22 Facts People Were Surprised to Learn Not Everyone Knew

We spend a lot of time in our own heads – after all, we hang out with ourselves more than we ever do anyone else. That means we (hopefully) spend time musing on stuff that interests us, but it can also mean our perception of what other people know and like can be skewed.

Below are 22 cool facts that people (wrongly) assumed were common knowledge before someone informed them otherwise.

22. Just not many.

There’s actually male Calico cats. Of course they have a different variation of chromosomes (XXY instead of XY in most cases) but they do exist!

I had one as a kid and everyone told me it was impossible haha

21. Not just for Santa.

It’s genuinely shocking the number of people who don’t realize reindeer are real animals.

[EDIT] Another fact related to this thread is that caribou and reindeer aren’t the same even though they’re the same species. Some countries distinguish them by name and some don’t, which is where the confusion comes from.

20. Who…who has a mouse wheel?

You zoom in and out by holding control and scrolling your mouse wheel. It is so frustrating watching someone fumble for the zoom controls. But I don’t want to be a d%ck and call out the solution.

Just use your mouse wheel!

19. Simple and elegant.

In the US, odd-number highways are north/south, even-numbered highways are east/west.

Be aware that there are two systems in play for numbering exits, and they depend on state choice. If you’re traveling, be sure to know what you’re going to see.

Sometimes exit numbers are “Exit 15 is the next exit after 14” and other times it’s “Exit 15 is 15 miles from where they highway started.”

18. There are all kinds of tricks.

The order of the colors of the rainbow.

I was face painting and a girl was visibly upset, trying to explain to the other face painter that the rainbow on her face wasn’t ordered correctly.

Apparently, neither he nor the wife of the person running the gig knew that rainbows have order.

It was a weird day, to say the least.

They were both full grown adults.

17. Dude.

If you press the windows key and the period key at the same time, it pulls up a whole list of emojis.

16. Pass it on.

The fact that gum, when swallowed, doesn’t stay in your system for 7 years or whatever you’ve been told as a child. It just immediately passes through your system.

I have had this conversation too many times with people whenever I swallow my gum because there isn’t a trash can around.

15. If you’re ever stranded on a tropical island. With a straw.

You know the three dots on a coconut? One of them is “fake” and you can stab it with a steak knife and easily carve out a hole big enough to get a straw through.

Oh and just in case, you don’t need to use a lot of force to check, the knife should sink into the fake dot extremely easily and bounce off the real ones. Do not go all in on stabbing a coconut.

14. Thank goodness.

Mayonnaise is not dairy! I’m lactose intolerant and anytime I ask if a food has dairy in it a surprising number of people think mayonnaise is a dairy product.

13. They literally teach us nothing.

So much legal stuff that I feel people should have learned in high school:

when you are the victim of a crime, you don’t need a lawyer and you aren’t in charge of prosecuting the defendant. Criminal cases are always the government versus the defendant, so the government is represented by the office of the district/commonwealth/US attorney

pleading Not Guilty is how you get a trial. I can’t believe how many people say omg he is such a liar for pleading not guilty when everyone knows he did it. Well pleading not guilty does not mean he didn’t do it. It means he is making the state prove their case, which he is constitutionally able to do

“just get a restraining order”. No, you can’t just get one. There is a standard to meet, it varies by jurisdiction, but generally your life/safety has to be threatened. So no, you can’t get a restraining order against that company that called you 3 times

12. You don’t say.

Cyclists shave their legs to make massages more comfortable and for hygiene purposes in case of an accident. It has nothing to do with aerodynamics.

11. A wild time, indeed.

Ruby red grapefruit. Is the result of atomic gardening.

The 50’s were a wild time with ideas of how to “harness the atom”.


10. You can ignore the numbers.

Once with a bunch of friends I was the only one to know that ingredients on food labels are written in order of quantity in the food item.

9. For my lazy peeps.

That “K” pauses YouTube videos. Spacebar does it but it also does the last thing you clicked.

More than that, L skips ten seconds and J goes back ten seconds. It’s from editing softwares. Professional editors use JKL often to move around the edit. Slightly differently than YouTube though. K is still pause, J is rewind, L is play/fast forward.

If you hit multiple times it goes faster. If you hit J or L while holding down K it will move one frame at a time. Quicktime uses JKL too, but it uses it like editing softwares instead of the way YouTube does.

8. They’re not the same.

Penguins only living in the South Pole while Polar bears live in the North Pole. Some people think that polar bears and penguins both interact with one another.

7. But do you want to?

You can eat the skin of a kiwi.

6. Bless.

You can get sharpie off smooth surfaces with expo marker

5. Shortcuts are life.

I just yesterday had a close friend of mine, mind you, he’s very knowledgeable of computers, be starstruck when i mentioned Middle Mouse Button could be used on Chrome to open stuff in new tabs or close said tabs.

He mostly uses keyboard shortcuts so he just used CTRL+LMB to do the same, which i had no knowledge was a thing.

4. The face I am making right now.

One fish, two fish if the same species.
One fish, two fishes if not.

I know, It goes against everything you’ve ever been taught.

3. I didn’t know this until I was an adult.

Narwhals are real creatures. Had conversation with a couple of grown ass adults that thought they were mythical whale unicorns… Had to show them multiple pictures, at that point I could not look at them without laughing.

2. So many weird English things.

That it is “should have” instead of “should of”.

I obviously don’t think I’m the only one who knows that but I’m baffled by how often I read that mistake.

1. Apostrophes are hard.

Not every word that ends in an ‘S’ necessitates an apostrophe.

I’m not telling how many of these are new to me, but I’m happy to know them all now.

What’s a fact you think more people should know? Share it with us in the comments!