1. We only use 10% of our brain
Thanks to another Knowable writer, Robyn, for writing the segment on brains!
You've probably heard it mentioned in T.V. shows or movies; "Humans only use X percent of the brain." The percentage fluctuates from 10-50%, but still it seems Hollywood and beyond are convinced there is a bunch of grey matter in our noggin that goes unused.
Well, surprise, surprise, movies like 'Limitless' starring Bradley Cooper have got it really wrong.
As humans, one of our biggest downfalls is being able to accept our own limitations. It has been suggested that the reason this myth has been perpetuated so widely is that people like to believe the reason for their own shortcomings is out of their control.
"If only I could use the full potential of my brain", they would say, "then I could finally write that Oscar winning screenplay that's probably just trapped in my untapped brain matter!"
So, how much of the brain do we use then?
Turns out, all of it.
Yes, every single bit of it. Not only that, but we use most of it pretty much at all times. Imaging shows that even though all parts of the brain are not continuously firing at the same time, they are still continuously active.
This requires a ton of energy. The brain makes up about 3% of your body weight, but uses a whopping 20% of all energy produced by your body. But you need it. Your brain regulates and maintains the function of your body.
So, don't get angry with your brain if you feel your not working to your full potential. Your brain is doing the best it can!
Continue reading on the next page!
2. Turkey makes you tired
Turkey fatigue is a thing! It's the tryptophan! I'm going into a tryptophan coma!
How many of you have heard these things at their last Thanksgiving?
It's true many people DO have a difficult time staying awake after consuming turkey. But most people wrongly blame the amino acid "tryptophan" for their weary eyes.
First of all, what the heck is tryptophan?
"Tryptophan is an amino acid that the body uses in the processes of making vitamin B3 and serotonin, a neurotransmitter that helps regulate sleep. It can't be produced by our bodies, so we need to get it through our diet. From which foods, exactly? Turkey, of course, but also other meats, chocolate, bananas, mangoes, dairy products, eggs, chickpeas, peanuts, and a slew of other foods. Some of these foods, like cheddar cheese, have more tryptophan per gram than turkey. Tryptophan doesn't have much of an impact unless it's taken on an empty stomach and in an amount larger than what we're getting from our drumsticks."
But think about it... usually when you eat turkey, you're eating it at a large family gathering, alongside a bunch of other food and booze. Big meals (especially ones with a lot of fats) take a lot of effort for your stomach to digest, and usually leave you feeling lethargic.
There you have it! You can stop blaming tryptophan for all your problems.
Continue reading on the next page!
3. Einstein failed elementary school math
Legend has it that Einstein failed grade three math. This has been a thread of hope handed off to countless slow learners over time. If Einstein could do it, you can too! Well, you may want to think about choosing some other words of comfort. Words that aren't a TOTAL LIE!
Young Albert Einstein was gifted in mathematics, algebra and physics, and his academic records, recently acquired from Swiss archives, show this. The papers also confirmed that he was a child prodigy, conversant in college physics before he turned 11, and a "brilliant" violin player.
BUT (yes, we have a but)...
his inability to master French may have been the source of his failing college entrance exams. So, yeah, Einstein wasn't totally amazing at everything, but he was certainly good at the thing he went on to make history in.
There is another factor that may have played a role in creating the "bad student" myth about Einstein. When Einstein's records were released to the world, those who saw them may have been mislead by the grading school system in Aargau, Switzerland, which is the reverse of many other countries (including all of North America).
Continue reading on the next page!
4. We only have 5 senses
We all learned the five senses in school: taste, touch, sight, smell, and hearing. But many scientists insist that there are far more than that. Based on the definition of what a "sense" is Any system that consists of a group of sensory cell types that respond to a specific physical phenomenon and that corresponds to a particular group of regions within the brain where the signals are received and interpreted scientists have come up with dozens more senses (some believe we have up to 22!). Here are some of the most commonly agreed upon senses:
Proprioception (the ability to tell where your body parts are, relative to other body parts)
Equilibrioception (the ability to keep your balance and sense body movement in terms of acceleration and directional changes)
Stretch Receptors (These are found in such places as the lungs, bladder, stomach, blood vessels, and the gastrointestinal tract.)
Chemoreceptors (These trigger an area of the medulla in the brain that is involved in detecting blood born hormones and drugs. It also is involved in the vomiting reflex.)
Can you think of any more?
Continue reading on the next page!
5. Don't touch baby birds
The old belief is that if you touch a baby bird that has fallen out of the nest, the mama bird will smell "human" on their baby and will abandon their baby bird. Effectively, you've just made a bad situation a whole lot worse, as an abandoned baby bird will definitely die.
Well... that's not exactly the truth. Most birds have a pretty bad sense of small, so if you handle their babies, they probably won't even know.
Even in the case that they could smell a human, and had the cognitive capability to associate that smell with danger, they wouldn't just up and leave their babies at the threat of danger. If anything, they would stick around longer to ensure their safety.
There are two types of baby birds you're likely to encounter on the ground: nestlings and fledglings.
If you find a fledgling a baby bird with a bit of feathers leave it be. These little tykes are actually on a 'trail period' outside the nest, while their parents keep guard over them. Like dipping your toes in the water before they dive in.
If you find a nestling a featherless or fuzzy baby bird it could probably use a helping hand. Feel free to very gently place them back into the nest.
Continue reading on the next page!
6. You can't wake up a sleepwalker
Many people say that waking up a sleepwalker will send them into shock or cause a heart attack. The truth? It's pretty much harmless.
However, while you can wake them up, it's best to refrain, and here's why:
Though there has never been a reported case of waking a sleepover causing the sleeper harm, the waker can get hurt very easily. Sleepwalking usually occurs during a very deep stage of sleep called Stage 3 non-rapid eye movement sleep.
While waking during this stage is difficult (kind of like coming up from the bottom of the ocean when the undertow is strong), it can be donebut doing so can leave someone feeling extremely foggy (called sleep inertia) for up to 30 minutes.
What are people's reactions when they come out of this state? Usually confusion mixed with agitation, which is the perfect cocktail for someone to lash out at you physically, because they may not recognize you.
Instead of trying to wake a sleepwalker, the Sleep Disorders Center at NYU recommends gently leading them by the arm to guide them back to bed.
Many people live by the mantra that ignorance is bliss.
It's true, how being left in the dark about influential pieces of information is preferable.
For example, being cognizant about a co-worker's questionable private life can adversely affect how others interact with this individual if they object to their tendencies outside of the workplace.
Not knowing certain things can be freeing, a notion that was explored when Redditor Distantmole asked:
"What’s something you really wish you didn’t know?"
These Redditor examples are based on an occupational hazard.
"How to fix a printer. Sometimes, I just play dumb when I'm asked..."
"I was the ONLY one who knew how to unjam the printer at my old job. And it was a lemon - it jammed at least once a day. I quit the job because I was overworked and unappreciated. My replacement left in less than a year. I hope they're suffering without their little resident unjammer. Thanks for letting me vent."
Parents are people too, and you wouldn't be here were it not for them.
So there's that.
The Origin Of You
"I know exactly where, when, and how I was made in grand detail. I have no idea why my parents felt the need to tell me this, but I now know and I wish i didn't."
"I was conceived in a waterbed in my parents’ old condo. My dad told me when I was 15…"
Pulling Back The Curtain
"My father photographed all the births, me and my siblings."
"Each of us had a photo album growing up."
"They started with the photos of our births."
"My father took photos of us coming out.... of the vagina."
"This is the first page of my childhood photo album."
Too Close For Comfort
"My parents told me they conceived my younger sibling in a tent with me and my older sibling while we were sleeping in the same tent. I did not need to know that."
You think you know everything about the members of your family.
However, some things about them are better left a mystery.
"Was on a vacation with my grandma in a shared room and she disappeared into the bathroom for 5 minutes, came out, I didn't think any of it and didn't care, and she came up to me and said."
"I have bad constipation right now so I shoved a bit of soap in my butt to help softening it up! Maybe I'll fart bubbles soon, he he!"
"That happened 6 years ago but it's burned into my brain."
The Family's An Open Book
"Didn't need to know the reason I'm mums least favourite child and I certainly didn't need her to tell me what colour my step dad's pubes are. Didn't need my Grandparents to tell me that they had sex the night before on the couch I was sitting on or my grans favourite position."
"Also didn't need to know my uncle only has one testicle or that my dad was in the room when my cousin was conceived. My family is far to open lol."
"If you find an unlabeled videotape laying around burn the f'king thing just in case."
The myth of mammals.
Scary Fish Tongue
"There is a parasitic isopod that gets inside a fish’s mouth, severs the tongue, and lives in the fish’s mouth acting as a replacement tongue."
I wish I didn't know about as Demodex or eyelash mites.
Oh, you didn't about them?
Prepare to have your mind blown.
There is a community of mites living in the pores of our faces.
Ever wondered why your face randomly itches when there's nothing visibly making contact with your face? That's because these little stubby boring worms–that are a distant relative of ticks and spiders–are having a party inside your fleshy dwelling, and they are grateful for its host to extend the welcome mat.
Americans often drop popular sayings in conversation that have some element of truth to them.
You've undoubtedly come across phrases like, "Kill two birds with one stone" or "it's raining cats and dogs."
While those are used to describe actions, like the state of the weather, there are other phrases that are dispensed as words of wisdom to help individuals through a challenging situation.
But the endeavor to console someone by using this tactic is not always effective.
Curious to hear examples of this, Redditor Braca5 asked:
"What popular sayings are bullsh*t?"
These sound familiar?
The Survivor Mentality
"whatever doesn't kill you just makes you stronger."
"Looks aren't important."
"It's true. They don't always or entirely matter, but they do. That's kind of how superficial humans are."
Not Every Pain Heals
"Time heals all wounds."
"There's another one that goes like this 'time heals nothing, it just replaces memories.'"
The stigma around this is so foul, the guilty will lie about their offensive crime.
"He who smelt it dealt it"
"Whoever said the rhyme did the crime."
Psychology Around The Guilt
"The irony is it's almost always the opposite that's true. Most people would rather just be quiet about a fart than try to put it on somebody else and as it is you usually become pretty accustomed to your own and probably don't even smell half of the ones that slip out so likely the person who dealt it is going to be one of the last to actually consciously smell it."
Playing by the rules doesn't always get you places.
"Cheaters never win."
"A better saying:"
'Treason doth never prosper, what's the reason? For if it prosper, none dare call it Treason.' John Harington (1561 - 1612)
Comeuppance Never Comes
"What goes around, comes around."
"Bullsh*t. I've seen people be jerks my entire life (I'm 57 y/o) and they never got what should have come around to them."
Thing About Karma
"Worse, it's an excuse to not take responsibility. A few years back, I had discovered a nasty person who was fooling the public by buying dogs from Amish auctions of out of state, bringing them, unvaccinated, across state lines, and pawning them off on the public as 'rescues' but also taking loads of donations when she was not registered as a charity. She was not using the funds for medical care. The gal was a flashy blonde in designer clothes and knew how to fool people."
"The county authorities were investigating and needed more evidence. I approached the owner of a local pet supply store where she operated her scam and asked him to cooperate. He banned her from the store but completely refused to cooperate with the investigation. Excuse, 'Karma will get her.'"
"B*tch got off with just a fine when she would have faced animal cruelty charges."
"Karma? No, it's not a thing."
Those who adopt a passive way of thinking end up making up for lost time.
Turning A Blind Eye
"Out of sight, out of mind."
"Ever lost track of a spider?"
How Much Time Do You Have?
"Good things come to those who wait."
Lond Distance Relationships Aren't For Everyone
“Absence makes the heart grow fonder”
I think those who say "if you love what you do, you'll never work a day in your life," is debatable.
Depending on the situation, being forced to do something you once loved so you could earn a living can potentially breed resentment.
I'm a former dancer who absolutely lived off the adrenaline of performing on a stage. But when the cast I was performing with at a theme park was forced to do the same rigorous show five times a day–sometimes in intense heat–I was miserable.
Once, I severely twisted my ankle mid-performance simply because I was physically exhausted but continued giving it my 100% when my body was ready to give out. That's when most performance-based injuries occur.
That phrase certainly got a second hard look from me back then.
No two people share exactly the same likes and interests.
But on occasion, one might find themselves being among the few, if not the sole members of a certain fan club.
Indeed, while Cats earned a place on the list of the worst movies of all time, its 19% score on Rotten Tomatoes suggests that there are a handful of people who actually liked it.
Or while many people dread having to clean their homes, some simply can't wait to get started, and will look for any and every opportunity to do so.
Redditor StardustNova_ was curious to hear where members of the Reddit community found themselves in a distinct minority of appreciation, leading them to ask:
"What's something you like that the vast majority people hate?"
You've got me all tied up in knots!
"I love untangling things."
"Your Christmas lights end up in a ball and there’s no telling where it starts or ends?"
"Got a necklace that got rolled up into a total mess?"
"I’m your de-tangler."
"Headphones come out of your pocket looking like a Tangela? "
"Total zen for me."
"Wish I could make a few bucks with it tho."- Not_Jo_Mama
I'm all ears!
"People that talk a lot so I don’t need to."
"I like listening to them & I find their energy refreshing."- krasavetsa
"Everything about the airport."
"Idk why but it’s so fascinating."
"Honestly I like it more than the trip sometimes lol."- abigailgwhitneyairport GIFGiphy
"The cold never bothered me anyway"
"A Winnipeg winter day where there's not a cloud in the sky or a breath of wind, but it's so f*cking cold out your nose hairs freeze together every time you breathe."- FakeLordFarquaad
When life gives you lemons...
"Apparently a lot of people don't like the lemon/yellow starburst candy, and that's the one I prefer."- mermaid_with_pants
Sudsy, soapy dreams...
"Doing the dishes."
"I find it so calming."- shakensunshineSeason 5 Episode 10 GIF by SpongeBob SquarePantsGiphy
The gift that keeps on giving.
"It's super therapeutic and relaxing to me."
"I'll wrap everyone's presents in the house, even the ones they have to give to other people!"- happygoose2022
Sweeet and sparkly!
"Fruit flavored sparkling water."- suitcaseinherhand
"It's raining, it's pouring..."
"Gloomy and rainy days."- eggtart_princerainy day GIFGiphy
Can't dive too deep!
"I got addicted to research when I was in college and something about putting everything together to present a coherent argument is just exciting for me."- ILoveFoodALotMore
It's always interesting to hear the thing which would make some people groan with misery that would make others cheer with glee.
Nor should always look down on someone for loving something you absolutely hate, as they could help you wrap those presents you've been putting off because you hate it so much.
And who knows, maybe Cats wasn't as bad as you remembered...
It's usually a good feeling to be "on top".
To be found at the top of the list of a notable or unique accomplishment.
Though having the distinction of being in the top 0.1 percent of something might not always be something to brag about, resulting in some keeping this distinction to themselves.
If only because some people might be unusually fascinated by their so-called "accomplishment", that they'll never stop being bombarded by questions.
Redditor ImLostInTheForrest was curious to hear if any members of the Reddit community believed they were in the 0.1 percent of anything, be it commendable, bizarre or unfortunate, leading them to ask:
"What’s something you believe you may be in the 0.1% of?"
A mighty heart indeed
"Scars on my heart."
"I have about 30, I think."
"On my 4th heart procedure, I had 24 cardiac ablations."
"They use radio waves to kill tissue to create scarring so that effectively signals can't travel through that way."
"During one procedure, epicardial, meaning both inside and outside the heart. by the top electrophysiologist on the east coast."
"He said only one other patient of his had more done in one procedure."
"Took 10 hours."
"I could hear the nurses gossiping about me in the hallway."
"This was 7 years ago, and now my heart is working great!"- pearlie_girl·
Extremely comfortable in my skin
"Half of my body is a birthmark of tan skin, and the other half is pale white."
"It's right down the middle of my stomach and same with my back."
"I've only ever seen 1 person online with it saying 'chimerism' but idk if that's same with me."
"Idk but it's uncommon." - User Deleted
"Still living with stage IV lung cancer for 13 yrs."- Flashy-Cattle-8086
Big shoes to fill indeed...
"I wear a size 18."- wearegoodthings
Love your job!
"Don't know if it's less cool because I do it for work, but I 'photograph' atoms and crystalline atomic structures most days."
"I get to see the world in a way few ever do which is kinda neat."- RayseBraizeAnimation Loop GIF by xponentialdesignGiphy
An exclusive club no one wants to be part of...
"I have this condition called Miyoshi Myopathy, which, thankfully, affects only my calves and hence my walking capabilities."
"My doctor told me it is rare, but tbh statistically rare does not really mean anything, everyone might have it but they either did not get out of their way to test it, via taking blood and had it examined in a lab, or they just never realized there was something wrong at all."
"If you are wondering why I said 'Thankfully it only affected the legs', it is because it is a muscle disorder, and some disorders affect Cardiac, heart, and Pulmonary, lungs, muscles that will obviously not be pretty."
"I have to get tested every year to make sure all my vital functions are normal and as of now nothing significant is noted and I should be living a long and healthy life."- 1123Icantthinkofname
It's harder than you think...
"Folks who know percentages."- mrg1957Giphy
"Apparently only 0.1% of people become mechanical engineers in the US and an even smaller percentage are women, so maybe that?"
"I was also less than 2 lbs when I was born, and I think the percentage is probably similar."
"I somehow have no lasting physical issues from that, though my sister has cerebral palsy."- s_p_o_c_k
Plenty to go around!
"I have 3 functional kidneys."
"No it doesn't mean I pee more."
"No it doesn't mean I can drink more alcohol, thats the liver."
"No I won't sell it for under $71,241." - User Deleted
While some wouldn't necessarily consider some of these things an accomplishment, all of them certainly make for fascinating conversation starters.
Seriously, where would the third kidney even go...?