Thursday, January 28, 2016

Senior Varsity Quiz

I have always been good with trivia. I know a lot about a little and a little about a lot.

In Junior High (we didn't have middle schools in Idaho), I was a member of the Junior Varsity Quiz Team. We competed against other Junior High Schools on a local television station program appropriately called Junior Varsity Quiz. We lasted two rounds before being defeated by North Junior High School. I'm pleased to say I answered the most correct questions in the program (a minor accomplishment considering we still lost).

Being able to answer questions quickly about a broad range of topics hasn't really been of much use to me later in life. Oh, it comes in handy if you are playing Trivial Pursuits or find yourself in a bar where a trivia contest is going on. But on a practical level, being able to rattle off random trivia just makes you sound like Cliff from the old Cheers program.

With the advent of the Internet and social media, I have discovered a new founded way to use my trivia skills answering those annoying random quizzes that pop in your news field such as "Test your knowledge of the first lines of Beatles' songs" (I did pretty darned good, BTW). Or "How familiar with these 60s slang words?" (Nailed them).  Then you post your scores on your Facebook page to impress your friends with your aptitude for obscure knowledge. I also got an A+ for 40s and 50s movie stars. Of course it helps that they are all multiple choice questions and you generally have a 25 percent chance of getting the right answer right out of the gate.

Of course I realize that these quizzes are plows to expose me to banner ads just like the top ten photos of stars who haven't aged well. But there is a siren song quality I can't resist when it comes to testing my trivia skills. I was always a good test taker.  I was just never very good at retaining long-term information that I could apply in any practical fashion, like becoming a doctor, lawyer or coming up with new theories of quantum physics or developing new social media strategies for getting new followers.

But if you are looking for information about Thomas Crapper and the evolution of the flush toilet and I'm your huckleberry (one of my favorite lines spoken by Val Kilmer playing Doc Holiday in the 1993 film Tombstone....this was before Kilmer made the list of top ten celebrities who haven't aged well...Kurt Russell played the title role of Wyatt Earp...interestingly enough, Kurt Russell played the young boy who kicked Elvis in the shins in the 1962 film It Happened at the World's Fair...Russell later went on to play Elvis in a film about his life ).

See what I mean?

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