John’s away this week, so Mike here to give a brief account of Friday’s All-Ireland Table Quiz final.
I’m sure Eamonn Coghlan could tell it in an interviewer’s face when the question approaches: “Tell us about when you finished fourth in the Olympics”. Gentleman that he is, he no doubt responds with a smile and a query: “Are you referring to the 1500 meters in 1976 or the 5000 meters in 1980?” Fourth place stings. Fifth? Sound. “You were off the pace. It wasn’t your day.” Sixth? “Ah, sure you tried your best?” This gentle intro has no doubt informed you that John, Dave, Shelly and I finished fourth on Friday night. Chronological order be damned: stick the important fact up front. If the scoreboard is to be believed, we’re the best quiz team in Galway (West of the Shannon, even), but we were pipped to the cash prizes. More about that in a while.
First up, it was an enjoyable quiz, with Micheál Ó Muircheartaigh pretty much an ideal quizmaster. How he managed to connect a question about the Indian Ocean (and many more besides) to a random bit of GAA trivia was quite an achievement. Such tangents have not been seen since Bugs Bunny missed that left turn at Albuquerque and ended up in ancient Rome. It was a fairly brisk ten rounds of six questions, all posted up on the big screen: a presentation tool that we’d recommend for every big quiz, especially when hosting duties are delegated to Mumblor the Magnificient. The standard of questions was pretty high, as the few we missed should suggest, as were the contestants. I don’t recall at what stage I looked at the scoreboard – again, very professionally done and often updated – but there were 23 teams within three points of the leaders!
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