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Panama Myths Revealed

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Written by Matt   
Tuesday, 14 March 2006 10:34
Rodrigo de Bastidas was a captain who sailed with Christopher Columbus to the Americas and discovered Panama in 1501. Many remember Bastidas for his bravery, cialis sale courage, and then-world-changing discovery, but very few know what a quirky guy he was. The following note was found in one of Bastidas' old pair of jeans. It is a letter written by Bastidas to one of his indigenous Indian groupies prior to the discovery of this life:             Hey Baby,

Sorry I haven't written for a while, but I sent you an email two days ago and you didn't respond. I'll be in the Americas sometime next week if you wanna hang out. I can't do all that much because I got tennis elbow snagging salmon last weekend in Colorado but we can definitely chill.  I'll be with this dude Chris Columbus who I think you'll like—he used to be the intern/coffee guy at some Portuguese mariner club but now he's a captain. On our way over to the Americas we're gonna have a contest to see who can catch the most fireflies! Should be fun and if you're lucky, I'll bring you a jar : ) Other than that, not a whole lot's new around here. I'm getting pretty fast and lately I've gotten really good at this root beer and pretzel game (which is kind of like dominoes but with root beer and pretzels). I'll teach it to you when I arrive. Can't wait to see you.





Panama is an isthmus and some people believe that at one of the country's narrowest points, a visitor can actually jump from one side of the country to the other, from the Pacific Ocean to the Caribbean. This myth is partially true. Let me explain: It can be done on a day in early March known as Shallow Wednesday when the sun and the newly-phased moon are directly lined up with the earth. Sir Isaac Newton was the first to discover this phenomenon when he was on Spring Break in Panama with some friends. They were all sitting around having some beers on the beach when Isaac scribbled the following notes in his journal:


            Wednesday 24, 1663

Hey diary. Listen, I know this trip was supposed to take my mind off science but I've come across something incredible. I think (now I may be going crazy here) that I can jump from one side of Panama to the other. I mean, it's not that far. It's like as far as Antonio Banderas jumped off the roof in that movie...oh what's that movie called....well whatever. Anyways, I could totally do it!  Oh yea, and we've been drinking since like 7 AM!

Seeya! Wouldn't wanna be ya! HAHAHAH


-Your Boy Isaac


It is widely believed that the name Panama comes from its indigenous meaning—‘abundance of fish'—however this is a falsity. The name Panama actually originated from, of all things, a lemonade stand! Yes, back before Panama was Panama, its soon-to-be founding fathers had nothing to do. On hot summer days, the three entrepreneurs would all get together to make and sell lemonade (fresh, not the packaged kind). Once the business at their lemonade stand picked up, the money started rolling in fast: with this business growth came conflict (i.e. what do we name our lemonade company?). To be fair to each other, the three boys named the stand Panama (a clever acronym for their names Pat, Nate, and Matt—Pat being the oldest and accordingly being named first).  The Panama Lemonade Stand grew and grew and eventually the boys took a turn towards politics. The rest, as they say, is history. It's just funny to think that, if it wasn't for age, the country could have been called Napama or Manapa. The Manapa Canal! Who knew!


Panama has over 1,000 happy little islands peppered off its coasts and a lot of people think that these islands naturally formed through hot spots in the lithosphere. This is a common and understandable misconception.  Vasco N��ez de Balboa was the man back in 1513 when he discovered the Pacific Ocean, but what a lot of people don't know is that his great discovery served as a grand-scale cover up. About 20 years before his discovery, Balboa was a contestant in the annual science fair at his middle school. The then *censored*y Balboa submitted his project: a larger-than-life baking soda volcano which he proposed to set off somewhere in the Caribbean Ocean on the day of the fair. Well, to make a long story short, the project went horribly wrong and the next day more than 1,000 small islands were born. Some say Balboa's volcano project was sabotaged by the school bully while others just credit the mishap to heavy winds. Either way, Balboa needed to do something to cover up this accident—and discovering the Pacific Ocean did just the trick.


The Panama Canal is certainly a wonder of our modern world and there is no doubt that the years of dedication to the project were well worthwhile. One thing that few people know, is how this grand idea was actually conceived. Back in the 1530's a one Charles V (Holy Roman Emperor and King of Spain) loved to throw parties. He was always thinking of new ways to impress his guests—one evening he conducted a fake execution practical joke and on his birthday he actually jumped out of his own birthday cake, a novel idea at that time. On one momentous morning however, Charles was eating a bowl of Cheerios and pondering what he had to do that day, when the idea hit him. Why don't I build a small waterway between my infinity pool and my Playboy grotto? That way guests won't have to get out of the pool! It'll save time and I can even charge them to pass through! He had his passage way built that afternoon and thus, the idea for the Panama Canal was born.

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Comments (1)Add Comment
written by Laneylue , May 22, 2009
Are there any myths about Panama? I need to know for school. I can't find a single one yet and I've been looking for 2 days straight. Plaese help!
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Last Updated on Monday, 11 August 2008 22:01