Saturday, December 25, 2010

2010- The Year that was

My blog was created in March’09 with 12 posts that year. The year 2010 is now coming to an end with 40 posts. In the past few months, the ‘indirank’ is consistently above 70. I take this opportunity to thank one and all for their support by way of visit to my blog posts and letting me know their views through posting their comments.

This year saw Rotary Club honoring all the volunteer counselor of first telephonic helpline called SAHAI ( in November’10.

Rotary club (East) in association with NIMHANS and MPA (Medical Pastoral Association) commenced this helpline for prevention of Suicide and providing emotional support to depressed and people with low esteem. I am associated with this helpline since its inception as a volunteer counselor.No achievement can be greater than the joy and satisfaction one get when some one in distress get benefit from this helpline.

While 2009 saw my name entering in to ‘Limca Book of Record’ for my unique “journey down the memory lane” after taking retirement from service, the same recognition was again accorded to me in 2010 by ‘India Book of Records’.

Another NGO ‘Sri Mission’ for whom I was editing their Awareness e-mail quarterly Magazine "MASTER" from the day one 8 years back, was discontinued in June’10

Here is a brief of activities in 2010 on my face book-
2010 Status Collage


Monday, December 20, 2010

Food For Thought

 I received this Hindi mail through circulation at a time when 'Akshaya Patra contest' is on at indiblogger. I thought of sharing with all indibloggers  who can read Hindi. This is not a part of contest  for votes please.-S.R.Ayyangar 
रोजानजो खाना खाते हो वो पसंद नहीं आता ? उकता गये
थोड़ा पिज्जा कैसा रहेगा ? 

नहीं ??? ओके ......... पास्ता 

नहीं ?? .. इसके बारे में क्या सोचते हैं ?
आज ये खाने का भी मन नहीं ? ... ओके .. क्या इस मेक्सिकन खाने को आजमायें ?

दुबारा नहीं ? कोई समस्या नहीं, हमारे पास कुछ और भी विकल्प हैं........     
ह्म्म्मम्म्म्म ... चाइनीज ????? ??
बर्गर्सस्स्स्सस्स्स्स ? ???????
ओके .. हमें भारतीय खाना देखना चाहिए ....... J   दक्षिण भारतीय व्यंजन ना ??? उत्तर भारतीय ?
जंक फ़ूड का मन है ?

हमारे  पास अनगिनत विकल्प हैं ..... ..   टिफिन  ?
मांसाहार  ?
ज्यादा मात्रा ?
या केवल पके हुए मुर्गे के कुछ  टुकड़े ? 
आप इनमें से कुछ भी ले सकते हैं ... या इन सब में से थोड़ा- थोड़ा  ले सकते हैं  ...
मगर .. इन लोगों के पास कोई विकल्प नहीं है . 
Think of them before wasting or throwing your food..................   

इन्हें तो बस थोड़ा सा खाना चाहिए ताकि ये जिन्दा रह सकें ..........   

इनके बारे में  अगली बार तब सोचना जब आप किसी केफेटेरिया या होटल में यह कह कर खाना फैंक रहे होंगे कि यह स्वाद नहीं है !! 
इनके बारे में अगली बार सोचना जब आप यह कह रहे हों  ... यहाँ की रोटी इतनी सख्त है कि खायी ही नहीं जाती.........

कृपया खाने के अपव्यय को रोकिये  

'मदद करने वाले हाथ प्रार्थना करने वाले होंठो से अच्छे होते हैं ' - हमें अपना मददगार हाथ देंवे 

"Serving hands are nobler than praying ones, extend your helping hands"


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

LOC- The Line of Control

This article is not about our country’s border issue where actual line of control (LOC) exists. Any intruder crossing the LOC lands in trouble and sometime become a contention for war between two countries. Similar situation exists elsewhere also.

While moving around in a big city like Bangalore, one often come across traffic signals which to me are no less than a LOC. Believe me or else observe it yourselves next time. The heavy traffic built up on both sides of road at a traffic signal is like troops across LOC almost ready to strike at the command of the traffic signal. So are the people in two or four wheelers waiting restlessly for the green signal. Their one hand or leg would be throttling the gear to full extent while the other one would be pressing the clutch to release it any moment. Fingers would be on horn button for continuous honking and the moment signal turns green, all hell breaks loose. The Great War begins and now it’s a race against time.

Two wheelers starts zooming from all possible sides and space including side walk while the desperate four wheeler drivers get busy honking even before the signal turns green. For a few seconds, there would be utter chaos and confusion. Nobody would be able to move an inch. The army of all kinds of vehicle across both sides would be face to face with no one ready to give way to the other. In the meantime some gentleman would start abusive/verbal duel which goes on for some time. The traffic police would be watching this battle helplessly for some time and then enters the ‘Chakravyuh” to pacify the desperate road soldiers. In the next 30/60 seconds , the light turns red and the battle comes to a halt as if ceasefire is declared but later continues again……

Another kind of LOC can be seen in front of those houses where there is a road and big trees. The dry leaves keep falling on the road but the point of contention arises between house owners staying in the vicinity of the tree as well opposite of it. Who should clean up the mess everyday on the road because the civic authority do not arrange for sweeping of the road. Even though there may not be any mutual understanding, it is presumed that only that portion of road in front of the house would be cleaned which falls in front of their house that is half side of the road. The other half falls in front of the opposite house so they should clean up. Thus, a LOC is drawn.

There would always be a possibility of a war if the bunch of leaves while sweeping flies or comes in the territory of the other.One can always vouch for the undercurrent of a cold war brewing up. One thing is sure that they would be keeping a watch on each other like a hawk while any one of them is sweeping to find if they are deliberately pushing the leaves across LOC and rest assured, that day would be a dooms day!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Traffic Police Calling

It seems that the department of traffic in Bangalore is receiving several complaints from motorists and two wheeler owners about the police constables suddenly stopping or chasing their vehicles on busy roads and signals to verify vehicle related documents, resulting in vehicles coming from behind ramming into the other. Many a times these constables can be seen running after the vehicle and trying to catch the offender from back resulting in either of them getting hurt or even falling from the vehicle and getting injured. In one case the police caught hold of the two wheeler handle so firmly, the driver was thrown off the vehicle and sustained multiple injuries. In another case the police while holding the door handle of a car was dragged several meters away! Thanks to number of complaints, the police authorities have now woken up to issue clarification in the matter.

According to the Additional Commissioner (traffic), an officer of the rank of Assistant sub inspector (ASI) or officer above them only can stop motorists and penalize traffic rule violators. They are equipped with a black berry smart phone that records and monitor every fine and offence. City police commissioner has further clarified that unless the motorists have violated any traffic rule the police have no authority to stop the vehicle merely for the sake of checking the documents. This implies that one must be aware of all the traffic rules and if one is confident that he or she has not broken any rule, they have every right to question any cop who stops them.

So far so good, but is it so easy in reality? In majority of the places traffic is manned by police constables and ASI may not be there all the time at all the places. In such a situation, if a constable stops to verify documents, can one dare to refuse? If refused, he can very well tell the ASI later that you have violated some rule and can get you a notice issued at a later date! They can quote 101 reasons for traffic violation if bent upon to teach the motorist a lesson for arguing or questioning their authority. However, the only silver lining is the assurance and press statement given by the ACP (traffic) that based on motorists complaint against the errant traffic police and if found guilty, departmental action would be initiated against them.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Facts & Figures Calamity

Be there an earthquake, flood or a disaster any time of the day or night, Newspapers comes out with all the facts and figures accurately the very next day. You get all the details about how all the roads have been submerged in water or how roads are blocked due to land slide, how villages are not accessible by road and where railway lines have been washed away. Electrical and telecommunication lines are snapped, bad whether making aerial survey impossible etc.
These headlines and sub headlines will follow more details like 638 people died, 1201 missing, 118 cattle washed away, 3114 houses collapsed and estimated loss of 3410.51 crores, phew! Commonsense says that these numbers are not estimated otherwise it would have been in rounded off numbers. They are exact and that too, up to the last digit and even in decimals. It is another matter as to how come these data are released the very next day of a calamity when communication is snapped; villages are not accessible by any mode like rail, road or air due to unfavorable climatic conditions.
Same yardstick applies to day to day scams taking place in our country. As far as I can remember, the first big scam was ‘Jeep Scandal’ during the regime of Mr. Nehru. In fact our country is now enflamed in scams and there is no respite. After CWG and Adarash Building scam, it is the 2 G spectrum scam now! It is reported that Rs.1.76 lakh crore presumed loss to the national exchequer on account of this scam.
I envy and salute these reporters and even government officials who have a sort of third eye to roll out the facts and figures with such precession in no time! 

Monday, November 22, 2010

Just Five Minutes Syndrome!

“Sir, I will be there in just 5 minutes”. 
All of us might have heard this many number of times from friends, clients, relatives or anybody else in our day to day routine, but do they really come in 5 minutes? Does these 5 minutes are for today, tomorrow or the day after?

My experience with electricians, plumbers, carpenters, tailors, iron-wallah etc is that they will never turn up at the promised time. If your tailor asks you to come after 2 days, rest assured, your cloths would not be ready even on 3rd day. When you go to him the next day, he will ask you with a smile on his face to ‘just wait for 5 minutes’. The other day a computer technician was uploading anti virus software on my computer when he got a call from some one. Knowing well that it takes anything from 1 to 2 hours to install the software, he told the caller that he would be there in 5 minutes. It took full 3 hours for him to complete the job at my place! Think of the poor caller who may be waiting for him leaving all his other engagements of the day.

I am still not able to figure out what’s so special about this 5 minutes syndrome. Why not people say 3 minutes, 7 minutes or 2 hours, why only 5 minutes?  I often ask my electrician, tailor or iron man to tell me an extended date and time providing all the cushion for urgent work on hand and the delays in commuting but even than they are not able to stick to their promised time. They plead their helplessness citing ‘Sab Chalta Hai’ attitude without any regret. In a place like Bangalore traffic jams, diversion of road, break down of vehicle due to pot holes are the best excuses for delay.

Even if somebody is MBA, MBBS or MCA, when it comes to mathematics, they fall short of proper calculations. We are all poor at calculation to visulise how much time does it require to complete a given task or to reach a designated place taking in to the account frequency of transport and traffic conditions of the city. If we are able to do these mathematical calculations in our mind beforehand, I bet you would never tell others that ‘You will be there in 5 minutes’!

It is high time we make an attempt of attitudinal shift from ‘Indian standard time’ to something concrete, focused, disciplined, punctual time befitting to the concept of time management.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Road Safety Awareness

1:- It can be observed that while accompanying a child to school or nearest pick up point, majority of parents (often mothers) hold the child’s left hand in such a way that the child walks on the right while accompanist remain on safer left side. The right side walker child is exposed to the dangers of traffic on road. Actually, the child should be made to walk on left side and parent holding the right hand of child should be on right side to protect the child.

2:- Whenever a car or vehicle is stopped on the road side, very often the occupants tend to get down by opening wide the right side door which opens towards the road. This way, people are exposing themselves to the danger of any vehicle coming from either side. The correct method is to get down from the left side door which opens towards footpath and not the road.

On Roads/Traffic-

Let the talks of Magic Boxes , flyovers, elevated roads, Metro, mono/tube rails be kept aside for a moment and concentrate on the following points which are not of long term nature and can be implemented with a minimum outlay of funds by any town developmental authority.

1. Remove or shift all the bus stops and auto stands which are situated immediately after a turning or circle. These are main hindrance in free flow of traffic. Penalise those bus drivers and auto drivers who stop the buses/autos at these turnings and bus stops.

2. Distance between two bus stops should not be less than half a kilometer. At present, there are many bus stops which are less than 100 meters apart and buses are not able to pick up speed.

3. Make footpaths free of hawkers. Stone slab footpaths are uneven. They should be properly plastered to have an even surface.

4. Public or for that matter any body including government agencies like wter board, Telecom, electricity, cable operators who dig the road or footpath must be made accountable to restore them back to original failing which heavy penalty should be imposed.

5. Slow moving vehicles like bullock cart, hand driven carts, three wheeler rickshaws, Tonga, etc should not be allowed within the city limits during peak hours.

6. Any body driving two wheelers on the footpath to go ahead in a traffic jam situation must be penalised or his/her vehicles should be impounded.

7. At railway crossings, there is a common tendency by two as well as four wheelers to block the right side of the road in order to go ahead as soon as the train passes. This practice results in blockage of traffic on both sides of the crossing. Public who are also well educated should understand this.

8. Potholes on any road should be immediately filled up as soon as information is received. Road inspectors should be made accountable for not attending to any pothole.

9. Superior quality paint should be used for zebra crossing and other road humps as the paints used at present become faint or invisible after a weeks time.

10. Glow signs should be put up at the starting of all road dividers.

11. Traffic discipline during crises like fire brigade, ambulance or police patrol jeep siren  must be known to all road users.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Dowry & RTI

Here is good news for ‘dowry’ seekers. The Delhi high court has come out with a ruling that ‘giving dowry under the fear that the proposed marriage may be called off, is not an offence’! The high court quashed the criminal proceedings against the bride and her family after they convinced the court that the dowry was given under pressure as the bride groom’s father had threatened to cancel the marriage. The court felt that bride’s parents were confronted with the unenviable situation either to concede to the dowry demand or face the loss of honor of their family in the society. They can not be faulted for giving dowry as they were victims of the circumstances.

By this judgment, court has proved that it does not consider ‘dowry’ as an offence and can be accepted/taken in the guise of threat or pressure. This should pave way for the disposal to several dowry harassment cases pending in the courts. All that the bridegroom & their family have to do is to ask the bride’s parents to concede in the court that they have done it under fear and honor of the family-‘Ghar ki Izzat’. And, hurray, the case shall be quashed. Now if you are one of the prospective dowry seekers, just ask the bride party of dire consequences because it is no more offence to receive dowry under threat even if they are giving it on their own. This threat will save the skin for any future backlash.

In another case filed before a metropolitan magistrate in Delhi, one RTI (Right to Information) activist has been accused of ‘domestic violence’ by his wife and teenaged daughter. This activist was chosen as the best ‘Citizen’ by a media group!  There are numerous such activists and awareness speakers spearheading their respective campaign on various social issues for a cause but their family life is shattered for some or the other reason including ‘preaching one thing, practicing the other’. These acts of writing, preaching, spearheading for the sake of name and fame only and not practiced by respective people in their personal life exposes them of their dual personality.

 While talking of justice, here is parting tailpiece with no comments-
Learned and highly religious Chief Minister of Karnataka Mr. B. S. Yeddyurappa has advised people to ‘chop the hands’ of officials who demand bribe to extend benefits of government schemes to the entitled family!


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Fifty Crores Bonanza

Come elections or ‘vote of confidence motion’, horse trading word gets momentum in political parlance. Now, Karnataka state is witnessing this melee.Both ruling and opposition parties are leveling horse trading charges against each other. If news report is to be believed, each MLA on sale is getting whooping 50 crores for cross over!

How come this word has come in to use in political field? In olden times, people used to carry huge amount of gold and diamonds on the back of a horse traversing miles and miles across the continent for trade & commerce purpose. So this word emerged wherever talks of trade arose. In politics it became a trade of MLAs and MPs. Now politics is no more a mission, it has become a trade where these so called people’s representatives are traded in plush resorts, sea side pools or in 5 star spas. These MLAs move in a group like (black) sheep and cattle.

Have you ever wondered how these 50 crores are traded? I have absolutely no idea but I just wonder if these are carried in a jute sack or in a suit case? Where are the godowns from where the supply is made? There must be a distributing point. Then again, where do they keep all these money? I remember, several years back there was a CBI raid on a Government official’s bungalow and crores of rupees were unearthed from his bed rooms. They were shoved inside the pillows and mattresses. Family members used to sleep over it. What a luxury without getting a sound sleep!
Recently there was TV news that currency notes were found flowing in a river. During our time, we used to read in textbooks that once upon a time India was so rich that milk used to flow like a river. But not any more, now milk is a scarce commodity and scary too for the heart patents. What a progress from Milky River to Currency River!

Coming back to the question, where do they keep all the ill-gotten money? They can not keep in bank locker because the moment sack is brought to the bank, cat would be out. A deposit in benami name is also ruled out as furnishing of PAN number is insisted upon. Any investment in real estate above 30 lacs requires reporting to IT officials. Yes, Gold can be one option despite soaring price. Gold bricks can easily be hidden any where even beneath the ground without any possibility of damage or erosion to the gold.

Sometimes I envy those ‘not so educated politicians’ whose sharp mind are able to find ways and means to amaze and hide in such a way that sometimes even the professionally trained investigating agencies are not able to detect any thing whereas ‘we the educated class’ can not even think of a place to hide our hard earned few thousands of rupees in our house which often gets robbed by white collared robbers or gets stolen by miscreants.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Stray Dogs Vs Pet Dogs

While Bangalore is famous for its greenery, good climate, IT/Biotech industries, it is also famous for Monkey & Dog menace! It seems these monkeys also played in Common wealth games stadium in Delhi recently. The local authority BBMP has totally failed to control the menace of both these animals so much so that sometimes back the Karnataka Chief Justice of High Court had to tell that ‘NGOs & Dog lovers should keep stray dogs in their bedroom or bathroom’! This has deep rooted thought to be tackled by civic authorities.

Whenever the news of dog bites is flashed on the front page of any newspaper, BBMP just sends the van, round up 1 or 2 dogs and that’s the end. In fact I have seen them letting off these dogs in nearby next locality. They never visit again or go to the next street!  These dogs are so clever that the moment the van arrives; they vanish from the spot in no time. The dog catching van should come again and again at different times including night visit at least for one week in all the streets so that one time escapee dog is caught some other day.

The ABC (Animal Birth Control) programme initiated by health department has failed miserably. Mere ABC programme will not suffice. What about ferocious dogs which keep chasing and bites children and innocent people? What about those dogs which keep barking all nights. The role of so called Animal protection NGO’s is just reduced to oppose any move by BBMP to eliminate such dogs but they have done very little on their own to end this menace except feeding these menacing dogs whenever they come near their house! Unless some drastic steps are taken, people will keep getting terrorized by these unwanted pets.

BBMP & NGOs should also discuss the issue of ‘Pet dogs’ hitherto neglected. The household pet dogs are also adding to the menace by barking on the slightest pretext at odd hours causing disturbance to peace of other residents. It is strange that many a times the owners do not bother to find out as to why their dog is barking? If the dog is for security, is it not fare for the owners to come out to find what’s wrong and stop the dog from unnecessary barking. Owners of such pet dogs never realize that there are other residents also staying in their vicinity where an ailing person, senior citizen or students are being disturbed at odd hours. Another issue relates to the ‘Poo’ droppings on pavement in front of ‘YOUR’ house when the owner of the dog takes it for an outing. Of late, some people are raising their voices against this matter too.  

Just owning a pet dog and putting up a “Beware of Dogs” sign board is not enough. They also need good care, hygienic living, medical attention, timely food and outing and above all proper training to listen to the commands of the master. This is not happening in majority of the case. Like any human being they are also prone to become restless and depressed in absence of love & affection from all concerned.

And in the end, here is another bad news for dog lovers. BBMP is contemplating restricting the pet dogs to 3 but how are they going to implement and supervise, is a question they only have to answer. I am not ‘anti-animal’ but I love them in natural habitat. The problem being ‘social’ in nature needs to be debated and trashed out collectively by civic authorities, NGOs as well as Animal lovers together.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Recorded message to Voice mail

There was a time when only Post offices used to have a phone in smaller towns and a messenger used to come home to inform if some body wanted to talk from out station. People used to go to the post office and wait for the caller to give a ring again! Those days are gone when one used to interact with a person directly over telephone to get his or her complaint/problem redressed (with exceptions like Electricity/telephones complaints which are always engaged when needed most!). It was very easy to know the status as to when the complaint will be attended or what the reason for delay if any is. Any time one could call the number to get doubts cleared. Even one could get annoyed or shout at the person for any delay or deficiency in service. Not any more.

In due course of time direct phones were replaced by PBX system attended by telephone operators who in turn used to connect your call to the concerned person or department. There was no way you could directly talk to anybody if the telephone operator was not in his/her seat!
Today, be it a corporate office, government department, company’s service centre or helpline, you are made to listen to a sweet recorded voice of welcome followed by instructions to press buttons from 1 to 9 as the case may be. There is no guarantee that you can immediately be connected. Many times (most of the time) the phone keeps ringing for some time and stops thereafter. You will have no other option but to try once again from the beginning, that is, getting welcomed again by the same sweet voice.

The phones at the service centers, company help lines have voice recording facility wherein you are guided to record your message with phone number. You never know when these messages are attended to or heard at the other end. Even after recording the message, you are not assured that next day any technician would call on you to fix up the problem. Don’t be surprised if no one turns up because either your voice message has not been properly recorded or has got deleted due to technical snag. You can come to know of this only when somehow you manage to talk to a person of the service centre and not a recorder.

In the end, one finds that with the advent of the new technology, a person is spending more time over phone than before to get connected to the right person through recorded messages and voice mails.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

8th Grade Final Exam- 1895

In the very beginning, let me confess that this piece of post is not mine. Sometimes we all get mails from chain mails from unknown source and this one is from such a mail. The source and the originator of the mail are unknown to acknowledge but the knowledge spread through the mail is of immense importance therefore I am just sharing with you. As it is by way of cut & paste, the text matter is going beyond the text box, please bear with the inconvenience.
Remember when grandparents and great-grandparents stated that they only had an 8th grade education? and the new generation just laughed it out! Well, check this out. 

Could any of us have passed the 8th grade in 1895? This is the eighth-
grade final exam from 1895 in Salina , Kansas , USA .. It was taken from the original document on file at the Smokey Valley Genealogical Society and Library in Salina , and reprinted by the Salina Journal..

   8th Grade Final Exam: 
Salina , KS - 1895 

Grammar (Time, one hour)
1. Give nine rules for the use of capital letters.
2. Name the parts of speech and define those that have no modifications 
3. Define verse, stanza and paragraph.
4. What are the principal parts of a verb? Give principal parts of 'lie,' 'play,' and 'run' 
5. Define case; illustrate each case.
6 What is punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of punctuation. 
7 - 10. Write a composition of about 150 words and show therein that you understand the practical use of the rules of grammar. 

Arithmetic (Time,1 hour 15 minutes)
1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.
2. A wagon box is 2 ft. Deep, 10 feet Long, and 3 ft. Wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold? 
3. If a load of wheat weighs 3,942 lbs, what is it worth at 50cts/bushel, deducting 1,050 lbs for tare? 
4. District No 33 has a valuation of $35,000. What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals? 
5. Find the cost of 6,720 lbs. Coal at $6.00 per ton.
6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7percent per annum.
7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft long at $20 per metre?
8... Find bank discount on $300 for 90 days (no grace) at 10 percent.
9. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per acre, the distance of which is 640 rods? 
10. Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt

U.S. History (Time, 45 minutes)
1. Give the epochs into which U.S. History is divided
2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus . 
3. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.
4. Show the territorial growth of the United States .. 
5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas 
6. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion. 
7. Who were the following: Morse, Whitney, Fulton , Bell , Lincoln , Penn, and Howe?
8. Name events connected with the following dates: 1607, 1620, 1800, 1849, 1865. 

Orthography (Time, one hour) 
[Do we even know what this is??]
1. What is meant by the following: alphabet, phonetic, orthography, etymology, syllabication?
2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?
3. What are the following, and give examples of each: trigraph, subvocals, diphthong, cognate letters, linguals?
4. Give four substitutes for caret 'u'.
5. Give two rules for spelling words with final 'e.' Name two exceptions under each rule.
6. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each. 
7 Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: bi, dis, pre, semi, post, non, inter, mono, sup.
8. Mark diacritically and divide into syllables the following, and name the sign that indicates the sound: card, ball, mercy, sir, odd, cell, rise, blood, fare, last. 
9.. Use the following correctly in sentences: cite, site, sight, fane, fain, feign, vane , vain, vein, raze, raise, rays.
10. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by syllabication. 

Geography (Time, one hour)
1 What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?
2.. How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas ? 
3. Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?
4. Describe the mountains of North America . 
5. Name and describe the following: Monrovia , Odessa , Denver , Manitoba , Hecla , Yukon , St. Helena, Juan Fernandez, Aspinwall and Orinoco . 
6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S. Name all the republics of Europe and give the capital of each..
8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude? 
9.. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.
10. Describe the movements of the earth. Give the inclination of the earth.

Are they kidding??? This is hard to believe....Notice that the exam took five hours to complete. Gives the saying 'he only had an 8th grade education' a whole new meaning, doesn't it?! Also shows you how poor our education system has become and, No, I don't have the answers!