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The Third Book of General Ignorance

the QI Team
The second book from the QI Team is in slightly different format and size. A full sized book which can’t be slipped into one’s pocket to cheat in pub quizzes. It is however a book with QI facts from shows over the years with each section ending with pithy remarks from panel members and/or Mr Fry. Unlike 1,234 QI, this book gives the fact then the rationale behind them. The panel are used as the ‘fall-guys’ often to use the exception to prove the rule.

This is the third book of QI General Ignorance, but I am afraid I have not reviewed editions one or two. Much is made in the opening introduction by the team of the number “3” including pointing out that Pythagoras, the first person to call himself a philosopher (in 520 BC) thought that “three” was the “perfect number”, the symbol of God. The Team point out that the good Pythagoras also struggled to explain why! My own feeling is the third book is to boost their pension fund – and why not!

The book is of course dedicated to QI facts, that is not facts dreamt up by the QI team but facts which in themselves are QI, clear? For instance, did you know that coal power stations emit 100 times more radiation than nuclear plants? Neither did I and I can’t prove it so if you have any quibbles, take them up with QI!

Another is how many Spartans died in battle at Thermopylae? Answer 299! The King is not included in the 300 usually mentioned which would have taken the total up to 301, but 2 Spartans were off elsewhere, one on a diplomatic mission back to Sparta and one had an eye infection so did not participate. Both these latter committed suicide through shame after the event so the total Spartans as a result of the battle rises back to 301! Mind you there were also 700 Thespians (not actors Dahlink) and 400 Thebans at the battle so a bit of good PR for the Spartans then!

Once again, a good read if interesting facts are your ‘thing’ and certainly a very good stocking filler for either yourself or the boring old fart in your life! The facts are listed at the beginning of the book and there is an excellent index at the end of the book so searching for your favourite tidbit to drop into a conversation will not be hard.

The intro to the book finishes off with “Live, reflect then ask more questions, is the bendiatris of the QI Team”. If this book does a little towards that then they will have accomplished their goal.

3.5 Mr MRHs for the addition of reason behind each fact.

Auld Yin
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