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A Quiz about Humorous Units of Measurement

Ever heard of the FFF (furlong/firkin/fortnight) system of measurement? Since a fortnight = 14 days or 1,209,600 seconds, and a furlong = 660 ft (201 m), the speed of light may be expressed as being roughly 1.8 terafurlongs per fortnight (or 1.8 megafurlongs per microfortnight). If you find this even vaguely amusing, then you will surely enjoy my quiz 🙂

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  • Question of

    A Muggeseggele is a humorous idiom used in Swabia (Germany) to designate a nonspecific very small length; Muggeseggele literally means…

    • A housefly’s scrotum
    • A mosquito’s egg
    • A drop of dirty water
  • Question of

    In issue 33, Mad magazine published the “Potrzebie System of Weights and Measures” developed by 19- year-old Donald E. Knuth, later a famed computer scientist. Its basis was the Potrzebie unit of length, equal to…

    • The width of a trillion microbes
    • The thickness of Mad issue 26
    • The distance Knuth could spit
  • Question of

    In which sport is an Altuve (called after player José Altuve), an informal unit measuring 5 feet 5 inches (1.65 m)?

    • Golf
    • Three-dimensional chess
    • Baseball
  • Question of

    In the Zork game series, the Great Underground Empire had its own system of measurements, including the bloit, which was defined as…

    • The length of time a battery-powered brass lantern can shine for
    • The distance the king’s favourite pet could run in one hour
    • The number of zorkmids it costs to buy a gloop of ale
  • Question of

    In computer operating systems, the interval between system timer interrupts usually varies between between 1 and 10 milliseconds. It is known in the trade as…

    • A jiffy
    • A mo
    • A micro-cornflake
  • Question of

    A Sheppey is a measure of distance equal to about  7⁄8 of a mile (1.4 km), defined as…

    • The closest distance at which sheep remain picturesque
    • The maximum distance at which a sheep-dog can correctly interpret its owner’s whistles
    • The distance that a firkin of ale will travel before dissipating, while flowing down the hill outside Dublin’s Black Sheep Brewery
  • Question of

    The beard-second is a unit of length (inspired by the light-year), defined as the length an average beard grows in one second. it is…

    • One thousandth of a metre
    • One millionth of a metre
    • Ten billionths of a metre (1/100,000,000 metre)
  • Question of

    The mathematician John von Neumann used the term Microcentury (one millionth of a century) to denote the maximum length of any lecture he would give. How long is that approximately?

    • 53 minutes
    • 28 minutes
    • 1 hour and 14 minutes
  • Question of

    According to Terry Pratchett, a New York Second (“the shortest unit of time in the multiverse”) is defined as…

    • The length of time it takes for your mouth to start salivating, after someone passes you eating a pastrami sandwich
    • The period of time between the traffic lights turning green and the cab behind you honking
    • The length of time it takes for a subway car to fill up at rush-hour
  • Question of

    Helen of Troy is widely known as “the face that launched a thousand ships”. Thus, what is the amount of beauty required to launch a single ship?

    • 1 microhelen
    • 1 millihelen
    • 1 megahelen
  • Question of

    What is one Warhol equal to?

    • Umpteen New York galleries
    • $105 million (the price paid for Warhol’s 1963 canvas titled Silver Car Crash)
    • Fifteen minutes of fame


What do you think?

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