Quiz #59 - Sunday 27th March, Turf Tavern Carlisle
Another week, another set of quizzes, and I was hoping for a good start to the week after last Friday's glory. Despite the endless optimism of the QM, however, it has yet to really happen at this quiz. The reason is clear: it's a quiz that requires a broad and varied knowledge, and my entertainment and picture weaknesses are exposed every week.
That was the case again this week too, with a dismal 3 on the pictures and middling 5 on current events. Both are about par for the course, but I'll never win scoring like that. The top 5 lists this week weren't so bad as last week, though it's impossible for it to have been worse, of course. The 5 eponymous Dickens novels saw three fall to me instantly, and the other two completely escape me. The only number 1 single by 5 given artists...also gave me 3, somehow. Holly Vallance was my first real celebrity crush, I'm not going to apologise for that! That poster is still in my old room at my parents' house, I think actually.
Alpha Links started well enough as I got the first 3, starting with the bakery featured in the "More Than Meets the Pie", which could only really have been Greggs. As it happens I've seen a couple of episodes of the show, but in any case, they're by far the biggest national bakery chain. It always annoys me when I miss a world capital, especially when it's a 50-50 and I zig rather than zag, as I did with that of Mauritius. For the second time in a week, the third to follow the next day, the question about the Big Easy (New Orleans came up right after it though. I ended with 6, which is disappointing.
The connections round was uncharacteristically difficult for me, though I ended with 4. I got questions 3 and 4, used that to figure the connection was beer, and guessed a couple of brands that might be names for the first two, getting one. A roundabout way to do it but I'll take it.
The Wipeout round started so well: the first 3 came easily. Then, a large gap, but I got the last. Only I very stupidly got 0 because I gambled on question 4, about the lineup of a band. I can't understand why I did it; 4 points isn't loads, but it's better than 0 and I can't afford to take hits like that. It doesn't just matter for this quiz but for my overall stats, and 0s make those look bad. I can't claim "lesson learned" because I've done it before and will doubtless do it again - in fact, spoiler alert for next week's round-up, I wiped out again last night.
As to the overall score, I'd have come in 2nd without that wipeout, beating the other solo player. I spoke to him afterwards, nice guy, used to ask the questions here a while back before work meant he wasn't available Sunday nights anymore. His team didn't show so he played solo, getting my 2nd place. Oh well, it happens, and it wasn't my worst score ever by any means.
Result: 24/55 (43.64%), 4th/6
Quiz #60 - Monday 27th March, Kings Arms Dalbeattie (A)
I have to be honest here, I was pretty much sleepwalking my whole way through this quiz, which can partly be explained by another very busy day at the office leaving me shattered. It was the first night in the changed layout and it did not work to my advantage, because my nicely placed small table in the back has been removed, forcing me to by where the QM usually does it from - making me a lot more exposed and open than I'm comfortable with. That's nothing against the quiz itself, but after 2.5 years my shyness still hasn't changed.
As for how I got on...actually a lot better than I thought. We started with Geography rather than GK, but had the latter immediately after. 6.5 and 7 were the respective scores, and indicated a relatively average night for me. This changed with a repeat of the "Big" round from the Granary last week, and this time I upped my score to 9. I might have had the full set, except that one of the questions had been slightly differently worded to mention a different artist who did the song Big Girls Don't Cry. As such, neither recognised nor remembered it. Alas.
Round 5 was another strong one, being words beginning with the letter A. Not for the first time, I mixed up the Adriatic and the Aegean seas to lose a mark. The last was another GK round, and I finished relatively strongly again on 7. Somehow, I ended up just 1.5 points out of the prize money, without realising it! I got a bit lucky with a round I'd already seen before, but that does give hope that I can perhaps actually come even third alone, which at that quiz would be a mighty achievement. Some day...
Result: 44.5/60 (74.12), unknown/14
Quiz #61 - Tuesday 28th March, Ship Inn Dumfries
We were joined at the Ship Inn by my friend from the Granary, as she had a week off work, making us 4 with the regular couple. We started very well, being in a 4 way tie for the lead on 7 after GK. It could have been 8 but for an annoying 50-50 miss on the periodic table; I'll not mix up Beryllium and Lithium again.
There followed Food and Drink, a round I seem to be doing every other quiz these days, and it was a brutal one; only 4.5 points came to us, leaving us half a point shy of another 4 way tie for top spot. We gained ground on Geography, and it's fair to say I gave more than a few. That sent us second as the scores spread out more. Then came disaster...
The specialist round this week was the picture round - European football club badges. Now, our guest member is a bit of a football fan, but none of the rest of us are. We tried to look up the badges of major European clubs. Only...we weren't given clubs to identify. Despite the explicit wording of the round, the badges were actually international teams, and we were utterly clueless. Had we realised what we were really looking for, we could have worked out several of them just from knowing the flags of those countries. As it was, we guessed 12 clubs and got 0. Having been 1.5 points behind 1st place before the round, we were now only 1.5 ahead of last place. A criminal error of judgement, that certainly cost us.
The replacement 5th round was questions relating to TV adverts; half the team has no TV, so this went as well as one might expect, and we laboured to 4, most of those being guesses. On the plus side, the gap narrowed, so the others must have done worse. That left music, and in a very rare state of affairs, I was actually able to consistently contribute to the round! Between us we managed 20/30, which left us solidly mid-table. It's the first time in a long time I've been off the podium here, and my usual 3rd place might have been achievable if not for the unconscionable foul up on the pictures, but we couldn't have won. Must do better next week!
Result: 43.5/82 (53.05%), 5th/8
Quiz #62 - Wednesday 29th March, The Granary Dumfries
This week's Granary quiz was the short, brutal kind of affair. The subject list looked fairly ominous: Film & TV is okay, albeit risky, but 20 questions on Disney and 20 on Music definitely isn't.
It was a worrying start, too, with only half marks on round 1. As strong as I am on film, I'm much less so on TV, and there's not a lot you can do when Lady Luck's tongue turns out to be forked. The Disney round wasn't actually quite as bad as we'd feared. It appears to have been requested, and the QM indicated he'd be open to future requests as well - within reason, of course. Friendly as I am with him, I'm very tempted to request a geography round at some point in the near future, as he might go for that. Anyway, we managed 14, which is very respectable. A bit of lucky guessing, a bit of successful deduction and a bit of the answer being as obvious as it seemed at first sight gave us the points.
Last was the music, which was one word names as song titles. Unfortunately there was a fair amount of pressure on my friend here, due to my notorious uselessness. The other big problem, aside from the overall difficulty of the round and our lack of expertees, was the music playing in the background. That's not a complaint, as I know it's a standard part of the atmosphere, but it made our job a little harder all the same, and we could only manage 6.
This left us way down the pecking order, as the other teams clearly handled it much better than we did. To be fair, Disney and music covers quite a few bases, and I knew a lot of teams would benefit from one or the other. We also expected music would be in the quiz as it had been a while. The score was fine though, so I've no complaints.
Result: 25/50 (50%), 13th/16
Quiz #63 - Thursday 30th March, Anchor Hotel Kippford
One quiz left in the week, and I managed to join the Disciples this time. I asked if I could join them, rather than the other way around as usually happens, and they had one of their sons I think with them. Or a friend of one of their sons, I'm not sure. Regardless, we got off to a very good start, with 6 on GK. We could even have had a full house, having named both answers we got wrong in our deliberations. One was a 50/50 to boot.
Round 2 was books, and we again did well, with 7. Weirdly, the one we missed was one we were sure of, a childrens book written by a comedian. All of us immediately said David Walliams, when it was Ricky Gervais. None of us knew he was a writer of childrens books, and to be honest none of us really believe he qualifies as a comedian either, but that's just personal taste I suppose. Food and drink was better still, as we actually did achieve the maximum of 8. I got the chance to redeem myself for past errors here, which is always gratifying.
Spelling rounds are typically hard, and this was no exception. I pushed heavily for a couple of answers but was relieved to get them both right. Unfortunately I was also culpable, though to a lesser extent, on two we missed. The only two, actually - 6 is exceptional for a round like that. Our joker was round 5 and company logos. It was a good choice, too, as we eased to a maximum 16 points. Having mistaken the Network Rail logo for the DVLA one last time I saw it, the mere suggestion of the latter led to us getting the former, which others did recognise. This was looking good!
Our good run continued with the last round, Film & TV. We had a couple of incorrect answers - but caught them in time for yet another 8/8! Our final score of 51/56 is a personal record for the quiz, or tied for it at least, and was 7.5 points ahead of the 2nd placed score. To think we could have scored even higher is incredible. A score like that is unlikely to be repeated any time soon, but I'll enjoyed the moment. Great stuff!
Result: 51/56 (91.07%), 1st/9
Week in Summation
It was a week of ups and downs, it's fair to say. The result in Kippford was superlative, as was the score in Dalbeattie. There was disappointment and missed chances elsewhere, however. I'm actually fairly lost for words for once, so I suppose I'll leave it at that! Overall I guess it balanced out just fine!
Total Result: 188/303 (62.05%)