Truths that turned out to be false.
While I was reading “Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die“, I found out that one of those sayings that I thought was true, turned out to be false. The Great Wall of China is not visible from the moon.
I always figured that I was too smart to ever fall for one of those myths and urban legends that keep coming around. Like the perennial story about crocodiles living in the sewers of New York and the very elusive gang that goes around and steals the kidneys of people they have drugged but then leaves a helpful note saying, “Don’t move. Call 911.”
But the story of the Great Wall of China turned out to be one of those myths that still persists even though, like the subterranean crocodiles and the thoughtful organ thieves, it has been debunked for some time. So that got me to thinking about what other myths were out there that I was unable to see through. Below is a list of things that I was surprised to learn after doing a quick Google search.
- All of the people convicted of witchcraft in Salem Massachusetts in the Salem Witch Hunt in 1692 died by hanging, not by being burned at the stake.
- Thomas Edison didn’t invent the first incandescent light bulb. But he was the first to patent one that was commercially practical to manufacture.
- The rice thrown at weddings is not harmful to birds.
- Meteorites are not hot when they hit the earth.
- Toilet water does not spin in the opposite direction in the southern hemisphere.
- Chameleons change their color in response to light exposure and ambient temperature, as well as to express their mood. They don’t do it as a form of camouflage.
- In 2007, the United States received most of it’s imported oil from Canada. Mexico came in second place with Saudi Arabia coming in third. In 2008, Mexico slipped to third place and Saudi Arabia moved into second but we still depend on Canada for most of our imported oil.
- Oil that we import from the Persian gulf only makes up 16% of our total oil imports.
After a tremendous outpouring from his fans, the Quaker Oats Company decided to promote the Cap’n. But Admiral Crunch quickly became bored with his desk job at Crunch Headquarters. And after a small mishap with the Crunch Berrie and Crunch Biscuit machine (at the hands of two recently promoted new co-Cap’ns) he decided that he was truly the best one suited for the role as the Cap’n. He soon requested his old position again, and he went back to being the best Cap’n that Crunch Headquarters has ever had. He is much happier now!