Answers for February 1998

Our WINNER for February comes from another, much colder island –

Christine Allin


Question 1

What happened on 24 June, 1947?

Answer

The seminal UFO sighting – of “flying saucers” by Kenneth Arnold at Mt Rainier

Alternative answers:

  • All stoats celebrate their collective birthday. [which explains the sounds of orgies down near my local river]
  • Dr. Bob was born? [I say, steady on, old chap]
  • Somewhere in a far off galaxy a large sun went supernova leading to a chain reaction which will reach the earth by 2002
  • My dad went to Australia. Don’t worry, he came back again. [Phew]
  • Princess Elizabeth got engaged to Prince Philip. [Which proves that they are part of the conspiracy too].
  • The hit-tune “How Much is that Doggie in the Window?” went to number 1 [The conspiracy widens!]

Question 2

How many stone blocks make up the Great Pyramid?

Answer

About 2,300,000

Alternative answers:

  • Just enough to reach from the floor to the pointy bit at the top, without missing out the middle.
  • 1,000,000,000,000,000,000 very small, easily transported ones- and most of them are assembled *really* closely.
  • One: it was chiselled from a suitable mountain and a few scratch marks added. Easier than shifting all those blocks, in the heat.
  • Eight *very* curiously shaped blocks.
  • None – since rocks are far too heavy to carry in that climate, and as the Ancient Egyptians had no knowledge of the Fork Lift Truck, the Great Pyramid was made entirely from polystyrene blocks, cunningly painted to resemble stone blocks. As we know that the Egyptians were skilled artists, this hypothesis seems to have a ring of truth about it. (See How the Gyppoes Fooled the Closed Minded Archaeological Community for Millennia, Handoncock, N & Wallaby, J R, University of Gullargambone Press, 1998. 7pp $49.95 and very good value for the money)

Question 3

How many tons of Australian Cane Toads are squashed each year?

Answer

Approx 200 tons

Alternative answers:

  • Don’t know, but why and how are these poor beasts being squashed, anyway? [Because they obstruct the progress of vehicular traffic on the highways]

Question 4

Why do some Swiss Italians put heavy boulders on their roofs?

Answer

Swiss Italians generally live on the south-facing slopes of the Alps, where a strong southerly wind gets under the eaves of their houses and tends to lift the roof off. I mean, it’s obvious.

Alternative answers:

  • So that stupid tourists will walk by and ask, “hey, why’s there a boulder on your roof?”
  • To protect them from alien abduction at night when they are asleep
  • Because it is easier than putting the house on top of the boulders.
  • Because the light boulders keep blowing off.
  • Actually the “boulders” are really excess stones from the Great Pyramid.
  • To stop them blowing off in the winter (the roofs that is)
  • As fire alarms, of course. If they have a house fire, the rafters burn through and the falling boulders either put out the fire or alert or kill the inhabitants.
  • Camouflage.
  • Defence against Jehovah’s Witnesses. (“Hello, I’ve come to talk to you about God” <rolling sound> SPLAT !) [Wow!! Thanks for the idea!]
  • So they will roll down and squash passersby.(This of course is the origin of the Swiss Roll)
  • The basic incompatibility of being efficiently Swiss and manically Italian would be bound to cause some mental imbalance. What is more surprising is that they don’t do something much more bizarre. [Oh, but they do – just you wait for the July questions]
  • To stop people from stealing their roofs.
  • They put the boulder over the bedroom where the mother-in-law sleeps.

Question 5

In the 1900s the Emperor of Ethiopia was impressed by American use of the electric chair for executing criminals, and bought one. What happened to it, and why?

Answer

There being no electricity in Ethiopia at the time, he used it as a throne. If this trend had been continued after electricity came in, it would have been a very convenient way of disposing of recalcitrant monarchs.

Alternative answers:

  • Like all electrical devices, it stopped working as soon as the warranty period expired.
  • It sits in the basement, rusting. The darned thing uses 110 volts, and someone forgot to tell them that they would need a converter.
  • The Americans backed out on the deal – they decided that they had too many criminals to kill, and not enough chairs to do it with.
  • The Ethiopians backed out on the deal when they discovered that they had no criminals. [Probably abducted by flying pigs]