Given a sequence $\{Z_d\}_{d\in \mathbb{N}}$ of smooth and compact hypersurfaces in ${\mathbb{R}}^{n-1}$, we prove that (up to extracting subsequences) there exists a regular definable hypersurface $\Gamma \subset {\mathbb{R}}\textrm{P}^n$ such that each manifold $Z_d$ is diffeomorphic to a component of the zero set on $\Gamma$ of some polynomial of degree $d$. (This is in sharp contrast with the case when $\Gamma$ is semialgebraic, where for example the homological complexity of the zero set of a polynomial $p$ on $\Gamma$ is bounded by a polynomial in $\deg (p)$.) More precisely, given the above sequence of hypersurfaces, we construct a regular, compact, semianalytic hypersurface $\Gamma \subset {\mathbb{R}}\textrm{P}^{n}$ containing a subset $D$ homeomorphic to a disk, and a family of polynomials $\{p_m\}_{m\in \mathbb{N}}$ of degree $\deg (p_m)=d_m$ such that $(D, Z(p_m)\cap D)\sim ({\mathbb{R}}^{n-1}, Z_{d_m}),$ i.e. the zero set of $p_m$ in $D$ is isotopic to $Z_{d_m}$ in ${\mathbb{R}}^{n-1}$. This says that, up to extracting subsequences, the intersection of $\Gamma$ with a hypersurface of degree $d$ can be as complicated as we want. We call these ‘pathological examples’. In particular, we show that for every $0 \leq k \leq n-2$ and every sequence of natural numbers $a=\{a_d\}_{d\in \mathbb{N}}$ there is a regular, compact semianalytic hypersurface $\Gamma \subset {\mathbb{R}}\textrm{P}^n$, a subsequence $\{a_{d_m}\}_{m\in \mathbb{N}}$ and homogeneous polynomials $\{p_{m}\}_{m\in \mathbb{N}}$ of degree $\deg (p_m)=d_m$ such that (0.1)$$\begin{equation}b_k(\Gamma\cap Z(p_m))\geq a_{d_m}.\end{equation}$$ (Here $b_k$ denotes the $k$th Betti number.) This generalizes a result of Gwoździewicz et al. [13]. On the other hand, for a given definable $\Gamma$ we show that the Fubini–Study measure, in the Gaussian probability space of polynomials of degree $d$, of the set $\Sigma _{d_m,a, \Gamma }$ of polynomials verifying (0.1) is positive, but there exists a constant $c_\Gamma$ such that $$\begin{equation*}0<{\mathbb{P}}(\Sigma_{d_m, a, \Gamma})\leq \frac{c_{\Gamma} d_m^{\frac{n-1}{2}}}{a_{d_m}}.\end{equation*}$$ This shows that the set of ‘pathological examples’ has ‘small’ measure (the faster $a$ grows, the smaller the measure and pathologies are therefore rare). In fact we show that given $\Gamma$, for most polynomials a Bézout-type bound holds for the intersection $\Gamma \cap Z(p)$: for every $0\leq k\leq n-2$ and $t>0$: $$\begin{equation*}{\mathbb{P}}\left(\{b_k(\Gamma\cap Z(p))\geq t d^{n-1} \}\right)\leq \frac{c_\Gamma}{td^{\frac{n-1}{2}}}.\end{equation*}$$

%0Journal Article