:: Trivial things I did not know about Europe before moving here
The Cod Wars: when reading a riveting, page-turner of a business case about a frozen foods producer in the UK, I came across this paragraph:
I assumed the phrase "Cod War of 1975" was either a typo ("Cold War" perhaps?) or a semi-serious reference to an industry battle like the so-called "Cola Wars" of the 1980's. In fact the Cod Wars - like any good movie franchise it was a trilogy - were a series of three quite heated nautical confrontations between Iceland and the United Kingdom over fishing rights in the North Atlantic between 1958 and 1976. An inglorious name for an inglorious conflict.
Domino Day: every year domino-obsessed Dutchman Robin Paul Weijers - a.k.a. Mr. Domino - assembles a pan-European supergroup of domino builders to break the previous record (almost always his own) for total number of dominos felled in one day. I watched my television in total befuddlement yesterday as the 2007 edition of Domino Day failed for the first time to achieve that goal. Words don't really convey the strange spectacle - check out some highlights . This year's theme: "Falling into life".
The remodeled St. Pancras station now has Europe's longest champagne bar: well, if I didn't know it before coming to live in the UK I surely know it now, as seemingly EVERY ARTICLE on the new Eurostar terminal includes this fact, though I see now I'm not the first to recognize it.
UK radio: in embarrassing contrast to the 15-year descent into consolidation and irrelevance we've experienced in the US, the quality here actually borders on tolerable.