The Withington Pub Quiz League


23rd January 2013


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Tonight's plaudits go to the Bards for notching up the first ever score to top 60 - and to the Meat Raffle for their long-deserved second victory of the season

Results & Match Reports

The Opsimaths got their own back in the second Club derby of the season, beating The Prodigals to the Orkney Dark Trophy by 8 points.  It was a raucous, warm atmosphere in the back room of the Club with Opsimath youngster, Hilary, playing a blinder to see the old men home.  Saddest news of the evening was that Dave took time off Eggheads recording to visit the Burrell Collection just so that he could miss meeting celebrity Egghead, Rodney Marsh.  Now there's a true Red!

The History Men provided The Compulsory Meat Raffle with the opportunity for their second victory of the season.  As victorious captain Rachael was (for a change) the first to write in....

"We have finally notched up our second win of the season.  It was a very close match and we were neck and neck going into the last round before 3 two-pointers and a couple of steals helped us pull away!  It was a very convivial evening with delightful opposition who, for a change, bought the drinks."

Later I received the Cartmill reflections...

"Excellent game at the Red tonight which saw CMR scoring a deserved win. The lead changed hands several times and going into the last round the Historymen were 1 point ahead.

I was in the safety of the QM seat tonight and as soon as I saw the last round questions and weighed them up against the seat positions I knew we were going to get a free drink!  And so it proved with a last round 0-9 drubbing for the Men.  Of course no one should be surprised at CMR's form - the surprise is that their position in the league is as yet modest compared with the thrashings they have administered on Mastermind and University Challenge.  I would not be surprised if they passed us during our steady decline in the second half of the season.

Being QM is an interesting task.  Is it really possible to remain entirely neutral?  I was berated by my team for encouraging them to have a blurt when all they wanted to do was cede a question without playing a shot.  Mind you I take solace from the great Speaker George Thomas who apparently once forgot he was no longer a Labour Cabinet Minister and said 'Hear Hear' when listening to a speech by Harold Wilson."

The Charabancs of Fire cantered to a comfortable victory over Albert.  Damian provides the insights...

"The Charas finally managed to record their first win of the year at the third attempt by beating the Albert, the team that beat us just a couple of weeks ago when there were only 3 of them.  Maybe it's a mistake for them to turn up to play us with a full team.  In any event, Eveline's vigorous objections to my earlier description of us being beaten by 'a three man team'  were not assuaged, when I said I'd always thought of her as 'an honorary man'.  It's a good job she hates to waste a good gin and tonic or I might have gone home wearing one!"

The Electric Pigs ended up 10 points adrift of I Blame Smoke Fairies at the Fletcher Moss.  Kieran reports:

"Good beer and crisps as ever in the Fletcher Moss and enjoyable company to boot.  We're just going to keep plugging away at the top and see if anyone can catch us. Now who does that sound like?"

The Bards rattled WithQuiz's Stato with (what I think) is the first ever score in excess of 60 points against The Men They Couldn't Hang.  Indeed so incredulous was I that I texted Tony back for a confirmation that it wasn't a texting finger error.  Hangman Graham has subsequently confirmed the Bards did indeed score 61 (SIXTY ONE - as the teleprinter used to say).  Graham goes on to tell us...

"Being presented with photos from the last game of last season by Eric, lulled us into a false sense of security.  After Il Capitano had won the toss and selected to go first we realised that at 29-11 down it was going to be an uphill struggle - which was probably why our answer to the RAF question was 'Club 18-30'.  Nevertheless a thoroughly entertaining evening admirably QM'd by Eric - and many thanks to Dom for playing the first half for us in place of Neil who was delayed by work commitments.  As it turned out Neil's performance in the second half was about as useful as his absence in the first.  We did feel, as did the Bards, that the team going second got the slightly easier rub of the green which completely explains why we just missed out with a final 61-19 scoreline going against us."

Tony did contact me later to wonder how I had the temerity to question the original score and also to observe that...

"the questions really fell to our strengths and we had more than just the luck of the Irish - we had a barrel load of leprechauns under the table.  Typically the Hangmen were totally uncomplaining and cheered when they talked themselves out of the right answer."

Quiz Paper Verdict

This week was an Ethel Rodin week.  But was it really?  An average aggregate of 75.4 - a mere 23 points better than the average aggregate for their first paper of the season.  This was dumbing down on a grand scale.  It was like going to listen to the LSO and hearing an orchestral compilation of Abba's greatest hits - nice but somehow not really what Rodin quizzing is all about.  In truth it really was great fun.  There was not a bad word to be had from around the grounds - other than, perhaps, a little gripe at the balance with the team going second having the advantage.

Kieran felt only 6 unanswered questions all night was an unusually low tally for a Rodin paper, whilst Damian's view was that ....

"the quiz itself was a thoroughly enjoyable affair, well crafted by Ethel R and up to their usual standards.  As usual we enjoyed the attendance of Chief Ethel Spokesperson Roddy himself who kindly acted us our question master.  Consensus as to QotW - at least as far as the Charas were concerned - was the one about Wardley Hall and the screaming skull of St. Ambrose Barlow."

Beaming Meat Raffle captain, Rachael, concludes:

"The paper was enjoyable, if a bit challenging.  Some of the pairs were a tad unbalanced though they evened out eventually.  All in all it was a good range of topics!"

And finally, from my vantage point as the QM at the Club I thought potential answer of the week was Howell's speculation that the Jimmy Savile investigation might have been called 'Operation Fix It'.

The Question of the Week

This week the Charas vote for Round 4 Question 2:

Wardley Hall in Worsley contains the so-called screaming skull of St Ambrose Barlow.  Whose official residence is the Hall?

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