May 23, 2016

EP. 124 — Famous Sayings You Should Stop Listening To

If you know that the early bird gets the worm, I’m sure you also know to stop and smell the roses, that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, and variety is the spice of life. Or maybe not, because those are all completely contradictory and made up by who, exactly? Some sort of internal rhyme shaman or sarcastic centuries-old grandmother?

Where the hell did we get all these idioms from? A stitch in time saves nine? Turns out we’ve been saying that one wrong, there should be a comma in there. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket? Well, I only have two hands, how many baskets should I be carrying? 

These situational little quips make us feel better in very specific moments, but the amount of them that seem to be direct opposites lead us to believe maybe none of them are worthwhile. On this week’s episode, Jack O’Brien is joined by Michael Swaim to pour through the dozens of axioms that, when you think about them for a little bit, don’t really give the best advice. Later they open up Poor Richard’s Almanack, the 18th century source for many of these proverbs, and go through some of the sayings that didn’t quite make it to the 21st century.


Quotes from ‘Poor Richard’s Almanack’:

Source Amnesia:

Fake Kurt Vonnegut Speech:

Richard Dawkins’ ‘The Selfish Gene’:

Nicolo Machiavelli’s ‘The Prince’:

5 Famous Wise Sayings That Are Secretly Dumb:

5 Bits of ‘Common Knowledge’ Science Has Disproved:

6 Famous Movie Wisemen Who Were Totally Full of Shit:

5 Staples of Wisdom That Need To Be Retired:

7 Quotes By Famous Geniuses (That Everyone Gets Wrong):

This episode is sponsored by Harry’s and Adam and Eve.

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