North America

2018 Resolution - North America - Part 3

Here we are, Part 3! What a fascinating world we live in. Mexico's entry is two sentences long, but takes up most of the page. Read it, and you'll see the use of space is worth it.

Jamaica: In 1978, amid violent internal political struggles, musician Bob Marley convinced opposing political faction leaders Michael Manley and Edward Seaga to hold hands in a gesture of unity at his 'One Love' Concert.

Mexico: Throughout his career, Santa Anna (whose full name is about a paragraph long), in this order, fought against and for Mexican independance, overthrew the victorious independance movement leadership, fought off the Spanish attempt to reclaim Mexico, became President of Mexico, led a coup against his own presidency, fought a war with the rebelling Republic of Texas (with mixed results), declared himself the "Napoleon-of-the-West" when captured, was exiled from Mexico after signing a peace treaty with the US, came back and violently crushed another rebellion for the Mexican government, was exiled again for how violent that was, came back again to fight off a French invasion (which led to him losing a leg, which he put on public display because he was proud of that), was elected president of Mexico again after that, was voted out of the presidency just as quickly, was exiled again, asked US president Polk to be made a liason to Mexico to prevent a war, then took command of Mexico's military and started a war with the US, lost that war (and his prosthetic leg, on display in the US in a museum now), was exiled for losing, came back from Jamaica to be president of Mexico yet again, was exiled for selling New Mexico and Arizona to the US, and nearly negotiated a deal with the US and France that would have put him in charge of Mexico again. Oh, and he helped invent chewing gum.

Times Santa Anna was exiled from Mexico: 5

Nicaragua: In Nicaragua, it is considered bad taste to pour a glass of hard liquor straight from a shared bottle. Instead, one should use a shotglass to measure their portion out.

Panama: Roughly 10% of the workforce assigned to construct the Panama Canal died on the job.

Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis: Apparently, men of this small Carribbean nation tend to be on the aggressive and assertive side when it comes to courting women. This often comes across as sexual harassment to outsiders. In truth, women of the Federation tend to be equally as assertive, and it is not considered improper for a women to candidly and personally berate a man for overstepping his boundaries.

2018 Resolution - North America - Part II

Here's Part 2. I'm finding that when looking up facts about these nations, I'm learning a lot more than one thing. It's getting hard to choose which one to share, sometimes.

Dominica: At the time of writing, Dominica's Prime Minister for the last 14 years has been the Rastafarian and excellently named Roosevelt Skerrit.

Dominican Republic: In 2012, Danilo Medina won the Dominican Republic presidency on an anti-corruption platform. So far, he has remained true to his word, and has helped build and maintain positive social reform and anti-corruption measures in his country.

El Salvidor: El Salvidor's electricity needs have been well handled by a series of hydroelectric installations since the 1950's. The plants are located on the Lempa River.

Grenada: Grenada's government has instituted robust conservation policies that help keep their forest and coral reefs some of the more stunning attractions of the Caribbean.

Guatemala: Insufficient law enforcement in Guatemala has led to the rise of numerous vigilante groups. As with many cases of vigilantism, the impact of these groups can run the risk of being worse than the crime they wish to combat.

Haiti: In 1791, Saint-Domingue's colonial rule was completely overthrown by a slave uprising. This was, by a very large margin, the most successful slave uprising in history. In place of the colony, the nation of Haiti was established.

Honduras: The waters off the coast of Honduras are a home for the rare and majestic Whale Shark. Whale Sharks are shy, fleeting creatures despite their massive size. They are curious, however, and will swim near divers and boats when an opportunity presents itself.




2018 Resolution - North America - Part 1

Alright, part 1 of my resolution. I'm going to do this in alphabetical order and by continent.

I'm also going to hurry with these, lest I end up in the middle of learning about South Korea when it suddenly becomes Unified Korea and even more suddenly becomes The East Asian Radioactive Zone of Exclusion.

Accounting for European Colonialism and contemporary politics, many of the facts I am about to detail may predate the existence of the modern nation they relate to.


Antigua and Barbuda: Admiral Nelson was not fond of Antigua. His time stationed there was filled with illness, mosquitoes, and enforcing trade embargoes against the United States. This last factor made him very unpopular among Caribbean traders.

Bahamas: The original inhabitants of the Bahamas were the Lucayans. Sadly, the Atlantic Exchange was unkind to them. A combination of disease and Christopher Columbus's colonial practices wiped them out.

Barbados: European colonists found Barbados mostly uninhabited. Long before their arrival, it had been occupied and fought over by a few First Nation communities, but it seems they moved  on to other things before the Europeans arrived.

Belize: As of January, 2018, Belize is in the middle of a decades-old territorial dispute with Guatemala. Belize stands to lose more than half of its area, should Guatemala's claim be enforced and upheld.

Canada: Well, offhand, I can say that Canada kicked the US's ass in the War of 1812. More often than not, wars like this result in tensions and violence between two communities in perpetuity. For the US and Canada, however, their relationship has been amicable ever since.

Costa Rica: Archaeological evidence indicates the presence of a material-rich civilization in Costa Rica that pre-dated the coming of the Europeans by hundreds of years. It seems the exact history of Costa Rica's native jade-work and goldsmithing has been lost. While the Europeans weren't solely responsible for this obfuscation, they sure didn't help.

Cuba: I pretty much have to make this one about Fidel Castro. He was an absolute Villain, but also a badass. The Cuban Government estimates 638 failed assassination attempts were made on Castro, both physical and character. This number is difficult to verify (or narrow down based on various criteria), but this number is also generally accepted.