Answers for June 1998

Two things I cannot stand are Frenchmen and football; dark forces therefore conspired to send me to Paris for some weeks. Anyway, having returned and waded through a heavy set of entries I find that it is easiest to declare as WINNER for June 1998:

Christopher Duffy


Question 1

In October 1995 the Queen of England was struck by what object?

Answer

During the course of some Unnecessary Firing at Ornithology, our beloved Queen of Australia was struck by a recently shot – very recently shot – grouse (bird). Thus saving the need for retriever dogs to go and get it (the grouse, that is). Perhaps she said “That’d be grouse.”

Alternative answers:

  • A fanbelt
  • A button snapping off of one of the Spice Girls’ brassieres?
  • A copy of Windows 95
  • An idea
  • The gently placed sweaty paw of P.Keating, a prime minister
  • A corgi
  • Raven poo, at the Tower of London
  • Paul Keating’s lack of decorum
  • Who is this Queen, anyway?
  • shit man these questions are hard im only ten!

Question 2

What happened on 30 June, 1908?

Answer

Tunguska (Siberia) was hit by an Unwelcome Frozen Object – as if they really needed snow in the summer too!

Alternative answers:

  • A butterfly flapped its wings, causing the great San Francisco Earthquake [retroactively – it was in 1906]
  • The sun rose; citizenry in the northern hemisphere discussed the solar eclipse of the previous day; a dirty big comet went foom over Tunguska in Siberia; on Salisbury Plain some quaintly dressed sillies finally ran out of grog thus ending a particularly debauched midsummer celebration; at the first Psycho-Analytic congress in Salzburg, Lord Baden-Powell launched the Boy Scout Movement, thereby solving the “stones in psychotic horses hooves” problem at one stroke; possibly in response, the Belgian government took control of the Congo Free State, Austria annexed Bosnia and Herzegovina, Crete proclaimed union with Greece and Henry Ford launched the Model T; then the sun went down and the Financial Year ended.
  • The universe ended and was instantaneously replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable.

Question 3

After rising from the dead Jesus appeared to advise Simon Peter to try fishing from the other side of his boat – how many fish did he then catch?

Answer

153, yet the net was not broken – John 21:11 (evidently he was playing table tennis). Does nobody read their Bible these days? Look what you are missing in John 21 – after Jesus had “revealed himself” to the disciples, Simon Peter put on his clothes and jumped into the sea … But the other disciples came in the boat…

Alternative answers:

  • 3 – the rest were LBW
  • 42
  • Heaps, but all below the legal size limit so they had to kiss ’em and throw ’em back – Rex Hunt style.
  • None, but Jesus got a good laugh out of it!
  • None….all the fish fled when they saw the dead guy walk on water to the boat…… [he had to walk quickly of course, owing to holes in his feet]
  • Obviously as many as Simon Peter wanted, as he was delusional – I mean, who would accept advice on fishing from someone apparently risen from the dead?
  • Trick question – what he actually said was “Why not use a Shimano rod and reel, and by the way, how’s the chapter going, the publishers want the draft for the book and they say they have three creation myths, four tree gods and two new deities who can take our place”. [Note: the word “Shimano” is already built into my spell checker – is this a conspiracy?]
  • Journalistic ethics were in a parlous state, then as now, but this is just too much. What do you mean by “appeared to advise”. He either advised or he did not. If the chronicler of this event didn’t know what Jesus said to Simon Peter, he should have said “Jesus spake unto Simon Peter, but I was too far away to catch his words”. [I, or rather John, presumably meant “he appeared within their field of vision, in order to advise them”. John could also more accurately have written “I couldn’t hear what he said because I wasn’t born at the time”]
  • Unlimited Fish Obtained

Question 4

Are all 8 arms of the octopus identical?

Answer

No – the fifth one also deposits sperm. So don’t go heavy petting with an octopus!! I couldn’t find an International Standard for assigning numbers to octopodean arms, so to find the fifth one I tried starting at #1 and counting, but after 1000 arms I gave up.

Alternative answers:

  • No!! I picked one up in a bar last night, and you can imagine the shock when I got “her” home and found that 1 leg had a DICK! [I picked one up too, but I ate mine]
  • Not if they are different.
  • Only suckers believe this. [Groan]
  • All of its arms are both the same.
  • Not after the cooking process gets started.
  • It depends on whether you’re a Platonist or an Aristotelian. In a Platonic sense, all octopodean arms are mere instances of the ideal octopus arm and are identical in that sense. If you’re an Aristotelian, the answer is no, since no two things that have different spatio-temporal locations can be the same thing.
  • No – they come out of different places on the octopus.
  • The Swiss make a Universal Functional Octopus that has three arms for cutting, two are screwdrivers, plus a file, a corkscrew and one for removing stones from horses hooves.
  • The males have an arm specially modified for groping the females, leaving them only seven to ward off the inevitable retaliation.

Question 5

What position was most common for heterosexual copulation in ancient Greece?

Answer

Like dogs – the “missionary” position was known but not favoured – at least not by the artists who painted pictures on ancient Greek vases.

Alternative answers:

  • Around 38.15N, 23.49E
  • Who in their right mind would want to know this? [Presumably – Scholars of history; Archaeologists trying to reassemble broken Greek pottery; People who did last month’s quiz; Perverts and sex fiends – but I don’t know much abut pottery.]
  • The great ancient Greek civilization may have been extinguished by a lack of copulation
  • Athens of course … famed for its annual Orgy and Dinner (“first served first come”)
  • Donkey style [That’s a new one. Where do you put the carrot? Or are we supposed to infer that heterosexual activity was about as rare as donkeys mating?]
  • The `Trojan Horse’ – don’t ask, but it involves a lot of men hiding inside and then emerging in the middle of the night
  • Upright, Flinching and Oedipal
  • Dog fashion, so they could watch the games at the same time
  • Doggie fashion – why, are there some other positions?
  • Doggy style – missionaries not having been invented yet
  • Woggy style!
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