The Withington Pub Quiz League


8th November 2023


WQ Fixtures, Results & Table

WQ Teams

WQ Archive Comments Question papers

Ethel and the Opsis top the pile - each with just one defeat - while the History Men wait for their first victory

Albert lost to Prodigals

Opsimaths beat Charabancs

KFD beat History Men

Ethel Rodin beat Electric Pigs

Albert lost to Prodigals

The Prodigals return to their winning ways after last week's blip

QM 'Salt & Vinegar' O'Brien checks out the crisp market

A curious throwback to the quizzes of long ago before all those 'Fancy Dan' run-ons and themes became the fashion.  It  provided relatively little scope for conferring  and The Prodigals won because they knew more than we did.  It moved at a cracking pace and as QM I worked through the first four rounds in 35 minutes.  The reference to divine forgiveness wasn't likely to  find favour with The Albert; forgiving each other simply isn't the way we roll. 

One issue which merits further investigation is the potato crisps marketed in our new home at The Sun.  It is claimed on the packet that they are produced from the potato cultivars known as Lady Clare, Saturna, Hermies and Lady Rosetta.  Is this a wind up?  Nobody present had heard of these.  If genuine I sense the possibility of a hidden theme based on obscure potato varieties. 

Early edition of C4's Naked Attraction


Opsimaths beat Charabancs

The Opsimaths edge a close run match to stay well in contention for the title

Mike watches the victory unfold

Another nail-bitingly close win for the (almost) table-toppers.  Nothing was guaranteed this week with the Charas fresh from an outstanding win over the Prodigals last Wednesday and the Opsimaths hobbled by last minute personnel changes (Emma was unwell and Brian who had been slowing up all day - well at least since lunchtime - swapped places with me and became QM).  So it was Howell, Nick, Charlotte and myself against Damian, Bernard, Graham and John.

We were lucky once again to nick a win with the Charas steadily advancing on us after they started with a poor Round 1.  By Round 6 they were actually ahead but thanks to Charlotte's mastery of Britpop and Nick's all round coverage of everything else we sneaked it.

A happy evening then in the Club's back lounge uninterrupted (mostly) by any whoops of joy from the Reds watching the telly in the front lounge.  Bard John (who also happens to be a Red and an Albert Club member) was watching the match and looking increasingly glum.  Cheer up, John!  It was an excellent paper enjoyed by all.

Mrs McQueen


Ethel Rodin beat Electric Pigs

Ethel stay top after beating the Pigs down in Ladybarn

James still there after 15 years looks back - and forward

The Pigs took an early lead which then switched to and fro.  Only in Round 7 was there more than a point's difference between the teams.

Michael thought that the first round was for people slightly older than him and had a moment of ‘Why am I here?’ self-doubt, but things came good in the end.

The injection of new blood into our league has to be encouraged.  That was me once, sliding into a seat vacated by my father-in-law’s occasional visits to Spain, and then refusing to leave that seat for, errm, 15 years.  Do we improve with age or do the questions just catch up with our generation? 

That question might have been partially answered by Ethel’s (largely) well-received quiz last week.

Happily connecting Lancashire & Yorkshire


Was this the worst British car ever made?


KFD beat History Men

KFD resume their interrupted title chase by beating the History Men

Kieran pens a love letter to Martin

Martin has a nephew named Joe who lives in Reading.  Barry has a nephew named Joe who lives in Reading.  

Only one of them was present in the Griffin this evening and 'My Nephew Joe Who Lives in Readingis most definitely not our new team name.  

Pied Piper Ivor was in the house and so inevitably the youth of Reading danced attendance.  Tonight that took the form of Martin's nephew Joe, a man of fewer than thirty summers and an alumnus of both UCL AND Imperial; so yes, I guess it runs in the family.  Joe was in town for work and fancied experiencing what a proper pub quiz is like as opposed to the watered down southern versions he usually has to suffer.  If David was put out at being benched to make room for him, the entertainment on offer from the Parken Stadium likely brightened his mood pretty quickly.  Thomas is at a wedding in Killarney and, given the assumed football allegiances of his fellow guests, he too will have had a splendid evening.  

One all Manchester celebrated


Barry made a decent return to KFD's cause after last week's indisposition by scoring four twos.  I chipped in here and there and Joe successfully navigated the debutante's rite of passage by putting away the hugely irritating Jack Whitehall for a maximum. Martin? Well we all know what an egotistical show off he is so, starry-eyed Joe looking on, he celebrated his family reunion by getting his first clean sweep of eight twos for a couple of years - and the first in the league this season.  Maybe we should get Joe up to Manchester regularly just to fuel Martin's hitherto unknown family competitiveness.  

Nearly Hatless Bob (it rested on the table in front of him for almost the entire evening) was brisk, efficient and genial and we were done by 9.50.  That was roughly the same time as United were despatched in Copenhagen to accompanying noises off and a panoply of anguished, despairing and angry facial expressions from our man in the Europa League (perhaps).    

Telling moment of the evening was when the Pied Piper's first two was scored for Mayfair - just saying.  We answered all but one of our questions and the History Men only missed out on two of theirs.  No bonuses were scored on any of those three and I don't remember any quiz having zero steals before tonight.  

Still no team is making a compelling case as the side to beat and next up in our pre-Christmas Griffin residency is Ethel.  That game is always competitive to say the least, so we'll see how things stand in a week's time.      

But tonight was all about Martin, a veteran who still performs at the highest level week in week out and who has pretty much the same appetite for quiz points as Robot Boy does for goals.  We'd be way less than average without him. And Joe, whatever effect you have on your uncle to make him reach that standard, keep doing it please.

Ivor enjoys a blurtless evening in Heaton Mersey

We lost by 7 points at Fortress Griffin.  This is such an expected result that if it had been a day at the First World War trenches the report might have read “All quiet on the Western Front”.  Instead it was a game of much interest and incident.  Our first three rounds were all tied and it was only from Round 4 that KFD started to move ahead.  Blurting was not the cause of our undoing this time - and remarkably there was not a single steal for either side; the three chances of a bonus all ended up as unanswereds.  So, KFD’s handsome victory was largely due to Martin’s clean sweep of eight twos.  This quiz equivalent of a nine-dart finish is most uncommon but Martin probably holds the record for the most achieved in the history of WithQuiz.  I cannot see him vacating his lucky seat two anytime soon.

The Historymen remain pointless despite our best efforts but as Anne always says it is only a pub quiz.  We did have our share of 'wrong seat for the question' occasions which meant we only had 10 twos to KFD’s 16 but there were some great rescues (van Eyck from Anne, Bela Bartok from Rupert and Roots Hall from David).  I had another shocker failing on film directors and Birmingham rock and did not get a two until my sixth round question on magazines.  KFD thought for about eight minutes for their Round 6 magazine answer (we were coiled springs hoping to snatch the bonus), but my question on the gentleman’s glossy sprung to mind immediately (it was the theme which prompted that of course).  

Quiz paper set by...

...The Bards

Average Aggregate score 86.5

The best average aggregate of the season so far but it never seemed too easy a set of questions.  Plenty to ponder and some enjoyable formats to keep everyone on their toes.

... and this is what Kieran thought ...

A belter of a quiz from the Bards but does anybody miss the days of Tony's seven paragraph questions?  No?  Thought as much. 

Split retirement home


... and Ivor gives his verdict ...

The quiz was rightly praised and had been well edited too.  Bob was delighted  that hardly any questions went on to a third line; the themes were accessible and the pairings balanced.  It's always a delight when a question leads to a nostalgia interlude: Pot Black in the early 70s when we watched in black and white (Martin) or on those colour TVs (the rest of us) where the red ball would suddenly take up the brilliance of Aldebaran for no apparent reason and remain glowing despite efforts to twiddle the adjustment knob.  Happy days when snooker players looked as if they had had a misspent youth.  Nowadays it is quizzers who look worse for wear - and not just in our league.


Ben More


... and James his ...

That was a very well constructed quiz which made for a high scoring game that was tight throughout. There were very few unanswered questions. 

There were some well-judged themes and the relative difficulty of the questions was well-balanced.  The Round 6  theme was well hidden in the first two answers; but I didn’t fall into the trap.  Round 4 was also a great hidden theme round, which found a way of largely avoiding the obvious giveaway-type question.  For my Agatha Christie question, I worked out the round's theme, realised there would likely be a 'Paddington' somewhere, twigged which book it was, but then had to confer and start a long (but eventually successful) debate to get the right time in the book's title.  

Pretty Britpoppers


The rhyming round was a good idea too which worked well - except that Greg having written down Nice, started looking for the name of a musical that rhymed with 'mice'.  

We felt a little embarrassed grabbing a steal for the film question when the Pigs had simply missed out the word 'Exotic' from the title.  It’s the kind of answer where, if we’d had no idea, we would have given them the points, but as we had it in full we felt justified in taking the points for a 'steal'.  Perhaps we had been a little mean however, considering  Roddy’s answer of 'Terry Sheringham' had been allowed earlier.  Fortunately the margin of our victory was just about more than it would have been if Roddy's answer hadn't been allowed.

Question of the Week

This week I've taken a leaf out of James' report and selected the Agatha Christie question that caused Ethel much pondering trying to get the time right.   It was Round 4 Question 4 ...

In which 1957 Agatha Christie novel does Miss Marple’s friend Mrs McGillicuddy witness a murder?

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

"Now listen here you!"