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This is a question What nonsense did you believe in as a kid?

Ever thought that you could get flushed down the loo? That girls wee out their bottoms? Or that bumming means two men rubbing their bums together? Tell us about your childhood misconceptions. Thanks to Joefish for the suggestion.

(, Wed 18 Jan 2012, 15:21)
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Until a couple of weeks ago
I believed that the first line of Stevie Wonder's 'I was made to love her' was, "I was born an aardvark, had a childhood sweetheart..." I was singing it to myself the other week, when it dawned on me that this couldn't possibly be the correct lyrics.
(, Thu 26 Jan 2012, 2:35, 1 reply)
My ethical and philosophical musings on the nature of war
I used to think a war was a competition where a number of men would try to compete to kill each other and whoever managed to kill everyone else but remain alive himself at the end would be the winner and get a trophy. I was amazed that anyone would want to do this and thought it was something I'd never want to do myself when I grew up. Though I had to concede that on the upside you did get a trophy if you won.

Oh yeah, and I also though that Zest soap had the ability to resurrect the dead. Though perhaps i didn't give enough thought to how a dead person was supposed to wash themselves with it.
(, Thu 26 Jan 2012, 1:48, 2 replies)
What are traffic signals but cenotaphs?
A grade school [USA 1952]classmate said that she would see visit me on Saturday. I waited and waited in my front yard. She never showed up. At school, I learned that she died, hit by a car, in her attempt to cross a busy street between my house and hers. I was six years old, so of course I knew better than to reveal a connection.

By the next academic year, the city installed a traffic control device to give pedestrians a chance to cross.

I concluded that death was necessary for the installation of a traffic signal. The business area had probably seen a bloodbath in its time.

Of course, I know better now, but, having made the macabre connection, I still think about her death at stop lights and when asked about childhood misconceptions. I'm not worth dying for.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 17:13, 11 replies)
I used to think dogs were baby giraffes.

(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 17:07, Reply)
For a long time I believed
That the girl next door used her rake to hit the large penis of my friend Billy. So I never spoke to her.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 16:17, 7 replies)
Have we had.....
Making cordial too strong giving you worms? I did not find out this was a lie til I was overheard saying it to my then 3 year old son when he made a drink. 3 years ago. I'm 31.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 16:10, Reply)
that my dad was Bruce Lee

(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 15:34, 6 replies)
Last one I think.
I must have been about 9 and I used to share a bedroom with my brother who was 10 years my senior. One evening, as he was getting ready to go out, something fell out of his pocket.
"What's that?" I asked, pointing at the floor. He bent down, picked it up and briefly showed me before pocketing it again.
"You put it on your willy when you have sex."
"oh" said I. I didn't really know what sex was except that men and women did it in bed with no clothes on. It was a condom, the sort that comes in the elongated foil rather than a square packet. I then had the image of what this would look like if you took it out of the packet - a long thin rubbery thing. How did that go on a willy I thought, and decided that you laid it along the length.

Some time later, I was walking out of school and a friend offered me a wine gum, one of the long ones.
"That looks like one of those things that you put on your willy when you have sex". He chortled, "Really?". By this time, I had learnt that you had to put your willy into a woman's fanny for sex.
"We then discussed how this would work, what purpose it served, and most importantly how would you get it to stay on. In the end, we concluded that I'd got it wrong, but couldn't come up with a better explanation.
I forgot all about the idea until during the AIDS scare when Mike Smith was on telly showing the nation how to put a condom on to a plastic willy.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 14:34, 3 replies)
Before the age of 7 or so, because none of the women I encountered
seemed to have ventured into the exciting world of Playtex Lift & Separate bras, I could not picture what the bit of the chest between their breasts looked like because it was always hidden where they are pushed together.
The only thing I could imagine was not just a continuity of flesh, but two patches where the skin was missing to reveal what looked necrotic crossed with compressed dog food.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 14:20, 6 replies)
As I lived in East Hull, I never had cause to visit the west of the city and thus had never seen a level crossing close up.
I figured that if the road crosses the tracks, then the tracks must stop at one side and then continue on the other. So how did the trains get across the road? I reasoned that they must leave the track, free-wheel across the tarmac and land back on the tracks at the far side.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 14:15, 7 replies)
When I was very young
I thought the cleft between my buttocks was actually the bumhole and was therefore more like a slit than a hole. So assumed that when I went big toilet, it came out in some sort of flying-saucer shape.
I was so confident of this, that it never occurred to me to bother checking.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 14:12, 3 replies)
For context: I grew up in South Africa so I believed the following when I was young.
- all French people carried a baguette on their person at all times.
- All English people drank tea, were well behaved and spoke with impeccably clear accents.
- Germans had no sense of humour and all their women had hairy armpits
- The entire population of Western Europe, with the exception of the British, had an aversion to showering and were consequently permanently smelly. Especially so in the summer. My British Grandma told me that and I believed her for many years.
- Chinese people were actually yellow
- Americans all lived in massive houses and drove huge cars.
- Mexicans just sit next Cacti all day and drink tequila
- Australia had a fly infestation problem hence the reason they all wear hats with corks dangling from string.
- If a black person and white person had a baby it would be an Albino. Every single time.
- All they eat in Italy is pizza and pasta.
- Sweden consist purely of blond people.
- Black people only spoke African languages. I almost died of shock when I met a French speaking black man for the first time.
- All the worst baddies in the world came from Russia.
- World War 2 was fought with only Americans, British, Italian and German troops.
- Gangsters only came Italy.
- Sportsman were to be looked up to and would always set an example for us youngsters.
- God should be feared. Later I realised it makes more sense to fear people who believed in God.
- White people were inherently more intelligent than black people.
- If you went to jail you'd come out with a bumhole the size of a watermelon.
- Taking out the rubbish for mummy once a week constituted slavery.
- Going to school was a waste of time.
- Eastern Europe was a colossal wasteland with no culture. I was surprised to discover many years later that it was in fact older than South Africa with a much richer heritage.
- Babies were delivered by storks in a towel hanging from their beak.
- The Vietnam war was won by the Americans.

There is probably a million more of these, but I have to work now....
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 13:48, 11 replies)
Too much TV
My Mum used to watch a popular farm based soap opera where all the characters answered the phone by abruptly stating the name of their farm to the incoming caller.

It took quite some time to convince my sister that the words "Emmerdale Farm" weren't interchangeable with the word 'hello' in everyday conversation.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 13:43, 4 replies)
I used to think that Alien and Aliens were the same film. With a logic based on how some people say Tescos instead of Tesco.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 13:35, 31 replies)
I see now that I was very wrong
I used to think that Liverpool, Liverpool FC were, in fact, by far the greatest team the world had ever seen.

To be fair, when i was a kid, they did win everything they turned their hands to...

Though I still hate Nottingham Forest, Spurs and Everton too (they're shit!). I hate Man United, but Liverpool, I love you...
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 13:29, 10 replies)

(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 13:25, Reply)
are mice just gay rats?
that is all.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 13:18, 5 replies)
My favourite joke as a child was
What's red and invisible?

No tomatoes.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 13:12, 5 replies)
at school
a friend of mine was telling me how he'd bought a YSL jacket on the weekend. I kept my mouth shut, pretending I knew what he was talking about. But for a long, long time after that I struggled to understand the concept of a 'wire cell' jacket. A coat made out of wire, arranged in a honeycomb cell style formation? That's not going to keep you warm.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 13:09, Reply)
The Angry Farmer
Behind our house was a 6 foot fence. In the fence was a gate.

I believed for years that I shouldn't go through there as it backed onto a field and the angry farmer would be angry.

It actually opened onto a footpath which was a convenient short cut down to the river.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 12:49, 2 replies)
When I was very young
I remember thinking ‘Thatcher won’t take our school milk off us, that’s a horrible thing to do’.

Shows what I know.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 12:31, 18 replies)
The literal meaning of the phrase "have your cake and eat it"
Was explained to me by my 12 year old sister, when I was 23.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 11:42, 12 replies)
The Killer Lightshade of Death
When I was a mere nipper I some how convinced myself that my lightshade on my bedroom celing was trying to kill me by tickling me before I go to sleep at night, I still believe this now. I'm 25

100% true
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 10:55, 2 replies)
I used to think that houses were baby castles.

(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 10:52, Reply)
Le Misanthrope reminds me.
Didn't 'Boudica' used to be pronounced 'Bow-duh-see-ah'?

and 'Nike' used to rhyme with 'Bike' and not 'pikey'?

I also remember the time when Uranus was pronounced like 'Your anus'. Used to make me giggle whenever we covered astronomy in science lessons. I miss those days
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 9:07, 48 replies)
When I was little
I believed it was fine to drink water from the tap!

Mind you, you could only buy bottled water in a restaurant in those days. I'm sure it was the late 1980s / early 1990s when the Perrier ads started appearing: "Eau n'eau!" etc. which started this whole industry.

I despair sometimes.

And when I say 'sometimes' I mean, when I'm awake.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 8:13, 10 replies)
Another word for cocksucker...
When I was 12, I overheard my sister saying the word "wanker". When I asked her what it meant, she told me that it meant someone who sucks cock. I saw no reason to doubt her, as it seemed to make perfect sense at the time.

Years later however, when I was 15. I went on to a chat site and came across some rooms that I found both weird and disgusting.

These chat rooms had some really raunchy names that would describe how there were teenage boys that were horny and they were "wanking" to whatever female pop star they were in to at the time.

Depending on how these chat room names were worded, these boys were either sucking somebody else's cock, or they were somehow successfully sucking their own, all whilst thinking of either Lisa Scott Lee from Steps or Britney Spears.

A bit of a strange way for a teenager to achieve sexual bliss on a regular basis. I would've just done that thing where I grab my cock and shake it for a bit, whatever that's called.
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 5:54, Reply)
Che Grimsdale's post below reminded me
I had the same problem when I was a child with the Llama joke. It sort of goes....

Beware, the Llama spits.

He was, and it did.

Took me until my late 30s to 'get it'.

(when that happens though, you can almost feel the lightbulb going off over your head!)
*edit. to keep in with the QOTW, I thought men and women, you know, 'did it' standing up. Well, wasn't too far wrong...
(, Wed 25 Jan 2012, 1:14, 8 replies)

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