From open-eyed sneezing to whatever the hell gleeking is, we count twelve things most humans can’t do! Are you an exception?
12 – Eat a Spoonful of Cinnamon,
- Ground cinnamon may be a tasty baking addition, but it’s impossible to eat on its own for most people. Attempting to do so will likely burn the inside of your throat and send you into a violent coughing fit.
- Cinnamon is actually the raw form of tree bark that has been ground into dust. It’s insoluble in water, so it’s not surprising that humans have such an intensely negative reaction to it.
- There are countless online videos of people trying to conquer the ‘cinnamon challenge’, where a spoonful of the powder is ingested. Those people are all dead now, so unless you’re in the minority of people who can safely swallow it, I wouldn’t try it.
11 – Tongue Tricks,
- Can you split or roll your tongue, perform a reverse T, flip your tongue 180 degrees or make shapes like a spaceship or clover leaf? These strange manipulations of our most malleable organ are a pretty neat party trick. I’m sure Tony Hawk did them before picking up his first skateboard.
- These all require muscle control and tongue dexterity. Some claim that they’re genetic traits, though this is heavily debated. Approximately seventy-five percent of the population can roll their tongues, but genetics isn’t the only factor, as some case studies show children who can manipulate their tongues born from parents who couldn’t.
- Whatever the mysterious origin of these tricks is, they’re quite impressive. Only the hardcore should attempt them, though, as they come with pretty serious risk of tongue cramping.
10 – Wiggling Your Ears,
- Are you in the minority of people who can wiggle their ears? Some can do it, but only in conjunction with raising their eyebrows, which is a good way to make everyone think you’re constipated.
- According to a 2006 ear-wiggling study, the mechanism behind ear movements is surprisingly sophisticated. Unlike most other facial muscles, ear muscles have their own accessory nucleus in the brainstem. This is basically the control area for muscle function. Compared to bats and cats, this nucleus is tiny in humans, which is why most of us find controlling our ears such a challenge.
- But those who weren’t blessed with natural ear-wiggling talents shouldn’t despair! With practice, it’s possible to train yourself to do it. Isolate your ear-wiggling muscles and in no time you’ll become the next ear-wiggling YouTube sensation.
9 – Touching Your Nose with Your Tongue,
- Ever tried touching your nose or chin with your tongue? Many have and it’s a lot harder than you’d think.
- It’s thought that only ten percent of the population can perform this act, which is known as Gorlin sign in the medical world. In some instances it can indicate connective tissue disorder, but if you can do it put it on all your resumés and dating profiles. You are one highly sought-after human being.
- Gene Simmons of KISS had no trouble with this trick, which led to rumours he’d had a cow’s tongue grafted onto his own. In truth, Mother Nature had just endowed him with a super long tongue and he did what anyone would do: leveraged it to become an international rock star.
8 – Fist in Mouth,
- People who can fit their entire fist into their mouths are a rare anomaly. For most, it’s a near impossible feat.
- The majority of the population can only get half or barely a quarter of their fist into their mouths. Seriously, they’ve done studies on this stuff. Successfully fitting your entire fist in your mouth usually requires both a large mouth and small hands. Yep, like a T-Rex.
- Although this trick has a slightly sexual connotation, babies are the ones who attempt it the most – usually when teething or discovering their body parts for the first time.
- If you aren’t confident you can pull this off, it’s best not to try. Getting your fist stuck in your mouth is kind of frowned upon by the staff at your local emergency room. But if many people have told you you’re annoying or that you talk too much then you should probably learn how to do this. Go on. Start practising.
7 – Open-Eyed Sneezing,
- You know that crazy sensation you feel when you’re about to sneeze? It’s like a particle cannon charging in your nose, preparing to obliterate everything in its path, and always seems to come about when you’re somewhere quiet or crowded, like a library or crowded train carriage.
- Have you ever noticed that the overwhelming majority of humans sneeze with their eyes closed? Try it yourself. It’s nearly impossible to launch a spread-fire of mucus with your eyes open.
- One popular schoolyard theory is this is to prevent your eyes from popping out – which actually happened in one astonishing 1882 case. This phenomenon is called eyeball subluxing.
- Most experts believe our eyes clamp shut during a sneeze because of an involuntary reflex sent from the ‘sneeze centre’ of our brains. This may be the body’s way of preventing germs from entering the eye. Thanks, brain! You’re always looking out for us.