Tuesday, 22 January 2008

Flags of the world

Gambia has the world's best flag (above), according to this site, based on criteria explained here. The flag, he says, represents the geography of the country, as well as having good strong colours. And he's right. Take a look at a map of the place.

The choice is quite understandable, and for the most part his A grades are all justified. Lower down the scale things become a little murkier, then at the very bottom it's all self-evident again. There can be little doubt that the flag of the Northern Mariana Islands is "truly awful". I protest at the Fail grade given to Brazil, however.

The Stars and Stripes gets a C+ for being "too busy" and having "too many stars". The dude is from New Zealand, incidentally, which is why he dares such heresy. I think he's right. All those lines, all those stars: it's positively juvenile.

The Union Jack is also "too busy" and gets a B. And the New Zealand flag gets a C for "colonial nonsense". You may have to refresh your memory as to what it looks like, to understand what he means.

Belgium, meanwhile, gets a B+ and the thumbs up for "good shape" -- apparently he thinks it's more square than rectangular, but I think he's mistaken. There are literally thousands of Belgian flags on permanent display these days around the streets of Brussels (picture). They don't look very square to me.

The scene on every apartment building in town, yesterday