Did you know that the musical The Lion King is based on Shakespeare’s Hamlet? It was news to me...
fact was just one of the nuggets of information I garnered at yesterday night’s U3A Fish and Chip Supper and Quiz Night. You have to admit it, Mr B and I really do live The High Life.
We haven’t been to a Quiz Night organised by the U3A before but we have been to plenty of similar events run by the Bowls Club. So, in the absence of any instructions on what to bring, we packed our red Marks & Spencer’s
bag with the following: One bottle of red wine with screw top (we have been caught without a corkscrew on more than one occasion); two wine glasses (wrapped up in tea towels for added protection); two plastic picnic plates; knives and forks; and kitchen towels
to act as napkins. It turned out we did not need to bring anything except the wine. Everyone else borrowed cutlery and glasses from the kitchen of the Friends’ Meeting House where the event was held and ate their fish and chips straight from the
paper. Our plates and wine glasses were viewed with some hilarity by our team members who called us “posh” and asked how much it was to talk to us these days.
Our team of four consisted of Delia and Jim, from our Afternoon Cribbage Group, Mr B and me. We decided to call ourselves “The Twenty-niners” – 29 being the absolute maximum score you can make at Cribbage. Mr B did, once
upon a time, score a 28 but that was back in about 1967. He still talks about it; he has a long memory for past successes. There was a prize for the most imaginative group name but we didn’t win. I don’t think our Quiz Master understood the
sheer significance of our name.
Ah, the Quiz Master! I need to tell you about him. However, first, never let it be said that I underestimate the amount of time
and effort that goes into the organisation of such an event. Each table was provided with a pack of forms on which to write our answers in each round, a warning notice telling us we must not use our mobile phones to find out the answers (perish the thought!);
a Joker card to claim double points on our chosen round; and two table quizzes, one all about Confectionery, the other called Wuzzles. Wuzzles is a shortened name for Word Puzzles. So, for example, the word RADIO written both forwards and backwards OIDAR
turns out to be Two Way Radio. We had the whole evening in which to work on the table quizzes, puzzling out the answers between rounds.
As I said, I am all
admiration for the effort involved – it was unfortunate, therefore, that our Quiz Master was one of those people who like to announce, at regular intervals: “Of course, EVERYONE must know the answer to that one!” or “Surely there is
nobody here who would get that wrong!” - when it was perfectly obvious from the scores on the doors that (i) they didn’t, and (ii) there was.
I turned out to be a bit of a whizz at the confectionery quiz. This undoubtedly gave our fellow team members the quite misguided impression that I eat a lot of chocolate bars. I promise you I don’t. Truly.
At the half way break our team was in the lead, three points ahead of our nearest opposition – though we had played our joker on the Musicals round. We failed on two
questions in that round – one of them being the origin of the Lion King. I shall remember that in future.
Though perhaps not. One of the
later questions was “How many points does a snowflake have?” All four of us said we had heard this question before in some quiz or other. All four of us agreed that the answer was eight. All four of us were wrong. Then there was a question
“On a clock with Roman numerals, how many times does X appear?” Delia took ages working this one out for herself – only to remember, some considerable time later when we had moved onto the next round, that she was actually wearing a wrist-watch
adorned with, you’ve guessed it, Roman numerals. Among the questions which completely stumped me was the one asking for the colours, in order, of the four buttons on a TV remote control. How would I know, when Mr B never lets it out of
Mr B was looking forward to the round on Sport, his favourite subject. Had the decision been left to him, he would have played our joker
on it. Good thing he didn’t, as it turned out, because the questions were not the regular kind of sporting questions but rather obscure ones.
I expect you
want to know if we won. Sadly we were shouldered into second place by the team which apparently always wins the quizzes. We couldn’t quite work out how they had crept up on us and overtaken us by eight whole points – but there you are,
It isn’t the winning that counts, it’s the taking part, as I told Mr B on the way home. Mr Super Competitive wasn’t having any of it.
woz robbed!” he protested, crossly.