I have read lots of books in my time. My love of reading began at a pretty young age, watching my mom read her books and fascinated at how quickly she could read. I mean, the woman used to be able to read a couple books a day while she was a stay at home mom. She can still read pretty darn fast and I bet there isn't a book out there she hasn't read. Okay, well there ARE books she hasn't read because they aren't her cup of tea, but not everyone can like every single book. But one other thing I learned from my mom, is don't waste your time on a book that doesn't grab your attention. There were times I would see her get a book, then close it to move on to the next one.
So what did I learn from books? Lots! Not sure if I will ever use most of this information, mind you... I have a useless trivia kind of brain, but I still retained information.
I learned, from reading the Little House on the Prairie books by Laura Ingalls Wilder, how to make maple candy in the snow. Doubtful I will ever do that... But I also learned about head cheese, how to make butter and things like that. I remember when I was in elementary school in the midwest, we got to go to school in a one room schoolhouse for the day. Later that week, we churned butter. I clearly remember those events because I felt like I was living in the books! I read those books til the covers fell off. I never bought the set again for some reason, perhaps now is a good time to do so.
The most recent thing I learned was from the Dark Monk book by Oliver Potzsche. Did you know that a hangman, way back when, could not marry in a church, his children could not be baptized and he could not be buried in a cemetery, in consecrated ground? The hangman's daughter could only marry another hangman's son. How messed up was that? They were hired to do the dirty work of the village or town but could not be absolved of their sins.
As a fan of pirates, I learned lots of nautical terms from reading a variety of books. Keelhauling. Interesting to say the very least. Keelhauling is the act of tying a man's hands and feet, hooking him up to another rope that proceeds to pull him under the water, running him from one side of the boat to the other across the barnacles and such... That's something pirates only want to do to someone they really hate. I don't exactly care for that sort of thing, but being a fan of something means I learn the good and the bad about it all. You can't be a fan of something and pick and choose what you like.
I have people ask me how I know so much stuff and I wish I could say I learned it in school, but I didn't. I could go on and on about all the little things I have learned from reading over the years, but it all comes out in time. Why give you the whole freakin' cow at once? I am going to make you keep coming back for more. That's right, you know you love it.
So what unique things have you learned from reading books?