The wheels in the sky, they keep turning for some reason.

Wheels have been around for thousands of years. But it's only recently that they found their ultimate intended purpose:

Heelys.

No no....I'm joking.

Well, not really. I'm too tired to joke. It's late and I'm getting this ready for tomorrow morning, so I'm looking for filler to pad this out to make it look longer, because todays oddity could be summed up in just a single sentence. It wouldn't be interesting, but it would be something that some of you may or may not know.

And, it actually has to do with wheels. Theres a shock, huh?

We see wheels everyday. They are on cars. On carts. On rollerblades/skates. We see them on mechanical devices. It's one of the most basic tools we use as humans.

Advertisement

It was invented sometime in the neolithic era. Evidence suggests the wheel was being used 12,000 years ago.

But it was being used in a way that some of you don't realize.

And that's because, the first evidence of a wheeled vehicle appears around 4,000 BCE. About 5,500 years after we have evidence of the wheel.

Advertisement

The reason for that is, the wheel wasn't invented for transportation. Even though early man used to transport heavy items on felled trees, they never figured out how to utilize the circular design for transportation until the people of Mesopotamia and the Indus Valley started using them for simple carts. Maybe they just never thought of it, or maybe they couldn't perfect the axel. No one knows for sure.

What we do know is, the wheel was first used to make pottery.

The potters wheel was the first known use of the wheel. By placing the clay in the center of the wheel and spinning it, uniformly symmetrical pots and bowls and cups were possible.

Mass production was suddenly possible as well. With the invention of the potters wheel, suddenly a person could specialize in pottery and spend their day making pottery which they could trade for food and clothing. Until then, people had to farm or hunt or herd to be able to barter. Potters ushered in a whole new era in human trade.

Soon people were specializing in just one trade. Instead of farming and hunting and keeping animals, now people were able to just farm. Or herd sheep. Or to build household items from wood. Or to make decorations, like stone carvings.

if it weren't for the wheel, we may not have an economy. And using the wheel for transportation was pretty much an afterthought.

Advertisement

And there are societies that had the wheel, but never developed transportation. For instance, the Olmec Civilization from the Americas. Wheels have been found that were used for making pottery, and that were used in childrens toys. But no Olmec wheels have ever been found that could have been used for a cart. It's thought that the lack of large domesticated animals is the cause. Nothing to pull the cart, so why make it?

So there you have it friends. This is what an oddities post looks like when I'm tired and want to go to bed.

Here's something for you all to think about; we should have a Whitenoise gathering, but to participate, you have to wear heelys, and be prepared to look up gifs on your smartphone without warning.

Or, I could just go to bed.

As a closing note, a guy I shoot with on Tuesdays and Sundays is a salesman who works for a candy distributor. He get's a lot of samples to give out to potential customers. He is always bringing in bags of flavored Tootsie Rolls for members to enjoy. He asked me if I likes Dots, and I told him I did. So he gave me a case. And by case, I mean a box that contains 48 individual boxes of Dots. That's a lot of Dots.

Advertisement

Why did I tell you that? Well, honestly, it's because I have a shit-ton of Dots and you don't.

Neener neener!