Category Archives: Interesting Facts

Reason 84-Year Old Woman Refused $1 Million-Dollar Offer For Her Tiny House

There used to be a cute little house sandwiched between hulking corporate buildings in Seattle, Washington. This abode is now part of the city’s history due to the refusal of its original owner, Edith Macefield, to sell the property to developers. Edith turned down a one-million dollar proposal in 2006 and didn’t want her home to be demolished.

The real estate holdout became a worldwide sensation when she declined the offer to sell her house for commercial development in the city’s Ballard development. The construction firm decided to build the five-storey project around the 108-year-old farmhouse. Edith became something of a folk hero for not succumbing to the whims of a property developer.

Edith didn’t want the money which meant nothing to her. She also didn’t want to move to another place. A smaller buyout offered a couple of years ago was also not successful.

She had been living in the house for almost 60 years when condominiums and shopping malls for hi-tech industry workers began to spring up. Ballard used to be a location for modest family homes. By 2006, Edith’s home stood alone, with her neighbors long gone. A retail and office development, Ballard Blocks, was being constructed when the one million dollar offer came in addition to assistance with housing and healthcare.

Edith is often compared to the animated character in the Pixar movie “Up” which features an aging widower whose home is similarly surrounded by looming development. The hardheaded widower mirrors Edith’s constant refusal to prevent her house from being acquired. She is now considered as an inspirational symbol for her determination against corporate pressure. She died in 2008 and left the house to Barry Martin, the head of construction in neighboring construction site.

Barry opted not to sell the house to the developers but to a man who wanted to preserve Edith’s spirit of resistance. That man was Greg Pinneo who ran a real estate coaching firm. However, Pinneo’s failure to pay back taxes on the house forced him to put it back on the market. The house went through foreclosure auction in March 2015.

Macefield was born in Oregon in 1921 and served the military in England during World War 2. When officials discovered that she was not 18-years-old, Edith stayed in England where she took care of orphans. She moved back to the U.S. in 1952 to take care of her ailing mother.

These personal stories of Edith were corroborated by Martin through letters and photographs which were found after her death. According to Martin, Edith claimed that she had worked as a spy during the war, was sent to the concentration camp at Dachau, Poland, and then escaped.

Her legacy remains after her passing. A music festival was established in 2013 in Ballard to celebrate the steadfast attitude of the woman while exploring the current landscape of Seattle music.

What Happens If You Leave Your Phone On During A Flight?

An estimated 100,000 flights take off around the world every day, yet more than a quarter of Brits are afraid of flying.

Easyjet pilot, Chris Forster, speaking to the Liverpool Echo, busted many of the myths arounds flying – helping to put those fears to bed, maybe.

So what could actually happen if you left your mobile phone on during a flight?

“Nothing to be concerned about,” according to Chris.

“Aircraft control systems are so sophisticated now, that they wouldn’t cause any interference.

“The regulations date back many years to when we didn’t even have things like iPads.

“The laws are starting to be relaxed – you can now use your devices in flight safety mode – and I think we’ll see more changes over the next few years.”

What about the plane door being open mid-flight, sucking passengers out in a Snakes on a Plane-esque disaster?

Simply not possible.

“The aircraft is pressurized and the doors are what we call ‘plug doors’, which prevents them from being opened until the pressure is released,” reassures Chris.

Neither is that ‘heart-in-your-mouth’ turbulence even remotely likely to bring down your plane.

He said: “An aircraft is built to withstand several times the force of turbulence you’re ever likely to experience.”

And while ‘a plane’s engine could fail,’ (scary) it’s ‘an extremely remote possibility because the amount of care and attention that goes into maintaining an engine is incredible’ (phew).

“Most pilots are unlikely to ever experience a technical fault with their aircraft in their entire flying career, let alone an engine failure,” Chris claims.

However, once on board even the most mundane requests can set off alarms bells in a passenger’s head.

The fasten seatbelts sign, seemingly illuminated for no reason, is often pilots “just being cautious.”

And being asked to lift-up your tray and window shutter during take-off and landing avoids potential injury in the unlikely event that take-off was abandoned, or it was necessary to evacuate.

Safe with this knowledge Chris has “hand on heart” never been “scared in the air;” despite flying for 16 years.

Now this summer you can fly a little bit happier.