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

that the "returned search results for..." message in soulseek at the bottom is not just a system log, it's stuff that was returned from your library

I thought the results looked too familiar too often

frogbs, Saturday, 16 November 2019 03:49 (six days ago) link

That I’ve been right all along about how to pronounce “vapid” (nobody ever says this word, you only see it in print, my instincts are usually terrible about this kind of thing)

El Tomboto, Saturday, 16 November 2019 03:57 (six days ago) link

of course according to merriam-webster I would’ve been right either way

El Tomboto, Saturday, 16 November 2019 03:58 (six days ago) link

Nat "King" Cole got his nickname/stage name from the "Old King Cole" nursery rhyme.

I realized this yesterday.

― Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Friday, November 15, 2019 4:09 PM (yesterday) bookmarkflaglink

The way I understand it, the jazz trio featuring Nat Cole took its name from the nursery rhyme and it then got applied to the artist himself when he went solo..
Do love the King Co9le Trio cos it features the guitar of Oscar Moore who is pretty dashed fine.

Stevolende, Saturday, 16 November 2019 10:40 (six days ago) link

That the Judeo-Christian notion of a soul didn't exist until Greek philosophers began ruminating about dualism.

Yul, Tied: A Celebration of Brynner in Bondage (Old Lunch), Saturday, 16 November 2019 13:07 (six days ago) link

Yeah how could one have been so shockingly ignorant about the origins of the Judeo-Christian notion of a soul.

I mean when I was like five I had this silly attachment to the Emersonian ideal of an oversoul. Then in like third grade I was big into the Nietzschean ubermensch concept. I was tempted by Manichean duality as a preteen, but it somehow the true historical path of these never quite crystallized for me. Good on ya, lunch

they see me lollin' (Ye Mad Puffin), Saturday, 16 November 2019 14:06 (six days ago) link

That no one else says vapid out loud.

Alba, Saturday, 16 November 2019 14:09 (six days ago) link

I feel less bad about overusing that word as a vapid youth

mh, Saturday, 16 November 2019 14:12 (six days ago) link

I read somebody saying that policy wonks are nicknamed as such cos they know everything backwards! Which is obv wrong because the dictionary says it is slang for for someone with an eye for tedious detail or an inexperienced sailor (1920s).

calzino, Saturday, 16 November 2019 14:20 (six days ago) link

vapid = 'vaped' right, please tell me i'm correct or i will be embarrsed

Yul, Tied: A Celebration of Brynner in Bondage (Old Lunch), Saturday, 16 November 2019 14:42 (six days ago) link

"When learning English, Russians have to practice making the "w" sound because they are not used to it. At first, they will often pronounce them as "v", which leads to being corrected by the teacher. This constant practice of substituting "v" with "w" leads to over correction wherein they become so conscientious about the substitution that they do it even when they're not supposed to."

mark s, Saturday, 16 November 2019 14:48 (six days ago) link

vapid = 'vaped' right, please tell me i'm correct or i will be embarrsed

― Yul, Tied: A Celebration of Brynner in Bondage (Old Lunch)

it took me until like five years ago to learn how to spell embarrassed. i couldn't remember if it had two rs and one s or two ss and one r.

tantric societal collapse (rushomancy), Saturday, 16 November 2019 15:50 (six days ago) link

mark s: I worked with a Ukrainian who would often go to the wending machine.

tokyo rosemary, Saturday, 16 November 2019 16:39 (six days ago) link

i agree with kids who say a W is actually drawed like a double-vee. sorry that’s my only opinion. Inconsistently said, incorrectly named, what a mess. and a danish pal went on for a minute about the sport of “wallyball” and i couldnt figure out if that was just a weird way of saying volleyball, or a different sport.

and i approve this message (Hunt3r), Saturday, 16 November 2019 17:07 (six days ago) link

In spanish, V is "ve" and W is "doble ve"

Jordan Pickford LOLverdrive (Neanderthal), Saturday, 16 November 2019 17:10 (six days ago) link

ah true. sorta pronounced doble b some places tho?

and i approve this message (Hunt3r), Saturday, 16 November 2019 17:21 (six days ago) link

i agree with kids who say a W is actually drawed like a double-vee.

The VVitch
VValgreens
VValt Disney

insecurity bear (sic), Saturday, 16 November 2019 20:13 (six days ago) link

vvtf

deems of internment (darraghmac), Sunday, 17 November 2019 01:00 (five days ago) link

Very very the fuck indeed

Jordan Pickford LOLverdrive (Neanderthal), Sunday, 17 November 2019 01:11 (five days ago) link

vvolwes

deems of internment (darraghmac), Sunday, 17 November 2019 01:18 (five days ago) link

Vvolves aye vve

Jordan Pickford LOLverdrive (Neanderthal), Sunday, 17 November 2019 01:20 (five days ago) link

That there's another famous Don Cherry that isn't the jazz guy

Cornelius Fondue (Matt #2), Sunday, 17 November 2019 10:53 (five days ago) link

Famous on ILX maybe.

'Skills' Wallace (Tom D.), Sunday, 17 November 2019 11:06 (five days ago) link

the (scott) walker (joe) walsh (don) cherry trio, uluv2 hear it

mark s, Sunday, 17 November 2019 11:09 (five days ago) link

The acronym "FAP" is a reference to masturbation.

(Lol that the fame of the hockey Don Cherry is an ilx phenomenon.)

No language just sound (Sund4r), Monday, 18 November 2019 15:25 (four days ago) link

Is 'fap' an acronym in that context? 'Flogging a peen'?

Yul, Tied: A Celebration of Brynner in Bondage (Old Lunch), Monday, 18 November 2019 15:31 (four days ago) link

Ha, we used to use it as an acronym for "fancy a pint" when planning ilx0r get-togethers. Idk if the original is also an acronym, though.

No language just sound (Sund4r), Monday, 18 November 2019 15:35 (four days ago) link

North American rather than ILX.

'Skills' Wallace (Tom D.), Monday, 18 November 2019 15:36 (four days ago) link

the acronym is not, and as far as I know "fapping" is onomatopoeia

mh, Monday, 18 November 2019 16:19 (four days ago) link

didn't that come from some ages old webcomic? was it Megatokyo??

frogbs, Monday, 18 November 2019 16:22 (four days ago) link

p sure this exact same discussion arose v early on (possibly courtesy much-missed NZ poster lady di)

mark s, Monday, 18 November 2019 16:23 (four days ago) link

the acronym is not, and as far as I know "fapping" is onomatopoeia

― mh, Monday, November 18, 2019 10:19 AM (four minutes ago) bookmarkflaglink

Yikes, is that what it's supposed to sound like?

Yul, Tied: A Celebration of Brynner in Bondage (Old Lunch), Monday, 18 November 2019 16:25 (four days ago) link

'Hen fap' at the very least has its origins in a photograph from a late-'90s Onion article.

Yul, Tied: A Celebration of Brynner in Bondage (Old Lunch), Monday, 18 November 2019 16:26 (four days ago) link

didn't that come from some ages old webcomic? was it Megatokyo??

https://www.sexylosers.com/

insecurity bear (sic), Monday, 18 November 2019 21:40 (four days ago) link

Yesterday I learned that you can’t drive through the Chunnel! I thought it was like the Holland Tunnel, basically. Now I’m a little obsessed with the drive-on trains.

There's more Italy than necessary. (in orbit), Tuesday, 19 November 2019 13:35 (three days ago) link

It's like your car is inside a big crate, you can't see anything of interest, and the novelty wears off after about 30 seconds, if that.

mfktz (Camaraderie at Arms Length), Tuesday, 19 November 2019 13:40 (three days ago) link

sounds better than the holland tunnel

mookieproof, Tuesday, 19 November 2019 15:43 (three days ago) link

The worst part of Eurostar is the scenery is so dull, especially in Northern France.

'Skills' Wallace (Tom D.), Tuesday, 19 November 2019 15:45 (three days ago) link

needs more poppies iirc

mark s, Tuesday, 19 November 2019 15:46 (three days ago) link

What happened to the enormous horse planned for the English side?

koogs, Tuesday, 19 November 2019 18:53 (three days ago) link

I didn't learn until last year that lady chickens lay eggs on a regular schedule. They don't have to have sex with a male chicken. They just lay eggs. Until that point I had always assumed that chickens in farms were artificially inseminated or something like that. I mentally equated their reproductive cycle with our own.

Imagine if human women gave birth to children every nine months, regularly, whether they had been fertilised or not. The unfertilised children would be zombie-like meat puppets without souls. I picture hairless white-skinned humanoids that never sweat and can be taught to do simple tasks. Like Donald Pleasence but without a soul.

It took me years to learn how to consistently spell Donald Pleasence's surname correctly. I don't often have a chance to use that knowledge.

Ashley Pomeroy, Tuesday, 19 November 2019 20:22 (three days ago) link

if eggs are fertilized they have chicken fetuses in them just fyi

-_- (jim in vancouver), Tuesday, 19 November 2019 20:24 (three days ago) link

Imagine if human women gave birth to children every nine months, regularly, whether they had been fertilised or not.

its not that weird, my wife does this

frogbs, Tuesday, 19 November 2019 20:26 (three days ago) link

zombie-like meat puppets without souls

Ah, so you've met my kids?

they see me lollin' (Ye Mad Puffin), Tuesday, 19 November 2019 20:29 (three days ago) link

the gestation takes place inside the fertilized egg

wait until you learn human women do eject an unfertilized egg every once in a while

mh, Tuesday, 19 November 2019 20:32 (three days ago) link

Was gonna say...

Yul, Tied: A Celebration of Brynner in Bondage (Old Lunch), Tuesday, 19 November 2019 20:33 (three days ago) link

lmao

Li'l Brexit (Tracer Hand), Tuesday, 19 November 2019 20:47 (three days ago) link

In their natural environment chickens will typically lay 12 or so eggs a year, too. We've bred them to be egg laying machines.

Life is a meaningless nightmare of suffering...save string (Chinaski), Tuesday, 19 November 2019 21:09 (three days ago) link

What happened to the enormous horse planned for the English side?

― koogs, Tuesday, 19 November 2019 18:53 (yesterday)

Officially "on hold" due to lack of funds IIRC - it was to be funded by subscription, the estimated costs rocketed and the donations / subscriptions did not. Shame.

Tim, Wednesday, 20 November 2019 07:54 (two days ago) link

People actually experimented on the veracity of the boiling a frog myth/metaphor. Seems to have been done several times over the last couple of hundred years.
Apparently a frog tossed into a boiling pot will have a lot of damage done whereas one put into a tepid one that is slowly heated is likely to jump out way before the heat gets too high.
Whodathunkit.
Works as a metaphor though & a lot of those have a recognised gulf between saying and reality.

Stevolende, Wednesday, 20 November 2019 15:09 (two days ago) link


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