Written by JACOB ANDERSON
Here, I explore a few common misconceptions, with insightful Twitter commentary along the way.
Kissless @KisslessLadies Jan 13
Unfortunately, these often retweeted Twitter accounts are in for a rude awakening, unless a meteoroid happens to strike their boyfriends. Perhaps if they just used “carbonate rocks” rather than coal, the sentiment could be just as touching, but more accurate.
This mantra is extremely popular among concerned mothers; however, there is no evidence supporting it. You actually can eat before you swim and not get cramps or drown.While athletes who swim often forgo food immediately before swimming to avoid gastrointestinal distress, the rest of us will likely be fine meandering around the pool after eating a Hot Pocket, free of cramps. However, this misconception makes for good threats.
I hope you eat the whole pizza, go for a swim, catch a cramp and drown.
This girl is on the right track, though:
Anna Waldron @annaphase 2 Jul 2012
I don’t even know where to begin with this one. If we only used 10% of our brain, what would be the purpose of all the rest of that pink mass in our head? Evolutionarily, having a large target of a head for predators is not exactly advantageous, and women have to push that big head out during labor (the sexual dimorphism in having wide hips is the consequence). Our large head is made for our brain, and every portion of it serves a function. Perhaps this misconception stems from the fact that not all 100% of our neurons are firing at the same time. This pseudo-philosophy on Twitter nearly moved me to tears:
They say Humans use only 10% of their brains. It seems like they use only 10% of their hearts too.
I’d hate to crush this poor guy’s hopes, though:
This is probably a massive relief to most college students who previously held this misconception. However, alcohol does indirectly kill brain cells in one of two ways, both in heavy, chronic drinkers typically defined as alcoholics. The first occurs when an alcoholic tries to stop drinking cold turkey: since their brains have adapted to the heavy alcohol usage, stopping abruptly can cause excitotoxicity, where nerve cells are damaged or killed by excessive stimulation (potentially including areas of the brain). The second occurs when Korsakoff’s syndrome develops from a lack of thiamine for people who get most of their daily calories from alcohol, implying serious harm to the brain.
Mom: You know alcohol kills brain cells
Uncle: You know I heard I only use 10% of my brain, so that means I have 90% to lose
This tweet actually contained two of the misconceptions I chose, though from different relatives of the tweeter. There is likely reason to fear for this family.
Scott Eddy @MrScottEddy Feb 10
I’m not sure the potential disintegration of the lipid bilayer membranes holding our cells together is ideal, but I feel you, Scott.
The great evolution debate is full of misconception, but this is something both believers and nonbelievers of the theory (a scientific theory, that is, putting it on the same level as germ theory and the theory of gravitation) can agree on:. We, in fact, evolved from a common ancestor. Evidence actually suggests that this common ancestor, existing 5-8 million years ago, was bipedal, and chimpanzees and bonobos then evolved to become more capable climbers, on a separate path from humanity.
Read above for why this is inaccurate. The next is remarkably insightful:
Deon Lundy @deon_L Nov 20
…Unfortunately, not in the way this tweeter means. Toasters and MacBooks do have a common ancestor in primitive electronics, using this analogy, but Toasters did not evolve into MacBooks the same way that monkeys did not evolve into humans.