This weekend, I’ll participate in The World’s Largest Trivia ContestTM. I’m a little preoccupied with preparations for that, including some significant travel. To provide some sense of the madness of minutiae that dominates my mind this week, I’ll return to a bit of a tradition around these parts and share a few personally memorable answers from the twenty-five years or so that I’ve been involved with this contest, in one way or another. In this instance, I’ve reminded myself of the answers by flipping through our team’s old answer sheets.
There are questions I simply do not want to miss. More precisely, there are certain films and television shows and other pieces of pop culture Trivia fodder that inspire such excitement and devotion in me that I do not want to botch the questions that draw from them. (Obviously, it would be great if we didn’t miss any questions the whole weekend, but I am a Trivia realist.) I still remember the pain of having no clue when Fargo questions came up the year after that film was released. I loved the movie, could expound upon its merits at tedious length, and yet I couldn’t call up the correct answers from my faulty, sparking memory when the relevant questions arrived. A couple years later, I and my partner-in-all-things were determined that we would not miss any questions about Wes Anderson’s Rushmore, a film that we championed like it was a crucial, faltering charity. We took meticulous notes and waited. As I remember it, we were actually away from our team headquarters when the question arrived, listening at the off-site space to where we had fled for some fitful sleep. From the question, we immediately knew it was from Rushmore but we uncertain if our teammates would be similarly certain, leading to a flurry of phone calls back to HQ that were met with a busy signal (one landline, no cell phones). The was a good sign, indicating that they’d found our notes and were trying to push past the other teams simultaneously calling in their attempts at an answer. The team got it correct, for a pleasingly significant ninety points. There are so many instances when our preparation doesn’t pay off. It makes it that much more thrilling when the mission is actually accomplished.
More info about 90FM’s Trivia can be found at its official website or at the radio station’s online home. There’s also a feature documentary about the contest, but it’s fairly hard to come by these days. To see how my team is faring over the weekend, Twitter is probably the best bet.