Quizzing, at C level

May 10, 2013 in Quizzes

A final guest blog on the 2013 Celtic Nations Championship.  Today, Ger Slattery tells us what it was like to be on the Irish C team in Edinburgh.

The edge of New Zealand's largest lake

The edge of New Zealand’s largest lake

I was delighted to take part in the inaugural Celtic Tri-Nations Quiz. It was a nice, yet humbling, experience. To be in the presence of, and compete against, some of the World’s top quizzers was obviously a thrill for an amateur, not-so-experienced quizzer like myself. I achieved my main aim – not to be completely out of my depth, though it’s fair to say that I justified my place in the Ireland C team!

Arriving in to Edinburgh on Thursday night, after making the long trip from County Mayo, I spent my first day walking the streets, checking out some of the many sights of that beautiful city. After indulging in so much culture, I proceeded to that other important part of Scottish culture – the pubs!

The Ireland C team (Michelle Coyne, John O’Sullivan, Derek Cray and mé féin) started brightly, when the quizzing actually began on the Saturday morning. In the end we lost out narrowly to Scotland (whether it was Scotland A, B or C, nobody could ever be sure as they kept switching team members throughout the weekend – rather disconcerting for the opposition… but anyway!).

One of the categories I was glad our team picked (at the time!) was ‘New Zealand’. “Great”, thought I. I like all things New Zealand, especially since a lovely 3-week holiday there in 2008, and if it’s physical geography questions that come up, then I’m happier still! Lo and behold, three geography questions they were!

  1. What is the largest lake in New Zealand?  Yep, knew that! Click for answer
  2. What is the name of the mountain range in New Zealand that is one of only two mountain ranges in the World that run from north to south? “The Southern Alps”, suggested Derek. It was a decent guess, but the answer is [Click here]. And yes, I did see them on my travels, but hey, I don’t always bring my compass with me!
  3. Name the most south-westerly city in NZ…  Blank faces all round. In my defence, I didn’t pass through [Click to find out] on my travels (and, yes, it’s a city apparently!).

So that sort of set the pattern for the rest of the weekend’s quizzing. Losing the team matches narrowly – once more to Scotland C and also to a local team from Kirkaldy, invariably picking topics only to know maybe one of the three questions, going for the wrong 50/50 options. But hey, we learned a lot, and laughed more! I was relieved to be on one winning team over the weekend, which Paddy has eloquently described elsewhere on this blog. It was nice to depart on a winning note!

Since my early days of attending pub quizzes and getting the same question wrong more than once (I hate that!), I have made a habit of jotting down on a piece of paper the answers to any questions I didn’t know the answer to. Deciphering my scraps of paper from the weekend in Edinburgh is going to take me some time I can tell you! Solenodon, Dirk Nowitzki, Zagazig,
the Muisca people, lari, prunella modularis, the list goes on!

Thank you and well done to all for a really enjoyable weekend – looking forward to the next one already!

Thanks Ger! Now, the last thing left for me to do is post up a gallery of photos from our Edinburgh trip. Here they are, taken by John O’Sullivan, Derek Cray and myself.


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