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More Cultural Fun Facts (May 2023)

Because of the mistake made on Vesak Day, I now know that there are differences between the lunar and lunisolar calendars, and I also experienced first-hand how misinformation can quickly spread across knowledge platforms.

white laptop

Limitations of one source, such as CHATGPT, can spread to many sites, and an error can magnify and eventually appear legit even when cross-checked.- as per Goethe’s quote: “By seeking and blundering, we learn.” Yes, indeed, thanks to the incident, I learned much.

With that, let’s proceed with our fun-facts cultural knowledge Q&A section. Here we go:

Q1. What tradition do most Norwegian children enjoy on their National Day? Allegedly, children in Norway can eat as much ice cream as they want on National Day! Norway is among the top ice cream consumption countries, with an average of 12 litres per person per year. Hennig-Olsen, a popular ice cream brand, broke the Guinness World Records by producing the tallest ice cream cone (2.82m high, 1,080 litres of ice cream plus 60 litres of chocolate and 110kg of waffle biscuit) (source:Guinness World Records, OfficeHolidays.)

Q2. Are “Scandinavia” and “Nordic” the same? No, the terms “Scandinavia” and “Nordic” are often used interchangeably. However, they do have distinct meanings. Geographically, Scandinavia refers to the three countries on the Scandinavian peninsula: NorwayDenmark, and Sweden, while the Nordic countries include FinlandIceland and some territories beyond the Scandinavia peninsula. Therefore, even though Greenland and Faroe Islands belong to Denmark, they are not considered Scandinavia but Nordic. Also, while people in Åland speak Swedish, it is part of Finland and is Nordic. (source: Wikipedia.)

TCG May collage

Now, unless you are in your seventies, 2030 will be the first time you get to witness the coronation of the British monarch, a ceremony steeped in traditions, cultures and ~1,000 years of history since William the Conqueror. Here are some fun facts if you want to live your “history-in-making” moment…

Q3. What are the ingredients in King Charles III’s anointing oil? It is vegan! The coronation oil has a new recipe comprising scented olive oil (pressed from olives harvested from groves on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem’s Old City) with sesame, rose, jasmine, cinnamon, neroli, benzoin, amber, and orange blossom; The exact recipe for the coronation oil is kept secret and known only to a select few. (source: Sky News, The Royal Family.)

Q4. What is the signature coronation dish? By now, many are aware of the vegetarian Coronation Quiche that King Charles III and Queen Camilla have chosen, featuring spinach, broad beans, and tarragon; lesser known are three other official recipes: i.e. Coronation Roast Rack of Lamb with Asian-style Marinade, Coronation Aubergine, and Strawberry and Ginger Trifle. (source: Buckingham Palace, Country Living.)

Well, we hope you enjoyed those Q&As. For more fun facts about Norway and King Charles III’s Coronation, please refer to the following Youtube clips:

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