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Old November 16th, 2013, 04:34 AM   #22901
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Penn's Woods View Post

At least I don't think the distance from Cardiff to America is comparable to the distance from the Brenner to Slovenia, unlike some people I could mention. :-P

Not that far. Only an inch on the map...
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Old November 16th, 2013, 08:24 AM   #22902
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Road_UK View Post

Not that far. Only an inch on the map...
2,54 cm
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Old November 16th, 2013, 10:56 AM   #22903
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Quote:
Originally Posted by piotr71 View Post
By the way, it's getting a little anoying all this American ignorance stuff. There is, with no doubts, same amount of stupid people in Europe. I've already heard that Poland must be somewhere around North Pole (probably because of a semanthic similarity of both terms). I heard it from a British - called herself - an educated person.
but honestly, how many Europeans know details about US states? about me personaly - i think i could locate about 60% of them more or less preciselly and know 6 capitals.
about inner borders - i could not draw them not as near precisely as european, nor i could locate cities so precisely.
it would be interesting to see the knowledge of Americans about US states. do they know all those funny capitals?
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Old November 16th, 2013, 12:05 PM   #22904
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how many Europeans know details about US states?
I'm sure you know that American states are not independent nations so they shouldn't be compared to Slovenia, etc.
But I am not sure that the majority of European people know what the capital city of Canada is. Although Canada is (by territory) the second largest nation of the world.
Mexico or Brazil is easy, but how many people in Europe know the capital of Chile? Chile has an area larger by France, and 17 million inhabitants, so it is not some almost unknown island republic of the Pacific ocean.

Last edited by Attus; November 16th, 2013 at 12:22 PM. Reason: Typo
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Old November 16th, 2013, 12:28 PM   #22905
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But I am not sure that the majority of European people know what the capital city of Canada is. Although Canada is (by territory) the second largest nation of the world.
The ignorance of Europeans has gone out of control in the last 20 years or so. Only a few months ago I was driving a well spoken English lady across the Austrian - German border and she obviously expected a Korean style border crossing. I had to explain to her what Schengen is all about. You'll also be surprised how many people here aim for Toronto when having to guess the capital of Canada. At least they're the ones who a smart enough to name a Canadian city.
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Old November 16th, 2013, 12:41 PM   #22906
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A certain president thought they were speaking "Austrian" in Austria

Well, you can't know everything. But I also feel ignorance is on the rise, knowledge is being replaced by "let's google it" (and forget it 3 minutes later).
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Old November 16th, 2013, 01:32 PM   #22907
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Wasn't that the same president that thanked the good Austrian people for the warm welcome he received in Australia?
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Old November 16th, 2013, 02:00 PM   #22908
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Originally Posted by x-type View Post
but honestly, how many Europeans know details about US states? about me personaly - i think i could locate about 60% of them more or less preciselly and know 6 capitals.
about inner borders - i could not draw them not as near precisely as european, nor i could locate cities so precisely.
it would be interesting to see the knowledge of Americans about US states. do they know all those funny capitals?
In primary school I have had a pleasure to attend, we had to learn all countries and their capitals, all soviet union's republics and their capitals and also all states and the capitals of the country, which was 'most vicious enemy' to the communist nations. Sadly, I do not remember even half of what I have learnt back then, but I take my age as a justifying factor
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Old November 16th, 2013, 03:50 PM   #22909
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Originally Posted by Attus View Post
I'm sure you know that American states are not independent nations so they shouldn't be compared to Slovenia, etc.
....
There's someone on Le Monde's forum who keeps insisting that the US is just like the EU in that respect: a "Federation" which - in his opinion (unless he's saying it to be annoying) - is bound to break up any day now because of its divergent interests. The fact that everyone speaks the same language and has the same cultural references, that people have relatives all across the country and that many people cross state lines twice a day to get to and from work...basically that state lines have no more cultural significance than the boundaries between départements, is apparently not significant. (But you're right.)

On the other hand, how many states are larger, in both population and land area, than Slovenia or even some larger countries? I was thinking about this in connection to that Cardiff/Brenner analogy. Pennsylvania, which is a bit below average in land area (32d or so, depends which list you look at) is larger than Austria, Hungary or the Benelux (or Portugal or...)

But Harrisburg isn't Vienna, Budapest or Lisbon. (Although my father, who was weird, used to make a point of visiting state, and Canadian provincial, capitol buildings when we were traveling.)

American schoolkids do memorize the states and their capitals, just like learning all the Presidents since Washington. How many retain all that...? Who knows. When it comes to retaining that sort of thing, I - like many of us on this forum I imagine - am very much an outlier.
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Old November 16th, 2013, 04:11 PM   #22910
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Vlamingen en Nederlanders -

http://www.standaard.be/cnt/dmf20131116_00841654

is this phenomenon of St. Nick arriving three weeks early something new (like American Thanksgiving Day parades are really to kick off Christmas shopping season)? Never heard of it before.

Someone else can talk about the TWO Zwarte Piets (Zwarte Pieten?). I know that's a hot topic but that's not why I posted this. Didn't know they were there until I opened the link. Although I have to say that they really jumped out at me thanks to my American cultural baggage, and the fact that the YouTube play button is obscuring St. Nick's face.
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Old November 16th, 2013, 04:12 PM   #22911
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A Florida homeowner has given up in the battle to keep two mall magnolia trees in his front yard in the face of a $5,000 fine levied by his homeowner's association, according to video from WESH.

Pat Fitzgerald recently planted the two magnolia trees, the same type specified by his HOA's guidelines, but HOA officials have deemed them "too short".

The trees are supposed to be at least 6 feet tall, WESH says.

Fitzgerald say that other larger magnolias recently planted on his street are in poor health, and he feels that planting the trees while they're younger will result in stronger plants.

Still, he can't afford the fine and has agreed to remove the trees.
http://www.azcentral.com/offbeat/fre...all-trees.html

Some news from another habitat - both by geographic location and human mentality. :P
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Old November 16th, 2013, 04:16 PM   #22912
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Suburbia, or neighborhoods with homeowners associations that have silly rules, being the "habitat" whose human mentality is weird?

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Old November 16th, 2013, 04:17 PM   #22913
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I am glad that some people from the UK begin to understand the Roma question. Ehm, at least partially.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-24909979

Quote:
"We have got to change the behaviour and the culture of the incoming community, the Roma community, because there's going to be an explosion otherwise. We all know that."
Ok, there is some understanding of the problem.

Quote:
"With the growth of state harassment and neo-Nazi violence in East/Central Europe, Roma families have settled in the UK, contributing economically and culturally.
Not that high understanding after all, talking about state harassment http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-24721538.
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Old November 16th, 2013, 04:19 PM   #22914
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I am glad that some people from the UK begin to understand the Roma question. Ehm, at least partially.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-24909979

Ok, there is some understanding of the problem.

Not that high understanding after all, talking about state harassment http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-24721538.
Will you **** off with that Roma bullshit in this thread all the time???
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Old November 16th, 2013, 04:21 PM   #22915
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Uh-oh. Looks like a good time to go to the farmers' market around the corner (as opposed to the WalMart or McDonald's which is supposedly all we have here).

Although I don't think they sell popcorn. :-)
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Old November 16th, 2013, 04:26 PM   #22916
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Nah you're alright, Michael. It's just that there are perfectly good dedicated threads available in other parts of this forum, rather than bringing that racist mumbo jumbo in here all the time. (from the same person)
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Old November 16th, 2013, 04:30 PM   #22917
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Penn's Woods View Post
There's someone on Le Monde's forum who keeps insisting that the US is just like the EU in that respect: a "Federation" which - in his opinion (unless he's saying it to be annoying) - is bound to break up any day now because of its divergent interests. The fact that everyone speaks the same language and has the same cultural references, that people have relatives all across the country and that many people cross state lines twice a day to get to and from work...basically that state lines have no more cultural significance than the boundaries between départements, is apparently not significant. (But you're right.)

On the other hand, how many states are larger, in both population and land area, than Slovenia or even some larger countries? I was thinking about this in connection to that Cardiff/Brenner analogy. Pennsylvania, which is a bit below average in land area (32d or so, depends which list you look at) is larger than Austria, Hungary or the Benelux (or Portugal or...)

But Harrisburg isn't Vienna, Budapest or Lisbon. (Although my father, who was weird, used to make a point of visiting state, and Canadian provincial, capitol buildings when we were traveling.)

American schoolkids do memorize the states and their capitals, just like learning all the Presidents since Washington. How many retain all that...? Who knows. When it comes to retaining that sort of thing, I - like many of us on this forum I imagine - am very much an outlier.
The problem in USA is that state capitals aren't the biggest\most known city in the state, like in Europe.
In Europe many people know Amsterdam, Lisbon, Budapest,... not only because they're the capitals of the Netherlands, Portugal, Hungary,... but also because they're big cities with famous monuments and history and visited by many tourists.
On the other hand, cities like Harrisburg, Albany, Springfield, Sacramento, Tallahassee aren't so famous and big, so Americans living far away are more likely to know only Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami.
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Old November 16th, 2013, 04:45 PM   #22918
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Why is that a problem? Things work a little bit different over there. Besides, Bern is the capital of Switzerland but Zurich is the place to be. And when there were still two Germanies, they picked Bonn as the capital in Western Germany, instead of Hamburg or Munich...

The Netherlands has gone for a different approach as well. Even though Amsterdam is the capital, the government and parliament, the head of State (the King) and all embassies are in The Hague.
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Old November 16th, 2013, 04:53 PM   #22919
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Currently enjoying a pain au chocolat, just bought at said market. Also bought a strawberry-cheese croissant for tomorrow's breakfast, organic raisin bread (I really don't care about the organic bit), and locally-made apple cider (non-alcoholic and sweeter than what is called cider in Europe). No popcorn.

Carry on....

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Old November 16th, 2013, 04:56 PM   #22920
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Originally Posted by italystf View Post
The problem in USA is that state capitals aren't the biggest\most known city in the state, like in Europe.
In Europe many people know Amsterdam, Lisbon, Budapest,... not only because they're the capitals of the Netherlands, Portugal, Hungary,... but also because they're big cities with famous monuments and history and visited by many tourists.
On the other hand, cities like Harrisburg, Albany, Springfield, Sacramento, Tallahassee aren't so famous and big, so Americans living far away are more likely to know only Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami.
Question of timing, in some cases: a lot of those state capitals were chosen before the cities in question became prominent. Chicago didn't exist when Illinois became a state. (That doesn't explain Albany and Harrisburg, of course. I think the thinking there was that inland, more-centrally located capitals would be more convenient to more people in a time when travel was time-consuming, and away from the bad influences of big cities...there was a strain of anti-urbanism among the Founders, Jefferson in particular.)

Trivia question: guess how many U.S. states have been states longer than Belgium has beem a country. (All 50 are older than independent Slovenia... ;-) )
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