Quiz: What Do BP and Kurt Cobain Have in Common?

Photo-illo based on art by <a href="http://www.artelista.com/obra/4355856680449693-kurtcobain.html">Angeluis Ynga Núñez</a> and <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/greenpeaceuk/4668842814/in/set-72157623796911855/">this entry</a> from Greenpeace UK's <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/greenpeaceuk/sets/72157623796911855/">Behind the Logo</a> contest.

Fossil-fuel extraction is pretty much a boy’s club. As such, it can be tough to distinguish the names of oil or gas fields from those of, say, downhill ski runs, weapons, and rock bands. BP, for instance, has Gulf fields named Nirvana, Stones, and Supertramp.

Browsing Offshore magazine’s 2009 survey of Gulf deepwater discoveries, you’ll also find Greek mythology (Atlas, Cyclops, Dionysius, Mars, Medusa, Triton), mountains (Matterhorn, Fuji, K2), Bond references (Q, Goldfinger), royal titles (King, Prince, Princess), Biblical stuff (Genesis, Lost Ark), now-doomed animals (Manatee, Marlin, Swordfish, Tortuga), and cartoon characters (Spiderman, Bullwinkle). The long list of whimsical names feel somewhat jarring in the spill context—a reminder, perhaps, that the energy industry is like a bunch of overgrown boys playing with matches. And, at least most of the time, they don’t burn the house down.

So, just for the hell of it—and I do mean the hell of it—take this little quiz. Some items have more than one answer. Answers below the jump.

For each of the following, indicate whether it’s a…
A.    downhill ski run
B.    hard rock/heavy metal band
C.    weapon
D.    oil/gas field in the Gulf of Mexico
E.    all of the above

(Extra credit: Identify the two BP fields.)

1. Bermuda Triangle
2. Black Widow
3. The Blow Hole
4. Brutus
5. Claymore
6. Devil’s Island
7. Fastball
8. Firebird
9. Gunflint
10. Genghis Kahn
11. Great White
12. Hornet
13. King Kong
14. Longhorn
15. Mad Dog
16. Morgus
17. Morpeth
18. Mother In Law
19. Orion
20. Raptor
21. Red Hawk
22. Shale Slope
23. Tomahawk
24. Thor
25. Vortex











(Reminders—A: Ski run; B: Band; C: Weapon; D: Oil/gas field; E: All)

1. Bermuda Triangle-A
2. Black Widow-B, C, D
3. The Blow Hole-A
4. Brutus-D
5. Claymore-B, C, D
6. Devil’s Island-B, D
7. Fastball-D
8. Firebird-C, D
9. Gunflint-D
10. Genghis Kahn-A, D
11. Great White-B, D
12. Hornet-C, D
13. King Kong-D
14 Longhorn-A, C, D
15. Mad Dog- B, D (BP)
16. Morgus-D
17. Morpeth-D
18. Mother In Law-A
19 Orion-A, C, D (BP)
20. Raptor-B, C, D
21. Red Hawk-C, D
22. Shale Slope-A
23. Tomahawk-E
24. Thor-E
25. Vortex-E

Download Offshore‘s 2009 survey of Gulf oil discoveries here.

You can find all of our breaking coverage of the BP disaster here.

Follow Michael Mechanic on Twitter.


We recently wrapped up the crowdfunding campaign for our ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project, and it was a smashing success. About 10,364 readers pitched in with donations averaging $45, and together they contributed about $467,374 toward our $500,000 goal.

That's amazing. We still have donations from letters we sent in the mail coming back to us, so we're on pace to hit—if not exceed—that goal. Thank you so much. We'll keep you posted here as the project ramps up, and you can join the hundreds of readers who have alerted us to corruption to dig into.

We Recommend


Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.


Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.


Share your feedback: We’re planning to launch a new version of the comments section. Help us test it.