Got a secret? Can you keep it?

This issue, The Menagerie reveals ten random secrets from the different facets of our lives. Some of these secrets are right under our noses all along.

1. Split-second Disney Cameos

How do Disney animated characters support each other’s flicks? Apparently, certain characters have cameo appearances in select films.

For starters, Belle from Beauty and the Beast, Pumba from The Lion King and the Magic Carpet from Aladdin were all in a village scene in “The Hunchback of Notre Dame”. Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, and Goofy were amongst the mermaids in the concert hall in “The Little Mermaid”. Boo from Monsters Inc. had Nemo (Finding Nemo) and Jessie from Toy Story as toys in her room, while the Sultan from Aladdin owned a Beast (Beauty and the Beast) figurine. Wall-E, on the other hand, made split-second appearances in Toy Story, The Incredibles, and Cars. These characters appear so fast that you need to hit the pause button, and search for them like hidden Mickeys.

2. You’re So Vain Says Carly

When Carly Simon released the song “You’re so Vain” in 1972, speculations circulated that Simon wrote the song for one of her ex-lovers. Actor Warren Beatty, recording artists Mick Jagger, Cat Stevens, and Kris Kristofferson were on the list.

Critics believed a whispered hint in the track’s updated version, released in Simon’s 2010 “Never Been Gone” album, pointed to Elektra/Asylum executive David Geffen.

Simon denied all claims. The singer-songwriter, however, provided helpful clues – the letters A, E, and R. Aside from Simon, only NBC Executive Dick Ebersol knows the mystery man’s identity. Eberson paid $50,000 in a 2003 Possible Dreams Auctions for Simon to whisper the answer to the 40-year-old riddle.

3. Rizals and His Kabata

Jose Rizal penned “Sa Aking Mga Kabata” (To My Fellow Youth) when the national hero was only eight years old in 1869, however, including “kalayaan” twice in the poem stirred controversies if Pepe really authored the masterpiece.

Historian Zeus Salazar argued that “timawa or catimaoan”, not “laya or calayaan”, was the equivalent for freedom during the time Rizal wrote the poem. National Artist Virgilio Almario further asserted that Rizal’s first real encounter of “kalayaan” was through Marcelo H. Del Pilar’s Pag-ibig sa Tinubuang Lupa (Love for the Native Land) in 1882.

Authors Moises Andrade and Edgar Yanga, however, declared that Father Mariano V. Sevilla first used “kalayaan” in his 1867 devotional “Flores de Maria o Mariquit na Bulaclac”.

4. Merchandise 7X: Coke’s Secret Recipe

For over a century, Coca-Cola has been the soft drink of choice for millions of people all over the world. Aside from the company’s marketing campaign, the beverage’s success over the years comes from its unique flavor.   Its current recipe, code-named Merchandise 7X, was first concocted in 1886 by a pharmacist named Dr. John Pemberton. Although many varying reports of the recipe’s composition were leaked to the public over the years, the exact combination of ingredients remains a mystery. Many tried (and failed) to replicate Coke’s distinctive taste. Others say the taste is purely subjective. Unfortunately, we may never know the real answer. Merchandise 7X is locked in a vault in Atlanta, Georgia where it is under watch 24/7.

5. Stigmata, How Do They Work? Francesco Forgione, popularly known as “Padre Pio”, was a highly devout Franciscan priest who is arguably the most famous stigmatic – one who suffers from wounds (called stigmata) corresponding to those Jesus bore. St. Francis of Assisi is the first known stigmatic, having received the bloody marks on his hands and feet in 1224.

For the church to recognize stigmata as authentic, they must fulfill specific criteria. The wounds should bleed continuously, be extremely painful (as if you were nailed to the Cross), and should not be naturally explainable. There is no conclusive evidence to suggest that the stigmata are a hoax. It remains to be one of a few miracles science has yet to disprove.

6.                    The Voynich Mansucript One of the most baffling pieces of literature ever discovered, the Vanish Manuscript was identified by experts to be from the 13th century, the Medieval period. The language used is currently unknown and there have been several fruitless attempts to interpret the mysterious handwritten print of the manuscript. Even more mysterious are the illustrations of various plants, animals and ‘little women’ all over the document.

Today the Voynich Manuscript resides at the Yale University Library, where it remains undecipherable.

7. Condos NOT for Sale

Condominiums have been popping up left and right in the Metro, and are portrayed as being in demand and hot on the market. However, even though real estate developers say all units are sold out, occupancy rate is not at all 100 perecent.

According to an insider from one of the country’s leading real estate developers, companies usually leave one or two condominium buildings empty, even if they are fully built and ready for occupancy. Companies refrain from having these units rented out or sold, and claim that no one wants to lease or buy the units to record the building as a loss. This allows companies to avoid paying bigger amounts of taxes they would eventually incur if they put the building in business.

8. About Those Fries…

McDonald’s is a household name all over the world, with millions served every day. Although eating fast food has its health risks, it never really stopped most of us, not even when came out with the McDonald’s recipe book. The site features a comprehensive guide to the famous fast-food chain’s menu and presents the ingredients used and how they are cooked.

A particular point of interest would be the French Fries. According to the recipe, a batch of McDonald’s French Fries is made with two large Idaho russet potatoes, ¼ cup sugar, two tablespoons corn syrup, one to two cups of hot water, six cups Crisco shortening and ¼ cup of beef lard, which also translates to beef fat or beef drippings from previously cooked burgers. Appetizing? Maybe you would want a milkshake to go with that. Just grab two cups of vanilla ice cream, whole milk, some cream and scoop in two tablespoons of the Nesquik flavour powder of your choice.

9. The Max Headroom Incident

In Nov. 22, 1987, a re-run of Doctor Who was abruptly “hijacked” by a mysterious broadcast. A masked person resembling Max Headroom (a cult TV character) appeared in front of a dizzying background of lines rocking back and forth, where he proceeded to blabber weird and subversive nonsense in a distorted voice.

He even had someone spank his butt with a flyswatter. The impersonator’s identity is a mystery to this day. His motive for hacking into the broadcast signal is also unclear. What is obvious, however, is that this one and a half minute transmission is perhaps one of the creepiest things you will ever see in your life. You can watch the strange transmission for yourself on the Internet.

featured photo by Trizia Roque

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24 replies on “Got a secret? Can you keep it?”

Tungkol sa “laya”, “malaya”, at “kalayaan”, mangyari pong basahin ang aking monograf na pinamagatang “Ang Kartilya ni Emilio Jacinto at ang Diwang Pilipino sa Agos ng Kasaysayan”, BAKAS: 1999. Maraming salamat. Zeus A. Salazar

Nais niyo po bang linawin ang mga implikasyon ng pagkakaiba sa paggamit ng “laya” ni Rizal at ang ulat na maaring hindi si Gat Rizal ang sumulat sa Kabata, Dr Salazar?

Ginamit ni Jacinto ang “kalayaan” bilang pangalan ng peryodiko ng Katipunan. Baligtad sa ipinangangalandakan nina Andrade hindi nanggaling kay Padre Sevilla ni kay Marcelo del PIlar ang kataga. Pinatutunayan ito sa aking monograf (106 pah.). Sana po mabasa ninyo. Salamat.

Tugon ito kay G. o Gng. Jsbatalla: ginamit ni rizal ang katagang “kalayaan” sa kanyang salin kay Schiller (ibig sabihin, tinanggap niya ang mungkahi ni del Pilar). Ang iyong tanong kung nais kong linawin ito kaugnay ng di pagkakasulat ni Rizal sa “Sa aking kaba(ba)ta”, wala po akong ganyang intensyon. Tungkol sa huli, mas eksperto sa akin ang aking naging mag-aaral na si Dr. Nilo S.Ocampo. Siya ang maaaring inyong kaugnayin. Tila siya ang kasalukuyang naghahanda sa salin ni Rizal kay Schiller para ito ilathala. May alam din dito si Dr. Bomen Guillermo dahil ang kanyang disertasyon ay may kinalaman dito. Mangyaring makipag-ugnay sa kanilang dalawa. Salamat.

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