Where's Brussels?

Old Oct 8th, 2004, 04:09 PM
  #21  
KT
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 1,437
Good heavens, Katherine, you win the grand prize. And Clifton didn't do badly, either.

So maybe those weren't the best questions to ask in order to make a point, which is that even most of us Europhiles aren't necessarily so clever when it comes to the rest of the world, which is, of course, the vast majority of the world's area and population.
KT is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 04:19 PM
  #22  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 249
Do any of you watch Jay-walking on the Jay Leno show?
Katherine is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 04:33 PM
  #23  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 725
There was a jay walking a few years ago at Thanksgiving. He went to a local junior college and asked the following questions:

What religion were the Pilgrims - "Athiests"

Where did the Pilgrims land when they came to America - Los Angeles.

When I told someone I was going to Iceland she asked me if that was in the Southern Hemisphere. I told someone I was going to New Zealand - Do they have zebras there?
rj007 is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 04:37 PM
  #24  
P_M
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 22,892
Yes I do, Katherine, and it's quite funny.

I just thought of another one--one time I was leaving for a week in Hawaii. As I was headed out the door, one of my colleagues asked me to bring her some Hawaiian coins. I brought back a quarter, dime, nickel and penny for her.
P_M is online now  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 04:55 PM
  #25  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 725
I just remembered another one - some years ago a woman in New Jersey contacted the tourist office in Santa Fe, New Mexico and was wondering if she needed a passport to visit New Mexico. They put together a certificate and passport giving her permission to enter New Mexico.
rj007 is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 05:54 PM
  #26  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,890
I can go almost everyone one better.

A couple of years ago I asked a temp assistant to send a package to Boston - with a note of the street address. She came back and asked me which city in Boston it should go to - apparently having confused Boston with the state of Massachusetts. When I explained - she first didn;t believe me - called FedEx - then insisted that the state was actually called Massytootsits (she was from Texas - is that a local pronunciation?)
nytraveler is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 05:56 PM
  #27  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 9,642
Well, for what it's worth, there are Belgians back home in Brussels who don't know where Seattle is and think Albuquerque is in Mexico or maybe Peru. Geographical ignorance is by no means confined to Americans.
BTilke is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 06:17 PM
  #28  
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 2,631
>Geographical ignorance is by no means confined to Americans.<

True.

When I lived in Texas, I was asked by a coworker where I was from - they being aware I had recently moved to the state. I told them "Hawaii" - and one woman asked how I now liked living in the U.S.

Some time after moving back home, I took a trip to Venice Our gondolier asked where we were from - and he had never even heard of Hawaii before.
chepar is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 06:25 PM
  #29  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 41,963
I never knew where Korea was til my older brother was sent there.
America is almost an island where people who live on the continent can drive into country after country or fly as short trip away so it makes them more aware of their locations.
cigalechanta is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 06:25 PM
  #30  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 41,963
I never knew where Korea was til my older brother was sent there.
America is almost an island where people who live on the continent can drive into country after country or fly as short trip away so it makes them more aware of their location.
cigalechanta is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 06:28 PM
  #31  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,425
Re; Geography taught at schools - My son who is in 3rd grade has a Geography class. He has to identify all of the continents, oceans, and name the countries in Europe, next week - another continent. He attends Private school, perhaps that is the difference. My older children have a love of travel, like DH and myself, so they find it fun to know geography. We are currently planning a trip to Portugal, and one of their freinds thought we were going to S. America.
annesherrod is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 06:31 PM
  #32  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 41,963
That sounds like a school I wish I could have been enrolled.(I couls still use it
cigalechanta is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 07:47 PM
  #33  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 3,000


I met a Dutch gal in a bar in Holland many years ago. After a bit of chat she told me that she doesn't like America. I think that was in the Jimmy Carter years. I told her I was from California. "Oh! I like California!" she replied.
hopscotch is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 08:10 PM
  #34  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 725
Along the same lines in Tony Horwitz's book Baghdad Without a Map, he was in Iraq watching an anti-American parade. A man came up to him and asked him if he was an American. He replied that he was. The man stated " I have an uncle living in California. It has always been my desire to ride the teacups at Disneyland". Then he went back to the parade and started shouting "Death to America".
rj007 is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 08:20 PM
  #35  
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 4,640
I am a typical American with terrible geography skills, though I went through a great school system. Now I try to tackle it in bits & pieces on my own. The radio show "Says You" often has a segment and even that helps.

I was reminded of that scene at the beginning of the movie Shirley Valentine, where her neighbor is griping about an upcoming trip to Brussels, SV responds "...well, it would be, what with all the sprouts..."
ninasdream is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 08:52 PM
  #36  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 3,977
I heard someone say recently that war is God's way of teaching geography to Americans.

Shucks, we have a man in this country who thinks the center of the universe is in Crawford, TX. Maybe we can send him there.
USNR is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 09:42 PM
  #37  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 725
Yeah, lets make someone CinC who voted AGAINST military pay raises 12 times, complains that the troops don't have enough body armor yet voted AGAINST a bill to provide funds for that very purpose and who wants to fight a sensitive war on terrorism. Perhaps he can send a box of See's candy to Al Qaida- that would be more sensitive.
rj007 is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 09:47 PM
  #38  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,067

Yes... Good call. We really should send something. Godivas maybe. Just to let them know that someone is still thinking of them.

Clifton is offline  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 09:59 PM
  #39  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 17,807
Please don't turn this political. I was lamenting the evident lack of geography instruction in schools - in the US and elsewhere. Keep to the serious or funny stories lest this gets yanked, okay?
Gardyloo is online now  
Old Oct 8th, 2004, 10:15 PM
  #40  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 725
It was my 9th grade geography class that got me interested in travelling. Like Gardyloo I lament the serious decline in what should be required classes for everyone.
rj007 is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

FODOR'S VIDEO