Series O, Episode 16 - Overseas
- The Australian icon that is regularly smeared in olive oil is the Sydney Opera House. A Greek migrant arrived in Sydney in 1964 named Steve Tsoukalas, and he fell in love with the building while it was being constructed. He thus began working there, and is still working there, being the building's longest-serving employee. He said: "Olive oil for the Greeks means a lot of things. The Greeks used olive oil in the Olympic Games to rub on the body. Olive oil protects from the sun." Thus Tsoukalas rubbed the building in olive oil, although it doesn't protect it from the sun. It does however stop the railings, door frames and window frames from getting rusty. (Forfeit: Colin Lane)
- The thing that Romans thought that the Britons had ever done for them was oysters. When the Romans invaded British oysters were considered a delicacy. The 1st century BC Roman historian Sallust said: "Poor Britons, there is some good in them after all. They had produced an oyster." Oysters were transported in carts across the Alps, the carts being packed with snow and ice. Wealthier Romans had saltwater tanks in their gardens to keep them fresh. Aside from oysters, the Romans considered the Britons uncultured and backwards, mocking our abundance of tattoos and lack of clothing. 2nd century historian Herodian claimed the reason the Britons didn't wear clothes was to show off their tattoos.
- The screen behind the panellists shows some anagrams of country names, and they have to figure out the anagrams of "Swale", "Fancer", "Go Alan" and "Shake Za Tank". The panel are asked who got all four, and none of them could of because the last one doesn't work as an anagram. The words are "Wales", "France", "Angola", and a misspelt "Kazakhstan", which shouldn't have an "e" in it. This question is based on a study that shows you are more likely to act immorally if you spend time abroad. People were given anagrams and those who spend time aboard are more likely to claim that they solve all the anagrams when they didn't. 48% of people who spend a year in foreign country cheated on the test, compared to 30% of the others. Some people think your moral compass loses its influence while you are aboard. A fifth of people admit to stealing while in a foreign country, and similar figures admit to urinating in public while abroad. 5% admit to drinking too much while aboard, resulting in a naked escapade in public. (Forfeit: I Did)
- XL: The panel are played a video and are asked what Sandi is doing. The video shows her dressed as a cowgirl riding a hobbyhorse across some land, waving her hat and shouting "Harrah!" When Oklahoma was opened up to American settlers, the way you could claim any spot of land was by just standing on the land, waving your hat and either shout "Harrah!" or fire a gun. In 1889, President Benjamin Harrison declared two million acres on Indian territories to be available to white settlers in "land runs", and on 22nd April all the land was available to claim. 50,000 Americans set up tents along the border so that could be ready to claim. Most galloped across the land after the starting gun was fired at midday. Because of the gunfire the claimers were nicknamed "boomers", and if you didn't travel by horse you could use a boomer train. However, the trains were limited in speed so that they couldn't travel faster than the horses. One woman, Nannita Daisy, who helped fight against gender discrimination, took part in four land runs. She got her first bit of land by jumping off a train and firing a shot, then got back on the same train, carried on to the next piece of land and grabbed that one too. Legend has it she jumped off the cow catcher. There is a statue of Daisy in Edmond, Oklahoma. Aside from the "boomers" there were also "sooners", who hid in Oklahoma before the legal date and time so they could claim land earlier. Because of this, Oklahoma is nicknamed "The Sooner State".
- The people who were overpaid, undersexed and over there were American women. During the Second World War, wives of American servicemen who were sent aboard got an allotment costing $50 per month of their husband's tour. If the husband died in battle the widow got $10,000 in life insurance. Some women thus decided to marry as many men as they could and became bigamists in order to claim more money. These women were dubbed "Allotment Annies". One, 17-year-old Elvira Taylor had married two men, and was caught when two American sailors were in a pub and they both showed photos of their wives to each other, discovering they both had the same wife. They then found out she was married to another four sailors. Warnings against bigamists had to be printed because it was such a problem. Even a film was made called Allotment Wives. Hundreds of women were convicted after the war.
- XL: When American GIs were overpaid, oversexed and over here, the original "here" was Australia. Australia was the first country American soldiers were sent to when they joined World War II, in December 1941, and the Australians were the first to use the phrase.
- The thing that is a great beauty with pouty lips, long legs, good posture, firm ears and spits in your face when you annoy them is a camel. Every year the government of Oman, the only country in the world beginning with "O", runs a camel beauty contest. The guidelines for a beautiful camel are: "Well proportioned body and face; a long gharib (the area between the hump and neck); long body; firm ears; pouty lips; board cheeks; big whiskers; a long, straight neck; long, straight legs; and fur shimmer." Mostly importantly the fur must be natural.
- You would keep your brother in a cage to protect a throne's lineage. In the Ottoman Empire, it was decreed than when a sultan ascended to the throne he should kill all of his brothers to prevent sibling rivalry. Sultan Ahmed I in 1603 however said he didn't want to kill his brothers, so he made a special pavilion called "the cage". His brothers were cut off from the rest of the world, accompanied by eunuchs and concubines past child bearing age, and they spend all their time doing macramé. If a sultan died with no heirs, one of the brothers would be taken out of the cage and would be made the new sultan. However, the sultan who came out of the cage was not always the oldest. In 1622 sultan Osman II died by "compression of the testicles at the hands of an assassin." The assassin was Pehlivan the Oil Wrestler.
- XL: When the Ottomans invaded Constantinople they had to get from the Bosphorus to the Golden Horn via boat. The way they did it was moving the boats across land. They couldn't sail across it because there was a huge iron chain floating on logs that had been installed making the way impassable. Thus the Ottomans secretly built a road and rolled the boats along on logs, having hidden their guns.
- XL: The thing you can tell about someone who wears socks with sandals is that they are not your enemy. Hiroo Onoda was a Japanese army officer in the mountains of the Philippines who refused to believe that World War II had ended. He was in hiding until 1974, when Norio Suzuki found him, and Onoda spared his life because Suzuki was wearing socks with sandals. Onoda wrote: "I might have shot him, but he had on these thick woollen socks, even though he was wearing sandals." He knew the locals would never do such a thing. Onoda effective got away with murder as he killed 30 people during his guerrilla campaign, but he was pardoned because he thought he was at war. (Forfeit: Brit aboard)
- Most of the world's obelisks are in Rome. Rome has twice as many obelisks than Egypt. Rome has 13, and Egypt has 6. Many of the Roman obelisks were ones the Romans stole, but five are homegrown. The word "obelisk" was coined by the ancient historian Herodotus. Britain has one obelisk, Cleopatra's Needle.
- XL: There is nothing special that is outside Mongolia. Outer Mongolia no longer exists. When Outer Mongolia did exist, between 1644 and 1911, it was inside the modern day country of Mongolia. However, it was a semi-independent territory of China's Qing dynasty. Inner Mongolia was under more direct Chinese rule. The region then declared independence in 1912, and then became Mongolia again in 1992. (Forfeit: Outer Mongolia)
- An endangered mammal that eats bamboo is the golden bamboo lemur. Pandas are no longer endangered, and are now classified as "vulnerable". (Forfeit: Panda)
- Rome was built on eight hills. There was a festival celebrating seven hills, but when you count them there are actually eight hills. Classicist Mary Beard says that: "Something has got confused there somewhere along the line." (Forfeit: Seven)
Objectionable Object Prize
- Colin wins a cuddly spider toy.
- Friday 16th February 2018
- BBC Two
- 30 minutes
Cast & crew
|Sandi Toksvig||Host / Presenter|
|Alan Davies||Regular Panellist|
|James Harkin||Script Editor|
|Anna Ptaszynski||Question Writer|
|John Lloyd (as John Lloyd CBE)||Series Producer|
|Kalpna Patel-Knight||Executive Producer|
|Justin Pollard||Associate Producer|
|Jonathan Paul Green||Production Designer|
|Mike Sutcliffe||Lighting Designer|
|Andrew Hunter Murray||Researcher|
|Alice Campbell Davis||Researcher|