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10 Surprising Facts About Star Wars

10 Surprising Facts About Star Wars

With the recent record-breaking release of Star Wars:The Force Awakens audiences around the world have been drawn back into the universe created by George Lucas nearly 40 years ago. Perhaps you are aware of the stories and characters, but with a franchise of this size some things are not well known.

So for your sci-fi pleasure here are 10 Surprising Facts About Star Wars.

1. Alien Languages? Not So Much

Sometimes it just easier to take what already exists and reuse it. Remember Greedo (the one Han shot first at the Mos Eisley cantina)? He was speaking Quecha, a native language from South America. Oh, and if you speak Zulu you can likely understand Jawaese, it’s the same language, just faster and higher pitched.

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2. E.T Shows Up

Did you see the movie ET: The Extra Terrestrial? Did you also see Star Wars: Episode 1 The Phantom Menace? Then you saw ET’s people. In the Galactic Senate scene there is a short cameo of the Asogian delegation…and ET was an Asogian. The cameo was the result of a promise made to Steven Spielberg. In exchange for a Yoda toy appearing in ET George Lucas put ET’s people in The Phantom Menace.

3. Chewie is Bigfoot?

Some filming for The Empire Strikes Back was done in northern California. It is a beautiful area well known for towering redwood trees. But it’s also suspected Bigfoot country (if you are a Bigfoot believer). Actor Peter Mayhew was asked to not go through the forest in costume…to keep from being shot by Bigfoot hunters.

4. Southpaw Storm Troopers

Did you notice something odd about the Storm Troopers in various Star Wars movies? They mostly appear to be left handed. You could blame this on the fact that their ammunition magazines are on the left…or that the Latin word for left is “sinister.” (Of course the fact that they are clones might play a role.) Can’t trust those sinister lefties.

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5. Bad Feelings

In every one of the (now seven) Star Wars movie the same phrase keeps appearing. Someone always says a variation of “I have a bad feeling about this.” You can see each one at the Star Wars Wikia.

6. Yoda is a Muppet?

The voice of Yoda was provided by Frank Oz. Oz is also famous as the voice of Fozzie Bear, Miss Piggie, Animal and Sam Eagle on The Muppet Show. In addition he is also credited for voicing Cookie Monster, Grover and Bert on Sesame Street.

7. One Famous Dog

Back to Chewbacca. His look was actually based on George Lucas’ dog. The dog also has a Harrison Ford back tie in. Ford played Han Solo in Star Wars and Dr. Indiana Jones in the Indiana Jones movies. Jones was named after the dog…Indiana. Oh, for you Indiana Jones fans they actually make a joking reference to this in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.

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8. Homage to a Birthday

Until The Force Awakens came out on December 18, 2015 every Star Wars movie was released within 10 days of May 14. May 14 just happens to be the birthday of George Lucas, who created the Star Wars universe and severed as screen writer on the first six films.

9. Welcome to the United Kingdom

Technically Star Wars: The Force Awakens is a British movie. Of course much filming occurred in the United Kingdom, but according to reports there were significant tax breaks given by the British government. This has apparently caused them some embarrassment.

10. It’s All in a Name

In the Sanskrit language the word for warrior is Yodha. This is the origin for the name of Luke’s trainer and the Jedi Master, Yoda.

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I hope that some (or all) of these facts were new to you. Also if you haven’t seen The Force Awakens you might want to check it out. It is just as entertaining as the original trilogy. A thoroughly enjoyable ride!

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Last Updated on December 9, 2019

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

Everyone experiences mental stress at one time or another. Maybe you’re starting a new career, job, or business, or you feel incredibly overwhelmed between work, parenting, and your love life (or a lack of it). It could even be that you simply feel that you have way too much to do and not enough time to do it,  plus, on top of everything, nothing seems to be going the way it should!

Yup, we all experience mental stress from time-to-time, and that’s okay as long as you have the tools, techniques and knowledge that allow you to fully relieve it once it comes.

Here are 5 tips for relieving mental stress when it comes so you can function at your best while feeling good (and doing well) in work, love, or life:

1. Get Rationally Optimistic

Mental stress starts with your perception of your experiences. For instance, most people get stressed out when they perceive their reality as “being wrong” in some way. Essentially, they have a set idea of how things “should be” at any given moment, and when reality ends up being different (not even necessarily bad), they get stressed.

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This process is simply a result of perception and can be easily “fixed” by recognizing that although life might not always be going as YOU think it should, it’s still going as it should—for your own benefit.

In fact, once you fully recognize that everything in your life ultimately happens for your own growth, progress, and development—so you can achieve your goals and dreams—your perception works in your favor. You soon process and respond to your experience of life differently, for your advantage. That’s the essence of becoming “rationally optimistic.”

The result: no more mental stress.

2. Unplug

Just like you might need to unplug your computer when it starts acting all crazy, you should also “unplug” your mind.

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How on earth do you unplug your mind? Simple: just meditate.

It isn’t nearly difficult or complicated as some people think, so, if you don’t already meditate, give it a try. Whether you meditate for 5 minutes, 30 minutes, or 2 hours, this is a surefire way to reduce mental stress.

Meditation has been scientifically proven to relax your body (resulting in less mental stress), while also reducing anxiety and high blood pressure.

3. Easy on the Caffeine

Yes, we know, we know—everyone loves a nice java buzz, and that’s okay, but there’s a fine line between a small caffeine pick-me-up and a racing heart and mind that throws you into a frenzy of mental stress.

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Try giving up caffeine for a while and see how you feel. And, if that’s completely out of the question for you, at least try to minimize it. You might find that lots of your mental stress mysteriously “disappears” as your caffeine intake goes down.

4. Attack Mental Stress Via the Back Door

That’s right: your body and mind are part of the whole being, and are constantly influencing and affecting each other. If you’re experiencing a lot of mental stress, try to reduce it by calming your body down—a calm body equals a calmer mind.

How do you calm your body down and reduce physical stress? A  great way to reduce physical stress (thereby reducing mental stress) is to take natural supplements that are proven to reduce stress and anxiety while lifting your mood. Three good ones to look into are kava-kava, St John’s wort, and rhodiola rosea:

  • Kava-kava is a natural plant known to have mild sedative properties, and you should be able to find it at your natural health food store or vitamin store. It’s available in capsules or liquid extract form.
  • St John’s wort is a natural flower used to treat depression. Again, it’s found at your local health store in capsules or liquid. Because it uplifts mood (enabling you to see the brighter side of all experiences) it helps relieve mental stress as well.
  • Rhodiola rosea is a natural plant shown to reduce stress and uplift mood, and Russian athletes have been using it forever. Like the other two supplements mentioned, rhodiola rosea can be found at your natural health store in capsule or liquid form.

While these supplements are all natural and can be very helpful for most people, always check with your health care provider first as they can cause side-effects depending on your current health situation etc.

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5. Good Old-Fashioned Exercise

This tip has been around forever because it works. Nothing relieves mental stress like running, kickboxing—you name it. Anything super-physical will wipe out most of your mental stresses once the exercise endorphins (happy chemicals) are released into your brain.

The result: mental stress will be gone!

So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or just plain stressed, try using some of the above tips. You can even print this out or save it to refer to regularly.

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Featured photo credit: Radu Florin via unsplash.com

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