Is it dangerous to take a shower during a thunderstorm?

Yes – if you take a shower during a thunderstorm, there is a risk of electrocution. To understand why, we need to remind ourselves how electricity behaves. If lightning strikes a house, the electricity will follow the path of least resistance, which is the best conductor available. This can (and should) be a lightning conductor, but even in its absence, the electricity will find some path. Many things can be used as conductors: metal gutters, plumbing pipes, or even reinforcement elements provide an excellent escape route to the ground. Thus, when lightning strikes, the current will flow through one of these available conductors until it reaches the ground and dissipates. The occupants will remain safe. But…

Well, there is always a “but.” If you are taking a shower during a thunderstorm, or even washing your hands when lightning strikes, you can become a conductor of electricity. The current will flow through the water pipes, and our wet body standing in the shower will close the circuit between the shower and the drain with which the water pipes have no connection. There are several documented cases of such a shock. This is why, despite the small chance of such an occurrence, experts recommend avoiding contact with plumbing during a storm. We don’t wash plates, shower or bathe. For our own safety.


What is the Mozambique drill?

Mozambique drill (also known by its alternative name “failure drill”) is a close range shooting technique in which the shooter fires two rapid shots into the opponent’s torso, evaluates the shots, and then, if the situation warrants, fires another shot into the head.

Double tap technique

This technique is a development of a technique called “double tap.” It was invented in the 1930s by William Ewart Fairbairn and Eric A. Sykes – British police officers of the Shanghai police. The full metal jacket (bullet with a soft core encased in an outer shell) used by the officers did not inflict enough damage on the attacker and for this reason the officers were instructed to fire two rapid shots at the enemy. The main advantage of this technique is speed, which was of great importance in the narrow streets of the Chinese metropolis. In the 1940s, this technique was adopted by the special forces of the OSS (Office of Strategic Services) and SOE (The Special Operations Executive).

Shooting to Live With the One-Hand Gun

Mozambique drill

Mozambique drill is a natural development of the double tap. The first two shots are fired into the torso and the third into the head. In theory, accurate shots to the opponent’s body should kill him or severely wound him, depriving him of combat capabilities, but often this does not take place. The opponent may be wearing a bullet-proof vest, using stimulants, or even pushing further under the influence of adrenaline, especially if the bullets missed vital organs. Therefore, the third shot should be aimed at the head center – between the eyes and the upper lip. Such a shot guarantees immediate incapacitation and will prevent the opponent from any retaliation. Why not try to shoot the head at once? The head is several times smaller than the torso and is in motion. Additionally, hitting the head at an inappropriate angle may cause the bullet to slide down the cheekbone, which will obviously be painful for the opponent, but not incapacitating.

The invention of this technique is credited to Rhodesian mercenary Mike Rousseau. During the siege of the Lourenço Marques airport (Maputo), Rousseau was armed only with a Browning HP35 pistol, and around the corner lurked an enemy guerrilla armed with an AK-47 (Kalashnikov) rifle. Acting in accordance with his training, Rousseau used the double tap technique, but the enemy, despite two accurate shots, still tried to shoot at him. Rousseau saw this and fired another shot, which struck the guerrilla in the neck, severing the spinal cord.

Rousseau later told the story to a friend, Jeff Cooper – a former Marine who used his war experience to develop a modern system of shooting techniques. Influenced by Rousseau’s story, Cooper added a third shot to the “double tap” thus creating the “Mozambique drill.” Rousseau was later killed in action in the Rhodesian War.

Mozambique drill is used as a part of CQB (close quaters combat) training. The technique appears regularly in cinema and television. The most famous movies in which we can see MD are: Heat, Collateral and the John Wick series.

What is the difference between a church, a cathedral and a basilica?

For many people, the difference between a church, cathedral and basilica is limited to size. A cathedral is a larger church and a basilica is a larger cathedral. However, this is not true.


A church is a house of worship, or a building where Christians gather to pray together, perform rituals, etc. Size doesn’t matter – a church can be a beautiful, huge edifice, or a simple little building.


A cathedral is a church, but a cathedral is not chosen for its size or splendour. Cathedrals are churches in which the bishop is seated. Therefore, it does not have to be the most beautiful or largest church in a given city. There is generally one cathedral per city. The cathedral is more important in the hierarchy than the church because it is from the cathedral that the bishop governs the area under his administrative authority. One of the most important features of a cathedral is that it has a bishop’s throne, from which the bishop addresses the faithful.


Basilicas were Roman buildings that were used as a market hall or court. Over time, the name came to include private homes if they were large enough and of the right shape. When Christians began to erect their own places of worship, they were modeled on Roman or Greek basilicas, and that is the name they received. However, over time, the term took on a new meaning.

Major vs minor basilicas

Today, a distinction is made between major basilicas and minor basilicas. Just as a cathedral must have a bishop’s throne, a major basilica must have a papal throne and an altar reserved exclusively for the pope or his authorized prelates. The minor basilica is an honorary title. It is given to churches and cathedrals that stand out for their historic, liturgical, pilgrimage and pastoral value. There is a whole list of formal requirements to be met by a given building in order to obtain the title of a basilica, but in a very simple way such a building must be historic, have a patron and attract religious tourism (e.g. in the case of a church which is considered by the faithful as a place of miraculous healings).

Finally, we would like to emphasize again that the described conditions are oversimplifications, as there are more formal requirements for an object to bear such a name. If you are interested in learning more about the subject, we invite you to read the following sources.*/basilicae.html

How many countries are there in the world?

How many countries are there in the world? The answer to this question should be very simple. It is known that the number of countries is constantly changing, because there are uprisings, countries divide, change names, merge with others or completely disappear from the map, but on a given day there should be a specific number. Unfortunately this is not the case. The problem is that depending on who you ask, you will get a different answer.

How many countries according to United Nations?

According to the UN, at the moment there are 195 countries in the world. Among them, 193 are members of the United Nations. The two unaffiliated countries are the Holy See and Palestine. Both countries are in the status of non-member observer state. This means that representatives of these states can attend meetings, but not vote.

There are states that are not officially recognized by the United Nations, but at least one UN member state recognizes them as such. These include: Taiwan, Western Sahara, Kosovo, South Ossetia, Abkhazia, and Northern Cyprus.

The UN does not recognize Taiwan as a country

How many countries according to International Olympic Committee?

Getting into the world of sports, it gets even more interesting. The International Olympic Committee recognizes 206 countries, while the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) recognizes as many as 211. This is due to the fact that these organizations do not require full independence to recognize membership in their ranks.

How many countries according to ISO?

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) recognizes as many as 249 countries. The number comes from the fact that the organization takes into account various kinds of colonies and dependent and independent countries (about which more in a moment). Of course, ISO has no influence on world politics, but its recommendations have much more practical applications. ISO standards are used by post offices or organizations that assign top-level Internet domains.

Associated states vs dependent territories

What is an associated state? In a few simple words, such a country is subordinate to another country, but it has its own legal system, legislation and judiciary. This causes the subordination to be basically symbolic. The dependent territories are: Northern Mariana Islands, Niue, Puerto Rico and the Cook Islands.

The opposite of a dependent territory is a country under various forms of political dependency. Officially, the UN recognizes 16 such countries, but in total there are 69 such territories. In this case, the country is under the strong influence of the state on which it depends. The reasons for the existence of such territories are different. They may be remnants of colonial policy, condominiums, protectorates, etc.

Bonus fact:

The most populous countries are: China (1420062022) and India (1368737513).


How long can you survive without food?

How long is it possible to survive by just drinking water and not taking any food? What is the human body’s endurance limit?

At the beginning it is necessary to point out that only an approximate time can be given, because it all depends on various factors such as: health of the starving person, body weight, genetic conditions or physical effort during the starvation.

Do we burn calories doing nothing?

Let’s start with our body. Do we still burn calories while doing nothing? Yes. Even if we lie down on a bed and close our eyes, our body is still using resources. The body has to maintain the right temperature, the muscles responsible for breathing are also working, and the most important muscle in our body, the heart, which is constantly pumping blood. All this comes at a cost in precious calories. How many exactly? It depends on our body weight, and the recommended formula to calculate our own energy expenditure is to multiply our weight by 0.02. An example reader weighing 70 kilograms burns 1.4 calories for every minute of reading this article (assuming he does nothing else at the same time). This means that for 60 minutes the body burns 84 calories and over 2000 calories in a day.

But what happens when we stop supplying calories? The body then begins to use its reserves. At the beginning goes fat tissue. The body of an average woman has 25-31% body fat and a man 18-24%. So let’s assume that our 70-kilogram individual has 20% body fat, or 14 kilograms of fat. It is estimated that 0.45 kilogram of fat is about 3500 calories. With the energy expenditure of such a person, this means losing 1/4 kilogram of fat per day. So that comes out to 53 days. However this is pure mathematics, in practice man still makes some movements. In addition, man does not live by fat alone, thus the body will start to take additional nutrients also from our muscles, which will soon be depleted. Our body takes protein from the muscles, which it uses, among others, to support the brain function.

Effects of starvation

In the initial stage of starvation, there is a significant weight loss, apathy and weakness. This period can last for about 30 days. After this time, the starving person will begin to feel much worse effects. Due to weakness of the body various infections may appear, which our body is not able to fight. Then weakness appears, with which the starving person is not even able to drink on his own. The lack of vitamins causes rashes, swelling and cracking of the increasingly dry skin. Due to muscle atrophy, any movement causes pain. The starving person is also increasingly lethargic. Beyond 40 days, the body will begin to shut down more organs. The last organ is the heart and it is its arrest that is generally considered the cause of death.

Interestingly, even the minimal amount of food taken in, extends life by up to several months. Prisoners of concentration camps and Russian camps, despite receiving starvation rations, were able to survive for a long time and at hard labor. This has to do with the yet unexplored “economic mode” of our body, in which it consumes fewer calories. It is speculated that this has to do with our body’s hormonal balance, specifically the thyroid gland.

No research has been done on starvation, but there are various historical sources about the course of such starvation.

One of the better documented cases is the 1981 Irish hunger strike, where IRA members went on hunger strike in protest. Most of the protesters were relatively young: the youngest was 23 and the oldest 30. The first death occurred after 46 days. The longest survivor was 25-year-old, Kieran Doherty. He survived for 73 days. These events are shown in a film entitled “Hunger.”

Much older in age was Mahatma Gandhi, who at the age of 74, conducted one of his hunger strikes in protest. It lasted 21 days. It is also worth noting that Gandhi had 14 such hunger strikes in his life.

Longest starving person

The longest starving person was a Scot who in 1965 decided to lose weight in a very drastic way. Under the supervision of physicians he starved himself for 1 year and 17 days. It was not a full-fledged starvation, because the patient received a small portion of yeast and a set of essential vitamins and minerals – a total of about 60 calories. However, even this small amount proved to be enough to keep the 27-year-old in good shape. After 382 days, Angus Barbieri had reduced his weight from 207 to 82 kilograms.

Starvation is also a religious ritual. The most extreme example is Sokushinbutsu which means self-mummification. Buddhist monks, for almost three years ate only nuts and seeds, while doing physical exercise. Then, for another three years, they fed on roots and herbs to induce poisoning of the body. In this way, the monks systematically supplied their bodies with ingredients that were used to embalm their future corpses. Finally, the monk was locked in a special cave, where he sat in the lotus position, awaiting death.

Mumified monk (Wikimedia commons)

Starvation was also one of the methods of execution. However, it usually went hand in hand with a lack of water, so death was quicker – after just a few days.

Daily dose of interesting facts

Exit mobile version