Odd Things in Odd Places – All 7 Travel Posts

September 26, 2014 By Tim Urban

Welcome to the Odd Things in Odd Places series.

In May of 2014, I polled Wait But Why email subscribers about which countries they’d like to send me to over the summer. They decided to amuse themselves and chose Russia, Japan, Nigeria, Iraq, and Greenland. So I went to each of them, consecutively, for about half a month each, and after each place, I wrote a big post about the country and what I learned there. There were seven posts in total, which are all linked below. Enjoy!


Series Intro

My confusion about why the hell I was doing this. Read

Russia: What You Didn’t Know You Didn’t Know

Russia is an odd place and I went on an odd trip. Beaten physically by a siberian shaman, beaten physically while nude in a bathhouse, and a day wearing a bear suit to mention a few activities. Read

Japan, and How I Failed to Figure it Out

Wait actually, Russia’s not odd. Japan is odd. Read

19 Things I Learned in Nigeria

The full story on scams, hand-holding, and being white in Africa’s most populous nation. Read

From Muhammad to ISIS: Iraq’s Full Story

The full, full, full story on Iraq. Read

But What About Greenland?

Stories from the land of ice and ghosts. Read

Wrap Up: The Genie Question

I asked dozens of people in each of the countries what they’d wish for if they had a magical genie. Here’s what they said. Read


Extra information

Citations & Sources