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The 6 Most Frequently Quoted Brain Facts (That Are Total BS)

The 6 Most Frequently Quoted Brain Facts (That Are Total BS)
After millennia of research, experts still don't know very much about the human brain. As such, most of what you have picked up on the subject from pop culture is just laughably wrong. In fact, we'll bet you even heard some or all of these brain myths in school at some point ... #6. What you heard: It's the reason Homer Simpson gets stupider every season, and it's what your mom warned you about when you got caught sneaking a beer from dad's stash when you were 13: Every beer you drink kills something like a million brain cells and makes you permanently stupider. Getty"Goodbye, Algebra 2!" The truth: Let's get this out of the way now -- too much alcohol does a whole host of horrible shit to just about every organ in your body. Getty"Asleep" isn't the same as "brain damaged." The whole idea of alcohol destroying your brain actually dates back to the temperance movement in America, circa 1830. Plenty of people believed it -- it just seems like common sense that beer destroys the brain. #5. #4.

The 5 Most Depraved Sex Scenes Implied by 'Harry Potter' The Harry Potter series has sold billions of dollars worth of books, movie tickets and DVDs because it's one of those rare series that children can enjoy but won't make adults want to gouge out their eyes. Author J.K. Rowling had a way of throwing a bone to the grown-ups here and there by slipping in sly little adult references along the way. It's usually done in subtext (like the elderly wizard Dumbledore's homosexual relationship with the male wizard Grindelwald), but sometimes it's right there in the open for anyone perceptive enough to get it. And sometimes, that shit gets nasty. #5. Via Wikimedia Commons Dolores Umbridge is perhaps the one person in the whole Harry Potter universe who is virtually impossible to like, no matter what angle you choose to piss on her from. Via Hp-lexicon.orgShe's like Mussolini and your nosy old neighbor, all rolled into one. Well, unless you count the part where she is abducted and gang raped by centaurs in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. #4.

The 5 Most Widely Believed WWII Facts (That Are Bullshit) They say history is written by the winners, but the truth is even stranger than that. In reality history is often written by popular opinion, or wishful thinking, or crass politics. That's why so much of what we hear about an event like World War II--whether from textbooks, movies or something you overheard a smart-sounding guy say--is just plain bullshit. #5. Claimed By: Hollywood, WWII-shooters, Cold War politics and chauvinists. Sixty years of World War II movies, and a decade of WWII video games, have made one thing clear: If it wasn't for America, you'd all be speaking German right now, baby! How America fights a two-front war. Why it's Bullshit: Because it's like thinking that while many X-Men contributed in their own special way, defeating Magneto really came down to Iceman. Cool party! There are two radically different histories of WW II, the one that was actually fought, and the one where the US kicked everyone's assess. World War II wasn't just a clever name. Cheerio, guv'na! #4. #3.

6 Animals That Kill Nature's Scariest Creatures For Fun We have made it our mission to celebrate the underrated badasses of the animal kingdom because in general, Hollywood has taught us to be afraid of the wrong creatures. For instance, for every animal you'd be terrified to run across in the wild, the odds are there is at least one other beast who sees it as a tasty snack. And often it's what you'd least expect. Like ... #6. The Terror: So you are a tarantula, the hairy giant of the arachnid world and the absolute worst nightmare of, oh, about 99 percent of humanity. Photos.comYour favorite hangouts include cradles, wood sheds and the bottom of sleeping bags. As you roam the landscape looking for a late night snack, you spot a potential prey: a silly-looking insect buzzing clumsily around. ... only to wake up hours later, unable to move, and with a nasty writhing feeling inside you. Eaten By: Via Wikipedia A wasp isn't anyone's favorite insect to find flying around in their house, but nobody is going to call 911 if they see one. #5. #4.

8 Ways Suburban Apathy Got Me Through Irene: A Hero's Story Like millions of people living on the East Coast, I was recently confronted with the full force of nature's fury: Hurricane Irene. Fortunately, my 30-plus years of living in the suburbs, multiple educational degrees and countless pairs of khakis had prepared me for this natural disaster. So, yes, I came out unscathed, but only by undertaking a series of perfectly executed steps to safeguard my survival. I reprint them here --not as a helpful survival guide because mere mortals could never apply these techniques successfully-- but more as a tale of inspiration like that I Shouldn't Be Alive show on the Discovery Channel. So on Wednesday --about four days before Hurricane Irene hit -- I began hearing warnings. Get Batteries for Flashlights It was the day before the hurricane, and I was still acting as cool as Soren Bowie at a racial purity contest. I was greeted by a PA announcement that the store was out of generators. "Oh, we haven't had any batteries for days ...." OK.

The 5 Most Widely Believed WWII Facts (That Are Bullshit) Hitler Was an Evil Genius Claimed By: The [Alternate] History Channel , Nazi admirers, The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich. Hitler, in addition to being the go-to example in every bad debate, has sort of become history's supervillain. Hitler was the Lex Luthor to the non-Aryan Superman. Why it's Bullshit: Since there are no cheap shots when it comes to Hitler, let's get this out of the way: Do you have any idea how hard it is to get rejected by an art school? Yet Hitler failed his entrance exam. His Munich Beer Putsch was basically one enormous "let's get arrested!" As a politician, he was a famous speaker despite his silly accent; had trouble breaking 40 percent in the polls despite "thinning" (assassinating) opposition. His contributions as a military tactician included allying Germany with a living cartoon character. Benito Mussolini: This dude existed. Hitler simply gets too much credit for the decisions made by people around him. FDR Knew About Pearl Harbor Ahead of Time

5 Ways Your Brain Is Messing With Your Head We accept on a regular basis the premise that our minds are being screwed with. Advertisers, politicians, magicians; we accept that they know the tricks to pull the wool over our eyes. But as it turns out, the ways in which your head is being truly and royally messed with the most, are coming from inside. Please be advised that your brain does not want you reading the following list, and may kill you to protect its secrets. #5. What is it? It's your inability to notice changes that happen right in front of you, even if they're hugely obvious... as long as you don't see the actual change take place. Um, What? Consider Alfonso Ribeiro. Now, if suddenly that image of Carlton blinked and changed to a different image, you'd notice it. In fact, if the entire text of this article--and the whole color and layout of this website--changed while you were gone, you probably wouldn't notice. A scientist named George McConkie started working on this in the 70s. Why Does the Brain Lie About it? #4. #3.

The 6 Most Bizarre Global Warming Side Effects All right, it appears the world has moved past the "is global warming happening" stage and has now moved onto, "how screwed are we?" But what is interesting is just how wide-ranging the effects will be, far beyond the normal "it will get really hot" and "the hippies will be really smug" we all have been expecting. Here are some of the effects you probably never saw coming... For most of us, the best part of our day is spending time with loved ones. For the rest, it's drowning reality in a pool of sweet, brain-clouding liquors. Once again, Billy Carter proves to be ahead of his time. The problem for beer is malting barley. For those who like to get a fancier drunk on, the wine industry also faces some changes thanks to global warming, as many wines are region specific and as the climate changes, so too do the way grapes grow and ripen. A desperate world will have to turn to the Red Sox for quality wine. If you were hoping there was an upside to global warming then you're in for a treat.

6 Global Warming Side Effects That Are Sort Of Awesome The way things are going, we can expect global warming to wipe out humanity in the next few years. Or never, it's not completely clear. So why dwell on negatives like drowning deaths and widespread panic? There's a bright side of our impending doom to look forward to and plenty of good things catastrophic climate change may bring to you (and the environment). Like... It Could Delay a Far Worse Ice Age In general, humans do better in extreme heat than extreme cold--a lot more of us live around the warm equator than the frigid poles. A new Ice Age isn't the stuff of science fiction, either. Maybe it will at least stop this one. On the Other Hand... Of course, some might call this a draw as we may be trading an Ice Age for living on an overheated desert planet where everyone has to wear suits that make us drink our recycled pee and take sandworms to commute to work in the Spice mines where our boss is Sting in a Diaper. Warmer Winters Means Fewer Deaths No exceptions. We May Grow More Food

5 Things That Are Way Easier Than They Look in Movies When we debunk movie myths, it's usually bad news for lazy people. We've found that movies often undersell the difficulty of activities like saving lives, fighting crime, seducing women and even shooting people. And I've verified through independent research that doing all four at once is not a realistic career goal. The dream will never die. Fortunately, it turns out there are some fairly idiot-proof tasks that movies pretend are difficult. #5. Where You've Seen It:Ocean's 12, The Thomas Crown Affair, Entrapment The Myth: In the world of heist films, art thieves are the Ivy League. The wealthy art thief from Ocean's 12 does gymnastics through the laser beams that protect all works of art. Not only do they outclass bank robbers -- with their regional American accents and bargain basement ski-wear -- not caring about money seems to be a prerequisite for stealing art. More than anything else, the art thief is drawn by the challenge. In Reality: #4. Where You've Seen It:L.A. #3.

8 Things You Won't Believe Can Be Hacked If movies are to be believed, hackers are mostly kept busy fighting the man with CGI animations of smiley faces, or else dwelling in the darkest corners of their mothers' basements and doing purely nerdy stuff that never affects the real world. But neither assumption is true: Hacking does not look like a rad skateboarder busting a kickflip over an onyx tower, and hackers do gain access to things that can affect your daily life ... and sometimes, even end it. #8. Explode Your Genitals We think we have a pretty good idea of what hackers are capable of: stealing your personal information, crashing your computer, Rollerblading like a sonofabitch and making out with Angelina Jolie (back when she was hot, before her alien DNA kicked in and she started looking like a hawk-monster). But today's hackers have finally crossed a line, and must be terminated with extreme prejudice."The good news is that your leg is going to be fine ..." "Is it enough to Sharpie 'Avira' onto them?" #7. #6.

5 Major Cities That Are Going to Be Destroyed If you turn on the news and hear that some city is being devastated by its fourth flood in 20 years, or that a village at the foot of some volcano has just been buried under lava, there is a 100 percent chance that someone in the room will ask, Why don't those people just move? It's a good question, and the answer gives us a nice insight into mankind's absolute refusal to back down from nature, even if it means certain destruction. Brave? #5. Back in 2001, before 9/11 or Hurricane Katrina, the Federal Emergency Management Agency announced a short list of the three most likely disasters to hit America over the coming years. Getty"FEMA: Using our powers for good, and occasionally the lottery." Withholding speculation as to whether FEMA are in fact wizards, that's a pretty "oh shit" moment right there if you live in San Francisco. And let's be clear, this isn't some sensationalist scare tactic -- at some point, an earthquake is going to devastate the city. Holy Shit! #4. Wikipedia #3. Getty