Archive for March 23, 2017

More or Less

“That’s Qatar. Its capital is Doha,” I said as we were talking about world capitals and looking at a map of the Middle East. “It’s a very small country.”

“Doesn’t look much smaller than Djibouti,” Alex replied.

And it’s true. On the map, they don’t look much different in size…


Which led me to wonder, which is larger?

And that one little question led to the creation of a game we now call More or Less, in which one person names two items, and the other person needs to identify which of the two is larger. It’s a great game for passing time on a car trip or during a long walk.

Here are some of our favorites:

Category Option A Option B
Land Area Qatar Djibouti
Percent of U.S. Flag Red White
Distance from St. John’s, NL Vancouver, BC Rome, Italy
Weight $10 in Quarters $10 in Dimes
Population New York City London
Calories Big Mac Whopper
Equatorial Radius Neptune Uranus
Length Distance from North to South Pole Great Wall of China
Official Capacity Rungrado May First Stadium, North Korea Michigan Stadium (“The Big House”)
Caffeine (per 12 fl. oz.) Coca-Cola Pepsi-Cola
Net Worth Jeff Bezos Warren Buffett
Loudness Squeeze Toy Vacuum Cleaner
Stores Worldwide Dunkin Donuts Starbucks
Number by All Teams in a Season Home Runs in MLB Goals in NHL
Top Speed Slug Snail
Heart Beats per Minute Pig Human
Estimated IQ Newton Leibniz
Number of Factors 144 192
Value 316 225

You should definitely try to figure out whether Option A or B is larger in each row above, before you look at the answers below.

And if you can answer at least 15 of these correctly, you’re more or less a genius!


  • Maps can be deceiving. Although they look similar in size, the area of Djibouti is more than double that of Qatar. Djibouti is 23,200 km2, Qatar only 11,586 km2.
  • The U.S. flag is about 41.5% red, 40.9% white.
  • Vancouver is 5,117 km from St. John’s, and Rome is only 5,050 km. (Canada is a big country!)
  • A dime weighs 2.268 g, a quarter weighs 5.670 g. So 100 dimes and 40 quarters will both weigh 226.8 g.
  • London has 8.7 million people. New York has just slightly fewer with 8.6 million.
  • A Whopper (no cheese) has 680 calories, whereas a Big Mac (with its two patties, a slice of cheese, and an extra bun in the middle) has only 540 calories. Go figure.
  • Uranus is larger with a radius of 25,500 km; the radius of Neptune is 24,700 km.
  • Traveling from the North pole to the South pole would be circumnavigating half the Earth, which is about 12,430 miles. But the Great Wall of China is estimated to be 13,170 miles.
  • Rungrado holds 114,000, whereas The Big House only holds just under 108,000.
  • Pepsi has 58 mg of caffeine, Coke only 54 mg.
  • Jeff Bezos is worth $70 billion, Warren Buffett is worth $65 billion. They’re both ridiculously rich, but Bezos was more efficient in acquiring his wealth.
  • A vacuum cleaner will reach 75 dB, which is “slightly annoying,” whereas a squeeze toy can reach 90 dB. A vacuum cleaner seems louder and more annoying because the sound persists, whereas most squeeze toys make a noise once, then stop.
  • In 2016, there were 25,085 Starbucks but only 12,258 Dunkin’ Donuts, according to Statista.
  • There were 6,672 goals scored in the NHL during the 2015-16 season, but just 5,610 home runs hit in the MLB in 2016. There are more than 6,000 hockey goals scored every year, but only two seasons in the past decade have seen more than 5,000 home runs.
  • A fast slug can move 0.2 mph, but the poor snail — with that heavy shell on its back — can only muster about 0.02 mph.
  • An average human’s heart beats about 60 times per minute; an average pig’s heart, about 70.
  • According to The Early Mental Traits of Three Hundred Geniuses by Catharine M. Cox, Leibniz was 183, Newton 168. (Sorry, Isaac!)
  • The number 144 has 15 factors, the number 192 has only 14.
  • 316 – 225 = 9,492,289.

March 23, 2017 at 2:40 am 2 comments

About MJ4MF

The Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks blog is an online extension to the book Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks. The blog contains jokes submitted by readers, new jokes discovered by the author, details about speaking appearances and workshops, and other random bits of information that might be interesting to the strange folks who like math jokes.

MJ4MF (offline version)

Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks is available from Amazon, Borders, Barnes & Noble, NCTM, Robert D. Reed Publishers, and other purveyors of exceptional literature.

Past Posts

March 2017

Enter your email address to subscribe to the MJ4MF blog and receive new posts via email.

Join 469 other followers

Visitor Locations

free counters