Quiz #119 – Sunday 18th June, Turf Tavern, Carlisle
The Sunday quiz seems to be taking on a "Grapes, Springholm" vibe in that my team isn't consistent but I don't generally have to do the quiz alone anymore. M is only there when work allows it, and J to an extent now as well. The rest of J's extended team, which can get quite large...they're not always consistently there. This doesn't hold true for the other teams, but there aren't a huge number of teams that come in week in, week out so far; it tends to be variable, but when they do come, they're usually with the same people.
This week, it was myself, J and M, plus one of J's friends who hasn't been in a long time. We started in typically bad fashion on the pictures, with 5. Some of those were hard-earned though, so I'm not really complaining. The current events round was better though, as we got 8 in the week that covered the elections. I was correct in my guess that French Open tennis winner Jelena Ostapenko would turn up, though it was her country (Latvia) not her name that was the question.
We had a surprisingly good 8 on the top 5 lists as well, which included a full house on football. Specifically it was the 5 time winners of the top European club prize. Thanks be to the others for that. Something about a Keith Lemon TV skit parodying various films required total guesses of big films in the 70s and 80s, and we lucked into 3.
Alpha Links started badly, as it has done a few times lately, but we recovered well with 6 of the last 7 to get that score after missing the first 3. I need to work on my world currencies, to be sure. The connection this week we got after the first 2 questions, establishing them as Tweenies characters. With Jake and Fizz nailed down, we had Bella and Milo to come. Bella was inevitably going to be an answer to a question about either Twilight or the plant Belladonna; it was the latter. I wasn't sure what Milo could be in a question, but "Venus de-" was obvious. A welcome full house.
5 we had there and 5 we had on Wipeout as well. There was no point in chancing any moret than that. I'm very happy with our 37 in total, which is definitely on the high side of my average scores, but it was only good enough for 2nd as the Sultans of Shrimp stormed to yet another win. Actually their 42 was on the lower side for them, which was noted after the quiz, but we couldn't have caught them I don't think, as we just didn't know enough of the others. An impressive start to the week!
Result: 37/55 (67.28%), 2nd/4
Quiz #120 - Tuesday 20th June, Ship Inn, Dumfries
After my own quiz, it was back to normal at the Ship Inn. S & A had personal reasons for being absent, but B and the other A were back again. Well, we had prize money from last time around to spend! A couple of regular teams were absent, with the Pharmacists and Cree West guys not being there. All to play for? Maybe!
We started very well, with 6.5 putting us top of the leaderboard after GK. As is quite common, one team scored 0. I really don't see the point in emphasising how embarassing this is when the questions being asked are as difficult as this; I honestly think the quiz would get better turn out with slightly fairer questions.
The sport round was a case in point. "How many wins did Lewis Hamilton get in the 2014 GP season" and "Who was the last person to score a hattrick in an FA Cup semi-final, and (for a bonus point) was was the year and their club?" are simply not things that any non-dedicated fan of those sports will ever know. I love this quiz but those sort of questions are just not right, I'm sorry. We got 3 and were still in the lead, with 9.5.
We slipped to 2nd after a 6 on current events, and then found ourselves badly missing S & A for the Dingbats pictures. They were tough, too much so for just the three of us, and we only got 7 of the 12. The others clearly handled them better as we were now 3rd, 5.5 points behind the leaders - a 4 point drop on the previous round.
The specialist round was the film Dirty Dancing, which the other A knew but as she wasn't there that was no help. I meant to watch it but genuinely didn't have the time, so we were hopeless here. 2 was as good as we could have hoped for, the only saving grace being that we were still 3rd.
That left played music, and unfortunately it was mostly on me, with A & B not being keen on a largely modern set this week. It was a disaster, as we only got 9. This meant we were on the receiving end of a total trouncing, finishing 4th in a way that makes it sound better than it was. We were only 1.5 points ahead of last, and 28.5 behind first. The winners were a team who have done this before, storming to a win by an incredible 18 points by dominating on music (though I think they also had the specialist subject down as well). At least one of them is the daughter of one of the NCP so there's clearly inherited intelligence there.
I have to admit though, a couple of them came across as flat out obnoxious. I'm not going to dwell on it but I wasn't happy with their attitude, and slipped out quickly at the end before they could say anything. Can't take anything away from their win, of course, and my frustration is largely at my helplessness in the circumstances. We did very well on the first 3 rounds, or at least as well as we could have done, and then were stuffed after that. Alas.
Result: 33.5/83 (40.36%), 4th/6
Quiz #121 - Wednesday 21st June, Granary, Dumfries
One more quiz to go, and we had J with us from Carlisle tonight. It was a crazy busy day, as I needed to walk home at lunchtime, then I headed to the library after work to start my next quiz (because the lack of internet access meant I couldn't work on my stats) before meeting J in advance of the quiz.
By the time we arrived, I was frazzled and J was unfortunately hayfever-stricken. Horrible condition, that! L joined us later, so we were the alternative form of Three's Company. Most of the usual suspects were there, including Sporting Quizbon, the Roof Rax, and last week's winners, Universally Challenged. Last week's questions were mostly based around 2017 but on various subjects, so there was no telling what we'd have this time. Bring it on!
We started with anagrams. Oh dear. But they were football - gettable? Premier League football clubs? Very easy. 10/10 almost instantly, with the only issue being that most of the others would have probably gotten the same. Next was a music round, unplayed as ever at this quiz. Oh dear, thought I, but we came through it strongly with 8. Very happy with that.
Film followed - yay! But from 2016 and 2017 - darn it. Film is overall my best subject, but I don't tend to go to the cinema very often these days, so I'm nowhere near as good on the more recent ones. I was hoping a round like this wouldn't turn up, given the very same happened last week (except that this also covered 2016). We did our best, but only had 6.
After that, we fell apart. The GK round seemed relatively okay, except that we were making educated guesses for what turned out to be more of the questions than we realised. None of them paid off, and we got a dismal 3. The last round was even worse, phobias. I included a round on them in my first quiz, one of which turned up in round 4 here, but that didn't help me on the last round. 2 I got but the wrong way around, and only 3 actual answers again.
This unfortunately had consequences, as it meant we finished 5th. Sporting Quizbon were left gutted by yet another 2nd-place-by-1-point result, which seems to have been a recurring scenario for them, and Universally Challenged were between us in joint 3rd. It was a very close call again, with us only 4 point behind the winners, but starting well and finishing poorly was a shame. I'm not happy with failing on GK rounds, ever. Must add phobias to the list of things I need to properly study in the near future as well - a very extensive list, at this point! Shame we couldn't finish on a high, but it happens. Maybe next week.
Result: 30/50 (60%), 5th/11
Week in Summation
3 quizzes isn't a lot to really go on, but this felt like a disappointing result in truth. Sunday was very decent, with the winning team being very, very difficult to beat. Like I at the Grapes! I'm convinced it can be done though, and won't stop trying. Tuesday would almost certainly have gone far better with a full team, but in truth the winning score was exceptional, and the winning margin of 18 almost unheard of. We were basically playing for pride without our music expert R. Wednesday...we just didn't know the GK questions. I'm never going to accept that, but it was a fact that couldn't be changed on the day.
Ultimately, I suppose that means that a better result wasn't wholly within my own hands, which does make me feel better about it, but it still exposes my not being at the level whereby I can just turn up myself and dominate quizzes. Improvement is a slow, gradual journey, and I am making progress in that regard. We're officially into the summer now, and I've got a busy one to come. In any case, with the sheer volume of quizzes I do, there are always going to be some bad runs. Better results will come!
Total Result: 100.5/188 (53.46%)