Wednesday, 31 March 2010

The World's Biggest Pub Quiz - Really!

Following on from that last item, I've been delving into this whole 'world's biggest pub quiz' thing. The Eden project claim they beat the record in 2007, but the Guinness people deny this. According to Guinness World Records, the official title goes to India, where on 3 December 2007 1,566 high school students took part in the national final of the huge science quiz marathon T.I.M.E Aqua Regia.

Meanwhile our plans are taking shape to attempt the record at Alexandra Palace, near Muswell Hill, north London next year. Yesterday we had a meeting with a potential charity partner who seem very excited about the concept, so watch this space!

World's biggest quiz?

Apparently an attempt was going to be made to hold the 'World's Biggest Pub Quiz' this week. It's all for a good cause, and supported by First Choice/Thomson Holidays.

My only grumble is that it should be called 'The World's Biggest Virtual Pub Quiz', as it ain't going to be thousands of people in one room, but a load of joined up individual quizzes going on all over the country, albeit using the same questions. Even the organisers have admitted it may fall foul of Guinness World Record rules.

Now, thousands of people all doing a quiz at, say, Ally Pally? That really would be the world's biggest pub quiz!

Lunch Bunch

Another corporate quiz this week, for top property company Jones Lang LaSalle at their offices in Hanover Square, London W1. A lunchtime do with fantastic food and wine courtesy of JLL's in house catering people. Fewer teams and a more intimate occasion, but all seemed to enjoy themselves, despite a spot of minor Blackberry- and glove-based cheating!

Thursday, 25 March 2010

Colman Getty PEN Quiz 2009

More photos, this time from the Colman Getty English PEN Quiz at RIBA last December. Marcus Berkmann set the questions, English PEN's Assistant Director Sarah Hesketh did all the organising, David Mitchell was the quizmaster and I courageously pressed a couple of buttons to make the scoreboard work.

Thanks to Sarah for letting us use these.

Origin Tonic 2

At last! I've finally got around to uploading some photos from the Origin Asset Management Charity Challenge 2010 with our quizmaster Marcus Berkmann in charge of proceedings. We've also been sent a very kind note from Origin:

'On behalf of Origin Asset Management I would like to thank you for the excellent job you did at our Charity Challenge. We all had a great time and have received very positive feedback from our guests. We hope it will the the first of an annual series and look forward to working with you again.'

Origin Tonic

Mission accomplished for Origin Asset Management at the Ironmonger's Hall in the City. Ten teams enjoyed a five round quiz including photo round and video round, all in aid of charity. Winners were Abusive Tax Shelter (Hewitt Associates) with a whopping 84 out of a possible 100 points!

Looking forward to the Origin Asset Management Charity Challenge 2011!

Frog And Toad

Here's another question from my local pub quiz: What's the difference between a frog and a toad? Well, what is the difference? Frogs leap, toads crawl? Frogs live in water and toads out? Frogs have smooth backs, toads warty? Or is it that a toad won't turn into a prince when you kiss it?

The quizmaster got all these perfectly reasonable answers, and in the end gave up and awarded a point to every team. A good decision as the truth is that toads are frogs. Frogs and toads are both in the order Anura, and there is no taxonomic difference between them:

Lightning Decision

Here's a topical question I heard in my local pub quiz in Kent recently: Are more people killed and injured each year by a) earthquakes b) hurricanes or c) lightning? The answer turned out to be lightning, apparently.

Somehow that doesn't seem right. However, it's on the Met Office website here:

100,000 injuries and 10,000 deaths a year. Yet it's estimated that 600,000 people have been killed in earthquakes (or tsunamis caused by earthquakes) in the past decade, with an unknown number of injuries. And floods, hurricanes and storms accounted for something like 2.5m-4m in the 20th century.

Personally I wouldn't have asked the question, as the answer relies too heavily on estimates, time frame, and a whole load of other variables for anyone to be able to say for sure that it's a fact.

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Apologies For Our Absence

Apologies for the absence of our weekly brainteaser recently. Brain Man Chris has been in hospital, so our quiz engine is only firing on two cylinders.

Thankfully he's on the mend, so we hope to restore normal service shortly.

Speaking of engines, here's a motoring question from Anne and Keith that really flummoxed us at the Prince of Wales quiz last night (I've elaborated and clarified it slightly):

Which car manufacturer originated in 1895 when bookseller Vaclav Klement tried to order parts for his German bicycle and received the reply: 'If you would like an answer to your inquiry, you should try writing in a language we can understand'? He started his own bicycle business in disgust, and later began making cars, which since 1926 have carried a winged arrow badge.

Click on 'comments' below for the answer.