Dinosaurs were my first introduction to science. Like most kids I loved dinosaurs, but unlike most kids I was truly passionate about learning about dinosaurs. Before the age of ten I knew most of the competeing theories about the KT extinction event and had made up my mind about which one seemed most correct based on what I knew about dinosaurs.
That's why when someone talked about Noah's ark or Adam and Eve I knew they were talking about a made up story. I knew there was no evidence for a world wide flood and I knew that the earth was billions of years old, not created in six days, and I knew I was an evolved animal. I believed in God, yes, but for me all the other stories in the Bible were just made up fun. If I met a Biblical literalist when I was a kid I probably would have just laughed at them for saying silly things. I still remember having an intense argument over the sandbox during the first grade with a boy who tried to tell me that humans weren't animals. It was the stupidest thing I'd ever heard at that age. Of course we're animals. What else would we be?
Later on some adults tried to defend that little boy's position. I can't remember who it was exactly. It might have been a teacher or maybe it was my grandfather. Anyway, he said that I was confused, that humans were mammals but not animals. For a few days I thought the whole world had gone completely bonkers. Mammals are animals, too. What difference did that make?
I'm glad my family decided to expose me to dinosaurs and true science at an early age. It's the best bullshit repellent out there.
PS - The allosaurus in my avatar is from the San Diego Museam of Natural History. She was the first dinosaur I ever met in person and I've loved her all my life. <3