12 Common Things Whose True Purpose You Didn’t Know

Written by Tanya Arora

We go about our lives every day following such a strong routine that we mostly never stop to pay attention to those tiny details that ever loom in the corner. Well, not exactly in the corner, but you know on objects such as your car, balls, food packets, and more. Every single one of these details has an interesting story of their own… a purpose, if you’d only care to listen, err, read.

We present to you 12 such common things you had no idea served a useful purpose. Ladies and gentlemen, prepare to be shocked!

1. The Sticker On Your Fruit

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Apples or oranges, no matter what you pick, you’ll see a small oval sticker on each of them with the name of the producer as well as the country, along with a rather cryptic set of digits. These numbers have hidden meaning!

If the sticker contains 4 digits with the first one being the number 4, it means pesticides have been sprayed on the fruit. If it has 5 digits with the first being 9, the fruit is organic. And if it has 5 digits with the first being 8, it’s a genetically modified fruit.

2. The Hole In Your Donut

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Your favorite donut has been around for hundreds of years, but have you ever wondered why it isn’t a hole-less circle of joy? Well, back in the past when donuts were first made, bakers found it extremely difficult to cook the edges and center equally. Hence, they made a hole in the center, which allowed for even cooking!

3. The Dots On The Frit Band Of Your Car

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A frit band is that black thing that’s on the edges of your windshield. This band helps in holding the glass in place and protecting it from UV rays. It also prevents the accumulation of dirt on the corners of the glass. When it comes to the dots on them, these help in the even distribution of temperature during the making of windshields. They also make the visual transition from the glass to the band a pleasing one.

4. Your Sunglasses

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Sunglasses are not just for protecting against the sun. The people in the Arctic invented tinted glasses so that the dazzling white snow wouldn’t hurt their eyes. Another interesting fact about sunglasses is that they became very popular in the 12th century in China, where people used them to hide their real emotions.

5. The Margins On Your Notebook

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The initial reason for these margins was for your teacher to scribble down notes and remarks there for you. However, one of the other reasons margins came about was to protect the written matter of notebooks from rodents! Since rats are more likely to gnaw at the edges, margins came about to prevent loss of information.

6. The Dimples On A Golf Ball

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Did you know that the first golf balls were smooth with no dimples? However, over time, golfers came to realize that the balls that worked the best were worn out and developed cracks, which led golfers to using the same ball for years. Manufacturers saw the opportunity in that and started producing artificially weathered balls with dimples.

7. The Half Belt On Your Coat

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Half belts were first found on military greatcoats hundreds of years ago. During that day and age, greatcoats used to be huge and had to be crafted by sewing several pieces of cloth together. The half belts were added to make the coat compact in size and these belts could be unstrapped, which helped in using the coat as a blanket. Though the half belt no longer serves a purpose, it still remains.

8. The Hole In Your Padlock

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Apart from donuts, even padlocks have holes. Although these holes are located at the bottom, beside the keyhole. Over time and due to exposure to earthly elements, padlocks can rust, jamming the locks and preventing use. But if you pour engine oil through the hole, your padlock will work fine again. That’s their purpose!

9. The Stripes On Your Headphone Jack

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Every headphone jack has 3 distinct stripes on them. Do you know why? These stripes help in the displacement of sound to each earphone through the wires. If these lines didn’t exist, sound would probably emanate from just one of the earphones.

10. The Ridges On Your Coins

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The 16th century is when ridges on coins made their first appearance. During that time, it was common practice to cut off tiny amounts of metal from coins and sell them. After that, they would exchange the damaged coin at its full value. To stop this from happening, coins were produced with ridges at the edges so that the damage could be detected. Nobody chips coins now, but the ridges remain.

11. The Cuticles On Your Nails

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Cuticles need no introduction. These tiny pieces of hardened skin on the bottom of your nails protect them from infection. If you try to remove it, you’ll create a wound, which would make an entry for fungus and bacteria to get in. So, when getting a manicure next time, tell your parlor lady not to cut them off!

12. The ‘R’ Symbol

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You’ve probably seen this on labels and packets of chips, right beside the brand name. The symbol of a capital ‘R’ in a circle signifies that this trademark has been officially registered and copying it can evoke a legal action against the infringing party.

Don’t you feel enlightened already? There’s so much we don’t know and these little tidbits just add to our knowledge. If you found this post interesting, be sure to share it with your friends!

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