1. "If you swallow toothpaste, you'll die."
    I was a very inquisitive child who liked to know the reasoning behind everything, so I can only assume that when she told me not to swallow toothpaste & I asked "why not?" for the fifty-millionth time that day, she said the only thing she could think of that would shut me up long enough to get me in bed.
  2. "The ice cream from the ice cream truck has drugs in it."
    I think she may have read this in an article somewhere, but I'm pretty sure she shared that information with me just so I wouldn't ask to go to the ice cream truck. While I now know this was a lie, I'm still wary of ice cream from ice cream trucks.
  3. "The cherries they put on top of sundaes are soaked in the same stuff they put dead bodies in."
    This was more of a lie than she thought & far less of a lie than I thought. She thought maraschino cherries were made with formaldehyde (they're not), a substance often used in the embalming process. However, I pictured a giant vat full of dead bodies & cherries all floating together, & have thought of them as "dead body cherries" ever since. To this day, I have never eaten a maraschino cherry & I doubt I'll ever be able to bring myself to.
  4. "You can't watch [popular tv show/movie] because the kids are disrespectful to their parents."
    While this was often true of the show/movie in question, we also watched plenty of things where the kids were disrespectful to their parents. What I've since realized is that this is the reason she gave whenever she didn't want to watch something because it was just kind of dumb. I think this was brilliant & fully intend to use the same argument with my kids.