TIL: 8 Crazy Facts About Everyday Things

We see a lot of things on a day to day basis and acknowledge them for what they are without thinking too much more about it. Here are 8 crazy facts about things we see regularly.

Lighters are older than matches are

Most people presume that matches came first, but they’re wrong. Johann Wolfgang Döbereiner brought out the lighter in 1823; matches didn’t come along for three more years. While matches are handy and all, I prefer using a lighter to light my candles anyway.

Chainsaws were originally used as an aid to childbirth

Ladies, cross your legs and thank what or whoever you believe in that we live in a time of medical marvels. Once upon a time – when people were still figuring out the whole surgery thing – chainsaws (you know, those things we use to hack down twenty-foot trees) were used in a medical procedure known as a symphysiotomy to widen the pelvis and give the baby more room on its way out. Thankfully, this practice was pretty much abandoned once we figured out that better hygiene leads to a better c-section survival rate.

I don’t know about you, but I think that I would have been practicing abstinence.

Very little of the world’s water is actually drinkable

There’s more water than there is land on our planet, but we can’t drink about 97% of it. Only 3% of our water comes from fresh sources like lakes, rivers, and streams; the rest of it is way too salty to do us any sort of good.

Tic Tacs are only sugar-free in a legal sense

If you’ve ever purchased a box of Tic Tacs at the convenience store, you may have noticed that they tout being sugar-free. That statement isn’t entirely true. You see, they’re actually made up almost solely of sugar, but since it only works out to be 0.49 grams, they can claim to be sugar-free (the threshold is 0.5 grams – Sneaky!).

One hundred and twenty-seven thousand

That’s how many trees per day it takes to supply the world with toilet paper. Perhaps we should consider being a little more environmentally friendly and invest in bidets. Not your thing? Please at least try using less.

No one knows who invented the fire hydrant

These things save countless lives every single day, so you would think we would know who invented them. Not the case – Ironically, the original patent for this life-saving structure was destroyed in an office fire. Now that’s something Alanis could have put in her song!

Watermelon is technically a berry

According to botanists, this refreshing, sweet summer treat is actually classified as a berry. So are avocados, bananas, and pumpkins, apparently.

But strawberries are not

Because science just isn’t confusing enough. Since this juicy berry comes from a single flower that has more than one ovary, strawberries aren’t actually a berry at all. Scientifically, they’re classed as an aggregate fruit.

Do you know any crazy facts about everyday things that I’ve left off this list? I’d love to hear them!

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Written by Shanda de Vries


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