It’s reported that 1 in 7 people who try to climb Everest will die, thus making it one the single most dangerous inanimate object in nature since Mike Tyson’s right hand. One of the reasons the mountain is so hard to climb is because it’s simply so tall, Everest could be a 29 thousand foot tall staircase and we can guarantee someone would fall down it and break their brittle, non-sherpa neck.
The mountain today stands at a mighty impressive and wang shrivelling, 29,028 feet today, however that’s because like all mountains, Everest is still going through puberty and is as a result, still growing. Back in 1850, it was exactly 29,000 feet tall. However, no one back then knew it because the people who measured it didn’t tell anyone.
When they measured the mountain and their machines all came back saying, yep, this mountain is exactly 29,000 feet tall, how about that? The researchers became incredibly irate knowing that when they announced to the world that Everest was exactly 29,000 feet tall, everyone would assume they’d approximated their results.
So, rather than be honest or something stupid like that, the researchers added an additional 2 feet to their original result and announced that Everest was 29,002 feet tall. The hope being that people seeing the figure would assume that the researchers responsible for it were both incredibly accurate in their estimation and possibly in possession of huge, science penises.
Why the scientists never thought of announcing that the mountain was exactly 8,839.2 m tall instead is beyond us, but we’re assuming it has something to do with “screw the metric system”. Which to be honest, is probably a pretty good reason.