In last night’s “University Challenge” (BBC2) between St Cross College, Oxford and Trinity Hall, Cambridge, the following question came up …
“Imperial measures. How many ounces in two and a half pounds?”
After a slightly long pause …
Team A’s Answer : “20”
Jeremy Paxman : “No”
Team B’s Answer : “40”
Jeremy Paxman : “Correct”
I wonder whether it was their mental arithmetic skills that let down these top students, or whether it is simply an indication of how irrelevant imperial weights have become in modern Britain.