Dear Friends of the Pub Quiz,
Many of my friends on Facebook are telling me and their other friends how and why they are grateful this month. So far they have been talking mostly about friends and family – for example, my wife Kate thanked me for convincing her that we should have a third child – but I’m sure tomorrow or Wednesday people will express thanks that the presidential election is over. Television networks may be less thankful that the campaign season will end, for I’m sure between the endless stream of crass political ads and the partisan focus on either Fox News or MSNBC, network executives were feeling that their work was relevant again, or at least necessary in our age of retail politics. Like many of you, I have long ago grown impatient with television – especially commercial television – having switched years ago to print and internet sources for our news. Let’s hope that Americans rediscover new reasons to be thankful starting Wednesday night, starting perhaps with the other people in their homes, those natural resources and parks that have not yet been depleted or neglected, and the silence in a room where two or more people are reading actual books.
As an aside, I should add that classical music suits me for reading books, whereas I use energetic dance music when I am grading papers. Never a coffee drinker or a taker of psycho-stimulants, I find that music can serve these functions if you have a wide-enough musical palate, and access to online music through Pandora, Spotify, or the web-available radio stations of the world. Some day I will attempt a music round at the de Vere’s Irish Pub Pub Quiz, though today is not that day.
Tonight’s Quiz will feature five questions on “things I learned last week from reading the newspaper.” I read rather widely, and often with you, the quiz-taker, in mind. I hope you have also been keeping up with the news. Expect also questions about burgers, Google and Microsoft, November, Hurricane Sandy (also called a “super storm”), countries that start with the letter I, social thinkers and philosophers, rookies, historical miracles, portrait painters, great American films, people born in Hawaii, baseball greats, gasses, bicycling, California travel, Beatles songs, reclining ruined urologists, films that have made more than $100 million, CBEs, blogs, trees, the election, swing states, Philadelphia, a sibling’s directives regarding guns, red states, Vietnam, carnivores that never eat people, novels, and Shakespeare.
I hope to see you this evening. It will get dark early tonight, so at the Pub Quiz you can pretend that you are out late even though you should be able to be home and in bed tonight by 9:30, depending on how long it takes you to brush your teeth.
Here are five questions from last week’s quiz:
22. Fear the Beard. What Beach Boy shares a name with a pitcher playing for the World Championship San Francisco Giants?
23. Davis Culture. The City of Davis grew around a Southern Pacific Railroad depot that was built around the time of the end of what US-involved war?
24. Countries of the World. Five of the twelve largest cities proper in the world are found in what country?
25. Food and Drink. What grain-like crop whose name starts with the letter Q is grown primarily for its edible seeds?
26. Science. What five-syllable word do we use to name the branch of natural science concerned with heat and its relation to other forms of energy and work?