Things you were shockingly old when you learned

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I think I was like 16 or 17 when I learned that cows and bulls were the male and female versions of the same animal and not two distinct animals.

What sort of seemingly basic facts did it take you a surprisingly long time for you to learn?

filthy dylan, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 05:30 (eleven years ago) link

How a candle works.

Guayaquil (eephus!), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 05:31 (eleven years ago) link

Practically everything.

Abbott of the Trapezoid Monks (Abbott), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 06:20 (eleven years ago) link

that SHIFT + 6 = ^. I think I figured it out a month or so ago. I always wondered how people got that character.

ILX MOD (musically), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 06:32 (eleven years ago) link

DO you have a Mac?

The best things about macs is that making any character is stupid easy.

¢™
øºÖØ°

Abbott of the Trapezoid Monks (Abbott), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 06:34 (eleven years ago) link

&¶¶¶¶¶¶

Abbott of the Trapezoid Monks (Abbott), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 06:34 (eleven years ago) link

!

If Timi Yuro would be still alive, most other singers could shut up, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 07:11 (eleven years ago) link

That (most) BMWs are named according to engine size (I was a car freak as a child but never knew this until being informed by a German flatmate while I was a PhD student).

i.e. 318 = 3 series 1.8 litre engine etc.

krakow, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 07:54 (eleven years ago) link

Didn't know that black and green olives are identical, just different stage of maturity, until a few months ago.

Didn't realise that Adam Ant was a pun, until a year or so ago. Likewise Lipps Inc.

Zelda Zonk, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 07:59 (eleven years ago) link

I've got a mac and I still don't know how to do any of, um, ^ those ^

Ismael Klata, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 08:01 (eleven years ago) link

I end up going to wikipedia and copy-and-pasting when I want unusual characters

Ismael Klata, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 08:02 (eleven years ago) link

The cows-and-bulls thing, plus Adam Ant, are the only things on this thread that I do know

Ismael Klata, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 08:03 (eleven years ago) link

how to cook an artichoke properly

nelson algreen (get bent), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 08:09 (eleven years ago) link

(a julia child recipe steered me right)

nelson algreen (get bent), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 08:09 (eleven years ago) link

How to tie my shoes (velcro, you see..)

Sugar hiccup, Makes a pig soar and swoon (Pillbox), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 08:12 (eleven years ago) link

Didn't realise that Adam Ant was a pun, until a year or so ago.

^^^ this. Same with Sandy Shaw.

NotEnough, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:34 (eleven years ago) link

Fay Fife of the Rezillos.

Mark G, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:35 (eleven years ago) link

(i.e. it's a pun on "I am from the town of Fife, my good fellow" in broad scots)

Mark G, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:36 (eleven years ago) link

What's the Adam Ant pun? Adam Ant = adamant? If so... pretty lame pun.

Mordy, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:37 (eleven years ago) link

That's it.

Mark G, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:43 (eleven years ago) link

xpost Tell that to Lai Mpun, the lead singer of Bangkok's Phleng Chat.

I CRIED (G00blar), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:45 (eleven years ago) link

I am 33 and didn't know any of these things. Wait - how the hell DOES a candle work?!

Savannah Smiles, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:53 (eleven years ago) link

Same with Sandy Shaw.
OK I was 32 when I found out this was a pun.

I KNOW WHAT YOU'RE UP TO (Colonel Poo), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:54 (eleven years ago) link

i don't know how to explain it but i used to think chickens had a really weird way of "mating", something to do with the rooster's legs. (!!?!?) :)

Ludo, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:55 (eleven years ago) link

I thought penguins were as tall as humans until that march of the penguins movie

I CRIED (G00blar), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:56 (eleven years ago) link

"that SHIFT + 6 = ^. I think I figured it out a month or so ago. I always wondered how people got that character."

^^^Dude, you beat me by a month. Thanks!

I once spent a half hour trying to eject a cd from a Mac before someone finally told me there's an eject button on the keyboard. I was going through all these crazy menus and preferences...

Nate Carson, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 12:10 (eleven years ago) link

I think I was like 16 or 17 when I learned that cows and bulls were the male and female versions of the same animal and not two distinct animals.

What sort of seemingly basic facts did it take you a surprisingly long time for you to learn?

― filthy dylan, Wednesday, November 12, 2008 5:30 AM (6 hours ago) Bookmark Suggest Ban Permalink


I did not know that oxen were cattle until about a week ago.

With a little bit of gold and a Peja (bernard snowy), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 12:23 (eleven years ago) link

I thought penguins were as tall as humans until that march of the penguins movie

loooool one of my friends thought this and it was since passed into running joke territory.

I think I've done that Mac eject button thing too :(

Pronounced lapels like 'labels' for years until corrected but happily don't dress well enough to use it often

The Slash My Father Wrote (DJ Mencap), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 12:34 (eleven years ago) link

My girlfriend was shocked to learn, at the age of 33, that a 'Flea Circus' is actually a rather charming mechanical toy, and is in no way operated by any parasitic insects.

Huey in Bristol (Huey in Melbourne), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 12:56 (eleven years ago) link

Ismael, at the age of 32, is shocked to learn the same thing. This thread is getting embarrassing

Ismael Klata, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 12:57 (eleven years ago) link

WAT! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flea_circus

Øystein, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 12:59 (eleven years ago) link

I thought penguins were as tall as humans until that march of the penguins movie

one of my friends thought this and it was since passed into running joke territory

no but seriously, what is this about?

negotiable, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 13:01 (eleven years ago) link

i mean i can see that there's rarely anything to size them against in the big white antarctic, but why would anyone then automatically think okay here's a bird i could play tag with

negotiable, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 13:03 (eleven years ago) link

u could still play tag w/it tho

SNAKES! (ice crӕm), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 13:04 (eleven years ago) link

But you could make the same assumption with ostriches in the big yellow desert (or wherever they live), and in that case you'd be right!

Ismael Klata, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 13:07 (eleven years ago) link

I'm still in touch with several grown adults who genuinely believe there's 'something' to supernatural claims about ouija boards, despite its fairly obvious origins in parlour games / illusions which utilised the (admittedly fucking spooky) ideomotor effect.

Huey in Bristol (Huey in Melbourne), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 13:08 (eleven years ago) link

aw no-one said 'where babies come from'

Cittaslow Mazza (blueski), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 13:14 (eleven years ago) link

I've had a lot of experiences in my adult life with mispronouncing words I understood as part of written text, but hadn't heard aurally in the context of conversation etc. For example, I was well into my twenties before I knew the word "vehement" wasn't pronounced veh-hee-ment. I wish others would politely correct you when you do that instead of letting you blindly sound like an idiot.

Sugar hiccup, Makes a pig soar and swoon (Pillbox), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 13:16 (eleven years ago) link

I'm a bit like that, but now I'm in the habit of saying works incorrectly, I can't get out of it. Canal is not pronounced can-el, but there's fuck all I can do about it now.

NotEnough, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 13:39 (eleven years ago) link

^ This happens to me all the time too - so much so that I actually now find it quite amusing when I realise, midway through a sentence, that a word I've never heard before is looming at the end. I suppose that people who talk a lot, rather than reading, must find the same with spelling. It only annoys me when some moron uses it as an opportunity to score cheap points (sadly fairly often)

Ismael Klata, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 13:40 (eleven years ago) link

I was going to start a thread like this, but it was going to be more about 'life lessons' that took you forever to learn, rather than trivia.

Anyway it's taken me this long to fully realize how unreliable first impressions can be when it comes to people.

invisible jet (wanko ergo sum), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 13:42 (eleven years ago) link

but why would anyone then automatically think okay here's a bird i could play tag with

haha

Ant Attack.. (Ste), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 13:57 (eleven years ago) link

TAL have an episode on this in the "best of" section on their wesite. people who thought unicorns were real, etc., lots of awkward silences at cocktail parties: good stuff.

rent, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 14:00 (eleven years ago) link

i like to tag birds. (runs)

Sugar hiccup, Makes a pig soar and swoon (Pillbox), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 14:01 (eleven years ago) link

There's a penguin here and he wants to say "you didn't touch me ner ner ner"

Mark G, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 14:12 (eleven years ago) link

I thought penguins went "weh weh weh"

╓abies, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 14:14 (eleven years ago) link

I'm still in touch with several grown adults who genuinely believe there's 'something' to supernatural claims about ouija boards, despite its fairly obvious origins in parlour games / illusions which utilised the (admittedly fucking spooky) ideomotor effect.

― Huey in Bristol (Huey in Melbourne), Wednesday, November 12, 2008 7:08 AM (1 hour ago) Bookmark Suggest Ban Permalink

you couldnt get me in the same room as a ouija board

a country packed with ponies (sunny successor), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 14:42 (eleven years ago) link

I was about 35 when I figured out Open Sesame = Open Says Me.

Rotgutt, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 14:44 (eleven years ago) link

i used to think HAZCHEM was a foreign word for danger like Achtung

Cittaslow Mazza (blueski), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 14:45 (eleven years ago) link

I just figured out, like 2 days ago, that the lyrics are "highway to the danger zone"

(until then, thought they were "I went to to the danger zone")

homosexual II, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 15:03 (eleven years ago) link

Today I learned that Mt St Helens and Ian Curtis topped themselves on the same day

an incoherent crustacean (MatthewK), Monday, 18 May 2020 22:53 (two weeks ago) link

I was today years old when I discovered that moose are not, as I thought, a deer-sized ungulate, but are in fact prehistoric fucking monsters.

The full size of an adult Alaskan moose pic.twitter.com/TEhgP7zZHG

— Nature is Lit🔥 (@NaturelsLit) May 21, 2020

Bougy! Bougie! Bougé! (Eliza D.), Friday, 22 May 2020 14:15 (one week ago) link

You wouldn't want one of them loose in the hoose

calzino, Friday, 22 May 2020 14:21 (one week ago) link

There was a moose that wandered through a fairly urban neighborhood of the town I lived in during my teens, and it was a big news story. People were freaking out.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Friday, 22 May 2020 14:28 (one week ago) link

Swedish woman I work with has many an amusing moose story she often shares with us.

Is Lou Reed a Good Singer? (Tom D.), Friday, 22 May 2020 14:33 (one week ago) link

They're like urban foxes over there.

Is Lou Reed a Good Singer? (Tom D.), Friday, 22 May 2020 14:34 (one week ago) link

The "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" credits make so much more sense now.

Bougy! Bougie! Bougé! (Eliza D.), Friday, 22 May 2020 14:37 (one week ago) link

man we have meese here and they are huge, and quicker'n you think, and cranky, and i stay the hell away.

last year a riding pal of mine was riding across grand mesa, which can be pretty remote, and he came across a pair of hunters observing a bull and a cow with her two existing calves. after verifying they had a cow tag, he watched and recorded one guy sighting his muzzle loader and then downing the cow. the calves were flipping out afterward, running around, while the bull, who was deprived of hot cow action, stayed on the scene furious. the hunters began to load gear to retrieve her.

my pal told me he thought of trying to disrupt the whole set up during sighting, but thought better. glad i wasn't there.

inveterate practitioner of antisocial distancing (Hunt3r), Saturday, 23 May 2020 04:53 (one week ago) link

That Eagle-Eye Cherry is Don Cherry's son and Neneh Cherry is his half-sister.

pomenitul, Saturday, 23 May 2020 14:53 (one week ago) link

I thought that was well known!

What fash heil is this? (wins), Saturday, 23 May 2020 15:00 (one week ago) link

^shocked

What fash heil is this? (wins), Saturday, 23 May 2020 15:01 (one week ago) link

The fact that 'Save Tonight' became a hit when I was 12 years old and totally unaware of Don Cherry's existence likely had something to do with it.

pomenitul, Saturday, 23 May 2020 15:02 (one week ago) link

Joel in Adventureland and Bill Haverchuck in Freaks and Geeks--unforgettable characters--are both played by Martin Starr.

clemenza, Saturday, 23 May 2020 15:35 (one week ago) link

during an in-depth conversation about the gender of the sheep emoji a friend found this article. so i learned that modern farmer is attempting to survive by creating viral content, and i also learned there are a lot of different kinds of sheep, some of which are indeed pretty cool-looking.

i hope modern farmer does ok. i thought it was a pretty good article.

https://modernfarmer.com/2017/12/12-sickest-sheep-breeds-world-according-author/

Kate (rushomancy), Saturday, 23 May 2020 15:57 (one week ago) link

Fritz Lang may have killed his wife.

A White, White Gay (cryptosicko), Saturday, 23 May 2020 17:47 (one week ago) link

The jury's out on that one!
http://www.williamahearn.com/lisa.html

Alert! The virus lives (Matt #2), Saturday, 23 May 2020 18:04 (one week ago) link

I'd assumed they used a stencil to do this:

Not tonight Netflix, I’ve found something else to watch till at least midnight. pic.twitter.com/1JzqqNWrXT

— Lee Madgwick (@LeeMadgwick) May 22, 2020

Portsmouth Bubblejet, Saturday, 23 May 2020 19:00 (one week ago) link

That doesn't look like any bike sign I've ever seen, but such is the ineffable nature of art, I suppose.

Andrew Farrell, Saturday, 23 May 2020 19:09 (one week ago) link

Michael Shannon is in Groundhog Day

I am a free. I am not man. A number. (Neanderthal), Saturday, 23 May 2020 20:14 (one week ago) link

Looks more like a bird wearing a monocle.

pplains, Saturday, 23 May 2020 20:38 (one week ago) link

He's clearly had some work done since then.

Unparalleled Elegance (Old Lunch), Saturday, 23 May 2020 21:02 (one week ago) link

In the '60s, Charles Wilp tried to get the Monks to record the soundtrack to an Afri-Cola ad but the execs rejected it.

Kate (rushomancy), Sunday, 24 May 2020 16:20 (one week ago) link

Henery Hawk preceded Foghorn Leghorn.

Spocks on the Run (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 25 May 2020 03:12 (one week ago) link

That Costello is an Irish name, not Italian.

punning display, Monday, 25 May 2020 13:14 (one week ago) link

That ventriloquism developed from an ancient Greek religious practice called gastromancy, where the practitioner would channel the voices of the dead who were apparently resident in their stomach. It only became stagecraft in the 18th century, and dummies only began to be used in the 19th century vaudeville era.

some infected evening (Matt #2), Monday, 25 May 2020 13:24 (one week ago) link

i think this factoid was on QI or something

"The word ventriloquism derives from the Latin words ventri (belly) and loquor (to speak)"

koogs, Monday, 25 May 2020 14:22 (one week ago) link

there was a good-looking cultural studies book abt it all maybe ten years back -- by stephen something? -- which i bought to read and then was suddenly w/o a bday present for a friend and gave it to them unread and now can't remember author or title

mark s, Monday, 25 May 2020 14:30 (one week ago) link

an ancient Greek religious practice called gastromancy

^best school of magic

change display name (Jordan), Monday, 25 May 2020 14:38 (one week ago) link

Scatomancy tho.

pomenitul, Monday, 25 May 2020 14:42 (one week ago) link

Dumbstruck by Stephen Connor?

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Dumbstruck-Cultural-Ventriloquism-Steven-Connor-ebook/dp/B001KVZPVC

koogs, Monday, 25 May 2020 14:54 (one week ago) link

The etymology of the word "tabby," which ultimately is from the Arabic, the name of some neighborhood in Baghdad. There's more to it, see here:
https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/tabby

Spocks on the Run (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 25 May 2020 15:03 (one week ago) link

Ooh, that's a good one.

Is Lou Reed a Good Singer? (Tom D.), Monday, 25 May 2020 15:04 (one week ago) link

Thanks

Spocks on the Run (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 25 May 2020 15:11 (one week ago) link

That Costello is an Irish name, not Italian.

Costell'O

I bless Claire Danes down in Africa (Ye Mad Puffin), Monday, 25 May 2020 18:04 (one week ago) link

stephen connor, yes, cheers

mark s, Monday, 25 May 2020 18:07 (one week ago) link

That not refrigerating beer or wine and just drinking it with a couple of ice cubes thrown in is totally fine

Chuck_Tatum, Tuesday, 26 May 2020 19:57 (six days ago) link

I've done that many times with wine but for some reason never considered doing it with beer.

Alba, Tuesday, 26 May 2020 20:19 (six days ago) link

it is absolutely not fine

Bleeqwot (sic), Tuesday, 26 May 2020 20:20 (six days ago) link

Lol yes i cry foul

I am a free. I am not man. A number. (Neanderthal), Tuesday, 26 May 2020 20:36 (six days ago) link

When I was in singapore a most places gave you a glass of ice with your bottle of Tiger and after my initial revulsion it turns out to be awesome when its hot as shit and you are eating noodles and curry puffs and chicken rice.

joygoat, Tuesday, 26 May 2020 20:49 (six days ago) link

well sure, Tiger

Bleeqwot (sic), Tuesday, 26 May 2020 21:08 (six days ago) link

Just shuddering thinking of cubing a Trippel or a Quad

I am a free. I am not man. A number. (Neanderthal), Tuesday, 26 May 2020 21:14 (six days ago) link

Had it served that way at a Vietnamese restaurant and surprised it worked, but it was a San Miguel lager, I think.

nickn, Tuesday, 26 May 2020 22:04 (six days ago) link

Oh yeah low grade lagers only. But part of me wants to ask for a 12% barrel aged stout on ice at a fancy beer bar someday

joygoat, Tuesday, 26 May 2020 22:48 (six days ago) link

what if the secret to loving ridiculously overhopped ipas and other beardy beer treats was a couple cubes of ice all along

mh, Tuesday, 26 May 2020 23:06 (six days ago) link

Linus Pauling was a dedicated dancer. Just heard that on a podcast about Genius Dinners that the Kennedys were throwing in the early 60s from a podcast called Feast.
Liked to tango and things.

Stevolende, Tuesday, 26 May 2020 23:09 (six days ago) link

cubing a quad is the new gleaming the cube

I bless Claire Danes down in Africa (Ye Mad Puffin), Tuesday, 26 May 2020 23:19 (six days ago) link

But part of me wants to ask for a 12% barrel aged stout on ice at a fancy beer bar someday

― joygoat

Scoop of vanilla ice cream or gtfo.

nickn, Tuesday, 26 May 2020 23:34 (six days ago) link

Manon and Manon Lescaut are different operas.

Trouble Is My Métier (James Redd and the Blecchs), Wednesday, 27 May 2020 17:36 (five days ago) link


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