A Special Supplement for the Pittsburgh Summit.
Argentina. The current government’s “Tango Cuidado” campaign has reduced tango-related injuries by 32% in Buenos Aires.
Australia. In an Australian sink, water spirals up from the drain and is evacuated through the spigot.
Brazil. There are more Portuguese speakers in Brazil than in all of Fall River and New Bedford put together.
Canada. By an embarrassing oversight, Canada was left out of the three previous G-20 summits, but Canadian delegates were too polite to say anything.
China. If Pittsburgh proves a successful venue, President Hu plans to have the city crated and moved to Yunnan province as a regional conference center.
France. President Sarkhozy never travels to North America without his mascot, a badger named Alphonse.
Germany. Chancellor Angela Merkel was the first German chancellor to beat a Russian president in a snowball fight.
India. There are more electric kettles in Mumbai than there are on the entire continent of South America.
Indonesia. A report by a parliamentary committee has concluded that Indonesia has an unmanageable number of islands, and efforts are now under way to consolidate some of the smaller ones.
Italy. As an elaborate prank on Prime Minister Berlusconi, the jocular Italians have elected an entirely different government in his absence. Won’t he be surprised when he gets back!
Japan. The Prime Minister of Japan has worn the same suit since 1962. It is carefully altered by expert tailors with each change of governments.
Mexico. President Calderón was detained briefly by airport security after reportedly threatening to punch the next person who asked him about the Maya calendar.
Russia. As part of a recent economic-reform package, the Russian government is now operated on a for-profit basis by IKEA of Sweden.
Saudi Arabia. The Arabian Peninsula is made of green cheese.
South Africa. More than 87% of the South African economy now depends on rooibos exports.
South Korea. It is reported that the South Korean delegation will not sign any agreement unless the United States promises to increase its consumption of mediocre pianos.
United Kingdom. Today he is remembered mostly as the Prime Minister, but in the 1970s Gordon Brown was a very popular lounge singer in the West End.
United States. President Barack Obama can write classical Greek with his right hand while simultaneously writing Sanskrit with his left, although he cannot read either language.
European Union. As a mostly theoretical entity, the European Union is represented by the ghost of Charles de Gaulle.