Someone Get These Idiots a Geography Lesson

Published by Andrew Hreschak in Little Idiocies
Published on 06/22/06 @ 11:47:00 pm using 440 words, and has 8932 views

Along with several billion other people, I've been following closely the World Cup football tournament being hosted this year in Germany. Since we weren't able to get tickets to see any of the matches, I'm forced to settle on watching them on television, and being subjected to the sheer stupidity of some of the announcers on the ESPN network. The specific idiots to whom I'm referring are Shep Messing and Glenn Davis, but there are some others who may have escaped notice.

So, why do these idiots need a geography lesson? Well, in watching the recent match between Ukraine and Saudi Arabia, their lack of knowledge of geography and grammar, not to mention a limited knowledge of the game of football in general, became glaringly obvious. Let's take a look at a simple map of Europe, taken from the following URL:

Map of Europe including Ukraine

Okay, so what's the issue? The issue is that the name of the nation located north of the Black Sea is Ukraine. It is NOT the Ukraine. However, I was forced to listen to 2 hours of inept commentating by Glenn Davis and Shep Messing, wherein they continually referred to Ukraine as the Ukraine. What is that? The name of the nation is Ukraine. There is no 'the' in there. A simple look at an atlas or a world map (yes, it requires opening a book or a website and actually learning something) would help these two idiots immeasurably.

My next point of contention comes from the incorrect usage of simple grammatical structures which, again, could have been avoided by these two guys had they simply been given a brief geography lesson. When implying possession, as in the team from a specific nation, (in this case Ukraine), the proper grammatical construction is "the Ukrainian team" and not "the Ukraine team".

While we're on the topic, let's discuss pronunciation as well. The word Ukraine is pronounced with the emphasis on the second, not the first, syllable. It is correctly pronounced U-kraine. It is not pronounced U-kraine.

I can understand that there is a certain inherent lack of knowledge of other parts of the world among many Americans, but these guys are commentators on a major television network. I'd think that ESPN could afford to buy an Atlas or a map for these two idiots...

So, once again, for the record, the name of the country is Ukraine. It is not, nor has it ever been, the Ukraine.

Contemporaneous Auditory Narcotics:
or, What my speakers are currently pumping...
Thievery Corporation - The Lagos Communique

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Comment from: Joe Alvarez [Visitor]
Joe Alvarez

Nice site.

I looked up Ukraine in Wikipedia and found this note under etymology:
“In English, the country is sometimes referred to with the definite article, the Ukraine, as in the Netherlands, the Gambia, the Sudan or the Congo. However, usage without the article is becoming more frequent, and has become established in journalism and diplomacy since the country’s independence (for example, within the style guides of The Economist, The Guardian and The Times).”

11/22/06 @ 11:34
Comment from: Andrew Dutton [Visitor]
Andrew Dutton

It’s correctly pronounced oo-cry-EEN-uh. In Ukrainian anyway. And in Russian. I don’t suppose it’s really relevant…

I really like the blue-lunar skin. Is this available for download? I’m just setting up my website now.

02/17/07 @ 23:38
Comment from: Alicia R. Plath [Visitor]
Alicia R. Plath

If only you had a chance to hear some of the pronunciation mistakes made by South American journalists, then you’d be really shocked!

04/08/07 @ 13:47