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5-year-old gave his mom advice for handling nerves. It was both adorable and spot-on.

"You say, ‘I am brave of this meeting!’, ‘I am loved!’, ‘I smell good!"

5-year-old gave his mom advice for handling nerves. It was both adorable and spot-on.

Kids really do say the darnedest things.

Any parent knows that kids can be surprisingly astute little philosophers at the most unexpected times. One minute your child is throwing a tantrum because you sliced their sandwich wrong, and the next they are blowing you away with their deep preschool thoughts. It's enough to give you whiplash, but it's also one of the most fun things about being around kids. You never know what they're going to say and sometimes what they say is just awesome.

Case in point: This 5-year-old who gave his mom some sage advice about handling her nerves.

Twitter user @Eprecipice (StressieBessie) shared the story in a tweet thread. She wrote:


"When talking about our agendas for the day, I told my 5yo I was a little nervous about a meeting I have today. He said, 'Mama, I am nervous all the time. I know what to do.' So friends, here is all the advice he could fit into the drive to school:"


1. “You gotta say your affirmations in your mouth and your heart. You say, ‘I am brave of this meeting!’ , ‘I am loved!’, ‘I smell good!’ And you can say five or three or ten until you know it.”

Okay, first of all, the fact that this kiddo knows what affirmations are is awesome. Some people have questioned whether this advice really came from a 5-year-old because of the vocabulary, but kids are sponges and affirmations aren't rocket science. It's become quite common for preschools and kindergartens to teach kids things like this, so it's not actually surprising to hear him talk about affirmations. It's just adorable to hear the ones he suggests.

2. “You gotta walk big. You gotta mean it. Like Dolly on a dinosaur. Because you got it.”

Okay, so this actually is sound advice. Researcher Amy Cuddy gave a whole TED Talk about how our minds respond to our own body language, and how using confident body language can actually release chemicals in our brains that make us feel more powerful and self-assured. So "walk big" like you mean it is legit.

3. "Never put a skunk on a bus."

No idea what this means, but it's definitely solid wisdom.

4. "Think about the donuts of your day! Even if you cry a little, you can think about potato chips!"

I'm genuinely not sure if this is referencing real donuts or not, which is part of what makes it delightful advice. Metaphorically, "the donuts of your day" could be the positive things that happened, and focusing on those instead of the negative is basic positive thinking. Then again, if you cry and think about potato chips, perhaps he's just referencing comfort with food. Either way, totally feeling it.

5. "You gotta take a deep breath and you gotta do it again."

Pretty much every therapist from every psychological school of thought will tell you that breathing exercises are one of the quickest ways to calm your body and mind. Simple, but seriously sound advice.

6. "Even if it's a yucky day, you can get a hug."

Even though that sounds like a pretty typical thought for a kid, it's also good well-being advice. According to The Conversation, the chemicals released when we hug can help us manage stress, reduce anxiety and manage our emotions.

Smart kid.

He added one more piece of advice for good measure as well for those of us who tend toward distraction.

Like a little Confucius, this one.

Seriously, if you ever want to hear some of the most oddly profound things you'll ever hear in your life, spend some time interviewing a 4- or 5-year-old. They really do say the darnedest things. And if you're nervous about something, just keep telling yourself you're "brave of" it. If nothing else, it'll bring a smile to your face remembering this delightful thread.


This article originally appeared on 01.31.22

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The Story of Bottled Waterwww.youtube.com

Here are six facts from the video above by The Story of Stuff Project that I'll definitely remember next time I'm tempted to buy bottled water.

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via The Story of Stuff Project/YouTube


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Karen Blaha/Wikimedia Commons

Crinkle crankle walls are more common the U.K., but they can be found in the U.S. as well.

If you were to draw a straight line and a wavy line from point A to point B, there would be no question which one used more ink. After all, "The shortest distance between two points (on a flat surface) is a straight line" has been baked into our brains since elementary school math class. Logically, a wavy line uses more ink because it covers more distance, right? Right.

So if that's true, how is it possible that a brick wall built in a wavy pattern could use fewer bricks than a straight one built between the exact same two points?

Not only is it possible, it's actually true, despite people's disbelief over the fact.

A post on X from @InternetHOF shows the claim that "corrugated brick fences" sometimes seen in England use fewer bricks than a straight wall, with the caption, "I don't believe this is true."

It does seem illogical from a pure geometry-on-paper standpoint, but what makes it true is how the structural integrity of brick walls works.

There are all kinds of nitty-gritty calculations a structural engineer could get into to explain, but thankfully, internet hero (and strangely popular X account) Greg came to everyone's rescue with an explanation that neatly fit into a single post on X.

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"For the maths if we can assume they’re true semi-circles then each semi circle would be 1/2piD or 1.57D whereas a double leaf wall would be 2D for the same length D.

"Therefore using 21.5% less bricks than a double leaf wall hope that clears things up."

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serpentine brick wall next to a bunch of daffodils

Crinkle crankle walls are usually referred to as serpentine walls in the U.S.

Karen Blaha/Wikimedia Commons

First of all, what a cool piece of human ingenuity that people actually figured this out hundreds of years ago. And second of all, why are there not more crinkle crankle walls everywhere? So much more fun and whimsical. And apparently, a better use of resources.

But before you go building your own crinkle crankle wall to make your house look super cool, make sure you've got the geometry correct. There are actual specifications for making a structurally sound serpentine wall, and if you don't do it correctly, you may find yourself with a pile of bricks and no wall, curvy or straight.

If you want to see some cool crinkle crankle walls in the U.S., head to the University of Virginia. Thomas Jefferson himself added them to the design of the Charlottesville, Virginia, campus.

wavy brick wall separating a grassy area and a driveway

Crinkle crankle wall at the University of Virginia

Carlin MacKenzie/Wikimedia Commons

More crinkle crankles everywhere, please.