Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Decathlon: Event #3!

Deadline for Event #2: Saturday 5/2, Noon PST.
Deadline for Event #3: Thursday 4/30, Noon PST.

In Celebration of Day Three, it’s

the Third Place Quiz!

a brutally challenging set of general knowledge questions about things, people, and places who are, one way or another, in third place!

There are twenty questions. Your first five correct answers are each worth three Decathlon points. Each subsequent answer is worth a single point. [Example: if you get any ten questions right, you will score (5 * 3) + 5 = 20 Decathlon points.] 25 points maximum, which means that if you get 15 right you've already maxed out. I honestly doubt it will be an issue.

No research please. Partial credit may be awarded for answers that miss the mark but show good reasoning. Answers may be posted in the comments or, if you are worried about your answers being poached, sent to M5KDecathlon@gmail.com. Answers must be in by Noon Pacific Daylight time, Thursday, April 30.

Did I mention, brutally difficult? Enjoy the challenge! It's all downhill from here...

The Questions

1. Dry air from the Earth’s atmosphere consists largely of nitrogen, with most of the rest taken up by oxygen. What is the third most common element in the air you breathe?

2. The most common element in the universe as a whole is Hydrogen, with most of the rest of all matter being Helium. What is the third most common element in the universe?

3. China is easily the world’s most populous country, followed by India. What is the third most populous country?

4. Germany is easily the most populous country of the European Union, followed by France. What is the third most populous country in the European Union?

5. Russia is easily the world’s largest country in terms of land area, followed by Canada. What is the third largest country?

6. The first Pillar of Islam is the profession of faith in monotheism and Mohammed’s role as the prophet (Shahadah). The second is the requirement of daily prayers (Salah). What is the third Pillar of Islam?

7. In the creation story of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, Adam and Eve are the first and second humans. Who is (apparently) the third human?

8. What is the third book of the Hebrew Bible?

9. What is the Third Commandment?

10. What is the Third Amendment of the United States Constitution?

11. What is the Third Estate?

12. What is the third book of John Updike’s “Rabbit” series?

13. What is the third book of the Harry Potter series?

14. What is the nickname of the third Beethoven Symphony?

15. “The Three Tenors” of the 1990s and early 2000s were Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo, and what third opera singer?

16. “I take one, one, one ‘cause you left me and
Two, two, two for my family and
Three, three, three for _________________”

17. The first James Bond movie was Dr. No. The second was From Russia With Love. What was the third?

18. The largest cities in Australia are Sydney and Melbourne. What is the third largest Australian city?

19. In 1900, New York and Chicago were the two largest cities in the United States; Los Angeles was 36th, just behind St. Joseph, Missouri. What was the third largest American city in 1900?

20. Most measures of world economies, like Gross Domestic Product, rank the United States of America as by far the world’s largest single-country economy. Japan is nearly always ranked second. What is one of the two likely candidates for third place?

30 comments:

fingerstothebone said...

Poach these answers!

1. I would say pollens is at least the 3rd most common element in the air I breathe, if not the 1st.
2. Dust, that's gotta be the 3rd most common, and 4th, and 5th too.
3. Indonesia.
4. Spain.
5. Australia.
(OK, I must've maxed out on the 3 point answers by now...)
6. Making the hajj?
7. I would think baby is next, you'd have to be an idiot to ask THAT question. Does Mrs5000 know that you don't know how that works?
(Whoa, way too many questions...losing track of where I am...)
15. Jose Carreras, but I hope you're not implying that Placido Domingo was the 2nd tenor, because he was the 1st.
(My eyes! My eyes!)
19. Boston.
20. China

Cartophiliac said...

1. Hydrogen
2. Quite possibly kryptonite, since bits of Superman's home planet have been scattered all over the galaxy... but I'll say carbon.
3. Indonesia
4. italy
5. china
6. the hajj
7. Cain
8. Levitticus
9. Keep the Sabbath
10. Don't be housing your troops in my house
11. the people
12. Eat Rabbits, Eat'em
13. HP and the Prisoner of Azkabahn
14. Weekend at Ludwig's
15. Willie Nelson
16. the many ways you make me count
17. Goldfinger
18. Canberra
19. Philadelphia
20. Germany

Serendipity said...

1. carbon, what with all that carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide floating around
2. lithium, since hydrogen & helium are the first two elements in the Periodic Table, and lithium is the third
3. Indonesia
4. Ukraine
5. Australia, being a continent and all
6. I don't know, and I don't want to offend anybody by flippant guesses.
7. Cain
8. Leviticus
9. thou shalt not steal is the first one that came to mind, so I'll stick with it as I have no better clue
10. Freedom of religion, since speech & guns are 1 & 2
11. workers, the first two being nobility and religious types
12. Run Hardest (get it? Like Die Hard, Die Harder. . . )
13. Urg. Goblet of Fire? I stopped keeping track of the actual titles as soon as I heard it was going to be a seven-book series. It'd be HP & the Sorcerer's (or Philosopher's) Stone and The Chamber of Secrets for 1 and 2, I think.
14. Emperor, 'cause that's the only nickname I know for a Beethoven Symphony, having forgotten everything I learned from your fascinating and well-written Beethoven's birthday celebretory blogs
15. Julio Iglesias, I say boldly, having no clue
16. my job, since if somebody is complaining about love and family, work can't be far behind
17. The Spy Who Loved Me, since I thought of it first
18. Perth, because it is another Australian city
19. Boston, since it shows up in literature of the time more than some other cities
20. China seems like they ought to have a big single-country economy, what with all their people

La Gringissima said...

1. carbon, as in carbon dioxide
2. mmmm, silicon?
3. mmmm, Brazil?
4. mmmm, Italy?
5. mmmm, China?
6. generosity. dunno the arabic name for it.
7. Cain? or was it Abel?
8. Leviticus?
9. ya got me. I'm Buddhist.
10. ya got me. I'm stupid.
11. the Church?
12. the Rabbit Ate Carrots
13. Harry Potter and the Incredible Edible Egg.
14. Bucky
15. Jose Carreras
16. my heartache. At least I know my Violent Femmes!
17. Goldfinger?
18. Adelaide
19. Philadelphia?
20. Canada

Whew. I'm sweating.

PB said...

What bugs me is that I know I've answered a lot of these very questions on Sporcle, but I'm still going to miss them here. Ah, the benefits of repeated guessing. Ok, here goes:
1. Hydrogen
2. Carbon
3. USA
4. UK
5. USA (Alaska's really big, I've always heard...)
6. Pilgrimage
7. Abel
8. Leviticus
9. Honor thy father and mother
10. I wish I had a lifeline here... Right of assembly?
11. First Estate is clergy, second is nobility, third is everyone else, i.e. peasants and bourgeoisie.
12. Watership Down
13. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (the best one, by the way).
14. No idea. Ode to a Bad Hair Day
15. It's something with a C - Caravaggio comes to mind, but he was a painter, right? Caveretto?
16. Uhhh... my friends?
17. Oooh, choices, choices... let's go with Goldfinger. Of course, the original, spoof Casino Royale with David Niven was, I believe, before From Russia With Love, so maybe that should get pushed back into the third slot.
18. Well, as we learn from Monty Python, everyone in Australia is called Bruce. So why not the cities too? Bruce.
19. Philadelphia
20. Germany

PB said...

Ah, I appear to have been mistaken about the dating of Casino Royale, the spoof - coming out in 1967, it would have been either 5th or 6th. But there was, at least, a Casino Royale TV episode with American (!) spy Jimmy (!!) Bond from 1954, or so Wikipedia tells me.

Snowgirl said...

1. helium
2. oxygen
3. bangledesh
4. spain
5. australia
13. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
15. Carreras
17. Goldfinger
18. Perth
19. Philadelphia
20. China

DrSchnell said...

This is a nastily difficult quiz! Probably the third-nastiest you've ever given!
1. Carbon (as part of CO2)?
2. All I can say is how the hell do they know, given that we really have no idea what is in many corners of the universe. But realizing the necessity of giving an answer, I say: um........... carbon?
3. USA! USA! USA! Do I get a bonus for knowing that Indonesia is #4?
4. Da U.K.
5. USA! USA! USA!
6. USA! USA!... um, no, I mean, aid to the poor (zakat, I think, in Arabic)
7. Cain?
8. Leviticus (Home of "God Hates Shrimp")
9. Thou Shalt not equivocate on your answers. I mean, Thou shall not kill
10. Right to not have troops quartered in yer domicile
11. the press (what are the first two?)
12. Rabbit is Rich (J.U. was born and raised just down the road a piece)
13. HP and the Prisoner of Azkhaban (sp?)
14. Eroica
15. Gordon Gano
16. 3 for my heartache
17. Casino Royale?
18. Canberra
19. St. Louis?
20. China (as long as you're not doing per capita numbers)

Missy said...

1. hydrogen
2. oxygen
3. USA
4. Spain
5. Greenland
6. almsgiving
7. Cain
8. Leviticus
9. Thou shalt not use the Lord's name in vain.
11. It's something to do with class systems in France?
13. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.
14. Jimmy
17. The one with the evil guy and the pretty girl.
18. Perth?
19. Philadelphia
20. Germany?

Rex Parker said...

Alright, I get to make shit up.

1. Hydrogen
2. Boron
3. USA!
4. Poland
5. USA!
6. Sharia?
7. Cain
8. Leviticus
9. Thou Shalt Not Kill
10. Freedom to party (won by Beastie Boys)
11. Clergy
12. Rabbit Stew
13. and the Prisoner of Azkaban
14. Eroica
15. Kenny Loggins
16. my heartache
17. Goldfinger
18. Perth
19. Philadelphia
20. Germany

Sandy said...

1. Carbon Dioxide?
2. Nitrogen?
3. Indonesia?
4. Great Britain?
5. China?
6. Pilgrimage?
7. Lilith?
8. ???
9. Thou Shalt Not steal???
10. Come on, this is just getting embarrassing. Protection from unreasonable search and seizure?
11. Church?
12. Stroll Rabbit Stroll?
13. Prisoner of Askaban!
14. Yeah, like I know that.
15. Andreas whose last name escapes me.
16. Excuse me, but I have no idea what you're talking about.
17. Never Say Die?
18. Adelaide?
19. Boston?
20. South Korea?

Staring at my answers isn't going to make them any more correct, so here goes...

Nichim said...

1. Hydrogen
2. Nitrogen
3. Bangladesh
4. Spain
5. Brazil
6. fasting during Ramadan
7. Cain
8. Leviticus
9. Honor thy father and thy mother
10. Michael and I were just lying in bed not being able to remember this the other day. Wish I would have looked it up.
11. ??
12. Run Rabbit Run
13. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
14. ??
15. Jose Carrera
16. three for my heartache
17. Goldfinger
18. Perth
19. St. Louis
20. India

Kadonkadonk said...

Oh Lord, I hope my Veggie Venn Diagram gets some points. Okay, here goes:

1. Carbon
2.
3. USA
4.
5. USA?
6.
7. Cain
8. Same as the Christians! Leviticus
9. No other Gods/Idols
10. In peaceful times, soldiers can't shack up with you? Don't remember the actual wording...
11. Poor people?
12.
13. The Prisoner of Azkaban. Bring on HP trivia anytime. ANY.TIME.
14. Eroica
15.
16. heartache
17. I've never seen a Bond movie. Oh wait, I saw the latest one with hottie Daniel Craig. No idea the name of that one either...
18. Brisbane? Don't know much about Australia...
19. Boston?
20. China?

Now my head hurts.

The Calico Cat said...

1. Hydrogen
2. Carbon or maybe Lithium (We are always looking for carbon based life forms... Then again Lithium is third on the periodic table...) O.K. I convinced myself to go with LITHIUM
3. Indonesia
4. United Kingdom
5. USA
6. No idea
7. Cain
8. Vayikra - but you probably know it as: Leviticus
9. Thou shal not make unto thee a graven image
10. I know several, but I don't know their numbers... so I'll guess no illegal search & seizure
11. I am only in estate 2, the other abodes have been apartments
12. Watership Down is the only one I know
13. Harry Potter & M5K hasn't reported on that one...
14. Dum Dum Dum Dum (G G G E flat - I think)
15. Careras
16. Ba ba Black Sheep (3 bags full?)
17. Goldfinger (BBC American just showed them in order...)
18. Perth - might not technically be the third largest, but it is the most remote city in the world, which is worth mentioning.)
Brisbane & Adelaide are also seemingly large in my mind...
19. San Francisco
20. China

mrs.5000 said...

1 carbon
2 uh, uh, uh, sulfur?
3 Pakistan?
4 The United Kingdom
5 The United States
6 pilgrimage to Mecca
7 Cain
8 Leviticus
9 Ixnay on the graven images.
10 Oh, jeez. The right to bear arms.
11 journalism
12 Rabbit is Rich
13 Harry Potter and the Pot-au-Feu--no, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, maybe? I can never keep them straight.
14 Erotica--no, Eroica.
15 Mario Lanza? Or was he, like, already dead?
16 "your right kidNEY," and a quick punch to the gut. Always good for a laugh in my neighborhood.
17 I'm guessing Goldfinger.
18 Perth
19 I'll say Philadelphia.
20 China
Psschew, my guessing muscles are exhaustirpated.

Elaine said...

1. Argon-- it can't be CO2 because that is not "an element" but a composition of two such
2. Oxygen-- because H2O makes water.
3. Russia
4. Italy
5. china
6. Cleanliness (including ritual cleanliness in areas such as diet)
7. The first child born to the couple following their expulsion from Eden... Wasn't that Abel? even though we always say, "Cain and Abel" in that order. But then, there is the brother, Seth. God knows. (ha ha)
8. Leviticus
9. We're supposed to know them in order? No way. Until Jesus nominated one "Great commandment," all ten were equally important. Random pick: Thou shalt make no graven images.
10. I took Poli Sci in 1965....so tickling the right synapse..? ...shoot. How about Due Process?
11. Judiciary
12. Rabbit Stew? Etoufee? Damn it, I'll remember it as soon as I hit Send.
13. Harry Potter and the Curse of Hermoine Gingold
14. Eroica
15. Jose Carreras
16. the road? or my houn'dawg?
17. Gold-FINga "Goldfinger," but you hafta SING it
18. Adelaide
19. Philadelphia
20. China would seem obvious, which is why I am casting about for another guess...in vain.

I think you would likely get quite a few perfect scores, actually... from younger, more agile brains. tsk Because there was a time when I knew a lot of these answers.
I think it was obvious I guessed on almost all of them! Pitiful.

d said...

1 carbon / 2 oxygen / 3 usa / 4 the uk / 5 china / 6 i think it has something to do with food / 7 cain / 8 leviticus / 9 i am godless - honor thy mother and father / 10 the one about allowing soldiers into your house or not allowing them / 11 the press is the fourth, so...the church? / 12 run, rabbit, run / 13 hp and the prizoner of azkaban / 14 oh jesus / 15 oh jesus / 16 for your love / 17 moonraker / 18 victoria / 19 philadelphia / 20 china

fuck it.

Elizabeth said...

1. Helium. Hahahahahahahahaha! Squeak!
2. Manganese.
3. Mexico.
4. Italy.
5. The United States (noncontinguous).
6. Tithing.
7. Lilith, Adam's first wife.
8. Leviticus.
9. Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord in vain when doing quizzes.
10. Giving people the right to a free press. Or free beer. One or the other.
11. Newspapers, unless that's the Fourth Estate.
12. Rabbit Redux.
13. HP and the Prisoner of Azhkaban, I think.
14. Eroica?
15. Juan Capistrano or some name like that.
16. " ... sweet oblivion."
17. The Man with the Golden Gun.
18. Perth.
19. San Francisco.
20. Singapore or Taiwan.

balaywho said...

OK, it was hard to pass all those answers, but I'm trying to be poach free...
1. carbon
2. I'll try carbon again
3. Indonesia
4. Great Britian
5. China
6. Obedience?
7. Cain
8. Leviticus
9. Honor thy father and mother
10. ???
11. The one just down the road from the second estate
12. Rabbit Redux
13. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azcaban
14. Pathatique
15. Inigo Montoya
16. "the little bitty baby"?
17. Goldfinger
18. I can't think of a single other city in Australia at the moment...
19. Boston
20. China

gl. said...

these answers are going to have a lot of question marks next to them:

1. hydrogen?
2. it's so hard not to say lithium, the third element on the periodic chart. um, carbon?
3. us!
4. i'm not even really sure of all the countries in the eu. the UK or germany, i'm guessing.
5. antarctica?
6. pilgrimage to mecca?
7. lilith, i'm guessing. or cain.
8. leviticus. thank you, "michael reads the bible"!
9. taking the lord's name in vain (goddammit!)
10. one of the weirdest ones: not housing soldiers
11. judiciary branch? 4th estate=press.
12. i'm glad i never got an english degree. i honestly have no idea.
13. harry potter and the prisoner of azkaban. i think this is essentially where i stopped reading them so i'd stop comparing them to the movies.
14. gah. i guess i only know the 9th. ode to boys?
15. erm. man. um. i don't know -any- opera singers.
16. EEEEEEE! three for my heartache! even if i get everything else wrong, i'm so happy i could answer this question.
17. i'm going to name one of the only other sean-connery-as-james bond movies i know: goldfinger.
18. brisbane. i visited all 3 in 2000.
19. philadelphia? i used to live near there.
20. um. china?

Ben said...

1. carbon
2. chlorine
3. The U.S.
4. Italy
5. Australia
6. Love one another
7. Abel
8. Judges
9. Thou shalt not steal
10. The right to bear arms
11. That big one, up on the hill.
12. Rabbit, Part III: Down the Hole
13. Prisoner of Azkaban
14. Pastorale
15. shoot--it's on the tip of my tongue... Pablo something? (I want to say Neruda, but I believe he was a Baroque composer.)
16. my rock 'n roll band
17. Goldfinger
18. Perth
19. Boston
20. China

Third-rate answers, all.

Michael5000 said...

Time's Up!

1. The third most common element in the air: Argon. There's about 25 times as much Argon as Carbon Dioxide. (only 1 person answered correctly)

2. The third most common element in the universe: Oxygen. (4 correct answers) Half mark for the fourth, Carbon.

3. Third most populous country: U.S.A.! (10) Half marks for reasonably close fourth and fifth, Indonesia and Brazil.

4. Third most populous country in the European Union: The U.K. (8) Half marks for reasonably close fourth and fifth, Italy and Spain.

5. Third largest country in area: U.S.A.! (7) Half marks for reasonably close China, Brazil, and Australia.

6. The third Pillar of Islam: Alms-giving, or charity (Zakat). (4) Half marks for the fourth or fifth Pillars, celebration of Ramadan and the Haj.

7. Who is (apparently) the third human? Full marks for Cain (14); half marks for Abel and Seth. Lillith was a fun choice, would be the SECOND human in any tradition that mentions her.

8. The third book of the Hebrew Bible: Leviticus. (18)

9. The Third Commandment: Depending on how your tradition numbers 'em, either keeping the Lord's name or keeping the Sabbath. (5)

10. Third Amendment of the U.S. Constitution: Billeting of troops, baby! (6)

11. What is the Third Estate?: Commoners -- those who are not nobles or clergy. (3) Half marks for "the poor." Also, the question itself is highly amusing because... eh, look it up.

12. Third book of the “Rabbit” series: "Rabbit is Rich." (2)

13. Third book of the Harry Potter series: "HP & the Prisoner of Azkaban." (15) How DO you keep them straight?

14. The third Beethoven Symphony: "Eroica" (6)

15. The Other Tenor: José Carreras. (5)

16. “Three, three, three for my heartache." (7) It's a Violent Femmes song.

17. The third James Bond movie: "Goldfinger." (12) Again, how DO you keep them straight?

18. Third largest Australian city: Brisbane. (3) Half marks for Adelaide and crowd favorite Perth, which aren't far behind.

19. Third largest American city in 1900: Philadelphia. (12) Its nearest competitors, Boston and St. Louis, were less than half its size.

20. Third place economy: China and Germany seem to be in a relative dead heat. (18)

Michael5000 said...

First place in Event #3 goes to general knowledge ninja DrSchnell, who earned 22.5 Decathlon points.

That put him a more fraction of a point ahead of general knowledge grandmaster gl., who scored 22 points.

General knowledge warlord Cartophiliac was third over the line with 21.5 points.

At the front of the pack, there was a six-way tie at 20.5 points apiece, including PB, Missy, Rex Parker, Kadonkadonk, Mrs.5000, and annie.

(My best guess of what I would have scored on this quiz, without the advantage of having written it, is 16.5 points.)

Elaine said...

OMG, I do not believe I am the only one who got #1 (Argon) right. Since I do not know much about the Periodic Table, I was safe from guessing Lithium. Or Lilith. But I did once see a Periodic Table of the Chocolates that seemed worth studying...

Rebel said...

fuck!!!! where's my post???? I promise I answered this quiz! Gah!

judges ruling on technical difficulties? can I get a make-up test?

MJ said...

bollocks! now i'm not even trying to do no. 3 (as if i understood what we were supposed to do hahaha)

MJ said...

i mean no. 2
Wow this one was difficult! I don't think i did the necessary training for this decathlon :(

gl. said...

holy crap! on the internet you can't see my look of shock. but i'm happy to know argon is the third most prevalent gas (i never, ever would have guessed it). i'm also sad that antarctica isn't really considered a contintent.

(maybe a storm quilt is within the realm of possibility, after all! back to create something for the 2nd decathlon event...)

Elaine said...

No,no, gl! Antarctica IS a continent. It has land under it! I stand with you on that...just...the question was COUNTRY, not continent.

And I have no clue why I know argon was right, other than I thought it was a funny fact when I saw it, so it stuck. Judge me, alas, by the other answers. Physical science, chemistry, I avoided them like the plague. A truly FAIR test would be about chocolate, or maybe teething, diaper rash, deciduous teeth, symptoms of scarlet fever, handling tantrums, and toilet training. I am a total EXPERT on those!

Michael5000 said...

@fingers: Are you suggesting that you could help us uncover the cause of our tragic, tragic childlessness?

@Serendip: Excellent explaining of reasons. Also, excellent flattering of the Beethoven writeups. Don't think I don't notice these things.

@PB: A James Bond movie -- with Woody Allen in it. Weird.

@DrSchnell: I agree! Third only to the infamous "Impossible Maps" quiz and the infamous "Papel Names" quiz!

@Missy: I'm sorry, "The [James Bond movie] with the evil guy and the pretty girl" is not quite sufficient.

@Nichim: I just want to clarify for the other readers, just in case there is any confusion, that Mr. Nichim is named "Michael."

@Kadonk: Technically, soldiers can still shack up with you in peacetime if you like a man (or woman) in uniform, and you ask nicely.

Sorry about the headache. I suggest you take four, four, four for it.

@Calico: You're thinking of the Fifth. The Third is more Dum, dum dum, dum dum dum dum Dum, dum {shift to unexpected minor} Duuuuum....

@Elaine: You DEFINITELY have to sing "Goldfinga." Such a... SPECIAL touch!

@Elizabeth: Squeak!

RE: Argon -- it's described as an "odorless gas," but it would HAVE to be odorless, since it's part of our atmosphere and we've evolved to accept it as part of the background. I bet that once we've been on other Nitrogen-Oxygen planets, Argon will totally smell like Earth.