Strange NZ Facts
Strangely True; Truly Strange
It is strange to be known so universally and yet to be so lonely.
- Albert Einstein
Strange is our situation here upon earth.
- Albert Einstein (again)
by Patricia Chapman
Source: from the book Strange Facts & True about New Zealand
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Comments: You have stated that no capitol city is further south than Wellington, NZ. if you have a look at a map with parallel lines on you'll find that Hobart, Tamania actually sits lower than Wellington by about 6-8 degrees of parallel so I think you should check before making a statement about what city sits farthest south.
First, thanks for writing. Second, I quoted from a book rather than "making a statement". Third, I took the quote to mean a country's capital city but you are correct because it does not say that.
Are you from Hobart?
Top 10 Down Under
NZ's Top 10 (1992)
edited by Michael Morrissey
(in which I read that honeybees kill more people per year than any other poisonous creature on earth):
Colin Quincey (b1945)
In 1977 Colin Quincey rowed his six-metre fibreglass dory Tasman Trespasser for 63 days 7 hours from New Zealand to Australia. He was the first (and so far only) person to have accomplished this feat. Quincey battled a bad back, setbacks by currents, screaming winds, sore fingers from bailing, sleepless nights and salt water irritations while completing his 2170 km arc across the top of the Tasman. On arrival in Australia Quincey exclaimed, "I've taken you - you bastard! I've won!"
New Zealand World Records
Litter collection - The greatest number of volunteers collecting litter in one location on one day is 19,924 who helped clean up the city of Wellington in October 1991 as part of a Keep Wellington Beautiful campaign.
Steepest street The steepest street in the world is Baldwin St, Dunedin, its maximum gradient 1 in 1.266.
New Zealanders who leave for Australia raise the IQ of both countries.
- Robert Muldoon on the exodus to Australia in the early 1980s
Spenceriella gigantea, a two-metre long thumb-thick worm, was discovered on Little Barrier Island in 1905. It has also been located on Kawau Island, the Hen and Chickens Islands and near Leigh and Tapuni. Difficult to locate and easily damaged by handling, it is hard to successfully capture a live specimen.
New Age Beliefs Demythified
During the 1970s and '80s firewalking courses became a New Age fashion. From Britain and California to New Zealand, up to $500 was paid for weekend seminars of meditation and chanting which culminated with participants being able to walk barefoot without pain or harm across pits of glowing coals. The organisers of these events claimed the invulnerability resulted from the effect of the mind insulating the body from the intense heat of the coals. Sceptics, however, have shown otherwise. Hot coals are poor conductors of heat and though an intense firepit radiated a great deal of heat, so long as the total contact time for the soles of the firewalkers does not exceed six seconds, burning does not occur. No mental preparation of any kind - except a belief in the laws of physics - is required for anyone to walk with impunity over the hot coals. The New Zealand Sceptics held the first of its free, public firewalks in 1989. Since then, hundreds have trod the glowing coals unscorched.
On the same subject, I recently spotted this article online:
Insurance Staff Roasted Alive
Age Extra: World in Brief
Thursday 16 July 1998 London - Seven British insurance company workers on a motivation course got a roasting after attempting a fire-walking trick perfected by Indian fakirs. The workers were rushed to hospital with burns when the coals they were persuaded to walk over turned out to be red-hot instead of merely glowing, The Sun reported. Two were transferred to a specialist unit and may need skin grafts. The exercise was part of a course on teamwork and motivation. The company said it was investigating the accident, which occurred during a course run by an outside agency.
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