The sum of our parts?

November 5, 2011 in EQC

It’s lunchtime on day two of the European Quiz Championship in Bruges.

The Nations Cup qualifier last night was possibly the hardest quiz I’ve ever seen, let alone taken part in. Questions ranged from obscure to the impossible. The one that sticks in my mind opened with a picture of a lady sitting at a keyboard, with her back to the camera. ‘Ok, it’s going to be about a pianist’ I thought.

“This Polish harpsichordist contributed to the harpsichord revival of the mid-twentieth century. What is her name?”

Now, I don’t know about you, but the harpsichord revival of the mid-twentieth century must have slipped under pay radar as I wasn’t aware anyone did anything noteworthy on the harpsichord since the end of the Baroque era. 🙁

As I said in my update last night, we were lucky enough to have a fourth team member for the Nations Cup. Steve Dodding is a British quizzer who had come to Bruges via bicycle, with the intention of taking part in the Individual and informal events on Saturday. Thankfully he decided to come along to the Nations Cup as a spectator and, when word of our plight reached him in the bar, he generously set off for our table to offer his services. He qualified under the Irish Granny rule! 😉

With Steve’s help we exceeded our initial goal – not to finish last in the top division. In fact we finished 11th (of 13) with 35 points, only one point behind Germany in 10th. The top 10 qualified for knock out quizzing so we were very close to that.

At the very top, Beligum pipped England in the ranking by a single point, with a phenomenal score of 86. Both of these were over 20 ahead of the next teams: Norway (62) and Finland (60).

Knockout quizzing sees two teams taking on each other in a match, with the teams taking turns to choose categories from a large board (on the big screen). Each category then included three questions. The quiz continued until all the categories were used. Amazingly, both Finland and Norway showed that the 20 point gaps from the qualifier weren’t that accurate as they defeated the top two in their semi-finals. They will face each other in tomorrow’s final.

Aside from meal times, quizzing is almost constant here. Last night saw a movie quiz, organised by the local Belgian group. Nationality doesn’t matter in these fun events and there was much mixing and matching in evidence. We didn’t feel so outgoing and sat down together, the three of us. A tall German called Holger approached us though and asked if we needed a fourth, which of course we did, so he joined us.

The production values of the quiz were excellent. Almost every question involved a video clip and it was both tough and fun at the same time. With Holger’s help we improved on our ranking within this crowd of quizzers, finishing seventh. We had actually been fourth at half-time but a picture round in which we had to match flags with screen shots cost us dear. We even managed to miss the connection between 101 Dalmatians and Croatia. 🙁

The Movie Quiz ended about 1am and I had to call it a night. I say it like that as the quizzing wasn’t finished! The Latvian team took over the stage and we’re about to start a Russian-style quiz as I left. I did hear the first question: “A science-fiction series begins with a short story by Frank [somebody]. What four word sentence was stated by the hero of this series at its end?”


You may have noticed that these posts are devoid of pictures. I’m sorry about that; I’m finding it hard to get photos from my phone to the blog. I have created a picasa folder which you can view here:

I’ll be back online shortly with a report on how we got on in this morning’s Individual Quiz. Until then I’m off to watch the Individual final.

3 responses to The sum of our parts?

  1. Thanks for letting me join in, lads. I can now count myself amongst other distinguished Irishmen such as John Aldridge, Mick McCarthy and Tony Cascarino.

  2. Steve (Eammon Dunphy) O’Dodding :oD

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