33 "Facts" Everybody Knows That Are Actually Total Lies

Remember these like a goldfish.

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1. Drinking alcohol doesn't kill brain cells.

2. Thomas Edison didn't invent the light bulb.

3. You do not use only 10% of your brain. You use 100%.

4. You can't see the Great Wall of China from space. (For a start, it's the same colour as the surrounding landscape.)

5. Twinkies do not last forever. Their shelf life is about a month and half.

6. Nobody ever said, "Beam me up, Scotty" in the original Star Trek TV series. Also, nobody says, "It's life, Jim, but not as we know it."

7. Vitamin C probably won't stop you from getting a cold.

8. Toilet pioneer Thomas Crapper's name isn't where we get the word "crap" from.

9. Goldfish don't have a memory of three seconds. They can actually remember things for quite a long time.

10. Sugar does not make children hyperactive.

11. The popular image of Santa Claus was not invented by Coca-Cola for an advertising campaign.

12. Sherlock Holmes never says "Elementary, my dear Watson" in Arthur Conan Doyle's stories.

13. The supposed distinction between "less" and "fewer" has never been a feature of the English language.

14. People at the time of Christopher Columbus didn't believe the world was flat, and nobody was worried he was going to sail off the edge of the world. (The idea that Flat Earth theory dominated the middle ages is a 19th-century invention.)

15. Water does not spiral down the plughole in opposite directions in the northern and southern hemispheres.

16. You're probably a lot more than 6 feet away from a rat.

17. A coin dropped from the Eiffel Tower (or the Empire State Building) would be very unlikely to kill someone.

18. Chameleons don't change colour as a disguise to match their environment. They change colour to communicate with other chameleons.

19. Schizophrenia has nothing to do with having multiple personalities. Dissociative identity disorder, the widely accepted current term for "multiple personality disorder", is a completely different, unrelated (and historically controversial) illness.

20. Whether you're more emotional and creative or logical and analytical has nothing to do with being "left brained" or "right brained".

21. You don't lose most of your body heat through your head. Your head loses heat at the same rate (per square inch of skin) as any other part of your body.

22. If you cut an earthworm in half, it's not true that both halves regrow their body, resulting in two complete worms. Only the head stands a chance of surviving. (But there are species of flatworms that can regenerate from any body part.)

23. There's absolutely no reason why you shouldn't decide to cheerfully, gleefully, even recklessly split infinitives.

24. Climate change is not a fraud perpetrated by a global conspiracy of lavishly funded scientists.

25. Elephants don't travel to a secret "elephant's graveyard" when they're close to death.

26. Orson Welles' radio broadcast of War of the Worlds did not result in nationwide panic by Americans believing there was a real alien invasion taking place.

27. Your fingernails and hair don't keep growing after you die.

28. Ostriches don't stick their heads in the sand when they feel threatened.

29. Napoleon Bonaparte wasn't short; his height was actually above average for his time.

30. You don't taste different flavours with different parts of your tongue.

31. Eating turkey doesn't make you any more sleepy than most other foods.

32. Lightning strikes the same place twice quite a lot, actually.

33. Vaccines do not cause autism.