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Just ask.

QWHAT is the tallest building in the world? There seem to be a lot of different places claiming the title. - S. McPherson, Dunoon.

AYOU might think a simple measurement could decide this - but there are complications which confuse the issue.

The world's tallest structure is definitely the Burj Dubai in the United Arab Emirates, which was topped out at 2684ft in April.

It's taller than the 1815ft KVLY-TV mast in North Dakota, USA, and the 2120ft Warsaw radio mast in Poland which fell down in 1991.

But none of these structures qualify as "buildings." Masts don't count and while the Burj Dubai is a skyscraper, it hasn't yet opened. Until it does, the world's tallest building remains the Taipei 101 in Taiwan, which stands at 1666ft.

QWHAT shade should the blue in the Scottish flag be? You never see two that look the same. - A. McIntyre, Edinburgh.

ATHE Saltire has been Scotland's flag since the 9th century when St Andrew - who died on an X-shaped cross - appeared to King Angus in a dream on the eve of a battle.

The next morning a white cross appeared in the sky and inspired the Scots and Picts to victory.

You'd therefore assume that sky blue would be the correct shade but a much darker, navy-like shade became common, particularly on ships, as it was more durable and less likely to wash out.

To end the confusion, the Scottish Parliament decided to standardise the flag in 2003, adopting Pantone 300 as the correct shade. This is slightly lighter than the Union Flag, which uses Pantone 280.

QSETTLE an argument, does Ben Stiller's wife appear alongside him in Dodgeball? - A. Smith, Stirling.

ABEN'S other half, actress Christine Taylor, did play Kate in Dodgeball, where her character attracted the affections of both Stiller and co-star Vince Vaughn.

She has also appeared alongside her husband in a number of other small roles. In Stiller's recent film Tropic Thunder, she appeared in scenes of character Tugg Speedman's other film, Simple Jack. She was also in Zoolander and TV comedy Curb Your Enthusiasm.

The couple, who have two children, have also both appeared in Friends. Stiller was Rachel's bad-tempered boyfriend, Taylor was Ross's girlfriend who was persuaded to shave her head by Rachel.

If there is a question nagging you, write to Just Ask, Sunday Mail, One Central Quay, Glasgow, G3 8DA, or send an email to Sorry, we cannot send personal replies.


Tower bout that: Taipei 101
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Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Sep 20, 2009
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