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This NPR article discusses some of the things people used to believe as kids. Such as people thinking sea horses were make-believe, unicorns were real, or "when my dad had the graveyard shift he literally had to work in a graveyard."
We have these signs in California, prohibiting large vehicles from traveling down certain streets:
When I was a kid, I thought this meant the streets were only a few inches thick, and if a heavy truck drove on them, they would crumble.
Also until pretty recently, I thought Warren Buffett got his start by investing the royalties from his song "Margaritaville."
So what silly things did you once believe?
Growing up, my dad always tell me that I'm truly his daughter because we had the first three letters of our name in common. He would spell his name B-r-i-a-n on tests that needed to get signed, permission slips, even checks!
It was only when I found his birth certificate in an old baby book of his that I discovered his name was legally spelled B-r-y-a-n. To this day, I'm still not quite sure why he told me otherwise!
That reminds me: growing up, my dad told us that we owned Vandenberg Air Force base because he inherited it from his dad. And I bragged about this to all my friends at school.
(Note: my dad is Dutch, and his father never even lived in America, so this makes even less sense.)
I just remembered one, on my drive to my folks place for thanksgiving. I thought all of the corn grown was for people to eat, and that it was just so sad that something caused the farmers to not be able to harvest it all before it went bad.
Now I know that corn is grown for many things, and it's left to dry out on purpose. :-)
Wait, it's... not... just for people to eat?
Nope! It's grown for animal feed and biofuel production. When I was a kid it was mainly for animal feed, but biofuel is now nearing 50%.