We have our own buster of myths Down Under, and his name is Dr Karl Kruszelenicki, aka for obvious reasons, Dr Karl. He's famous for being really clever, writing more than two dozen books, wearing super-loud shirts and being on the radio often. He's got degrees in maths, biomedical engineering, surgery and medicine (according to Wikipedia). He's our go-to-geek.
So I recently read his book, Dis Information and Other Wikked Myths, which is not his most recent. Here he debunks ideas that I thought were truths. Some of them have been life changing for me. For example, did you know that it's ok to have a drink while on antibiotics? Dr Karl explains the birth and growth of this 'dis information', and I have already put this knowledge to use. Who said science doesn't help us in everyday life?
He explains that Cleopatra was not beautiful, Columbus never put foot in America, germs are not spread by aeroplane air conditioners, and Galileo didn't invent the telescope. Dr Karl also sets the record straight on shark cartilage, cats' purring, vitamin C for colds, the great stock market crash of 1929 and lie detectors. He discusses the Roswell 'autopsy' and early puberty in girls (is it really caused by hormones in chicken?).
This book crosses all geographical boundaries, and has a fair bit of American content. It's a great read for anyone with an enquiring mind, or a good gift for a mind you'd like to be a little more enquiring.