Wednesday, 3 June 2009

A Strange Map and a Ghostly Tale

One of my favourite sites is Strange Maps, because I like maps. And I'm strange. Anyway, the latest entry is a weird one about a shifting sandbar that's a ship's graveyard. Along the way you get a spectral vision on the bridge of a doomed trawler, and some other stuff.

Maps. They're spiffing.

5 comments:

Todd T said...

You're right about that map site - endless cool stuff there.

Interesting that the Outer Banks of North Carolina also claim to be the Graveyard of the Atlantic, and have similarly impressive numbers on their side. (They are considerably less "Outer" than Sable Island, being less than a mile from the mainland these days.) Perhaps the islands are holding a competition to lure in and sink the most ships.

valdemar said...

Yes, Strange Maps is brilliant. I love maps, me. I am a geography fetishist, in fact.

One thing that these ships' graveyards remind us of is how bloody dangerous going to sea used to be. And we worry about a few Somali pirates.

Todd T said...

Yes indeed. And there is something viscerally thrilling about ship and lighthouse versus night and storm, and about the great deep that we can never truly know. I have always particularly enjoyed a good supernatural sea tale.

I share your geographic bent. I'm the only one I know who gets geography questions right when watching quiz shows. My wife and I keep track of how many countries, states and provinces we and the kids have each visited, and we made a point of going 50 miles out of our way to set foot in White Pigeon, Michigan, so that we could check off Michigan while we were in the vicinity. People think we're kooks. Perhaps we are. I must say though that I have fallen behind on knowing the details of the world's countries, and their borders, features and capitals. I haven't kept pace with changes in Europe and the ex-USSR. Must fix this.

valdemar said...

Aha! Geography is a neglected science, or possibly art. I did a quiz at work recently and the last round was geography. When it was announced a young colleague made a noise as if the topic were to be quantum physics or early Puritan trouserpresses. What do they teach 'em?

I agree about the problem of keeping up. The Cold War had the great advantage of keeping frontiers fixed. Now things have started wobbling all over the place. I read a news story this week about a Newcastle United fan who is deciding whether - now they've gone down - it's worth commuting to St James' park from Taraz in Kazakhstan. Never heard of Taraz before.

Todd T said...

I haven't heard of it, either. Yipes, I have to get down to business.

They have geography bees here (U.S.) for young folks, similar to spelling bees. They get brief TV coverage, admittedly on the same segment of the news that will cover the cat stuck in a tree or the three grandmothers who have started a needlepoint co-op, but at least it has some notice.

But when they poll the general public on matters such as where is Iran, or even Britain, or what is the capital of their own state, the results are shockingly bad.