The words you use every day are like superheroes; they all have backstories of one kind or another, and while some (Batman) are awesome, others (Robin) are another story. Learning the bizarre histories—and in some cases origin myths—of the common words on this list is like bumping into an old acquaintance and discovering that not only has he always secretly been a crimefighter, he got his start as a circus acrobat.
English and French writers have been using the word “mullet” to describe a type of fish with spiny fins from about the mid-15th century. Modern taxonomy nerd Carl Linnaeus hadn’t even been thought of yet, so the name seems to have been applied to different species over the centuries before settling down to describe just one species of North American game fish in 1866. It has a flat head. You can see where this is going.