom? Gerald Ford, for his daughter Susan who was like, "Daaaaaad,

  • this is so embarrassing, why can't we have a prom in the Hilton Ballroom like everyone

  • else?!"

  • The first to own a Muzak franchise? Lyndon B. Johnson. Because you can't build a great

  • society without terrible elevator music.

  • Before he was president, Grover Cleveland was president.

  • But before that, Grover Cleveland was a hangman. As sheriff of Erie County, he personally carried

  • out two hanging sentences to save his district money-- which is probably not what the town

  • meant when they were like, "you need to start closing some of these loopholes."

  • *crickets* Anybody... loopholes? No? Sorry.

  • The great William Faulkner once refused a dinner invitation from President Kennedy's

  • White House. "Why that's a hundred miles away," Faulkner explained. "That's a long

  • way to go just to eat."

  • Upon hearing the news of the notoriously quiet Calvin Coolidge's death, Dorothy Parker reportedly

  • asked, "How can they tell?"

  • In 1933, an assassin shot at Franklin Delano Roosevelt five times while Roosevelt was giving

  • a speech. Five people were hit. None were Roosevelt.

  • And now, let me share with you an excerpt from Ronald Reagan's Diary from October 17,

  • 1984: "Little Drew Barrymorethe child in 'E.T.'—was one of the children [I met].

  • She's a nice little person."

  • Speaking of Reagan, if you combine the electoral college results of the 1980 and 1984 elections,

  • Reagan defeated Jimmy Carter and Walter Mondale 1014-62.

  • Also, he almost took a part in Back to the Future III...in my opinion the most underrated

  • film in the franchise.

  • Furthermore in 1983, he convinced Mr. T to play Santa. Seriously. I have long argued

  • that we need to imagine Santa more complexly.

  • Harry S. Truman's middle name? Just "S".

  • President Obama received some weird gifts including: 50 pairs of boxer briefs from David

  • Beckam; a pair of blinged out headphones specially designed for

  • him by Ludacris; a $50k insurance policy in case he's ever attacked by Australian crocodiles...only

  • Australian crocodiles; and a pet donkey that a town in Colombia tried to send him. Tried

  • being the operative word because Obama politely declined.

  • Speaking of pets, John and Abigail Adams, this is true, had a dog named Satan.

  • Benjamin Harrison's opossums were named Mr. Reciprocity and Mr. Protection, which coincidentally

  • are also the names of my guns.

  • And Teddy Roosevelt's kids had some tremendously named guinea pigs: Dr. Johnson, Bishop Doane,

  • Fighting Bob Evans, and Father O'Grady

  • For a better name than all of those we return to my portrait gallery. By the way, that is

  • my family. Jimmy Carter once wrote a children's book called The Little Baby Snoogle-Fleejer. That's

  • right, Snoogle-Fleejer...

  • Thanks for watching mental_floss on YouTube, made with the help of these nice people. If

  • you have a great question you've always wanted the answer to...submit it in the comments

  • and we'll try to answer as many as we can starting in April.

Hi I'm John Green, welcome to my Salon. This is mental_floss on Youtube. Gerald Ford,

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45 Odd Facts About US Presidents - mental_floss on YouTube (Ep.3)

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