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Sunday, May 06, 2007

Questions of Geography

1) Which non-European country gets a box to itself on the Euro note?

2) Which is the only Buddhist republic in Europe? (This is not a trick question.)

3) Name one of the world’s two double-landlocked countries?

4) Which country’s official language is Catalan?

5) Toilets flush one way in the northern hemisphere and the other in the southern because of the what effect?

6) Why, when anyone still cared about this kind of thing, did Irish couples unable to get married during Lent set sail for the Blasket Islands?

7) Why did a Soviet ambassador sign a peace treaty with Berwick on Tweed in 1966?

8) What is the largest place in the world with an annual rainfall of zero?

9) Why is the Irish county of Monaghan like a pregnant cow?

10) An old farmer on the Poland-USSR border is visited by the boundary commission and asked which of the two countries he’d rather live in. He thinks a bit and says Poland. Because?

Answers in comments stream.


puthwuth said...

1) French Guiana.
2) Kalmykia, an autonomous republic within the Russian federation.
3) Lichtenstein and Uzbekistan.
4) Andorra.
5) Coriolus.
6) Because according to tradition the Blaskets remained on the Julian calendar after the rest of the country adopted the Gregorian.
7) Because, apocryphally, ‘England, Scotland and the town of Berwick on Tweed’ had declared war on Russia in 1853 (Berwick’s status as a border town was disputed at the time) but only England and Scotland signed the peace treaty in 1856. (Don’t ask me about Wales and, like I said, the original story is apocryphal anyway, though the 1966 peace treaty did happen.)
8) Antarctica.
9) Because it’s close to Cavan.
10) He’s heard the winters are much colder in Russia.

Unappeasable Henry said...

Sorry peewee, but you're mistaken about number 5. It's Coriolis (not Coriolus), and notwithstanding what The Simpsons and any number of pseudo-science programmes may claim to the contrary, the Coriolis effect only applies to vast fluid masses. The swirl in your basin is essentially random, and most likely determined by your basin's geometry, whether you're in Sidmouth or Sydney.

Not a lot of people know that.

Anonymous said...

P.S. Please change peewee to puthwuth. Very rude of me -- meant to be teasing but came out wrong!

puthwuth said...

Coriolus by analogy with Coriol'anus', obviously, the curse of the Bardic bum striking again.