Thursday, May 24, 2012

Top 5: Crap You Believed as a Kid

In pre-internet (or at least, very early internet) days, kids couldn't research things, so they had to believe what they were told by tv, aunts and uncles, and random authority figures.  These folks made mistakes, and the kids bought them all.  Here are some of the biggest fallacies you bought as a kid.

5: You have to wait a half hour after eating before going swimming.  Because...?  I guess the idea was you'd get a cramp and drown.  But you probably won't.  Unless you typically get cramps after eating, you're unlikely to have the problem in the first place.  If you are swimming and do get a cramp, you either swim back to land, or float until help arrives.

4: If you got an Apple while trick or treating, it probably had a razor blade in it.  A mass hysteria in the early 80's surrounded Halloween and trick-or-treating.  Namely, was the candy kids came home with poisoned by crazy people.  The answer was no.  There were a few (read: almost no) isolated cases.  But never one involving a razor blade in an apple.  And as an aside, I trick-or-treated for over a decade, and I never received an apple anyhow...

3: Eating Pop Rocks and drinking Coke will make your stomach explode. Mikey from the life cereal commercials died hat way, right?  Turns out, no, no he didn't.  And since you can burp, neither will you.  Nevermind that the whole interaction isn't any more than a big fizzle.

2: Don't pick your nose or you'll give yourself brain damage.  Can any adult reading this tell me why this isn't true?  Is this possibly a lie that's for the greater good?

1: Gum stays in your stomach for 7 years.  Okay, you may have been told five years, or 10 years, but the real question is: does gum stay in your stomach for an extraordinary amount of time?  Gum is indigestible, but that doesn't mean it just stays inside you when you swallow it (or else we'd see common surgery to remove 15 pound balls of old Hubba-Bubba).  It doesn't get broken down, but it does get passed.  I suspect this originated in part as a choking precaution to discourage kids from swallowing gum, but when the teacher caught us chewing, we weren't supposed to admit we had gum in our mouths, were we?

Our parents rocked, but they didn't have the benefit of Snopes back then!  We do--don't put your kid through the silly exercises our parents put us through!!!  If you liked this article, please share it on your favorite social network.  We also love it when you comment below, and like our Facebook page!


  1. You kidding me I am still going to tell my kids this kind of stuff ... I will just preface it with, the government doesn't want you to know these things so they keep it off the internet.

  2. you do what you feel you have to at any given time.

  3. If my 3 year old son were answering this 18 years from now he would answer that (1) the "Put it together Fairy" comes and puts stuff my dad buys but does not want my "help" assembling together when I'm sleeping and (2) the "Sticker Fairy" comes when I'm sleeping to put wall stickers on my wall if I'm a good boy and go to sleep without a fight... 

    Yes, we invent fairies from time to time.

  4. True enough, but some of this is just straight-up unfounded! 

  5. Yes, fairies are an important item in the parental toolbox.

  6. What about, "If someone hits you on the back while your eyes are crossed, they'll stay that way."


    Of course, the internet is chock full of brand new unfounded nonsense if you don't check sources, so the problem might have just multiplied.  

  7. Excellent point about the internet.  I guess it all depends on how deeply you look.