Sunday, 16 April 2017

Weekly Roundup, W/E 14/04/2017

I've finally managed to start properly compiling my quizzing data, with a view to conducting proper analysis, and I've come to realise how useful and important these blog posts are. Information I've included in these, but which isn't in the journal in which I record live data, has proven critical to ensuring my records are as complete as possible.

This makes sense really, because I'm a contextual learner. Lists of facts are certainly useful, but I find it more interesting and productive to consider the wider context - in which further facts can be found. The things I learn while verifying and refining my own questions are useful for the same reason. 

That said, I do need to start reducing the length of these posts, because of the time they take to write, so I'll see how I go with that.

Quiz #70 - Sunday 9th April, Turf Tavern, Carlisle

This week, I had the unexpected company of the same guy I joined with last week. I certainly wasn't complaining about that, but we started slowly with only 5 on the pictures and 4 on current events. I got the first two of the latter but a run of 5 errors cost us. The top 5 lists were better, as 4 of the top 5 F1 teams of of all time and 3 of the female Dragons from Dragons Den gave us 7.

Alpha Links also went okay, with 7, which was followed by a full 5 on the connections, which was a great joint effort on Dad's Army characters. We resolved not to wipeout on the last round this time, and took fewer gambles - though not none, strictly speaking. We were rewarded with 5 for our efforts, though in a high scoring quiz we were unable to get higher than 4th. Story of the week, really. Decent start all the same!

Result: 33/55 (60%), 4th/7

Quiz #71 - Monday 10th April, Kings Arms, Dalbeattie - K

It was the plan that I would join a combined force of Big Tam's and their kids this week, but unfortunately the other couple didn't show, so they were left as a four and I had no place. I eventually summoned the courage to ask to join a different team though, the Has Beens. Between us all, we started pretty well with 14/20 on four letter words, but struggled on anagrams of the songs and films of Elvis with 9/15. "Also known as" was better and yielded 12/15.

Our fortunes were definitely improving, and 13/15 on Transport was the same as that we scored on Geography. In both cases I found myself more able to contribute than in earlier rounds. Music finished the quiz, unplayed as is the usual standard with K these days, and as with the first round, we had 14. Our score seemed impressive, but this quiz has an extremely high standard, and we were 10 points away from the win. A shame, though I've seen it enough times at this quiz not to be surprised.

Result: 75/100 (75%), unknown (outwith top 3)/unknown

Quiz #72 -Tuesday 11th April, Ship Inn, Dumfries

Now this was a strange evening. My usual team were away because of work, so I joined the Newbridge Caravan Park. Unfortunately my presence split them, as they were exactly 6. I didn't realise this until after the quiz had started, and they certainly made no objection to it, but I couldn't help but feel bad about it all the same. The host was also absent, so one of his employees was on QM duties, albeit reading a pre-written quiz. Always a danger, but at least it was the usual quiz.

We started in typical standard, with 4.5 on GK, but followed it with just 2 on the human body, which left the three of us dead last. We remained there after getting 6.5 on Food & Drink, but we were only half a point adrift. As with last week, the scores weren't given out after the first picture round, dingbats, but I checked and we had 7/10.

Then came the problems. The specialist subject was nicknames of darts players, and was quoted as a picture round, though in practice, it wasn'. It was a list of 50 nicknames, and we had to give the real players. Yes, 50 points were on offer. Fortunately, my side of the Caravan Park had chosen the subject in the first place, and one guy in particular knew what he was doing - we had an incredible 38, on a subject many of the other teams appeared to struggle with. 

Unfortunately, our score was so far above that of the other teams that the guest host accused of cheating, and when the scores were announced, we had only been given 17 points. I'm not going to mince my words here: this was bang out of order. We have an impecccable reputation, knew the subject and had even chosen it. The QM did not look at anything but the score - no checking with other teams, or asking us. And of course, as guest, he's never met any of us. We managed to get it sorted in the end, but it completely soured the evening. Even the mere accusation hurt a lot.

Ultimately, our score meant we had a healthy lead entering the music round, and our 13/30 did not matter - we had won. By my own scoring, it was by 2 points less than that given, but I'll be keeping to my own records as I don't trust those of this QM. By far the least satisfying win of my "career" but I'm glad for it all the same. Anything less would have been far worse.

Result: 71/120 (59.17%), 1st/7

Quiz #73 - Wednesday 12th April, The Granary, Dumfries

This week's Granary quiz was exactly like last week's one, unusually: two rounds, one of 25 and one of 20. The first was the sort of words round I normally really like, but it's hard to concentrate in those environs, under that sort of time pressure, with only two of us in the team. It was words ending in "table", and the pressure meant we missed some obvious ones. We still managed 17 of 25, however but this did felt like an underperformance.

For the other round, I was hoping for a subject like films, and got exactly that. From the 1990's, specifically, which ought to have been okay. We started badly though, and I was pretty much alone which helped none. We recovered to 13/20, for an overall 30, which still left us respectfully placed in the standings. Winning was never a possibility, in any case.

Result: 30/45 (66.67%), 6th/16

Quiz #74 - Thursday 13th April, Anchor Hotel, Kippford

 One more quiz to go, and the Motley Crew were back again. Not so many, this time, and one of the absentees was the guy I'd had friction with last week. I can't deny it, it made for a bit of a more easy going atmosphere, though I was determined to try and show restraint all the same. The categories all looked pretty reasonable to me, but I tried to exempt myself from the joker discussion anyway. We went for one simply called "words", which was round 3.

Before that, we started well with 6 on GK and 7 on films. The QMs are apparently Bond fans, like me, as there were 3 questions on that between the two. The words round involved a link word between two others, so at the end of the first word and the start of the second. The one we missed was dog - hold. Missing word: house. The others came to us for 14/16. 

Cryptic pop music gave us 6, then I was outvoted on an answer that would have given us a full house on pictures of fictional rabbits. It was a 50-50 though, either the Duracell or Energiser Bunny. I suspected the latter, we went for the former. The last round was Geography, and I was culpable in one error, but I was explicitly not blamed for it this time, especially as I'd been right in the previous round. Again, it was a 50-50. This left us with a very high score, but surprisingly not in the money. No shame in that though.

Result: 45/56 (80.36%)

Week in Summation

It's been a week of high scores but near misses and ultimately, little in the way of prizes. The best result was one of the most controversial quizzes I've done in a long time, though our win was well-earned all the same. I suppose that's why last year I focussed on the scores rather than the placings. Still, there's always room for improvement - including on things like handling the pressure. I'm ultimately pretty happy with how it's all gone, and if I could score like this every week, I'd be laughing.

And yes, it seems these shorter reports still include all the relevant details! So I'll stick to this style in future.

Total Result: 254/376 (67.55%)

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