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I had a friend who used to read palms.  It wasn't the stereotypical life line-love line thing.  She was from Singapore and had been taught by here grandmother to look for Chinese characters in the various wrinkles in my palm.  Her fortunes tended to deal with the same subjects because that's what everyone wanted, but they were very specific.  Were they correct? Who knows.

"Mom" is one of the few words that is a cognate over most classes of languages, 'dad' being another one. Why is that? Human arrogance. When babies begin to babble, they start making sounds. "Mamamamama" is one of the first because it's basically what happens when you say "aaaaaaaaah" and start closing and opening your mouth. We naturally assume that they are talking about their mother.

Of course, at the age when they start saying this, they're too young to have that sort of recognition. They're just making a sound.

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Was it a kiss, or were you trying to get food off my tonsils?

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The working definition we used in several social science classes for fact was "a statement that is widely accepted as true."

A couple things with this:

1) Widely accepted as true does not mean true. Thus the evolution of facts over time.

2) The perception of what is widely accepted as true depends on who you ask and who you talk to. This, I think, is fundamental to why conflicting "facts" are brought up in debates, especially political debates. For example, in the US, the far right talks to a very very small group of people with a very...

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