Hi, this is Cracked Senior Editor David Wong, and I want you to guess which of the following scientific facts is NOT true:
A. There is an insectlike parasite in nature that crawls into another creature's mouth, eats its tongue, then replaces the tongue with its own body, so that the host creature continues to live and eat, never realizing the parasite is there.
B. A different microscopic parasite is responsible for nearly half of all human deaths since the Stone Age.
C. There is a brain parasite that lives in mammals and alters their behavior. Up to 3 billion humans carry this parasite.
D. When musicians play an instrument and miss a beat (because a finger slips, or they're a half-second slow, etc.), there is a secret pattern to their misses, as if all humans are subconsciously playing a hidden song with their "mistakes."
E. A rugby player in England broke his neck during practice and suffered a stroke as a result. When he woke up in the hospital, he was suddenly gay.
The answer, of course, is that all of these facts are true, and speak to an issue that I write about in my powerful and important new book, This Book Is Full of Spiders, Seriously Dude, Don't Touch It:
That was not the actual novel, that was just a trailer for it on YouTube. Yes, books have trailers now. The actual book is in text form, but the above video is an example of what you'll be imagining in your head when you read it.
The book is about the spiderlike creatures that crawl into your mouth at night, eat your tongue and subtly influence your brain against your will, and the scrappy group of small town friends who completely fail to stop them. You can buy it here. The book, not the creatures. They're free.
This is of course a work of fiction. In real life there is probably no more than a 50 percent chance that a spider has replaced your tongue. If you are concerned, this simple checklist will help you diagnose yourself. If more than THREE of these are true, you might want to see about getting your skull replaced. Do you:
... ever have dreams in which you lost all of your teeth?
... find it impossible to sleep without a blanket, no matter how hot it is?
... look at a clock to find out the time, then look away and realize you still don't know what time it is?
... get lonely when you're alone, but hate being around other people?
... think all babies look the same?
... find that when you tune into a TV show you don't normally watch, it's always the same episode, or even the same scene as the last time you saw it?
... imagine a tiny little man running alongside your car during car trips?
... always plug in a USB cable the wrong way on the first attempt?
... see a famous person trending on Twitter, and immediately assume they died?
If you came out positive, but are dismissing the entire idea as ridiculous, that makes perfect sense -- an overly inflated sense of skepticism is in fact one of the most common symptoms of infection.
-David Wong, Senior Editor, Cracked.com, Critically Acclaimed Noveltician