850: World According to Americans
|World According to Americans|
Title text: It's not our fault we caught a group on their way home from a geography bee. And they taught us that Uzbekistan is one of the world's two doubly-landlocked countries!
There’s a somewhat well-circulated image on the internet entitled “The World According to Americans” which plays on the stereotype of the ignorant American. In it, the entirety of Eastern Europe and most of Asia are entitled “commies” and the Middle-East as “evil-doers,” and so on. Later, other people created similar maps to re-do the concept. It later spread to other cultures. This comic is an anti-joke playing on that idea. You expect to see something which plays on the stereotypes that exist in American culture of various parts of the world. However, instead, the map is remarkably well-informed. The title-text expands on the joke.
A few notes about things written inside the map:
- In the Mercator projection, Greenland is larger in area than South America, but the latter is actually eight times bigger. Even in the Robinson projection used in the comic, Greenland is "still too big" — and the Gall-Peters projection, which fixes this, is not particularly pretty. See comic 977 for more on map projections.
- On December 26, 2006, a huge earthquake struck off the coast of Indonesia, causing severe tsunamis. December 26, the day after Christmas Day, is celebrated as Boxing Day in the UK, Canada, Australia, and some other English-speaking countries, but not the US. BBC News is part of the British Broadcasting Corporation and thus uses the term "Boxing Day."
- Risk is a board game played on a map of the world, where players own territories and battle each other for world domination. The person in the comic admits to knowing Kamchatka Peninsula only from the territory "Kamchatka" in the game.
- Papua New Guinea and the Philippines appear to be misspelled.
A landlocked country is a country that does not border any major bodies of water. Furthering the concept, a doubly-landlocked country is a country that not only has no connection to water, but is only bordered by other landlocked countries. As the title text states, there are only two such countries in the world (as of 2012): Uzbekistan and Liechtenstein.