Monday, 15 April 2013

09/04/13: The three longest-reigning kings of England all have the regnal number III

The attendees
1) The statistician
2) The doctor

The ones that got away
1) If you took the M3 motorway out of London, which city would you ultimately arrive in? (Edited: on the night it was "which city would you arrive in first?" which, as ably spotted in the comments below, would give a different answer.)
2) In what year was The Bone Collector released?
3) Identify the film from this quote: "God didn't do this. We did!"
4) Identify the film from this quote: "Well, it now seems quite possible that until we get to a decent jail with bribable guards, I may stand in some need of... rather close physical protection."
5) Identify the song from these lyrics: "Why is the bedroom so cold? / Turned away on your side / Is my timing that flawed? / Our respect run so dry?"
6) Identify the song from these lyrics: "You have made my life complete and I love you so"
7) Is a Halcyon a type of skylark or a type of kingfisher?
8) To which royal household did Henries IV, V and VI belong?

The answers

The excuses
1) Regular readers may be wondering why, given the frequency with which such questions appear on these pages, we are still yet to try and properly get to grips with British geography. Unfortunately, given our relatively immiment move abroad, motivation is something of an issue: I somewhat doubt that my one motorway fact (the lowest number that isn't a motorway in the UK) will come up much in the Canadian pub quiz landscape. This is probably just as well: at a mere 70 miles off we thought our suggestion the M3 went to Brighton was 'not bad'...
2) To be entirely accurate, the question we tried to answer was not quite "When was The Bone Collector" released, but "When was this film, for which you only have a picture of Denzel Washington and Angelina Jolie to go by, released?". It came as little surprise to hear our guess of 2002 was considerably off the money: it was based entirely on "how much older does she look than when she was in Hackers?".
3) A film neither of us had seen (despite being big fans of the lead actor), but perhaps guessable given our passing knowledge of the plot. Our own 'well-it's-better-than-nothing' stab of Dogma probably gives away how little effort we put into this one.
4) We spent rather longer struggling with this one, as it tickled just the right spot of our brains. Our eventual punt on The Italian Job was made with similar optimism to Dogma, however, and for once we had actually seen the film in question (which always reminds me of the cute/ridiculous dog of the same name).
5-6) Song lyrics are one of those rich seams for quiz questions: without too much effort you can get an entire pub quietly trying to sing along until they reach a bit they recognize. Unfortunately for us, these lines didn't even ring a bell, but they're sufficiently famous that I can't even try and get awway with the old 'before our time' argument.
7) A surprise lesson in Greek mythology, from where the phrase 'halcyon days' originates. A chapess called Alcyone would spend 14 days each year laying eggs and making a nest as a kingfisher (obviously). Handily for Alcyone she was daughter of Aeolus, god of the winds, who would prevent storms for those two weeks so she wouldn't get twigs blowing all over the place. These were thus the halcyon days, a period of calm amidst adversity (although the phrase has come to refer to any peaceful time).
8) Saving the best til last, and I can only try and save a modicum of face and blame the beer (it was the antepenultimate question on the quiz, after all). In lieu of a better excuse, I'll distract you with the rather fun 'fact' (according to Wikipedia, at least) that to avoid reference to Richard of York's defeat at the Battle of Wakefield in the mnemonic for the colours of the rainbow, people from Yorkshire developed the alternative "Rowntree's Of York Gave Best In Value". Make of that what you will.


  1. Shouldn't Winchester be the answer for #1?

  2. Good point. I suspect he meant "where does the M3 go" but was trying to phrase it in a way that wasn't ambiguous. I think I'll reword it here for the sake of posterity.