Here's why people's brooms are standing up all by themselves
Yesterday, you may have seen a new trend circulating on social media called the "broom challenge".
The craze - which has been sweeping the internet - has seen people posting videos and pictures online of their brooms standing up all by themselves. The bizarre and seemingly impossible sight has certainly freaked a lot of people out, and many want to know how and why this is happening.
A viral tweet posted by somebody with the handle @mikaiylaaaaa suggested that NASA said Monday was the only day the "standing broom" trick would work, because of the Earth's gravitational pull.
This "new trend" was actually disproven seven years ago (because people have been falling for this for years):
The tweet - which has since been 'liked' more than 170,000 times and retweeted over 42,000 times - read: "Okay so NASA said today was the only day a broom can stand up on its own because of the gravitational pull...I didn’t believe it at first but OMG!"
The PSA was accompanied by a video showing a woman testing the "theory", and lo and behold, the broom remained standing, much to the woman's surprise.
This was enough to pique the interest of a number of other Twitter users, and soon enough, the social media platform was flooded with people's brooms standing all by themselves:
So, what's causing this phenomenon? Is the NASA theory correct and the Earth's gravity is behaving differently? It is down to our planet's axis? Some people have suggested it's down to the vernal equinox - is that true? Have our brooms come alive like that scene in Disney's Fantasia?
Well... no. All this actually has a very simple explanation.
First of all, after trawling the web, we couldn't find any evidence anywhere to suggest NASA said anything about the broom challenge. In fact, they were pretty busy all day yesterday announcing details of their Artemis I mission.
Secondly, the vernal equinox isn't until March 20 - and it still won't affect your brooms.
The answer is actually rather simple: it's all down to balance.
Per CNN, the center of gravity is low on a broom and rests directly over the bristles. This means that if you can get the bristles positioned is resemble a tripod, your broom will stand upright any day of the year. (Seriously, I can only assume all these people have never been bored at work, because I used to do this all the time when I worked at McDonald's.)
As much as I love the idea of inanimate objects coming to life or even the thought of NASA focusing their time and effort on brooms - this is nothing more than a party trick.