Bizarro is brought to you today Americans for the Right to Call Your Band Ska When it is Actually Polka.
In the mid-to-late 1900s, when I was a kid, encyclopedia, dictionary, and bible salesmen used to go door-to-door carrying heavy sample cases full of their wares. It would be hard to believe if I couldn't remember it from my own childhood. My parents actually bought a set of World Book Encyclopedias from a guy who came to the door. I think my mother worried he may drop dead if she sent him away with a full case.
Back then, before scientists had discovered the wonders of the Internets, an encyclopedia was the only way to research something in a shallow, half-assed way without going to the library. So that made it perfect for school projects. From such cursory forays into its pages, I learned that Idaho's main crop was cotton, that rock and roll music was a passing teenage phase, and that the Romans did not kill Jesus, the Jews did. I also learned how airplanes fly (pilots make them), what atom bombs are good for (keeping us safe from Soviets), and that the capital of China is Peking (until they changed it to Beijing, because it is harder to remember how to spell.)
My own Wikipedia page is rife with errors. I was not born on the 10th of anything (nor on any other day in July), I did not "drop out" of college (I was asked to leave at gunpoint), and in the picture of me it looks as though I am holding up two fingers when I was actually holding up one. Other than that, the site is a gold mine of information and I use it regularly. Even though my days of shallow, half-assed paper writing are long gone.