The World Turned Upside Down

If you are a musical theatre junkie, then that phrase will bring to life the lyrics from Hamilton’s – Yorktown-

“I’m not throwin’ away my shot! I’m not throwin’ away my shot! Hey yo, I’m just like my country, I’m young scrappy and hungry, and I’m not throwin’ away my shot! Til the world turns upside down, ‘Til the world turns upside down.”

The World Turned Upside Down (Yorktown); Lin-manuel Miranda

Although that song wasn’t the first thing to pop into my head, I have been thinking alot about how the world has been turned upside down, particularly in this past year. I really love that phrase – the world turned upside down and want to spend some time with it, but not as you might expect. It can be a depressing topic, so let’s turn it upside down, and make it not depressing.

So, let me present you with some things you probably believed were true, but are in fact NOT TRUE – I’m gonna turn your world upside down. 🙂

  • Sloths are slow and lazy creatures. Although they are slow – walking 2 meters per minute on the ground, they are 5 times faster under water. Because their metabolic rate is so slow, they can hold their breath for 40 minutes underwater and swim 5 x faster than they walk!
  • You can see the Great Wall of China from space – (I have even taught this.) NASA confirmed that this in fact is false, but our textbooks have not yet caught up.
  • It takes 7 years for your body to digest bubble gum. According to Healthline, the ingredients in gum will pass through your body without digesting at all.
  • Carrots improve your vision. The beta-carotene in carrots converts to vitamin A which does improve your sight. However, once your beta-carotene limit is reached, it stops making that conversion.
  • Toads give you warts. Nope, warts are caused by HPV.
  • Coffee stunts your growth. Nope again. It is linked to calcium loss but even that isn’t enough to affect your bones.
  • Bats are blind. In fact, they can see 3 times better than humans, according to Rob Miles, at Bat Conservation.
  • Cracking your knuckles will give you arthritis. I don’t like the sound of this, but what I am hearing is the nitrogen bubbles bursting in your synovial fluid. It does not lead to arthritis.
  • You swallow 8 spiders a year in your sleep. Gosh am I glad this is faaaaaaaarrrrr from truth! Scientific American deemed this as untrue because spiders view humans as rocks and if that rock is vibrating (snoring) it is warning them to stay away.
  • Einstein failed math. He did fail an entrance exam to a school in Zurich, but he nailed the math section of that test.
  • The toilet flushes in different directions in different hemispheres. (another one that I have taught) Live Science reports that the only thing that changes the direction is the shape of the toilet and the angle that the water enters.
  • Alcohol warms you up. You may think you’re warming up after a drink, but is slowing your circulation and making you colder. (my husband was right!)
  • Mount Everest is the tallest mountain. Yep, I taught this one too….It is the tallest mountain AT SEA LEVEL, but the tallest mountain from base to peak is Mount Kea in Hawaii. It winds up being a mile taller than Everest when you factor in 19,700 feet of it exists in the Pacific Ocean!
  • Dogs are color blind. In fact, a Russian scientist has proved that dogs see blue and yellow as good as we do.
  • An apple fell on Newton’s head (and thus prompted the theory of gravity). Much like Adam and Eve’s story, an apple wasn’t mentioned, only a fruit. In Sir Isaac’s case, a fruit fell and prompted his inquiries.

See, that wasn’t depressing or discouraging was it? Hopefully it was even a little insightful.

We need these little brain breaks from time to time, so that we will have the needed creativity, focus and prioritization to make the changes really needed to turn our world upside down.

Cheers to you.

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