The Withington Pub Quiz League


22nd April 2009


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Cup specialists, the Pigs, win through to yet another Val Draper final against SPW - the Plate final will be between X-Pats and the Opsimaths

The Results

This week's Cup & Plate semi final results:

SPW enjoyed a fairly comfortable home victory over the History Men - Ivor writes:

"Each team just able to field 3 players tonight.  No Everton-type shocks in this semi-final.  Half time score was 11-11 and we did think we might have a chance as hard quizzes often swing on the last few questions - but not this time as SPW accelerated in the second half to be worthy winners."

Electric Pigs sustained their extraordinary cup reputation against TMTCH at the Fletcher Moss - they have now been in each of the last 4 Val Draper Cup Finals!!

Opsimaths kept their noses in front against their bogey team, the Albert, to earn a place in next week's Plate final

Getaways lost out in a record-breaking low scoring match at the Gateway to X-Pats - just 34 points were scored all evening

The Paper

This week the questions were set by Snoopy's Friends.

I'm afraid the paper has been universally panned.  It proved far too hard with an average score of a measly 45.0 (compared to the season's previous lowest of 56.4 for one of Snoopy's earlier papers).

Mark from the Getaways comments:

"I know how tricky it is to set a good paper, but tonight's was a shocker.  Many questions were obscure.  There were whole rounds on specialist interests or knowledge, a few dodgy questions that annoyed both sides, and some obvious imbalances in the pairings."

Andrew writes in from the Pigs/TMTCH match:

"This was quizzing's equivalent of a tense semi-final on a dead pitch with divots coming up everywhere."

and Ivor adds:

"A miserable combined score of 54 with 22 unanswered questions (I suspect the score wouldn't have been much higher with four players per side).

Some interesting pairs but overall the going was definitely 'hard to firm' rather than 'good to soft'."

At the Albert Club we had a most convivial evening with the Albert team.  Pretty early on we realised that the outcome was going to be a bit of a lottery with so many unanswered questions (there were 24 in total) so we settled for a friendly, chatty evening with not so much focus on the score tally.

Our best laugh came with the question about the capital of the least populous US State.  The Albert team, after much debate, said 'Juneau'.  Pausing for a moment with a look of total surprise on her face, Jitka quickly regained her usual composure and replied: 'Yes, of course I do, I've got the answer in front of me.'

I did have a personal gripe about the 'What place of entertainment lies at the southern end of the Millennium Bridge' question.  I know this part of London well.  The Tate Modern is indeed on the south bank at the end of the Millennium Bridge but a few yards away to the east of the Tate Modern is the reconstructed Globe Theatre.  To me the answer was clear: a theatre could be described as a place of entertainment whereas an art gallery didn't quite fit that label.  Of course I hadn't given the answer Snoopy's wanted.  But was I wrong?

The Question of the Week

This week the vote (from the Pigs) goes to Spares Question 1:

Complete the following quotation from Brian Clough when talking about Trevor Brooking: 'He floats like a butterfly and.....'

For the answer to this and all the week's questions click here.


Val Draper Cup & Plate Finals paper

As you’ll be aware, the paper being set for next week’s Finals is to be a joint effort compiled from the offerings of each of the 7 teams not involved.  The Charabancs have agreed to act as paper editor and publisher. 

Will the teams listed below please send their offerings to all of the following email addresses:

Gerry Collins (gorton.crown-office@postoffice.co.uk & gerrardcollins@hotmail.com),

Damian Land (damianland@aol.com)

John Dennison (Johndennisonco@aol.com)

 by this Friday evening (24/04) at the very latest.

Charabancs of Fire

Snoopy’s Friends

Ethel Rodin

History Men




Each offering should be a single round (themed, paired, bingo, pictures or whatever you like) on a single page ready to be cut and pasted into the finals paper – and on a separate page a pair of questions to go into Round 8 of the paper. 

Please use Microsoft Word and label both pages with your team name.  We are hoping to get the finalists to vote for the best round and then present a prize to winning setters the following week at the Presentation evening.


Venue for the Finals

It's really up to the Finalists to choose their venue but I have booked the Albert Club for next Wednesday evening so all 4 teams are very welcome to make this their 'neutral' ground.


End of Season Presentation Evening

....and in 2 weeks time (May 6th) we will hold the End of Season Presentation evening at the Albert Club.  As has become the custom I have prepared a special quiz paper for the evening (full of pictures, music, etc).  Will those who won trophies last year please polish them up and bring them along (even if they're just getting them back again, SPW)?

Fr Megson

Golden Oldies....

Wrestling with my conscience - and the cat


Another blast from the past.  This piece was published on the website on April 28th 2005 when, it seems, a General Election was looming:


The other evening after work I was wrestling with the cat for squatting rights on the sofa when Danny, my stepson, burst in and demanded to know who I would be voting for in the General Election.

"What General Election?" I started to ask before realising that, as the founding member of an esteemed quiz team, I shouldn't really have to confer on a question like this.

"Labour," I muttered enthusiastically.

"But you don't even like Tony Blair", protested Danny.

"Yes, there is that", I conceded, "but I don't like anybody else either and anyway I'm a natural born Socialist so it would be class treason not to vote for Labour like wot I've always done....

"Yes, Danny, I know that Labour is no longer a Socialist party but you are missing the point.  No Danny, I'm not losing my temper, but Jesus wept, you're doing bloody politics for bloody 'A' levels so the least I expect is that you might be intelligent enough to follow the cogency of my superior argument?  Now go away and practice your iPod 'cos I'm busy trying to listen to THE ARCHERS.   And it wouldn't do YOU any harm to listen to intelligent worthwhile programmes once in a while".

Danny's a good lad really but, like most young people today, he refuses to grasp the complexities of being a tired old git.

Many hours later when I woke up (with the cat snoozing contentedly on my chest), I got to thinking.  Maybe I should vote for somebody else.  But who?  The Greens sound like a nice bunch but they might feel inclined to put a tax on unreconstructed neanderthals like me whose idea of a nice dinner is steak and chips with lots of salt and hold the salad.

The BNP are running, as well I know, 'cos I saw their Party Political Broadcast the other evening.  I hadn't meant to watch it but I was sleeping with the cat on the sofa and it was on when I woke up.  They seem very sweet and caring.  They were singing a lovely English folksong à la Ralph McTell all about a misunderstood young lad who was forced to become a nutter on the streets of London 'cos when he was off fighting those racist Argies loads of gay black Albanians with turbans and Irish accents took over his bedroom and brutalised his teddy bear.  I felt very sorry for the nutter and for his teddy but all the same......I'd be worried that they were only pretending to be sweet and caring and when they finally got into power they might start shooting everybody that wasn't born in Basingstoke.

I was getting desperate now.  What about Charlie Kennedy?  Seems like a nice bloke.  He looks reassuringly like a human wreck and he's got an accent that baffles Sassenachs so we would have a lot in common.  And yet..... Lib Dem.... doesn't sound very macho does it?  Not the type of party that could take care of itself if it got into a fracas outside the Pack Horse in Levenshulme on a Saturday night.  Nah, sorry Chas.

Then I leapt up with a brainwave (much to the annoyance of the cat).  Why shouldn't WITHQUIZ put forward its own candidate?   I would be prepared to nominate Mike Bath for P.M. if any of you lot would second him.  I really think he would appeal to the Great British public.  He's clever but not too clever. He's good at communicating - he's got his own website for Chrissakes!  He's about the right age - not baby-faced like that Hague tosser a few years ago but not as old as the Pope either.  And he looks nice and avuncular.  I think he would look ever so wholesome kissing babies and pets.  Though we would probably have to airbrush out the pint of beer and the packet of pork scratchings if we want the pictures to appear on the front page of The Guardian.

We'll need a name of course.  The Bath'ist Party sounds good but I think it has been used before by a friend of George Galloway's.  The Liberal Opsimaths has got a nice ring to it but we don't want to alienate the large percentage of the electorate who don't own a dictionary.  The Friends of the Electric Pigs Party?  You're being fcekin' stupid now.

I'm not very good at manifestos.  Perhaps Ivor could run us one up when he gets back from the pub.  Keep it simple Ivor.  Something along the lines of:

"If elected we promise to get rid of the rat race. We will achieve this by forcing all the successful people in British society to take all society's losers out every Wednesday evening and buy them a pint."

Yes, I know it sounds a bit too much like ragged-trousered Socialism but it might just work.   And at least we would finally be spared the excruciating embarrassment of having to don a bloody red nose every time we feel like helping those worse off than ourselves.

Sheamus McGuevara