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 (ten years ago) Permalink

How a candle works.

Guayaquil (eephus!), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 05:31 (ten years ago) Permalink

Practically everything.

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

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

&¶¶¶¶¶¶

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

!

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

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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

Ismael Klata, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 08:02 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

how to cook an artichoke properly

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

(a julia child recipe steered me right)

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

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

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

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

Fay Fife of the Rezillos.

Mark G, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:35 (ten years ago) Permalink

(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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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

Mordy, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:37 (ten years ago) Permalink

That's it.

Mark G, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:43 (ten years ago) Permalink

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

I CRIED (G00blar), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:45 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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

I CRIED (G00blar), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 10:56 (ten years ago) Permalink

"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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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

Øystein, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 12:59 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

u could still play tag w/it tho

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

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

aw no-one said 'where babies come from'

Cittaslow Mazza (blueski), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 13:14 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

^ 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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

i like to tag birds. (runs)

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

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

I thought penguins went "weh weh weh"

╓abies, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 14:14 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

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

Rotgutt, Wednesday, 12 November 2008 14:44 (ten years ago) Permalink

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

Cittaslow Mazza (blueski), Wednesday, 12 November 2008 14:45 (ten years ago) Permalink

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 (ten years ago) Permalink

Lizzie Borden was not an underage girl at the time of the murders. She was 32.

(Secondary realization: Lizzie was her given name, not Elizabeth)

Josefa, Friday, 17 May 2019 20:08 (one week ago) Permalink

Relevant to that, I learned recently that Lorena Bobbitt was only 22 when the dick chopping happened.

Yerac, Friday, 17 May 2019 20:33 (one week ago) Permalink

Illeana is the granddaughter of Melvyn.

5 favrite kind of animal. jaguar. giraffe. (Old Lunch), Thursday, 23 May 2019 13:17 (four days ago) Permalink

xpost I was old enough to be fully aware of both cases as they were happening but it still takes conscious effort for me to remember that John Bobbitt and Joey Buttafuoco are two different people.

5 favrite kind of animal. jaguar. giraffe. (Old Lunch), Thursday, 23 May 2019 13:19 (four days ago) Permalink

I can use the Alt Gr key to write áéíóú or even ÁÉÍÓÚ - learned today, aged 39.

mfktz (Camaraderie at Arms Length), Thursday, 23 May 2019 13:47 (four days ago) Permalink

Oh that's cool!

Ned Caligari (Tom D.), Thursday, 23 May 2019 14:01 (four days ago) Permalink

In the song "Pretty in Pink" the "in pink" means naked

Josefa, Thursday, 23 May 2019 15:45 (four days ago) Permalink

wait wut
really?!

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Thursday, 23 May 2019 15:47 (four days ago) Permalink

i am truly shockingly old to have realized that
i guess i just didn't want it to be true because it's gross and uh not everyone is pink

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Thursday, 23 May 2019 15:48 (four days ago) Permalink

yeah I think I was thrown by the latter point

Josefa, Thursday, 23 May 2019 15:49 (four days ago) Permalink

That turning a gas hob knob fully anticlockwise brings the flame right down without extinguishing it.

Alba, Thursday, 23 May 2019 18:54 (four days ago) Permalink

the existence of gas hob nobs

mark s, Thursday, 23 May 2019 18:56 (four days ago) Permalink

Colossus of Bhridges

I just got this terrible* dad joke now that I am 6 days older than when I first read it

* I say this lovingly

also re Flim/MILF, a couple of years before Flim and maybe 5 before American Pie I decided I liked a band called Milf and wrote their name on my school science folder. So I hope nobody knew the acronym them, and I also hope the band was named after something else tbh.

The stupidest part is I'm not even sure I'd heard the band or if I'd just read a review that sounded cool and decided I should like them. Hey, I was 14, but perhaps this is why normal people don't performatively pretend to like things they don't know anything about? Fairly sure I learned that lesson unusually late in life too.

a passing spacecadet, Thursday, 23 May 2019 19:34 (four days ago) Permalink

also I was like 30 when someone showed me the gas hob thing after many years of accidentally turning the hob off in the middle of something. yeah, it's v useful

a passing spacecadet, Thursday, 23 May 2019 19:37 (four days ago) Permalink

Oh, I knew going in that it was an indefensibly-terrible dad joke. Thank u for recognizing the effort.

smrater than all of you (Old Lunch), Thursday, 23 May 2019 19:40 (four days ago) Permalink

Hey, I was 14, but perhaps this is why normal people don't performatively pretend to like things they don't know anything about? Fairly sure I learned that lesson unusually late in life too.

― a passing spacecadet

I think everyone does this as a teenager as do many adults

don't mock my smock or i'll clean your clock (silby), Thursday, 23 May 2019 20:11 (four days ago) Permalink

it's good not bad

mark s, Thursday, 23 May 2019 20:32 (four days ago) Permalink

I've only half accepted that that bit at the end of podcast and radio advertising where the T&C's are read on helium is actually sped up and not performed by a cabal of people who can speak at twice the normal human speed.

Good cop, Babcock (Chinaski), Friday, 24 May 2019 07:13 (three days ago) Permalink

xp

On a similar note, I learned recently that it's a common thing for people to listen to podcasts on 1.5x or 2x speed to get through them faster.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Friday, 24 May 2019 12:04 (three days ago) Permalink

I do this with ploddingly read audiobooks

d'ILM for Murder (Hadrian VIII), Friday, 24 May 2019 12:10 (three days ago) Permalink

> listen to podcasts on 1.5x or 2x speed

they also did this with subtitled VHS films in microserfs

koogs, Friday, 24 May 2019 12:42 (three days ago) Permalink

oh there are weirdos out there who do it with TV shows too

Number None, Friday, 24 May 2019 12:51 (three days ago) Permalink

i only listen to podcasts on 0.5x so i can savour every word

michael keaton IS jim thirlwell IN ‘foetaljuice’ (bizarro gazzara), Friday, 24 May 2019 12:54 (three days ago) Permalink

oh there are weirdos out there who do it with TV shows too

networks do this too with syndicated old sitcoms to squeeze more hernia mesh commercials in.

andrew m., Friday, 24 May 2019 14:02 (three days ago) Permalink

haha i listen to podcasts on 1.2x because i don't wanna notice it's sped up, i just wanna trick myself into have like 6 more mminutes a day to listen to a different podcast

km not doin typos anymore (Will M.), Friday, 24 May 2019 15:42 (three days ago) Permalink

oh there are weirdos out there who do it with TV shows too

Hey Duggee at 1.3x speed is the best show on iplayer fyi

a passing spacecadet, Friday, 24 May 2019 16:00 (three days ago) Permalink

I listened to a German audiobook at 0.9 speed and felt only 0.81 times as stupid as I did when completely failing to understand it at 1.0

a passing spacecadet, Friday, 24 May 2019 16:02 (three days ago) Permalink

You can also change the play speed of the clips on porn sites for a more efficient wank. I’ve heard.

shhh / let peaceful like things (wins), Friday, 24 May 2019 16:05 (three days ago) Permalink

Lifehack!

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Friday, 24 May 2019 20:02 (three days ago) Permalink

I listen to podcasts at 2x speed. They need to invent a player that automatically identifies music and goes to 1x for that because manual adjusting is not fun when I’m listening through the desert island discs archive.

I also can’t tell anymore if Marc Maron actually normally sounds a bit slow in 1x real life or if it’s just me being used to listening to him like he’s taken a line or two before the show.

fancy the Dirkishness of carrying Doré a round (fionnland), Friday, 24 May 2019 20:58 (three days ago) Permalink

Marlon Brando had no Italian ancestry and was in fact *German! The surname Brando being derived from Brandau!

(*in the American sense)

Ned Caligari (Tom D.), Saturday, 25 May 2019 09:27 (two days ago) Permalink

I bet plenty of those O'Malley's are derived from Mallenstein as well. it reminds me of the indisputably Jewish James Caan winning some Italian-American of the year award once iirc.

calzino, Saturday, 25 May 2019 09:37 (two days ago) Permalink

With an estimated size of approximately 44 million in 2016, German Americans are the largest of the self-reported ancestry groups by the US Census Bureau in its American Community Survey.

... and that's just the self-reported ones. My dad, who had a dislike of Americans, apart from John F. Kennedy, was always saying they're just Germans really.

Ned Caligari (Tom D.), Saturday, 25 May 2019 09:43 (two days ago) Permalink

He had a lot of strange notions though.

Ned Caligari (Tom D.), Saturday, 25 May 2019 09:44 (two days ago) Permalink

Needless to say he disliked Germans too but his attitude towards them softened somewhat when he went to work there for a while and realized how many of them were Catholics.

Ned Caligari (Tom D.), Saturday, 25 May 2019 09:51 (two days ago) Permalink

my mum said something similar to me about the US St Patrick's Day parade recently, and I tend to agree with her on this, despite it perhaps being a slightly a wrong or unusual notion - fuck the plastic 3rd reich-paddies!

calzino, Saturday, 25 May 2019 09:54 (two days ago) Permalink

lol

Ned Caligari (Tom D.), Saturday, 25 May 2019 09:55 (two days ago) Permalink

I have long suspected most of them to be secretly, to use deems' preferred term, Scotch.

Ned Caligari (Tom D.), Saturday, 25 May 2019 10:00 (two days ago) Permalink

After all, as I think (hope) most of us realize, those US Presidents who claim Irish ancestry are usually descended from Scots who were given plantations in Ireland to fuck over the Irish and then exported the family business of fucking people over to Americay.

Ned Caligari (Tom D.), Saturday, 25 May 2019 10:06 (two days ago) Permalink

That Amazon women warriors were not from Brazil.

pplains, Saturday, 25 May 2019 14:45 (two days ago) Permalink

I mean, sure, there may be some female fighters living on that South American river, but I'm talking about the ones who raised Wonder Woman and went to the Moon.

pplains, Saturday, 25 May 2019 14:46 (two days ago) Permalink

I'm sure we've had that one before!

Ned Caligari (Tom D.), Saturday, 25 May 2019 14:53 (two days ago) Permalink

"The word Amazon itself may be derived from the Iranian compound *ha-maz-an- "(one) fighting together"[19] or ethnonym *ha-mazan- "warriors", a word attested indirectly through a derivation, a denominal verb in Hesychius of Alexandria's gloss "ἁμαζακάραν· πολεμεῖν. Πέρσαι" ("hamazakaran: 'to make war' in Persian"), where it appears together with the Indo-Iranian root *kar- "make" (from which Sanskrit karma is also derived).[20]" some off-the-pojnt scholarship from the wikipedia entry on the amazon river

(it's called the amazons bcz some 16th-century spanish bloke was attacked by local warriors led by women, and was shook enough to remember his classical education)

mark s, Saturday, 25 May 2019 15:35 (two days ago) Permalink

Not that this is something I should have known years ago, but it's a question that comes up at least every Easter time.

In a bag of Spice Jelly Beans or Gum Drops, there's usually cinnamon, spearmint, peppermint, wintergreen, licorice and clove (my favorite), but sometimes there's this weird ass 7th flavor that nobody's ever been able to identify. Vaguely medicinal, probably some old flavor like horehound or whatever Moxie is made out of.

Anyway, I finally Googled it, and there's 2 different flavors. Some brands have sassafras, some (Brach's) have ginger.

Hideous Lump, Saturday, 25 May 2019 20:56 (two days ago) Permalink

Okay I don't really know what you're talking about, but I want in.

Also otm about clove.

Andrew Farrell, Saturday, 25 May 2019 21:07 (two days ago) Permalink

weird ass flavor that nobody's ever been able to identify: … ginger

you hate 2 read it

mark s, Saturday, 25 May 2019 21:09 (two days ago) Permalink

irl giggle

tfw you are not easily whelmed (sic), Saturday, 25 May 2019 23:58 (two days ago) Permalink

my life experience with jazz is highly mediated and/or studio stuff and i totally failed to anticipate immediate applauses during performance after solos. i was able to understand why/what i was seeing, but not having seen it, i was all "is this a thing? like, a not unusual/not rude thing?"

Hunt3r, Sunday, 26 May 2019 20:40 (yesterday) Permalink

i personally find it rude when people don't whoop "GET IT!!!" after a particularly hard swinging solo

Lil' Brexit (Tracer Hand), Sunday, 26 May 2019 20:52 (yesterday) Permalink


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