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Do you consider yourself to be good at geography?

Asked at Massachusetts Street on May 3, 2006

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Photo of Brian Bondari

“No. We tend to be a little more poor at geography than the rest of the world. That’s my take on it.”

Photo of Ashley Goldman

“No. I haven’t taken a geography class since my first year of high school, and that was eight years ago.”

Photo of Tiffany Smith

“Yes. I won my seventh-grade geography bee, and sometimes I help my roommate with her geography homework.”

Photo of Robert Yoesel

“Yeah. I read the paper regularly and subscribe to news magazines. I try to be familiar with the locations of countries that are in the news.”

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Comments

GreenEyedBlues 8 years, 7 months ago

Good morning to EVERYONE! There was quite a little storm goin' on earlier... seems to have quieted down a BIT.

I'm otay at geography.

Grundoon Luna 8 years, 7 months ago

yeah, I'm pretty good.

Here's a sucker bet: Name all 50 states in 5 minutes. If you want to make it interesting then name all their capitals in another 5. Most people can't do it. Especially if they try to do it alphabetically.

sgtwolverine 8 years, 7 months ago

I would try to be good at geography, but I keep remembering that Detroit is north of Canada, and that's just weird.

trinity 8 years, 7 months ago

and a pleasant good morning&happy hump day to all! :)

i'd have to answer the ots question as, fair-to-middlin'! my third grade teacher had taught one-room schoolhouses, was ollld when i had her, so much was expected-and delivered! as an adult i appreciate her sooo much. not many can diagram sentences, these days! ;)

bankboy119 8 years, 7 months ago

Right past Lawrence right Bob?

Everybody see that pop is being taken out of schools?

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060503/ap_on_re_us/soft_drinks_schools

paladin 8 years, 7 months ago

I didn't do so well in Geography, cause I kept losing my Geography book. I do know that nobody really seems to know where Mexico is anymore. And, I think nose glasses are a comment in themselves. Pretty cool. I had some once that I used to enjoy wearing, just for fun, but I lost those, too.

neopolss 8 years, 7 months ago

Let's put it this way - Carmen Sandiego never got away from me!

sgtwolverine 8 years, 7 months ago

Well, paladin, Cuba is in Miami, so I suspect Mexico is somewhere in California. Or western Michigan. Yeah, believe it or not, in addition to its Dutch population, Holland, Michigan has a very significant Mexican population. It's an odd mix.

KSChick1 8 years, 7 months ago

Western Kansas starts right outside of East Lawrence

sgtwolverine 8 years, 7 months ago

I thought western Kansas was somewhere around North Dakota. Or Vermont.

acg 8 years, 7 months ago

I'm pretty good at geography. Especially American geography. It helps having moved 36 times in ones life, though.

jonas 8 years, 7 months ago

Well, since I'm going into strategic arms and intelligence, I think I'm good enough at geography for my job. I know where to find USA, and I know where to find Rest of World, so I'm all set.

horrific_changeling 8 years, 7 months ago

Once I start coming to from a black out and can finally open my eyes, raise my head from what ever surface I find myself on, yes, I can usually locate where I'm at by some object....so far.

Fortunately the light at the end of the tunnel sometimes goes Whoooo Whoooo!

horrific_changeling 8 years, 7 months ago

azure..I used to know a song that did them alpha in less than 5, but that was long ago.

And here's the website for Wicked the musical..for fun. http://www.wickedthemusical.com/

And you can get the book and more of his books like Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister, for less at amazon.

Those are the best two of his. Mirror isn't so hot. Fairy tales is silly, and fun, not so great for the price.

horrific_changeling 8 years, 7 months ago

Oh yeah, I was going to post about the pop when I read it last night...now they can sue years later for some illness from the artificial sweeteners!

Ceallach 8 years, 7 months ago

I'm with trinity on the fair to middlin, I would better if countries didn't keep changing their names:)

Ceallach 8 years, 7 months ago

Azure, hope are you feeling better today. ms_c was also under the weather yesterday.

ms_canada 8 years, 7 months ago

Someone once asked my husband, "Does your wife always have a book in her hand?" Absolutely always, was his reply. I read a LOT and my favourite reading is history. Geography goes along with history for me. So yes I am pretty good at geography. Plus the fact that hubby and I have travelled a lot. For years I belonged to the National Geographic Society and they include maps many times in their magazines and i have a large box of well used maps of all parts of the world. Some of my favourite maps are the ones of the countries in ancient times. It is interesting to see how maps of the world have changed. Like, Babylon in now Iraq, Gaul is now France. The land of the Franks is now Germany, Alba and Caledonia are now Scotland. I find that interesting and I guess that makes me somewhat peculiar. what the heck! Who cares, not me.

ms_canada 8 years, 7 months ago

Oh and sgtwolverine - your comment about Miami now being Cuba just proves my point. Things change, people move. Conquerors come, peaceful or otherwise.

Jeanne Cunningham 8 years, 7 months ago

IF the question were asked of people who have friends and/or relatives in the military in Iraq or Afghanistan, I'll bet there's a different percentage.

Also, as the middle and lower classes are more and more stressed economically, those able to travel (even domestically) is greatly reduced. More people who have never been out of their immediate vicinity would greatly reduce personal knowledge. That alone reduces the general knowledge.

Shortened attention spans, need for immediate gratification, etc., have also reduced the number of people willing to spend the effort to learn about things they don't perceive as of any immediate value to them. OR, they think that when they need to know, they CAN easily find out. I DO believe that is a very common attitude. Information is so easily available - why even try to retain it all? When you DO need it, you just Google it...

paladin 8 years, 7 months ago

I used to have strategic arms, but not much intelligence. Ask any of my old girlfriends. My son is a career Naval Officer and has been all over the world. And, I've learned allot of geography following his exploits. It is very fascinating. I've always loved looking at maps. Vicarious escape, I guess.

staff04 8 years, 7 months ago

I am competent when it comes to world geography.

Soda vs. Pop

I've always wondered which is better?

Thorny_Ramathorn 8 years, 7 months ago

you may good at geography Ron Burgandy(if that is your real name)... and your ability to give directions while sitting shotgun have improved slightly since the "TURN HERE, oh you missed it" episode. Sorry man, couldn't resist the urge to bring that up again.

Purell 8 years, 7 months ago

staff04,

I'd like to see the soda vs pop map of the US with special zones marked for grits and other regional specialties

webmocker 8 years, 7 months ago

Azure: You're right, it's tough to name all 50 states, at least without looking at a map. 4:40

paladin 8 years, 7 months ago

When I was drafted into the US Army, some of the other grunts from back East heard me say "pop" and had no idea what I was talking about. They really thought I was a hick. And kept teasing me about it. Yup! Until we got to Vietnam, and then it wasn't important anymore.

badger 8 years, 7 months ago

I would hope that she wouldn't be mixing the pregnancy and the beer. Beer and pregnancy can have a causative relationship, but that doesn't mean you should combine them.

I'm a pretty fair hand at geography, with one exception. I have no idea where (or what) several of the countries in Eastern Europe are without looking at a map.

I was taking geography the year the Berlin Wall fell and countries under the Soviet Bloc started spinning off, and we would have to relearn them every few weeks. I never really got a handle on them, and still look for some countries that aren't there any more before I remember that they're gone.

Ceallach 8 years, 7 months ago

JPT, good to know -- I thought it might be the western city limits of Topeka :)

concerned_citizen 8 years, 7 months ago

Geography is obsolete. That's what Mapquest is for.

bankboy119 8 years, 7 months ago

Ceal you were being nice then to include Topeka w/Eastern Kansas.

Kam_Fong_as_Chin_Ho 8 years, 7 months ago

Why is the guy in the first photo wearing a fake nose and glasses ala Groucho Marx? Here's a great online geography quiz to test yourself. I scored a 70%. Can anyone beat that?

http://www.geographyzone.com/new/index.php?t=1&b=1

smiles 8 years, 7 months ago

One reason you shouldn't mix pregnancy and beer - look at Brian

sgtwolverine 8 years, 7 months ago

Wow. I got a 50, and that included two total guesses that were correct (I mean, come on, St. Vincent and the Grenadines? That sounds like a band or something). I guess it's not all bad, though; for all but one of the wrong answers, I was only one country away.

acg 8 years, 7 months ago

I got a 72%. I can do better than that, I swear. Who really needs to know where Tanzania is, anyway? :)

sgtwolverine 8 years, 7 months ago

Well, after taking that quiz, I know where Tanzania is! Temporarily, anyway. Man, there are a lot of countries on the other side of the world.

sgtwolverine 8 years, 7 months ago

You know, now that I think about it, I think it would be interesting to see how good the world is at picking out specific states in the U.S. I really wonder how that would look.

Ceallach 8 years, 7 months ago

bankboy, many think it's kind to include Topeka in Kansas :):)

Ceallach 8 years, 7 months ago

Wow, with my really poor score on South American countries, it's a good thing I was representing Vanuatu!

sgtwolverine 8 years, 7 months ago

bowhunter, the only neighbor to which I can find a reference is Kneebonia. North Elbonia was destroyed a while back.

Ceallach 8 years, 7 months ago

would that be where Kneebonia attaches to Legbonia or Thighbonia?

bankboy119 8 years, 7 months ago

Well...because I couldn't find all of the Stans I got oh...let's just say really bad.

sunflower_sue 8 years, 7 months ago

A_A, Thanks to Mrs. Jennings (my grade school music teacher) I can still name all 50 states in alphabetical order in less than 30 seconds. (So can my sis and my kiddies, as well.)

As far as world geography goes, I used to have a job painting maps for a certain travel agency. I was much better then. Now, I'm only average but WAAAAAY above "Jay-Walking" level on Leno.

sgtwolverine 8 years, 7 months ago

However, we don't know that Brian doesn't have rock stars, professional athletes or hordes of women chasing him. Of course, we also don't know that I'm not incredibly wealthy.

Oh, wait -- my mistake. We do know that I'm not incredibly wealthy. Oops.

RonBurgandy 8 years, 7 months ago

Thorny - One very exaggerated incident where the driver didn't react to the first mention of directions. You are clinging to straws man.

beatrice 8 years, 7 months ago

Marion: "Most of the "highly educated" Pseudo-liberal/Neo-socialists in this town can't find thier a@@es with a road map"

Not true - all they need to do is log onto the LJW board, then look for Marion -- a@@ found. (Does that make me great at geography?)

I don't care if they take pop out of schools, as long as they leave the soda alone.

kcwarpony 8 years, 7 months ago

Yes, but only if I have a map in my hand. I'm very good at telling people where to go :)

Grundoon Luna 8 years, 7 months ago

Thanks, Ceal. I feel better today, but a little icky.

I wish I had time to take the geography quiz, but I'm back at work and freakin' BUSY. Shewee! Maybe when I get home.

4:40 is a pretty good time, Web! Now name the capitals!

Horrific, thanks for the link. I'll check it out when I get home.

sunflower_sue 8 years, 7 months ago

Recently, my daughter got a map of Africa and had a list of cities or prominent landmarks that she had to put on the map for a school assignment. Sadly enough, several of the items on the list weren't on Africa at all. Two were in Indonesia and I think the other was in Thailand. No wonder our kids are getting so bad at geography.

RonBurgandy 8 years, 7 months ago

A consistent 50% on the quiz, lowest was 40%, highest 80%. That is pretty interesting, a lot of places I have never heard of.

kcwarpony 8 years, 7 months ago

Azure_Attitude, "Name all 50 states in 5 minutes."

Did you ever watch the cartoon show "Animaniacs"? Yakko, Wakko, and their sister Dot... Wakko did a song listing all fifty states AND their capitals, "Wakko's America", just under two minutes if I remember correctly. It will leave your head spinning!

oldfashiongirl 8 years, 7 months ago

Hi y'all,

I meant to write this yesterday with reference to the demonstrations and illegal immigrants. I was married to a Dutch national and lived in Holland 6 years. It took me all that time to get a green card for my husband, yet he was married to an American citizen, which supposedly made it easier to emigrate from Holland. I spent many hours in consulate offices in Germany and embassies trying to get a small infraction of his trading some coffee flavored tea, as coffee, to someone in exchange for some potatoes, off his record.

These minor incidents were forgiven during World War II if they were to feed your family and he was only 14.

Finally the big day came and we had to pay a departure tax. He. unlike Mexicans, could not step off the dock in Rotterdam and walk across the Atlantic and disappear somewhere on the east coast. The point is he did it legally and waited his turn!!. I'm celebrating my own cinco de Mayo by not eating at any Mexican restaurants and simply making something at home. Cheaper, better and no gas money to pay out.

Geography: I did really well in that, all because the teacher had a poster that said, "LET'S TRAVEL THE WORLD TOGETHER!" in our little 2 room schoolhouse. I've travelled to 33 countries and enjoyed it all. Can any of you find Possum Trot, Ky, Monkey's eyebrow, Ky on a map?

Have a great one!!!!

acg 8 years, 7 months ago

Never been to Possum Trot, KY but I have been to Toadsuck, Arkansas. :)

staff04 8 years, 7 months ago

How about Big Bone Lick State Park, on Beaver Road in Union, KY? Anyone ever been there?

http://parks.ky.gov/stateparks/bb/

sunflower_sue 8 years, 7 months ago

I've been to Bear Butte in SD. The hubby camped on Bloody Dick Road in Montanna. Have driven through Knoblick, GA.

sunflower_sue 8 years, 7 months ago

OK, after taking the quiz, it's safe to assume that I do, in fact, suck at geography. (I was consistently a country or two off.) One of the places I had never even heard of. Sign me up for Jay Leno's program!

sunflower_sue 8 years, 7 months ago

RI, My hubby was at Old Chicago years ago and ordered a beer. When asked what he wanted, he said "Surprise me." When they brought him the beer, he sipped it and told them what it was that they brought him. I think it's safe to say, that if you can do that, you've had too much beer.

ms_canada 8 years, 7 months ago

Washington, Oregon, California, Arizona, Colorado, Utah, Montana, Idaho, N. Dakota, S. Dakota, Wyoming, Kansas, Oklahoma, Iowa, Missouri, Texas, New Mexico, Louisiana, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Delaware, Illinois, Michigan, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennesee, Nebraska, Kentuky, Hawaii, Alaska, Arkansas, Pennsylvania, well that seems to be all I can pull off the top of my head, 37 states, not bad for a northern Canadian. I challenge anyone there to name all 10 Canadian provinces without cheating. I swear that I did not look at a map. Anyone take me up on it. Just try it, see how many you can get.

bankboy119 8 years, 7 months ago

Quebec, Ontario, Alberta, British Columbia, Saskatchewan...there's more to Canada than that? 50% isn't that bad.

ms_canada 8 years, 7 months ago

good work bankboy to get 5 of them, I will tell all at the end of the day. If anyone can get the northern territories also, they will get extra points. A little hint, there are some maritime provinces on the eastern seaboard.

H_Lecter 8 years, 7 months ago

Here's a fun question that the 99% of the people I've asked can't answer.

What is the capital of Canada?

Then, ask people from Ottawa, KS (which is south of Lawrence) what the capital of Canada is.

staff04 8 years, 7 months ago

Lecter- Good point to clarify that Ottawa, KS is south of Lawrence considering today's theme!

I grew up there. There is also an Ottawa in Ohio and Illinois.

ms_canada 8 years, 7 months ago

Das Ubermime - very good indeed. Ok I shall reveal all. Das got all the provinces right. Just one tiny thing Newfoundland and the Labrador are one province and extra points for Yukon Territory. and great going on the Inuit people of the north. They now have Nunuvut Territory and its Capital City is Iqaluit pronounced eecal oo weet. and they sing the national anthem in their own language of Inuktitut. ee ook ti toot The capital of Canada is indeed Ottawa. It is a beautiful city. Our parliament buildings sit high on an embanquement overlooking the Ottawa River. They're quite elegant buildings There you go, children, you have had your geography lesson for the day. You may all go out and play now.

ms_canada 8 years, 7 months ago

Oh my bad that should be ee nook ti toot not that anyone would really care.

badger 8 years, 7 months ago

My roommate used to say, "The Inuit want a part of Canada all to themselves. I think they'll get Nunavit."

Sadly, even without drugs or booze, that just kept being funny every time he said it, because dorkiness is its own amusement.

sunflower_sue 8 years, 7 months ago

RI, No, hubby's not a beer Nazi...but he has his preferences. He has one beer he's tried that he will not drink...Coma. (I'd give you his exact words on that but they're so crude I'd be forever banned from the OTS...although it's bust a gut funny!)

Grundoon Luna 8 years, 7 months ago

Faint of heart do not read! XOX, many years of independent reseach and comparison studies among my lady friends indicated that there is evidence to suggest that ears can be a reliable measure as long as the ears are either big or small. Mid sized ears can run the gamut. Check the hands too (girth). Most people know the poem about the feet, but our reserach did not support that assertion.

sunflower_sue 8 years, 7 months ago

A_A, did you get a federally funded grant for this research, and may I take part in the study? It sounds educational and fascinating!!

sunflower_sue 8 years, 7 months ago

Oh, my pardon, you said "independent" research. Excuse me, I have to go gaze upon my hubby.:o)

sunflower_sue 8 years, 7 months ago

Normal ears but the hands are quite girthy.;o)

formerlyKS 8 years, 7 months ago

I always thought Lawrence was western Kansas?!

Grundoon Luna 8 years, 7 months ago

Well, Sue, while we conducted our research independently, I find group "studies" to be distasteful, we had to compare notes so there was collaboration in a sense. The info is helpful have whether you like . . . oh how should I put this . . . a Cadillac, a Camry, or a Civic. Some don't want to feel like they are giving birth when doing it, while other what to KNOW they're doing it. There is also the matter of technique. One can possess a fine appendage, but if there is no style or imagination behind it, it isn't much fun. Those things just don't run themselves. I better stop before I get kicked off the board . . .

Grundoon Luna 8 years, 7 months ago

XOX, some girth is good, some length is good, technique matters most. . . oh, wait endurance! We mustn't forget endurance . . .

Ceallach 8 years, 7 months ago

Is there a full moon tonight? Our ladies have become wolves :) Howl on girls -- or should I say roar????

Grundoon Luna 8 years, 7 months ago

Or sing! OH, SWEET MYSTERY OF LIFE AT LAST I'VE FOUND YOU . . . . .

sunflower_sue 8 years, 7 months ago

A_A, that song 'bout made me cough water out of my nose. That is a great movie!

Ceal, have an evening with Mr. Monk planned? ;o)

I just did a session of yoga w/ the family. Kiddies are off to bed and now I'm relaxed...and apparently out of shape!:(

sunflower_sue 8 years, 7 months ago

I just got an invite out to the hot tub. (I'll look for the full moon while I'm out there.) Talk to you good people tomorrow. Dorme bene!

Ceallach 8 years, 7 months ago

You go girl! No time with Mr. Monk tonight -- left work early with Mr. Migraine :- Came home, drugged up and just now regained consciousness. If I had a hot tub invitation I wouldn't be posting either :)

Just wanted to check in, see what was going on. I've been out of or on limited circulation with posting for quite a while due to work. I missed all y'all!!

Haven't seen gnome on for a while -- hope he and Mrs. Gnome are okay.

Grundoon Luna 8 years, 7 months ago

It's a classic. Madeline Kahn is a riot! No full moon until next week, but other planets may be in favorable aspect.

Qestion? Does your spa get whack after a good storm? Our LCD/LED/whatever will display wierd characters. It will reset, but the hubby about has a coniption fit whenever that happens. "Honey, did it reset?" "Yes" "does it work?" "yes" "what's the problem?" He probably thinks it's indicative of something going wrong, and he may be right, but in 5 years that the only bug.

Ceallach 8 years, 7 months ago

Madeline Kahn is also a very friendly, nice person. I met her several years ago when she was working on a movie in Kansas and Missouri. She is a natural comedienne. My brain is still a little fuzzy, I can't remember for sure -- I think I heard that she was either battling cancer or had died from it. If true, what a loss! She was friendly to me when she certainly was in no way obligated to even acknowledge my existence,

sunflower_sue 8 years, 7 months ago

A_A, only problem w/ the tub is that if the power goes out, it resets to 95*. ARGH! You're right. Just a half moon tonight. And a few stars inbetween the clouds.

Ceal, get to feeling better. Migraines are a pain in the...well, head. I do believe, that the beloved Madeline Kahn lost her battle with cancer some time back.

RI, Just a rabid yeller dog! Now, I'm gonna go bite something!

sunflower_sue 8 years, 7 months ago

RI, go to bed! Give the wife a foot massage...or whatever! Good night!

Ceallach 8 years, 7 months ago

Thanks, ss, I'm calling it a night in hopes of being able to work tomorrow. Foot message, mmmm.... not that sounds good. Lucky Mrs RI!

All y'all have a good night.

Manana

Grundoon Luna 8 years, 7 months ago

95? Egads! That's a vertiable cold shower. I am kind of a wuss, though, my skin can't take over 101 or I'll get exsema (sp). Any hotter than that and I can only hang about 5 minutes. I think I'm allergic to the shock because I had no trouble before Tude-man started adding that stuff. I guess it's hard to maintain the pH without it. It's probably heat and shock. But sure as I am sitting here there is no foot rub like letting the whirlpool jet get at your tootsies. YEE-HAW, that's mighty good!

Ceal, Maddy was struck by down by Ovarian cancer 'bout 6 years ago. What a great loss. She really was fabulous. Did you meet Madeline while they were filming Paper Moon? I thought I saw in the credits that it was filmed in KS and MO.

Grundoon Luna 8 years, 7 months ago

And thanks for the wellness wishes, Ceal, and I hope you are on the mend as well. Now I am off to bed . . .

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