Have you ever heard of Cyanoacrylates? I have now, because I googled “superglue” so I could write something smart to pretend I’m knowledgable. Like something about its history, e.g. the fact that it was used to close battle wounds in the Vietnam War. I always thought that that was one of its first main uses, but it turns out that the stuff had actually been discovered in 1942 and been around since the 1950s. It’s magical stuff! Last Christmas, when we visited the emergency room to treat a laceration on the head of one of my kids, they also glued it shut with superglue. That glue surely lives up to its name!
And duct tape … Would aviation even be possible without it? No wonder it’s a common subject in our comic strip! Wanting to sound smart, I also googled it and discovered quite a few things. For example that, on Wikipedia, the first sentence says it’s also known as “duck tape”. Hah! I chuckled to myself, reading that. People are so dumb! Does anybody older than six actually make that mistake? But as I read on, it seems that the name doesn’t simply come from a hearing mistake, but that the original duct tape used a “duck cloth” backing. Duck cloth is finely woven cotton fabric and derives its name from the Dutch word “doek” (linen canvas). The word “duck tape” predates “duct tape” by over 60 years.
Well, I’ll never make fun of anyone saying “duck tape” ever again! It’s always humbling to see the Dunning-Kruger effect in action in oneself.
And I learned even more: I always used “gaffer tape” and “duct tape” interchangeably. Apparently they’re two different things! Gaffer tape is designed to be removable without leaving any stains and used mainly for temporary taping down cables on stages etc.
I guess I better stop learning now before my head explodes …