Friday, 19 April 2013

Q is for Quizzing

I love a good quiz. Don't get me wrong, I hate exams and tests and anything where I have to remember content under pressure for any really important reason. But I love a quiz. Dredging up that fact from somewhere at the back of the brain, the frustration when you hear an answer that you know you knew, but couldn't quite bring to mind - the whole deal.

Some good serious quizzing faces here from our hosts.
On TV, I love a bit of BBC's Pointless - trying to remember facts and then establish what may be least well remembered by those polled. I have a strict policy of abandonment, however, if people get through to the final round and then pick a rubbish subject, like sports. I'll even turn over to ITV for a bit of The Chase, if my early evening quiz needs have not been sated, but it isn't quite as good. I've taken groups of students to see both of these shows being recorded as part of their course. It is fascinating to see the studio in action when such things are filmed, but hard to stop myself shouting out the answers like I do at home.

I fancy Manchester for 2013 University Challenge
Champions - they play their next match on Monday!
I really enjoy University Challenge - although I rarely get any of the answers right. I think the mix of questions that you feel you might possibly know and the joy of learning things you knew nothing about is quite satisfying. I love the crazy theme tune, the often hilariously-named, super intelligent young people and I relish admiring their often astounding knowledge. I'm not always a fan of the Paxman put-downs, but I do sometimes find myself chuckling at his frustration with the incorrect answers he deems obvious and wonder how he would cope with some of the students I teach all day.

Similar to the quick-fire missing vowels round -
answers on tomorrow's blog!
Undoubtedly, my favourite of all TV quiz shows, though, is BBC Four's fabulous Only Connect. I just love this show. Hosted by my girl-crush, Victoria Coren, it contains several fiendish rounds where you have to find the connection between words or phrases. My absolute favourite is the quick-fire round where the vowels have been removed from words or phrases and you only have a category as a clue to the solution (have a go yourself - right). The online version of one round, the  'Connecting Wall', is especially addictive and can keep you glued to your chair for hours. I strongly recommend you give it a go. Here is one (Game Wall 232 at this link) I managed to score full marks on - let me know how you get on!

A winning team of Family Day Quiz - my cousin Antony,
my brother, Tom, my cousin, Annie and Mum -
clearly where I get my quizzing gene from!
My cousin Kate is the Queen of Quizzes. She has, in the past, put together a quiz for our Family Day,
when all of my Mum's brothers and sisters, and their families, gather together in the summer. We are a family consisting of more than 50% teachers (including Kate and myself) and therefore organised fun goes down very well. Despite many disputes over the answers and occasionally controversial topics such as 'The Tommy Round' which featured questions all about my brother, Tom (a round his team did very well on, I might add), it is loads of fun. I think we should resurrect the tradition at the next Family Day.

In Carleton, my Mum and Dad's village they have a regular quiz at The Swan, the local pub, and last week, I'm proud to announce, Mum was on the winning team - take a bow, Mum! We have yet to find a good quiz around here, but we've been invited to join some work colleagues at a local pub quiz and I hope we get around to that soon. I need to get my quiz on!


  1. I swear we are woven of the same cloth. I also love quiz shows! I auditioned once for Jeopardy and made it through round one, much to my ex-boyfriend's chagrin. I didn't even go to round two as I let him take my place. It was his dream. Great post again! I've added you to my blogroll and started following you. Jennifer a.k.a. Urban Gypsy Girl

    1. Wow - I love the phrase woven of the same cloth! I've never actually auditioned for a quiz show, but I'd love to. I think I would probably forget all the answers that I can think of when I'm curled up on the sofa with a cuppa, though! Thanks for adding me to your blogroll - I'm touched :0) x

  2. Hi, really enjoyed reading your A to Z posts, and though I might disagree about the League of Gentlemen I was right with you on pretty much everything else. Do hope you will continue to blog when the challenge is over. Uni challenge followed by Only Connect is our Monday night staple, always a bad day when the series finishes. And Kate Atkinson, Behind the Scenes is one of my all time favourites.
    thanks for sharing

    1. Thanks, Martine! Monday night quizzing is a great treat after the first day back at work after the weekend :0) I will continue the blog after A-Z but probably not try and do one every day. Cheers for stopping by!