Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Weekly Roundup, W/E 09/06/2017

Predictably, after spending several hours writing my epic review of my holiday, I’ve fallen a couple of weeks behind with the roundups again. 2 as of starting to write this, almost 3 as of actually posting it. I really need to start managing my time better! I’ve no preamble for this post, except to say that it was always going to be interesting to see how I would respond to being back at my usual quizzes after a refreshing and relaxing holiday. I’d already started back the same night I returned with a win at The Grapes, but would that continue?

Quiz #110 – Sunday 4th June, Turf Tavern, Carlisle
The turnout at this quiz seemed strangely low, which was unfortunate, and had the consequence of preventing me and M joining up with J and one of his friends. The dominant team previously known as the Sultans of Shrimp were absent but there did end up being 6 teams in total. J had to leave for work part way through, not helping his team of 2’s chances, but potentially opening a door for the two of us.

Not that we started in awe-inspiring fashion, with a mediocre 5 on pictures being followed by a hard-earned 6 on current events. The top 5 lists were better than usual though; the 5 Premier League football teams to have topped the table for at least a day this year – apart from the actual winners – was always probably going to include an anomaly from the first days of the season. That was the case, and we missed Hull City as a result. The others were the usual suspects like Manchester United so we got 4. We also got 4 on Leonardo Di Caprio’s top 5 box office results (adjusted for inflation). Titanic, The Revenant and Inception were obvious, and Tom Hank’s role in Catch Me If You Can meant dual star power and high takings. Credit to M for that. The last could have been almost anything; we went with his early breakout hit, The Beach, but it was actually the Tarantino film Django Unchained; we dismissed that as too niche because of the director. Great score for the round though.

Alpha Links has been notably harder the last month or so than it was previously, and it didn’t start well, the first question wanting a song title. Even when you know the first letter, those can’t usually be guessed. We got 6. The connection this week was all M, I must admit. I’ve never seen the Dukes of Hazzard and didn’t get many questions either. He had 4, however. That left the Wipeout round, and we were predictably fairly cautious. 5 we went for, 5 we got.

Our score was a respectable 34 – very respectable in consideration of the other scores, as we’d won by 9 points! My 2nd win at the venue, and my first with M. Absolutely delighted with that!

Result: 34/55 (61.82%), 1st/6

Quiz #111 – Monday 5th June, Kings Arms, Dalbeattie (P)

I must admit, I do like it when I get the chance to join Big Tam’s Appreciation Society at the Kings Arms. They’re lovely people, and bloody good quizzers to boot. That I’m saying this naturally implies I was with them this week, and I knew from this night that it would be the same again the following week. The quiz was P’s second as far as I’m aware. His first was a tricky one that I won with the Has Beens, so hopefully history would repeat.

P started his last quiz with 2 sequences of 10 Royals. This time it was the same again but with politics; the timing, days before a general election, was pure coincidence, we were assured. 10 Prime Ministers and 10 US Presidents, one of the former appearing twice. That extra titbit actually made the difference, since we knew Harold Wilson had split terms. The presidents were pretty easy, and we got a full 20.

Geography followed, and it was the very same picture as last time – the Mediterranean Sea – but with different countries asked for. We mixed up a few and only got 6/10. Another round on politics, this time general questions, had plenty of pitfalls, but aside from mixing up the EU Council head and the EU Commission head, we were okay, with 17/20.

I was hopeless at the next round, which pertained to P’s native Yorkshire. Thankfully my team were much better versed in the area and we got 8.5/10. That left a music round, played introductions from a decade chosen by majority vote as the 1960s. Unfortunately, most of them were only about 5 seconds long, making them very tricky indeed, and we were thankful to get 12/20. Others seemingly managed less.

Would this be enough for my 3rd consecutive win? Alas, no. By the mere sum of half a point, we had missed out. A valiant performance all the same, however, and I’ve no complaints! Very good quiz!

EDIT: I'm coming back to this post on 28th June as I update my spreadsheet with my figures. In this case, they didn't add up! Adding up the scores as given, you get 80, which is actually a win by half a point, which I just can't claim. I may have found the error though, as adding up the totals does indeed give us 79, so I think I've gone a point over on the Yorkshire round. As such, I've edited that paragraph to reduce it to 8.5 from 9.5. That should correct things. This paragraph in itself says a lot about my precision I think!

Result: 79/100 (79%), 2nd/unknown

Quiz #112 – Tuesday 6th June, Ship Inn, Dumfries

I’ve written many times about the difficulty of the Ship Inn quiz, but this time the QM promised it was going to be easier than usual. Our usual team of S & A were joined by B, who I think was with us last time. He’s the owner of another pub I used to frequent, and may well be a welcome regular feature in our lineup.

There were no immediate indications that the quiz was on the easier side of brutal, though we did start strongly with 7 on GK. That left us joint-top of the leaderboard with 2 others, the lowest score this week being 3. History followed, and while that’s usually a strong suit of mine, this round wasn’t. 5 dropped us to mid-table, 1.5 points behind the leaders. There were a few half points awarded in that round, as we weren’t actually told at the time that first names would be required. As the assumed standard in quizzes is that the last name is acceptable unless specified, this was unfortunate. Round 3 was anagrams of various drinks, and despite struggling for an age on Irn Bru, we got all 10. Having a publican in the team certainly helps!

The pictures were dingbats, and these have been a mixed bag for us in the past, but 11/12 is nothing to scoff at. The specialist round this week was the Lisbon Lions, a famous Celtic team from the 70s. The club itself was the first question, though they weren’t all as easy as that. It was a fair set, however, and we successfully guessed what some of the questions would be before the round took place, helping us to 7.

Played music has done us no favours in recent weeks though, and the same was true again this time. Before the round, we’d been sliding slightly, so were 3 points behind the leaders. We closed that to 1.5 after it, our 16 on a tough round seemingly better than it looked, given we jumped a place to second with a 2.5 point gap. The NCP won, unsurprisingly, but it was well earned so I’m not disparaging them in the slightest. Always good to see a 1-2 between us and them! Next time, perhaps it would be in our favour, however…

Result: 56/84 (66.67%), 2nd/8

Quiz #113 – Wednesday 7th June, Granary, Dumfries

While the Granary’s baseline format has always been 5 rounds of 10 questions, they do like to mix it up now and then. It had been a while since they’d truly done that so it was inevitably coming. L & I were looking at 3 rounds tonight, the first being 25 questions.

All of those were on food and drink. The first part of it was 10 pictures of chocolate biscuit cross-sections. They were tough, and we managed 5. Anagrams are difficult at the best of times, especially when you have even less time than usual due to the need to work on the other bits of the round; 5 again. The final 5 were dingbats, and only 2 came to us. Oh well.

True or false followed, and I was culpable for our errors here, as I was certain that a couple of them were definitely false. That was unfortunate, as the QM had not specifically told us that there actually were any false ones. There weren’t, as every single one was true. Not the first time he’s done that, won’t be the last! Surely must pick up on that next time, and thus do better than 6.

We ended with a simple GK round, and to be honest that was fine. 7 salvaged some dignity for us, getting us to half marks in total. Those lost points in true or false made the difference, too, as we’d have tied for the win if we’d gone all true. As it was, we were in the middle of a large pack. Only 4 points behind the win, but no matter.

It’s worth noting that I had my score as 26, not 25, but the discrepancy was presumably in the first round which we didn’t see back after handing it in. I’m not sure where we thought we had the point, but I’ve taken it from anagrams based on my best recollection.

Result: 25/50 (50%), joint 6th/14

Week in Summation

I asked the question at the start as to how I’d get on in my first week back and the answer seems to have been “pretty darn well”! The Granary result can’t be said to be anomalous as it’s typical of the quiz, so I’m not dismissing it just because it went against the grain of the rest of the week. It was very much the sort of result we’re used to, though also the sort we’re trying to rise above. The occasional blip is to be expected though, and food & drink has never been a great subject for us.

Other than that, this was a really good week. The Sunday win was superb; I was delighted to get a win with M at last, as I think our partnership had earned that. It was a near miss in the other venues, but the Kings Arms usually has a close finish, at least among most teams, and we’re not regular winners at the Ship these days. Overall, a very decent set of results, and I’m happy with my week’s work.

Total Result: 194/289 (67.13%)

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