Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Thought Americans were bad at geography? Check out this Swiss Airlines map of the Americas via Strange Maps. Among other blunders, it puts Sao Paolo in the Atlantic, San Jose, Costa Rica, in Nicaragua, and Santo Domingo and San Juan near the Cayman Islands. They don't seem to have bothered labeling Santiago de Chile. As for US cities, they've put Portland and Sacramento in Idaho, Seattle near Spokane, Indianapolis on Lake Michigan, Chicago in northern Wisconsin, Memphis south-east of Nashville, Little Rock in mid-Kentucky, Pittsburg (without the H) and Columbus on Lake Erie, Minneapolis near the Canadian border, Detroit in Lake Huron, and Oakland on the coast north of San Francisco. Washington is on the Delaware and Philadelphia on the Hudson, with New York somewhere near Springfield, Massachussetts. As for Canada, Toronto's nowhere near Lake Ontario, and Ottawa is in south Quebec.

My guess is that most people are ignorant of geography outside their own area; I've met few Europeans who know much about the world outside Europe, and few Americans who know much about the world outside America.


Akaky said...

Phildelphia is on the Hudson? I guess it could be worse; I could be in Massachusetts with the rest of New York. I want to make it clear to everyone that there is no way in hell that I am going to root for either the Phillies, which isnt so bad, now that I give it some thought, or for the Red Sox, which is as bad as it could ever be. I will open an artery before I join the Red Sox nation

John said...

Small example of what I meant: Right now TV3 has a headline up on its website reading "Hillary wins Virginia primary." Uh, wrong state.

Akaky, as a Royals fan, I must admit I'm a member of the Non-Northeast Baseball Nation. We don't mind one another's teams, but we really can't stand either the Yanks or the Sox. And we don't much like the Mets, either, though as New York's B team they don't stir up so much annoyance in the land of $60 million payrolls.

Anonymous said...

Hilarious consequences of not knowing your geography


Akaky said...

NY's B team? Never say that on Long Island, John; as a rule, Mets fans hate the Yankees more than Red Sox fans do, and unlike the Sox fans, there's no getting away from the Yanks, not if you have to share a city with them. ;-)

John said...

Yeah, what exactly happened to the old Dodgers and Giants fans? I assume most of them didn't transfer their allegiance to teams that had abandoned them. All the Dodgers fans went with the Mets, I guess. The Giants fans too, or did some of them switch to the Yankees?

I'm just guessing that the Mets are bigger than the Yanks only on Long Island and maybe parts of Jersey. What is it in Manhattan, 75% Yanks-25% Mets? When I was about 11 years old and we lived in Trumbull, Connecticut, it was about 75% Yanks, 20% Sox, and 5% Mets. The only kid I remember who was a Mets fan was a little wussy who'd moved from Hauppage, LI.