Thursday, October 30, 2008

Why I Love Wikipedia

As a young child, a favorite pastime was paging through our family's sets of encyclopedias, reading about whatever article caught my interest. I am confident this early exposure to the broadest possible spectrum of random knowledge is what made me such a voracious addict of, well, random knowledge. So naturally I love Wikipedia, because it's so easy to stumble across something you've never heard of. Ten minutes ago, I never knew there existed such a vegetable as the mangelwurzel. Say it with me, "mangelwurzel". Isn't it glorious?

4 comments:

elephantschild said...

Sometimes Wikipedia leaves you hanging, though. Take this enigmatic example,

The mangelwurzel has a history in England of being used for...the brewing of a potent alcoholic beverage.

What was it called, I wonder? And apparently you can carve mangelwurzel(en?) as you would pumpkins.

Evan said...

That's actually how I found it, crosslinked from the jack'o'lantern entry. Apparently Europeans have been carving vegetables into lanterns forever. Wierd. Eerie.

Mom said...

Your post brought back memories of a little 5 year old boy coming home from school, running to the bookshelf, grabbing an encyclopedia then reading it while laying on his stomach on the couch. Afterwards the other kids would groan while you told us all the facts that you learned "reading" the encyclopedia. Guess I am not sure just when you actually learned to read. Thanks for the memory!

Jungle Mom said...

My son would read our World Book encyclopedias by flash light every night. He is till full of useless trivia and prone to share with us all kinds of things he learned from his readings.