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DVD Smith
1282984.  Wed May 02, 2018 8:37 am Reply with quote

Q: In which city in the Philippines did Muhammad Ali fight Joe Frazier in October 1975?

[Klaxon: Manila]

A: The "Thrilla in Manila" actually took place at a stadium in Quezon City, which is part of the Greater Manila metropolitan area but is not actually in Manila itself. (It's the equivalent of organising a fight called "The Melee in Manchester" and then staging it in Salford.) [1] At the time of the fight, Quezon City was actually the nation's capital - Manila wouldn't claim the title of capital of the Philippines until the following year.

A street in Quezon City called Balete Drive is reported to be haunted by the ghost of a "White Lady" who seems to specifically target taxi drivers, after having been supposedly murdered by one. [2] The story of the White Lady became so notorious that in 2005 a local government official wanted to make it an official "haunted" tourist destination in the hope of attracting Halloween parties. [3]

Further out in the Quezon province, each May the city of Lucban hosts the colourful Pahiyas Festival, where the townsfolk decorate their houses with coloured rice wafers (known as "kipings"), making sculptures, chandeliers, flowers etc. The best-decorated house wins a prize, and all the decorations can be eaten afterwards. [4] [5] [6]


Last edited by DVD Smith on Thu May 03, 2018 7:52 am; edited 1 time in total

 
crissdee
1282992.  Wed May 02, 2018 9:37 am Reply with quote

DVD Smith wrote:
a fight called "The Melee in Manchester"


Or "Saturday Night" as it's known locally!

 
DVD Smith
1283429.  Sun May 06, 2018 11:30 am Reply with quote

Qaanaaq, in northwest Greenland, is the northernmost place in the world with a name that is a palindrome. [1] Only 30 miles from Canada, the town is the furthest north in Greenland, and experiences 24-hour sunlight from April to August. [2]

Qaanaaq is not a place for the weak. The book Outhouses by Roger L Welsch contains an account of the Qaanaaq locals which says "men working around town wore T-shirts even though the temperature never rose above freezing, rarely, in fact, rose above zero Fahrenheit." [3]

In the winter, the townspeople in Qaanaaq get their fresh water from icebergs frozen in the sea ice. A man in a loader truck travels out to the iceberg, hacks off some large lumps of bright blue glacial ice, then brings it back to the village, where the townsfolk each take a large piece of ice and put them on the porch outside their house, chipping off pieces as they need them. [3] The effort needed to get fresh water for this community means that the water is among the costliest in the world, with a 2017 estimate putting it at 600 Danish kroner (88) per cubic metre. [4] By comparison, Thames Water's 2017-18 rates charge around 1.29 per cubic metre, with the average British person using around 150 litres (0.15 cubic metres) of water each day. [5] [6]

Another Greenland town, Qeqertarsuaq, is home to the northernmost campus of the University of Copenhagen, known as the Arctic Station. [7] The campus has room for 26 people and gets approximately 150 visitors a year. [8] The name "Qeqertarsuaq" means "The Large Island" in Greenlandic - which is quite amusing considering it lies right next to Greenland, the largest island in the world. [9]

 
tetsabb
1283493.  Mon May 07, 2018 4:45 am Reply with quote

I thought Greenland was actually a number of islands connected by ice? And surely Australia is a bigger island?

 
crissdee
1283499.  Mon May 07, 2018 5:23 am Reply with quote

That's a point, when does an island become a continent?

 
suze
1283504.  Mon May 07, 2018 6:15 am Reply with quote

When the important people say it does!

When I was a small person, my enyclopedia had it that Australia was the largest island in the world. It seems now to be more common to regard it as a continent and hence not eligible for the largest island prize. But if we really wanted to, we could consider Antarctica as a very large island, North+South America as an even bigger island, and Europe/Asia/Africa as an absolutely huge island.

Is the claim that Greenland is in fact three islands by now generally accepted, or is it still at the hypothesis stage?

 
DVD Smith
1283513.  Mon May 07, 2018 7:45 am Reply with quote

The general consensus I was aware of was that Greenland was the largest island and Australia was the smallest continent. Looking at Wikipedia's list of islands, Greenland is around 2.7 times larger than the next largest island (New Guinea) but around 3.5 times smaller than Australia. So it could feasibly be both, but since the largest relative size gap between landmasses falls between Australia and Greenland, that seems like a suitable cutoff point for separating the definitions. (Plus, the second sentence of the Wikipedia article for Greenland describes it as being part of the continent of North America.)

And as for the three islands thing, Wikipedia's list of islands also has a footnote about that, saying it's a possibility but the current commonly-held definition is that Greenland is one large island (for now at least). It may even hold that if Greenland is ever officially redefined as three islands, one of those three islands could still be the largest island in the world, since it only has to be 40% of the size of Greenland to still be bigger than New Guinea.

 
DVD Smith
1283729.  Thu May 10, 2018 8:15 am Reply with quote

Pingualuk Lake in northern Quebec is an almost perfectly circular lake situated within a giant meteor crater.



The lake's water comes entirely from rain and snow, as there are no inlets or outlets for the water to travel through. As a result, the water in the lake is among the purest and clearest in the world, with a salt level of 3 ppm. By comparison, the "freshwater" Great Lakes have a salinity level of 500 ppm, and seawater is about 35,000 ppm.

http://www.wondermondo.com/Countries/NA/Canada/Quebec/Pingualuit.htm
https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/pingualuit-crater-lake

Pingualuk's larger and more famous cousin is Crater Lake in Oregon, USA, a lake formed from the collapse of a volcano caldera. Like Pingualuk, Crater Lake has incredibly pure water, has no rivers, and gets all its water from rainfall.

 
Baryonyx
1284019.  Mon May 14, 2018 7:58 am Reply with quote

Omg I had such debates about the Greenland/Australia thing as a teenager!

As a pro-Australia Biggest Island-er, I used to get SO ANNOYED at the idea that Australia didn't count because it was too big. (Sorry Mr Bolt, you ran the 100m too fast, you are hereby categorised as non-human)

The best argument I heard to change my mind is that if Australia is an island, what is its mainland?

 
suze
1284090.  Mon May 14, 2018 1:32 pm Reply with quote

Baryonyx wrote:
(Sorry Ms Semenya, you ran the 800m too fast, you are hereby categorised as a man)


That is not actually what you said, but some other people did and so the notion must not be utterly preposterous.

Would it possible to construct a definition of "island" such that the Moon is one?

 
AlmondFacialBar
1284091.  Mon May 14, 2018 1:34 pm Reply with quote

Baryonyx wrote:
Omg I had such debates about the Greenland/Australia thing as a teenager!

As a pro-Australia Biggest Island-er, I used to get SO ANNOYED at the idea that Australia didn't count because it was too big. (Sorry Mr Bolt, you ran the 100m too fast, you are hereby categorised as non-human)

The best argument I heard to change my mind is that if Australia is an island, what is its mainland?


There is none, technically. The Australia is an island claim makes it the largest island of the mostly submerged continent of Oceania.

:-)

AlmondFacialBar

 
DVD Smith
1284114.  Mon May 14, 2018 6:50 pm Reply with quote

Australia is also wider than the Moon. In my head that makes it big enough to qualify as a continent. ;)

In fact I've arbitrarily decided that's where my island/continent cutoff point is - anything smaller in diameter than the Moon is an island. :)

 
suze
1284150.  Tue May 15, 2018 12:18 pm Reply with quote

DVD Smith wrote:
Australia is also wider than the Moon.


This is a fabulous piece of utterly useless information which I am determined to shoehorn into class at the earliest opportunity!

 
Brock
1284155.  Tue May 15, 2018 1:19 pm Reply with quote

As posted to this forum not so very long ago: post 1270538

 
DVD Smith
1284184.  Wed May 16, 2018 4:29 am Reply with quote

suze wrote:
DVD Smith wrote:
Australia is also wider than the Moon.


This is a fabulous piece of utterly useless information which I am determined to shoehorn into class at the earliest opportunity!


I love it because it gives you a good idea of how big the Earth would look from the surface of the Moon. Next time you see a full Moon, imagine that it's Australia and then the rest of the Earth around it. Always seems bigger than I originally thought.



Also as an aside, I saw the Solar Eclipse in Kentucky last August and the solar flares of the corona reached out at least three times as wide as the disc itself (as seen in this image here.) It was so much bigger than I could have possibly imagined. So that's all I think about when I see a full moon now.

 

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