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Monsieur Caution (2)

Having found the Minotaur, he killed him by smiting him with his fists

"In 1972 I created the concept of Mazes & Minotaurs, the world's first roleplaying game. Inspired by my fanatical interest in ancient Greek and Macedonian wargaming, coupled with a love of Greek myth and the 1963 movie, Jason and the Argonauts, it took the gaming world by storm." -- Paul Elliott. [more inside]
posted by Monsieur Caution on Jul 16, 2014 - 13 comments

A quick overview of Saint Patrick and the druids and reptiles of Ireland

It's pretty widely known that there have never been snakes in Ireland, so who did Saint Patrick chase out? The case has been made that the story of Saint Patrick chasing out druids (snake-tattooed pagans) is also a myth (and Patrick wasn't even Irish). But that doesn't mean there are no reptiles in Ireland. The only native land-based reptile is the viviparous lizard, though there are other reptiles that are semi-inhabitants of Ireland. And this brings us to the the amateur survey of Ireland's lizards, newts, frogs and slow worms, one of a number of such surveys hosted by Biology.ie, "Ireland's premier Biodiversity Awareness portal."
posted by filthy light thief on Mar 17, 2014 - 32 comments

The great Medieval water myth

"The idea that Medieval people drank beer or wine to avoid drinking bad water is so established that even some very serious scholars see no reason to document or defend it; they simply repeat it as a settled truth. In fact, if no one ever documents the idea, it is for a very simple reason: it's not true."
posted by jedicus on Feb 27, 2014 - 84 comments

Setting the record straight on the flu vaccine

Setting the record straight: Debunking ALL the flu vaccine myths [via]
posted by brundlefly on Oct 30, 2013 - 79 comments

The Bob Ross of advanced knife fighting

Paul Vunak doesn't want you to be irresponsible while fighting with knives. Here he is, busting common knife fighting myths in his dulcet tones. Bonus: best video transition in history around the 4:39 mark.
posted by lattiboy on Aug 27, 2013 - 103 comments

Top Myths of Renaissance Martial Arts

The diverse range of misconceptions and erroneous beliefs within historical fencing studies today is considerable. But there are perhaps some myths that are more common, and more pervasive, than others. This webpage presents an ongoing project that will continually try in an informal and condensed manner to help address some of these mistaken beliefs.
posted by cthuljew on Jul 25, 2013 - 39 comments

Still far from that digital democracy any utopian could hope for.

7 (well, technically 6) myths of the digital divide.
posted by iamkimiam on Apr 26, 2013 - 8 comments

Saturday Morning Hinduism

Introductions to major figures: Lord Shiva (8:55), Lord Ganesha (10:41), Lord Hanuman (11:25), and Lord Krishna (12:38). But it really doesn't end there. [more inside]
posted by Monsieur Caution on Apr 20, 2013 - 17 comments

Jousting Fanfic

Jeff Wik irreverently recaps Le Morte Da Arthur
posted by Charlemagne In Sweatpants on Jan 13, 2013 - 13 comments

Alaska ISN'T an island?!

Que Sera Sera posts about "Weird incorrect facts from childhood that other people have kept in their heads without reconsidering until the moment it hits them." Lots of people are learning new things in the comments. Via defectiveyeti.com
posted by artychoke on Jan 12, 2013 - 625 comments

"The vaginal corona is a permanent part of a woman's body throughout her life. It doesn't disappear after she first has sexual intercourse, and most women don't bleed the first time."

My Corona: The Anatomy Formerly Known As The Hymen & The Myths That Surround It is Scarleteen's reprint of a booklet (PDF) produced by the Swedish Association for Sexuality Education (Time for more accurate terminology: Hymen renamed "vaginal corona"). More mythbusting: You can't pop your cherry: Hymen 101 (NSFW-ish video, less than 4 min.); SBTB's Where is the hymen? and Virginity clichés in romance; and 20 Questions About Virginity: Scarleteen interviews Hanne Blank.
posted by flex on Oct 11, 2012 - 41 comments

"Characters with Unusual Pets and their Unusual Circumstances"

"The Secret Pet Society" is an fantastical series of paintings with descriptions by artist Travis Louie which features Victorian-era styled people posing alongside their mythical creatures. [more inside]
posted by quin on Apr 24, 2012 - 11 comments

No, I DON'T want a bedtime story tonight

Smother Goose, an invaluable resource for anyone who was ever traumatized by a childhood "classic", covers everything from popular kids' books to bizarre movies, even that odd little song you had memorized as a kid. [more inside]
posted by misha on Jan 28, 2012 - 25 comments

Freeze your beans and save your wooden cutting board

In two parts, Lifehacker takes on popular food myths with some of the latest research: Wood cutting boards are no less safe than plastic; frozen coffee beans can taste great; the evidence of the health effects of artificial sweeteners remains somewhat unsettled; and alcohol doesn't really burn away in cooking.
posted by blahblahblah on Nov 4, 2011 - 69 comments

I'll take the Double Dip to go

There may be $2 trillion sitting on the balance sheets of American corporations globally, but firms show no signs of wanting to spend it in order to hire workers at home, however much Washington might hope they will.

Time magazine outlines five common destructive myths about how to stimulate U.S. Growth.
posted by AndrewKemendo on Jul 16, 2011 - 42 comments

It tastes like burning!

Sunscreen: Are you really covered? from WebMD. Debunking the most common myths about sunscreen. [more inside]
posted by blue_beetle on Jul 12, 2011 - 80 comments

Zeus does not understand contraception

so the moral of the story is
always wear a condom
because otherwise
you are going to have to resort to an impromptu skull c-section
with a shovel

Myths Retold. [more inside]
posted by KathrynT on Mar 2, 2011 - 50 comments

It's what would happened if Mythbusters aired on G4 instead of Discovery.

Pop-Fiction sets out to test some of the rarest video game urban legends.
posted by aftermarketradio on Jul 1, 2010 - 36 comments

Art Myths

Six Myths of the Art Market [more inside]
posted by Mitheral on Mar 27, 2010 - 55 comments

The downside of the online gold rush – riches for some, “slavery” for most

How the myth of Silicon Valley is really like a “gold rush.” Riches for some, “slavery” for many, says Toronto technology commentator Jesse Hirsh, who also takes aim at the ethic of waste built into Web ideology as expressed in Chris Anderson’s Free. (Video of presentation.) [more inside]
posted by joeclark on Aug 6, 2009 - 30 comments

Bringing New Meaning to 'Flogging the Bishop'

Does it cause hairy palms? (No, that is a myth.) Will it make you go blind? (No, though zinc deficiency can be detrimental to one's vision, and semen contains a small amount of zinc.) Are you going to hell for it? (Maybe, maybe not.) But what if it helps with conception? (well, the men doing it, anyway)
posted by Navelgazer on Jul 9, 2009 - 20 comments

they come out the butt, stupid!

Kinda sutra - a charmingly animated short in which people talk about childhood misconceptions about sex and childbirth. More on childhood sex misconceptions from Dan Savage 1, 2, 3. (pretty tame clip, but possibly NSFW) [more inside]
posted by madamjujujive on Apr 13, 2009 - 55 comments

Offshore windfarms attract killer whales

Chris Goodall, author of Ten Technologies to Save the Planet, talks about the ten big green energy myths.
posted by Artw on Dec 1, 2008 - 42 comments

Quantum Mechanics: Myths and Facts

Quantum Mechanics: Myths and Facts (pdf), a recently-updated paper on the Cornell arXiv peer-review site. By Hrvoje Nikolić of the Rudjer Bošković Institute in Croatia. [more inside]
posted by XMLicious on Feb 25, 2008 - 47 comments

Skulls... why'd it have to be Skulls?

Indiana Jones and... the Kingdom of the Crystal Skulls? Actor Shia LaBeouf announced the title of the new Indiana Jones movie at the MTV Video Music Awards. But what was George Lucas' inspiration? Where did these Crystal Skulls come from? These ancient objects have been referenced in many places, including an episode of StarGate SG-1, imaginatively titled "Crystal Skull". There is also a Festival and a not-for-profit Foundation dedicated to researching these artifacts.
posted by crossoverman on Sep 10, 2007 - 67 comments

Myth-busters have the odds against them

Persistence of Myths Could Alter Public Policy Approach. "The conventional response to myths and urban legends is to counter bad information with accurate information. But the new psychological studies (PDFs) show that denials and clarifications, for all their intuitive appeal, can paradoxically contribute to the resiliency of popular myths." [Via Firedoglake, more at MindHacks.]
posted by homunculus on Sep 5, 2007 - 53 comments

Pirate myths...they're drivin' me nuts.

Pirate myths debunked. Slate's Explainer attacks your favorite pirate stereotypes: walking the plank, saying "arrr." Not a myth: pirate republics. Pirates formed egalitarian mini-states based upon utopian values, a prime reason for their brutal suppression by European authorities.
posted by nasreddin on Jun 5, 2007 - 126 comments

Don't get fooled again

What are the greatest hoaxes in rock history? [MP3 links] They Might be Giants' John Flansburg tells John Schaefer what he knows, and Rolling Stone readers weigh in as well. Was it Mama Cass choking on a sandwich? Jack and Meg White as siblings? Paul dead (again)? Keith Richards getting his blood replaced? Or snorting his father's ashes? Oh, wait, that last one was true.
posted by psmealey on Apr 4, 2007 - 59 comments

Drugs screens and poppyseed bagels don't mix.

Top 20 Science Myths. Note: turns out some of these are not myths so much as exagerrations.
posted by Arthur "Two Sheds" Jackson on Sep 29, 2006 - 57 comments

Becoming Mary Poppins

Becoming Mary Poppins - A look at the original author P. L. Travers, Walt Disney, and the differences therein. Via the New Yorker.
posted by loquacious on Sep 2, 2006 - 27 comments

2. "Immigrant" is not synonymous with "Latino" ...

Some facts about Latinos and immigration, and chances are good they haven't been mentioned at all during coverage of the "immigration crisis" . (and take a stroll down memory lane to past GOP platform statements on the issue)
posted by amberglow on Mar 30, 2006 - 110 comments

Eight Myths About Video Games Debunked

Eight Myths About Video Games Debunked - Henry Jenkins (previous discussed here) points out errors in the myths we here about videogames and those who play them. It's nice to hear intelligent commentary that doesn't run along the lines of the usual messages.
posted by Dantien on Dec 13, 2005 - 71 comments

Flood myths

From a New York journalist's description of the days after the flood:
I saw persons take watches from dead men's jackets and brutally tore finger-rings from the hands of women. The ruffians also climbed into the overturned houses and ransacked the rooms, taking whatever they thought valuable.
Sound familiar? This report about the Johnstown Flood was also filled with stories of "minority savegery", drunken Hungarians at the time that eventually turned out to be completely untrue or wildly exaggerated, such as the rescue helicoptor being shot at. also see previous mefi thread on LA looting here
posted by destro on Sep 3, 2005 - 36 comments

Rich get richer, poor get poorer...

Class Mobility within America - The mythology surrounding Horatio Alger is a powerful force within American culture: the idea that anyone can pull oneself up by the bootstraps to become financially successful. Surprising research by statistician Miles Corak shows that Americans have no more income mobility than Europeans — contradicting cultural presumptions of egalitarianism — and even less than Scandinavian countries, despite their heavy taxation. Marketing slowly meets reality in the American Dream...
posted by AlexReynolds on May 15, 2005 - 83 comments

The 'Acting White' Myth.

The 'Acting White' Myth. When smart black kids try hard and do well, they are picked on by their less successful peers for 'acting white.' But it isn't true.
posted by Lisa S on Dec 12, 2004 - 45 comments

They called me ‘Crack Baby’

They called me ‘Crack Baby’ - An issue of the foster care youth magasine Represent (March/April 2004) takes on the media myths and realities of being the child of an addict. [via a&ldaily and PY]
posted by jb on Nov 14, 2004 - 3 comments

The Skeptic's Dictionary

The Skeptic's Dictionary is a wonderful resource for all sentient individuals: 'A Collection of Strange Beliefs, Amusing Deceptions, and Dangerous Delusions (and how to think critically about them)'. It's where I send people when they start telling me nonsense. It is also a jolly good read: try the entry for natural, for example. And some entries, like the entry for IQ and race, verge on the profound. There is a print edition, but the extensive internal and external site linkage makes reading the collection online a particular joy. While The Skeptic's Dictionary has been referred to before on MeFi, the link made the site out to be a cornucopia of Urban legend-style oddities, like Snopes. Which I thought was a shame: not dissing Snopes, but the Skeptic's Dictionary delivers a firm grounding in critical thinking as well. This post is dedicated to all of my relatives who chipped in to buy shark cartilage tablets and several fifty-dollar pamphlets full of testimonials after my father had been diagnosed with terminal cancer, and who probably still think the worse of me for not contributing to their folly.
posted by chrisgregory on Feb 6, 2004 - 28 comments

Apple Myths:

Apple Myths: Over the years, there have been more than a few misconceptions about Macs. Now Apple take's a look at some of the most popular ones.
posted by riffola on Jan 31, 2002 - 64 comments

The day after Thanksgiving is the biggest shopping day of the year in America. False. This and many other popular xmas legends debunked at snopes (also notable: Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer created by the Montgomery Ward store chain).
posted by mathowie on Nov 26, 2001 - 11 comments

Teenage myths about contraception

Teenage myths about contraception "Coke douches work and you can use crisp bags as condoms" and "Putting a watch around your penis before sex means the radioactivity of the dial kills off sperm."
Many more....
posted by nonharmful on Jul 17, 2001 - 31 comments

Eight Sword Myths

Eight Sword Myths by Glenn Pettit is a relaxing unobtrustive and straight-forward read for those who like to collect, brandish, or just stare in awe at c-c-c-cutlery. And who doesn't? This document dispells certain modern misunderstandings but also tips a hat to timeless legend itself.
posted by ZachsMind on Dec 6, 2000 - 2 comments

Four out of 10 people mistakenly believe

Four out of 10 people mistakenly believe it is possible to get HIV by sharing a drinking glass or being coughed or sneezed on by an infected person. The survey, released Thursday, was conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "It's scary that so many people are still so ignorant of what causes HIV-AIDS," said Marty Algaze, a spokesman for the Gay Men's Health Crisis. "Almost 20 years into this epidemic, it's disturbing that people think you could still get it from casual contact."
posted by jhiggy on Dec 1, 2000 - 3 comments

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