Thursday, July 9, 2009

Geo Party!

...Dr. Livingstone, I presume?

So earlier today as I was perusing the headlines at Yahoo!, I came across a story that sparked several hours of frenzied world geography discovery. The article discussed that remnants from a plane crash off the coast of Comoros had washed ashore in Tanzania. I am ashamed to admit that I had to go look at a map of the world IMMEDIATELY b/c my first thought was "Remnants from a plane crash off the coast of AFRICA wound up in TANZANIA?!?!?", confusing Tanzania with Tasmania. Ya know, that little dollup of an isle below Australia. So upon discovering this glaring lack of knowledge about African geography, I printed off 2 maps of Africa: 1 with the countries listed on it, the other, blank. I allowed myself exactly 5 minutes to study the map before I grabbed my mechanical pencil and unleashed the fury on the blank map, trying to identify as many countries as possible in 5 minutes. Let's just was sad. 26 out of 61. I looked at the map with names a few times during slow periods of my afternoon. Tonight, I told Jason about it and then remembered this awesome site that has tons of different geography quizzes. I immediately went there and took the Africa quiz - I'm proud to report that my score was 150 out of a possible 162 points! If I could do math, I'd tell ya how many questions that means I got right! However, we're tackling geography right now, so let's let sleeping maths lie.

Some notes:

Burkina Faso is my favorite country name (aside from the obvious Djibouti), and now I can not only point it out on a map, I can tell you, all intelluctuel-like, that it's located above Cote D'Ivoire, Ghana, Togo and Benin.

They have a country called "The Gambia", which I really enjoy b/c it's as if this country said "We're so cool, we need a 'the' before our name'", like "The Fonz" or "The Incredible Mr. Limpet".

Before today, I had never even heard of Eritrea.

I knew the correct location of Gabon thanks to watching Survivor. Who said you can't learn anything from reality TV??

The name "Liberia" unsettles me. It just sounds hellish. Could be a beautiful place for all I know (which is clearly not much), but I get the same feelings when I read it's name as I do when I hear the word "Clowns".

I've always thought Zimbabwe was bigger than Zambia (it's not). And by "always", I mean "since reviewing a map this morning".

After completing the Africa quiz, I went buck wild and took all of the continent quizzes. I got perfect scores on Australia, USA and South America - which was weird b/c I do not know why I was able to easily locate Paraguay...?? It's not like I've ever been to S. America or even really looked at a map of it since 7th grade. I missed 1 on the Canada quiz. I then skewered my own kabob of geo high by taking..dun dun dun...The Europe Quiz. I extend the invitation to take this quiz and admit your score aloud to anyone reading this. If there was a million dollars riding on me pointing to "Montenegro" on a map of can safely assume I would be "cloaked in failure", to quote 'Jerry Maguire', for the rest of my life.

If you're bored and looking to either feel elated or deflated, depending on your level of georgaphical savvy, you should go quiz crazy!

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