6 Things I've Been Getting Wrong
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6 Things I've Been Getting Wrong

Fact-check yoself before you wreck yoself.

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6 Things I've Been Getting Wrong

I recently discovered that many things I thought I knew, I actually don't.

Maybe you know already these things, in which case, congrats!

But in case you are like me and go through life without actually fact-checking things you took for granted, this is for you.

1. The definition of peruse.

For many years, I thought the definition of peruse meant to browse, or quickly skim over something. As in, I perused the syllabus without taking the time to fully read it. I am wrong. Peruse actually means "to read thoroughly, and examine carefully". Literally the opposite.


2. Bears don't hibernate.

An extremely common misconception that was ingrained into my head during childhood was that bears hibernate during the winter. In fact, if you asked me a few weeks ago of examples of animals that hibernate, I'd probably only be able to come with one: bears. But bears don't hibernate! Hibernation is defined by the ability of an animal to drop to the same as the outside temperature. Bears go to sleep - know as "torpor" - but can easily be awoken, and their body temperatures remain high.



3. The song "Edelweiss"

Edelweiss is not the national anthem of Austria, like the "Sound of Music" led me to believe. It is not even a traditional folk song of Austria. It has nothing to do with Austria. It was created by Rodgers and Hammerstein for the "Sound of Music" soundtrack in 1959.



4. Marie Antoinette. Four words, fourteen letters.

Marie Antoinette never actually said, "let them eat cake". The phrase "let them eat brioche" was published by Rousseau when Marie was nine years old. But since Marie Antoinette was pretty unpopular, people attributed the phrase to her. The only person who actually did say "let them eat cake" was the person dressed as a Tastykake at the top of the Eastern State Penitentiary.



5. Black holes don't suck things in.

I mean, technically they do. But only to the same gravitational effect as other planetary objects of that size. They're not holes at all!

6. Standing close to the TV does not damage your eyes.

Mom, you trickster, you're not fooling me anymore! For a brief period in 1967, General Electric televisions produced x-rays which could be harmful if you sat too close. Then, they recalled all of them and fixed the error. But the paranoia stayed in the home. Unless you have a 50 year-old TV and ignored the recall, you can go ahead and glue your eyes to the TV.









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