Bullshit Facts You Learned in School
Primary schooling teaches people many useful things, like how to take standardized tests and how gross the female reproductive cycle is. It’s arguably the best place for young humans to learn about social interaction first hand. However, when it came to the actual learning of facts it had the academic accuracy equivalent of Shaq’s free throws.
Take a second to think about how smart you are. No, not how smart you act to impress people or how smart your dumbass friends think you are because you knew a little more than they did about sea anemones. I’m not talking transient Wikipedia knowledge you pick up while taking a dump at work, an action you defend and love because it’s like you’re being paid to defecate. Take how smart you think you are and knock it down a few thousand pegs and carry the one. That’s where the vast majority of us lie, and it’s where just about all of your teachers were as well.
Mediocrity, Fuck Yeah!
These facts I’m about to go over aren’t the played out, clichéd ones about how Christopher Columbus didn’t discover America or how a tomato is a fruit and not a vegetable. These are facts with some chest hair, and some may even blow your mind.
Vikings didn’t wear horns on their helmets.
This pissed me off too. It makes the Vikings slightly less awesome knowing they did all their conquering, raping, and pillaging dressed like common conquerors, rapists, and pillagers. The fucking nerve these guys had. If you burn someone’s village down while wearing horns, that’s badass. If you do it wearing a leather skullcap or whatever, that’s just barbaric. I rooted for them when I found out they discovered America before Columbus did, but now? Screw it.
Citation: Portage & Main Press
Napoleon didn’t have a Napoleon complex.
A conversion error between French feet and modern feet, Napoleon was not 5’2″ and in reality was between 5’5″ and 5’6.5″ which was average at the time. 5’6″ may not sound average today, but this was like 200 years ago. A lot of averages change in such a span. For example, the average American was hard-working and amassing a fortune took determination and skill whereas today you make a million by designing an iPhone fart app while taking a crap at work. Man, you really love work shits.
Einstein wasn’t bad at math.
Chalk this one up to stupidity. It should’ve been a huge red flag when some asshole at the Reader’s Digest decided to make some shit up about Einstein being terrible at math so as to encourage underachieving students. The dude is regarded as one of the greatest physicists of all time, and as everyone knows, physics uses more mathematics than Sarah Palin uses ghostwriters. Einstein himself is quoted as saying, “I never failed in mathematics. Before I was fifteen I had mastered differential and integral calculus.” It was probably followed by, “so fuck you,” but the editor took liberties like editors always do.
Science doesn’t say that bumblebees shouldn’t be able to fly.
It’s one of those things that makes scientists look like assholes. It’s not “Nazi scientists experimented on the elasticity of the human tongue using gypsies as test subjects” assholery, but it’s still aggravating because of how easy it is to prove a scientist wrong with that premise by simply pointing at a fat bee. That Nazi reference wasn’t superfluous, by the way, because it was some German scientist in the ’30s who made that statement after using (very) flawed methodology. He retracted his statement quickly after being called a verdammter Idiot and probably placed on the tongue test list.
Humans did not evolve from chimpanzees.
Creationists took this misconception and ran with it. Inevitably, it morphed into the silly argument, “if we evolved from chimps, then why are they still here?” The answer is simple: It’s because we didn’t. Humans evolved from a common ancestor to the chimpanzee. To dumb it down and make it easier to understand, It’s like chimps are our cousins (maybe even literally in some cases.) Our “dad” and their “dad” descended from the same set of “parents.” They went on one evolutionary line, we went on another. So chimps are like the cousin that stayed in Cuba and we came to the US. It just turned out better for us. Poor Elian.
Men do not think about sex every seven seconds.
How would something like that even be measured? This doesn’t even make any penis in a vagina sense. Just speculating here, but the origin is probably rooted in a marketing meeting where some hotshot states “men think about sex every seven seconds” as a means to perpetuate the “sex sells” mantra. But there is no scientific indication of any titties kind that insinuates this as fact.
We use our entire brains, not just ten percent.
A commonly used plot device in movies where someone has unusual brain powers such as telekinesis, mind reading, or rational thought. It’s usually proclaimed that we only use ten percent of our brains and that accessing the other 90 could make us superhuman, or that Einstein (the dude that apparently sucked at math) could access 11% which is what made him so intelligent. That, of course, is bullshit. While it’s true that only a small percentage of neurons are firing at any one time, unless you’re a registered republican you make use of every nook and cranny of your brain.
0.999_ (infinitely repeating 9) is exactly equal to 1.
This is the biggest mindfuck on this list and something easily attributed to faulty ways of teaching mathematics. Seemingly unintuitive, 0.999… and 1 are simply two ways of writing the same number. It’s not less than one by a “tiny, tiny bit”, it’s exactly one. There are plenty of proofs, some easier to grasp than others, but for many stubborn people even hard mathematical evidence isn’t enough to unlearn the shitty way their first grade teachers taught them numbers.
Citation: Cambridge University Press
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