Diapers and Dragons

Friday, April 3, 2009

Not So Easy

Sigh. According to Lauren, getting into Australia might not be so easy after all. I'd have to take a knowledge test, one of those things that countries make prospective citizens take to prove that they know more than any of the actual natives do. She says:

Actually, it's quite difficult.You have to pass a knowledge test to become a citizen.

The test includes questions like:

Who was Phar Lap?

What is a Baggy Green?

Who was Australia's first prime minister?


Very difficult, even for most Aussies.

So unfair. I replied that it's rather like the citizenship test we have here in the States, which apparently is the inspiration for the game show "Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?" which mostly proves that most of us aren't.

However, through the miracle of the Internet, I'm at least able to answer those first three questions. Did you know:

1. Phar Lap was a racehorse, apparently Australia's version of Man O' War, Secretariat, and Seabiscuit rolled into one.

Phar Lap: Australia's wonder horse
He triumphed during the Great Depression of the early 1930s, when a hero was most needed by the people of Australia.
He conquered the local racing scene—36 wins from his last 41 starts—and then won North America's richest race, the Agua Caliente Handicap, in 1932.
A fortnight later he went to the great equine heaven in the skies, struck down by a mystery illness that many suspected was the work of gangsters.


2. Apparently a Baggy Green has something to do with cricket, a sport that is vaguely comprehensible to me only because I've read lots and lots of P.G. Wodehouse and Adrian Plass (who thinks heaven might just be a cricket field.) There's a Baggy Green website, I know that much!

3. And doesn't EVERYONE know that Edmund Barton was the first Prime Minister of Australia? That would be like Americans not knowing that John Hanson was the first president of the USA!

Bring on more trivia, Lauren!

Um--they have WiFi at the test-taking site there, right?

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