Thursday, June 16, 2005

Americans in the UK....

Test to see how British you've become by taking the BBC quiz on the government's Life in the United Kingdom, a booklet to be handed out to immigrants to the UK. Sample question:
Life in the UK explains what to do if you spill someone's pint in the pub (we're not making this up). What, according to the book, usually happens next?

A: You would offer to buy the person another pint
B: You would offer to dry their wet shirt with your own
C: You may need to prepare for a fight in the car park
(I got 10 out of 15)


Blogger Richard John said...

Amazing! Well, I got 12 right which I suspect may be a number that most will fail to achieve.

However, it is not at all obvious to me how on earth this quiz represents a test that validates someone's readiness to be part of Britain.

This is a typical example of a generally sensible idea (be part of a process that aims to have immigrants blend into society rather than become a society within a society) that is taken over by the civil service, made politically correct and ultimately fail in its intended purpose.

6:47 PM  
Blogger mamapajamas said...

I agree, Richard J... I got 15 right ("Seat on the throne"!!!), and I've never been to the UK or contemplated immigrating there :/. I just gave the answer I thought a bureaucrat might like! ;)

It does seem pointless :/.

4:15 AM  
Anonymous Drew Fobbester said...

I only scored 9 out of 15 so it is official - Scott is more British than I am and I am (officially at least) British. What would the "Are you fit to be American" test look like - I might score better!

9:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is there an "Are you stupid enough to not emigrate" test?

5:31 PM  
Blogger Richard John said...

Mamapajamas - so you know the date sequence for the national saints days...... wow.

10:05 PM  
Anonymous Mark said...

10 out of 15 is 67%. I got a 5, just at the top of the "a seat at Heathrow" crowd. :)

I think they should ask how many litres it takes to fill up a gas tank, and how much it costs, and what are the words used to describe the different parts of a car. Maybe that's too basic, but the basic things count. :) I thought some of the things were good. What's the emergency number to dial, for instance. What's the most important thing to ask a solicitor (I assume that's an attorney?).

I didn't like the first question though. The correct answer was "Respect laws, the elected political structures, traditional values of mutual tolerance and respect for rights and mutual concern." I can understand the part about respect for laws and mutual tolerance and respect for rights. The parts about respecting the political structures, and mutual concerns would take a while to get used to. We have defined political structures here, but we don't emphasize respect for them. In fact we've had a long history of the opposite. The part about "mutual concerns" sounds like the "socialism pill". We do have common concerns here, but it's more extemporaneous. Such concerns are not set by a central authority, though there are authority figures that people look up to, but this changes over time. We don't always look up to the people in the same positions until the end of time. If people have common concerns it's because they just so happen to have them. There's a saying here that the easiest way to lead is to figure out which way the crowd is going and get in front of it.

12:49 AM  
Blogger mamapajamas said...

Richard J... Actually, I guessed at that one, and got lucky :). Seemed to me St. Patrick's Day was earliest, and there was some hoo-raw in the news recently about St. George's Day and the flag of England, so all I really had to do was plug the other two in somewhere, giving me a 50-50 chance of getting it right purely by accident :D.

On the others, pure bureaucratic thinking was the only requirement ;).

5:56 AM  
Anonymous JohnM said...

Scott I only got 8. I suggest I swop my UK passport for your US one.

9:27 AM  

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