Spring Training Games Begin

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Trivia Q&A: February 20

We had 14 teams in for Trivia on Tuesday night, on a night where we honored the US presidents in both of the special categories (we rarely have both of those categories with the same subject). The scores in both of those rounds were both generally pretty good, and we had a tight two-team race going into IQ Trivia. But it was the boys from DIMS who came away with the win, as they got 4 of 5 correct in IQ Trivia and finished with 47 points. Congrats to Mike, Ken and Darek on another impressive win.

Second place went to Stupid Sexy Flanders with 40 points, and third place went to Hendrix Isn't The Best with 37 points.

Best Team Name: Fergie's Back Up Singers

Current Events
1. President Jacob Zuma, of what African country, resigned last Wednesday in a televised address over numerous scandals that plagued his time in office?
2. Former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney announced last Friday that he is running for a Senate seat in what US state?
3. What rock star had a meltdown at a concert on Long Island last Thursday night, mumbling through just 5 songs, improvising bizarre lyrics before walking off stage?
4. What Oscar-winning actor walked off an on-camera interview on ESPN last week after he was asked a question about his rumored relationship with actress Katie Holmes?
5. What rap star released a new video of a single called "God's Plan" where he gives away $1 million to various people in the Miami area, to complete strangers, a women's shelter and to the fire department?
6. What country was struck by a 7.2 magnitude earthquake on Friday, and was followed by a 5.8 magnitude aftershock?
7.What nation is currently leading the overall medal count at the Winter Olympics, with 29?

Presidential Trivia
1. Who was the first US president to travel abroad while in office? a. Warren G. Harding; b. Teddy Roosevelt; c. Calvin Coolidge; d. Woodrow Wilson.
2. Besides Abraham Lincoln, who was the only president to die in his second term in office? a. William McKinley; b. Warren G. Harding; c. Zachary Taylor; d. John Tyler.
3. Who was the only president born in the state of New Jersey? a. Woodrow Wilson; b. James K. Polk; c. Grover Cleveland; d. Martin Van Buren.
4. Who is the only president to earn a Masters of Business Administration? a. George W. Bush; b. Bill Clinton; c. Woodrow Wilson; d. Jimmy Carter.
5. Who was the last president who did not attend college? a. Ronald Reagan; b. Teddy Roosevelt; c. Dwight D. Eisenhower; d. Harry Truman.
6. Who was the first Republican elected president? a. James Buchanan; b. Abraham Lincoln; c. US Grant; d. James K. Polk.
7. Name 1 of the 2 US presidents who never made a State of the Union address.

The Q Train: Presidential True or False
1. The teddy bear was named in honor of Teddy Roosevelt.
2. Bejamin Harrison served two non-consecutive terms.
3. James Buchanan was the only bachelor president.
4. William McKinley was president during the Spanish-American War.
5. Ronald Reagan was the only president born in California.
6. Abraham Lincoln scrawled the Gettysburg Address on the back of an envelope.
7. George Washington had wooden teeth.
8. Barack Obama was the first president born outside the contiguous United States.
9. Ronald Reagan is the oldest man inaugurated president.
10. FDR was the first president to appear on TV.

General Knowledge
1. In Roman numerals, what number does the numeral "C" represent? ( 1 pt)
2. The medical condition known as aFib is an ailment associated with what organ? ( 1 pt)
3. In the Star Trek universe, what color is Mr. Spock's blood? ( 1 pt)
4. The city of Milwaukee, WI sits on which of the Great Lakes? ( 2 pt)
5. What cartoon dog was born at the Daisy Hill Puppy Farm? ( 2 pt)
6. The dimples of Venus are located where on the human body? ( 2 pt)
7. What country has the most volcanoes in the world? ( 3 pt)

IQ Trivia
1. Rio Manzahares and Rio Jamara are two rivers that run through what world capital city? ( 4 points)
2. What is the only city to host the Olympic Games three times? ( 4 points)
3. Who is the only musician to top the singles charts as a solo artist, in a duo, in a trio, in a quartet and a quartet? ( 5 points)
4. "Star Beast" was the original title of the screenplay that became what 1980 Ridley Scott film? ( 3 points)
5. Steve Balmer resigned from board of Microsoft in 2014 after purchasing what NBA team? ( 4 points)

Answers
Current Events
1. South Africa; 2. Utah; 3. Marilyn Manson; 4. Jamie Foxx; 5. Drake; 6. Mexico; 7. Norway.

Presidential Trivia
1. b; 2. a; 3. c; 4. a; 5. d; 6. b; 7. William Henry Harrison and James Garfield.

The Q Train: Presidential True or False
1. true; 2. false, Grover Cleveland; 3. true; 4. true; 5. false, Richard Nixon; 6. false; 7. false, he had lead, gold and ivory false teeth; 8. true; 9. false, Donald Trump; 10. true.

General Knowledge
1. 100; 2. heart; 3. green; 4. Lake Michigan; 5. Snoopy; 6. lower back; 7. USA.

IQ Trivia
1. Madrid; 2. London; 3. Paul McCartney; 4. "Alien"; 5. L.A. Clippers.

Monday, February 19, 2018

We Honor The Presidents Tomorrow

Trivia will be happening this Tuesday night, February 20th at 8:30 PM, with "Presidential Trivia" as the Special Category, in honor of Monday being President's Day. It will be seven questions connected to those who have held the highest office in the land, and it will be multiple choice. The Q Train will further celebrate the holiday, with "Presidential True or False Trivia." I will give you ten statements connected to the US presidency, and you have to tell me if it is true or not.

The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
"In Roman numerals, what number does the numeral "C" represent?"

I look forward to seeing many of you this coming Tuesday night at Professor Thom's for another great night of Trivia!

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Trivia Q&A: February 13

We had 14 teams in for Trivia Night last night, as we had a Valentine's Day themed Special Category and Q Train lightning round. The scores for both rounds were generally on the higher side for most teams. We had a four-team horse race going into IQ Trivia, and the possibility of a four-way tie at the end was there (the teams were separated by just two points), as that has never happened before. But the team of Turkey Club got 4 of the 5 IQ Trivia questions correct, and finished with 48 points and the victory. Congrats to Bob and Cato on a great win.

Second place went to Professor Thom's Bar-Crossed Lovers with 44 points (they also won Best Team Name, and it was their second straight second place finish), and third place was a tie between DIMS and Oh-Yum with 43 points (Oh-Yum won the tie-breaker).

Current Events
1. What country recently passed a new defamation law that makes it illegal there to accuse that the country was complicit with the Nazis in the Holocaust?
2. What Grammy-winning recording legend gave a lengthy rambling interview to Vulture magazine claiming among many things that he once dated Ivanka Trump and knows who killed JFK?
3. Which Ivy League school said last week it will not be rescinding the honorary degree it gave Bill Cosby in 2003 because it has never rescinded one before?
4. Jimmy Garoppolo, the QB on what NFL team, signed a 5-year, $137.5 million deal last week, the largest contract in NFL history?
5. What retail chain announced that they will no longer sell CDs in their stores and will remove them by July 1st?
6. Redmond Gerard won the first gold medal for the USA on Sunday at the Winter Olympics in what sport?
7. Reg E. Cathey, a character actor who won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series for what TV show in 2015, died last Friday at the age of 59?

Heart Trivia
1. "Places in the Heart" was a 1984 film that what actress won her second Best Actress Oscar for?
2. "Heart of Darkness" was an 1899 novella written by what British author?
3. "The Heart of Rock 'n' Roll" was a 1984 Top 10 hit song bt what San Francisco-based rock band?
4. "The Tell Tale Heart" was a 19th century short story by what American author?
5. "Achy Breaky Heart" was a 1992 hit song by what country artist?
6. "Crazy Heart" was a 2009 film that what actor won a Best Actor Oscar?
7. "The Heartbreakers" was the backing band for what Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame rock star?

The Q Train: Number One Songs With Love In The Title
1. Love Takes Time (1990)
2. A Groovy Kind of Love (1988)
3. That's the Way Love Goes (1993)
4. I Knew I Loved You (2000)
5. The Greatest Love of All (1986)
6. You Give Love a Bad Name (1986)
7. Justify My Love (1991)
8. Love Yourself (2016)
9. Crazy In Love (2003)
10. I'll Make Love To You ( 1994)

General Knowledge
1. Besides Mercury, which other planet in our universe has no moons? ( 1 pt)
2. 31,538,000 seconds is approximately equal to what length of time? ( 1 pt)
3. What animal is in the logo of the World Wildlife Fund? ( 1 pt)
4. A cube has how many total edges? ( 2 pt)
5. Who has been the band leader on "The Tonight Show" since 2014? ( 2 pt)
6. What insect was named to honor the Virgin Mary? ( 2 pt)
7. "The Dismal Science" is a derogatory term for what academic subject? ( 3 pt)

IQ Trivia
1. Who was the first pope to make an official visit to the United States? ( 4 points)
2. Stanley Ann Dunham was the mother of what famous American man? ( 4 points)
3. What 21st century pop group is the only music group to have their first three albums debut at number 1 on the Billboard 200? ( 5 points)
4. What iconic book and movie character got its name from a birdwatching book its author discovered it in? ( 3 points)
5.What 1961 movie ranks as the number one "must-see romantic movie" for Valentine's Day, according to Netflix audience scores? (4 points)

Answers
Current Events
1. Poland; 2. Quincy Jones; 3. Yale; 4. San Francisco 49ers; 5. Best Buy; 6. snowboarding; 7. "House of Cards."

Heart Trivia
1. Sally Field; 2. Joseph Conrad; 3. Huey Lewis & The News; 4. Edgar Allan Poe; 5. Billy Ray Cyrus; 6. Jeff Bridges; 7. Tom Petty.

The Q Train: Number 1 Songs With Love In The Title
1. Mariah Carey; 2. Phil Collins; 3. Janet Jackson; 4. Savage Garden; 5. Whitney Houston; 6. Bon Jovi; 7. Madonna; 8. Justin Bieber; 9. Beyonce; 10. Boyz II Men.

General Knowledge
1. Venus; 2. one year; 3. panda; 4. twelve; 5. Questlove; 6. ladybug; 7. economics.

IQ Trivia
1. Pope Paul VI; 2. Barack Obama; 3. One Direction; 4. James Bond; 5."Breakfast at Tiffany's."

Monday, February 12, 2018

Love Reigns On Tuesday

Trivia will be happening this Tuesday night, February 13th at 8:30 PM at Professor Thom's, with "Heart Trivia" as the Special Category. In honor of the following day being Valentine's Day, I will ask you seven questions that have something to with hearts, mostly in music, literature and the movies. The Q Train lightning round will be "Number One Songs With Love in the Title." I will give you the names of ten songs that topped the US charts within the last 30 years that has the word "love" in it (continuing the Valentine's Day theme), along the year it was released, and you have to tell the artist who had that hit.

The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
"Besides Mercury, what other planet in our universe has no moons?"

Hope to see many of you for Trivia on Tuesday night, as love will surely be in the air then!

Wednesday, February 07, 2018

Trivia Q&A: February 6

We had 12 teams in for Trivia last night, with some large sized teams (in number of players that is, not the girth of players), and a rather fun night all around as well. The top five teams were neck and neck all night long, at one point only separated by just two points. But the team of DIMS pulled out the win by getting 4 of 5 correct in the IQ Trivia round, and jumped from third place and won with 45 points. Another great win for them.

Second place went to The 2018 Quinnter Olympics with 43 points, and third place went to The Iron Bank with 42 points.

Best Team Name: You Should All Be Standing and Applauding Me (which they did all night long!)

Current Events
1. What rapper was accused of sexually assaulting two women in the UK in 2016 and 2017 in a lawsuit revealed last week?
2. What Oscar-winning actor is set to Fred Rogers of PBS fame in an upcoming biopic called "You Are My Friend?"
3. Roger Federer won the 2018 Australian Open Men's Final last week, and how many Grand Slam titles has he now won?
4. What female pop singer canceled the last 10 dates of her current European tour due to severe pain, as she suffers from fibromyalgia?
5. What Republican congressman announced he was not running for re-election this November and would be returning to the justice system?
6. The NFL announced last week that what TV network will pay $3 billion for the next five years to broadcast Thursday Night Football?
7. What classic rock star announced on social media on Monday that he is retiring from touring when the current tour ends, citing the personal toll of touring and the recent death of his lead guitarist?

Winter Olympics Trivia
1. Which nation has the hosted the Winter Olympics more times than any other? a. Switzerland; b. Russia; c. USA; d. Norway.
2. What nation did the US hockey team defeat to clinch the gold medal in 1980? a. Sweden; b; Finland; c. Czechoslovakia; d. West Germany.
3. The first Winter Olympics took place in 1924 in what country? a. France; b. USA; c. Russia; d. Norway.
4. Tonya Harding's infamous attack on Nancy Kerrigan took place just prior to what year's Winter Olympics? a. 1988; b. 1992; c. 1994; d. 1998.
5. What was the first Canadian city to host the Winter Olympics? a. Montreal; b. Calgary; c. Vancouver; d. Toronto.
6. What country's Olympic bobsled team was the subject of a 1993 feature film? a. Brazil; b. Cuba; c. Bahamas; d. Jamaica.
7. Tara Lipinski of the US is the youngest athlete to win a gold medal in 1998 in what sport? a. figure skating; b. speed skating; c. ski jumping; d. cross-country skiing.

The Q Train: 21st Century Oscar-Winning Characters
1. Abraham Lincoln
2. June Carter Cash
3. Harvey Milk
4. Stephen Hawking
5. Katherine Hepburn
6. King George VI
7. Idi Amin
8. Ray Charles
9. Margaret Thatcher
10. The Joker

General Knowledge
1. "The Truth is Out There" is the tagline for what popular sci-fi TV series? ( 1 pt)
2. "Straight Out of Compton" was a 1988 album by what rap group? ( 1 pt)
3. The Arabian Sea is part of what ocean? ( 1 pt)
4. What amendment to the US Constitution abolished slavery? ( 2 pt)
5. According to Google Trends, between "beautiful", "license" and "accommodation", which is the most misspelled word in the US? (2 pt)
6. The Winter Palace is a famous building located in what country? ( 2 pt)
7. Steely McBeam is the official mascot of what NFL team? ( 3 pt)

IQ Trivia
1. What female rock singer performed with a band called Big Brother and the Holding Company in the 1960s before embarking on a solo career? ( 4 points)
2. Joseph-Armand Bombardier received a patent for what vehicle he invented in 1937? ( 5 points)
3. What is the only surname shared by a US president and a UK prime minister, both serving in the 20th century? ( 4 points)
4. Who is the only actress to portray Queen Elzabeth I and Queen Elizabeth II in the movies? ( 3 points)
5. What international company took its name from the First Mate in the novel "Moby Dick?" ( 4 points)

Answers
Current Events
1. Nelly; 2. Tom Hanks; 3. 20; 4. Lady Gaga; 5. Trey Gowdy; 6. Fox; 7. Paul Simon.

Winter Olympics Trivia
1. c; 2. b; 3. a; 4. c; 5. b; 6. d; 7. a.

The Q Train: 21st Century Oscar-Winning Characters
1. Daniel Day-Lewis; 2. Reese Witherspoon; 3. Sean Penn; 4. Eddie Redmayne; 5. Cate Blanchett; 6. Colin Firth; 7. Forest Whitaker; 8. Jamie Foxx; 9. Meryl Streep; 10. Heath Ledger.

General Knowledge
1. "The X-Files;" 2. NWA; 3. Indian; 4. 13; 5. beautiful; 6. Russia ( I also accepted Austria); 7. Pittsburgh Steelers.

IQ Trivia
1. Janis Joplin; 2. snowmobile; 3. Wilson; 4. Helen Mirren; 5. Starbucks.

Monday, February 05, 2018

The Games of Winter Trivia On Tuesday

Trivia will be happening this Tuesday night, February 6th at 8:30 PM at Professor Thom's with "Winter Olympics Trivia", seven questions about the history of the games that begin later this week. It will also be a multiple choice round. The Q Train lightning round will be "21st Century Oscar-Winning Characters Trivia." I will give you the names of ten characters from recent films that won Oscars for those actors and actresses who portrayed them. You will tell me who won those Academy Awards.

The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
"'The Truth is Out There' is the tagline for what popular sci-fi TV series?"

I look forward to seeing many of you this Tuesday night for another great night of Trivia!

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Trivia Q&A: January 30

We had a great night of Trivia on Tuesday night, with 15 teams in and a crowd really into the Q&A. It was one of those nights when I made the Q Train lightning round a bit easier than I would have liked, with 8 teams getting all ten correct. But in no other category did any team get a perfect score for any round. So, I suppose that balances out. But it was the team of Big Game Danny that won the night, as they were in first place throughout the night, and wound up winning winning with 44 points. My congratulations to Indy, Noah and Kyle on their first ever win, in their first time back at Trivia Night in over a year.

Second place went to State of the Onion with 39 points and DIMS finished in third place with 37 points.

Best Team Name: Ground Control to Professor Thom

Current Events
1. What male singer announced last week that he will be forced to retire from touring after recently being diagnosed with Parkinson's disease?
2. What retail chain, which filed for bankruptcy protection last September, announced they are closing 180 stores around the US this year?
3. What film led the way with 13 Academy Award nominations last Tuesday?
4. What rock superstar announced last week he will make one last world tour of 300 concert dates and will retire from touring to spend more time with his family?
5. What Emmy-winning TV series from the 1990s is getting a reboot by CBS next season, exactly 20 years after it ended its 20-year run?
6. What magazine erased actor James Franco from its much coveted Hollywood portfolio cover last week due to the sexual misconduct allegations against him?
7. Ingvar Kamprad, who was worth $60 billion and was the 8th richest man in the world, died last Saturday in Sweden at the age of 91. What retail chain did he start in 1943?

Super Bowl Trivia
1. Which team won the first Super Bowl in 1967? a. Dallas; b. Green Bay; c. Pittsburgh; d. NY Jets.
2. Which of these NFC teams have the New England Patriots NOT beaten in the Super Bowl? a. Philadelphia; b. Carolina; c. Atlanta; d. Dallas.
3. Where is this year's Super Bowl being played? a. Miami; b. Minneapolis; c. Houston; d. Los Angeles.
4. Which team has appeared in the most Super Bowls? a. New England; b. Pittsburgh; c. Dallas; d. Denver.
5. How many Super Bowls have the Giants and Jets won combined? a. 3; b. 4; c. 5; d. 6.
6. What number Super Bowl is this year's game? a. 51; b. 52; c. 53; d. 54.
7. Name 2 of the 5 players to have won the Super Bowl MVP award at least twice.

The Q Train: 21st Century TV Characters
1. Francis Underwood
2. Liz Lemon
3. Tyrion Lannister
4. Michael Scott
5. Don Draper
6. Omar Little
7. Walter White
8. Carrie Mathieson
9. Brian Griffin
10. Selina Meyer

General Knowledge
1. Benjamin Franklin famously said, "Nothing is certain except death and what?" ( 1 pt)
2. In September 2014, what nation voted not to ceded from the UK? ( 1 pt)
3. Robert Moog revolutionized music by designing a popular model of what instrument? ( 1 pt)
4. In 1986, what boxer defeated Trevor Berbick to become the youngest heavyweight champion in history? ( 2 pt)
5. Jared Leto won an Oscar in 2014 for what film? ( 2 pt)
6. Which US state has the motto "North to the Future?" ( 2 pt)
7. How many letters are there in the Hawaiian alphabet? ( 3 pt)

IQ Trivia
1. What pop singer is the only artist to have a number one Billboard album in six decades? ( 5 points)
2. What Asian country celebrates National Foundation Day every February 11th? ( 4 points)
3. Sir Isaac Newton and Gottfried Leibnitz both developed what branch of mathematics? ( 3 points)
4. In the 1994 film "Forrest Gump", which US president does Forrest expose his butt to in doctored archival footage? ( 4 points)
5. Yerba Buena was the original name of what West Coast city, which was changed by the chief magistrate there in 1847? ( 4 points)

Answers
Current Events
1. Neil Diamond; 2. Toys 'R' Us; 3. "The Shape of Water;" 4. Elton John; 5. "Murphy Brown;" 6. Vanity Fair; 7. IKEA.

Super Bowl Trivia
1. b; 2. d; 3. b; 4. c; 5. c; 6. b; 7. Tom Brady (4), Joe Montana (3), Bart Starr, Terry Bradshaw and Eli Manning (2 each).

The Q Train: 21st Century Trivia
1. House of Cards; 2. 30 Rock; 3. Game of Thrones; 4. The Office; 5. Mad Men; 6. The Wire; 7. Breaking Bad; 8. Homeland; 9. Family Guy; 10. Veep.

General Knowledge
1. Taxes; 2. Scotland; 3. synthesizer; 4. Mike Tyson; 5. "Dallas Buyers Club;" 6. Alaska; 7. 13.

IQ Trivia
1. Barbra Streisand; 2. Japan; 3. calculus; 4. Lyndon Johnson; 5. San Francisco.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Pigskin Trivia Dominates This Week

Trivia will be happening this Tuesday night, January 30th at 8:30 PM, with "Super Bowl Trivia" as the Special Category. It will be seven questions on football's big game, and for those of you who aren't huge fans of the pigskin, it will be multiple choice. The Q Train lightning round will be "21st Century TV Characters Trivia." I will give you the names of ten famous characters from TV shows on the air since 2001, and you have to tell the show they were on.

The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
"Benjamin Franklin famously said, 'Nothing is certain in life except death and what?'"


I hope to see many of you this Tuesday night for what will surely be a great night of Trivia Q&A!

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Fenway Park Never Fails to Impress

My friend Paul Swaney over at the great web site "Stadium Journey" recently posted their annual list of the Top 100 Stadium experiences across North America, and naturally Fenway Park landed in the overall Top 10. Check out this link to find out where it ended up.

Paul and his crew also have a Top 10 rank of stadiums by sport, all of the major league ones, and it also includes college and minor league stadiums as well. (As a Minnesota Vikings fan I was surprised that US Bank Stadium didn't crack the NFL Top 10. Oh well, I guess they have their reasons why it didn't.)

I also found it interesting that Citi Field cracked the overall Top 100, but Yankee Stadium did not. 

So, please do check out Paul's site. Worth your time to check it out, as he even has reviews of ballparks from sports from around the world.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Trivia Q&A: January 23

We had another fine turnout with 12 teams and a crowd really into last night's Trivia. The scores were rather low the first two rounds, as this might have been another night I made the Trivia a bit harder than I thought. But the scores picked up in the following rounds. The boys from DIMS had another terrific night, getting all five correct in IQ Trivia and walking away with 51 points and convincing win. Congrats to Michael, Ken and Derek on another great win.

But in all my years doing Trivia, something happened last night that never happened before. We had a four-way tie for second place! The teams of Liverwurst Club, My Neck, My Back, Eat My Tide Pod Snack, Probing Sessions and Shut Up the Government & Shut Down the Super Bowl all finished with 36 points, so we had a tie breaker question to determine second and third places. "How many total Grammy nominations do Jay-Z and Kanye West have combined in their careers?" The answer is 128, as they both have 64. Probing Sessions was closest in their guess, and finished second, and Liverwurst Club was next closest, and finished third.

Best Team Name: My Neck, My Back, Eat My Tide Pod Snack

Current Events
1. Delores O'Riordan, the lead singer of what Irish rock band, was found dead in a London hotel room last week?
2. Pope Francis officiated a wedding ceremony among two flight attendants during his three-day visit in what South American country last Thursday?
3. What world capital city had only six minutes of sunlight for the entire month of December, due to unrelenting cloud cover, the darkest since the city began recording the data?
4. What company is planning to build a new corporate campus while hiring 20,000 new workers because of a tax cut that will enable them to bring an estimated $245 billion from overseas?
5. A former employee of what Oscar-winning actor accused him last week of sexually harassing her and masturbating in front of her when she worked for him in the 1980s?
6. At least 43 people were killed when five suicide bombers stormed a hotel in the capital of what Asian country last Saturday?
7. What much-maligned film starring Mark Wahlberg led the way with nine nominations as the Razzie Awards were announced this past weekend?

Grammy Awards Trivia
1. Which rock group has won the most Grammys with 22 in its history? a. The Rolling Stones; b. U2; c. The Who; d. The Beatles.
2. Which of these individual pop music artists has won the most Grammys? a. Madonna; b. Michael Jackson; c. Stevie Wonder; d. Frank Sinatra.
3. What city is hosting the 2018 Grammy Awards? a. New York; b. Los Angeles; c. Nashville; d. New Orleans.
4. Who was the first rock band to win the Album of the Year Grammy in 1968? a. The Beatles; b. The Rolling Stones; c. Simon and Garfunkel; d. Blood, Sweat and Tears.
5. Which female artist has won the most Grammys in history, with 27? a. Aretha Franklin; b. Beyonce; c. Ella Fitzgerald; d. Alison Krauss.
6. What artist is nominated for the most Grammys for 2018? a. Kendrick Lamar; b. Bruno Mars; c. Jay-Z; d. SZA.
7. Which of these artists is the only one to refuse a Grammy Award? a. Bob Dylan; b. Sinead O'Connor; c. The Dixie Chicks; d. The Sex Pistols.

The Q Train: True or False Trivia
1. The island group known as the Azores are found in the Pacific Ocean.
2. Marlon Brando portrayed Superman's father in the 1978 movie "Superman."
3. The land that makes up the District of Columbia was donated by the state of Virginia.
4. The Ebola virus was named after a river.
5. The Evelyn Wood program is best known for teaching public speaking.
6. A cow has four compartments in its stomach.
7. A male moose sheds its antlers once a year.
8. In 19th century Japan, it was customary for women to dye their teeth black.
9. The primary characteristics of strobe lighting is a reddish glow.
10. Jakob Dylan, son of Bob Dylan, is the lead singer of the band Hot House Flowers.

General Knowledge
1. "We're gonna need a bigger boat" is a famous line from what 1976 film? ( 1 pt)
2. What was the first state to ratify the US Constitution? ( 1 pt)
3. The West Nile Virus is primarily transmitted by what insect? ( 1 pt)
4. James Spader plays an ex-fugitive who works with the FBI on what TV series? ( 2 pt)
5. The iconic statue "Christ the Redeemer" is found in what country? ( 2 pt)
6. "Rude Boy" was a 2009 hit single for what female pop singer? ( 2 pt)
7. What nation fought the Soviet Union in the Winter War of 1939? ( 3 pt)

IQ Trivia
1. UFC champion Ronda Rousey went to the 2004 and 2008 Olympics in what sport? ( 5 points)
2. Hill Valley was a fictional town in what hit 1985 comedy film? ( 3 points)
3. What former dictator sued the makers of "Call to Duty: Black Ops II" in 2014 for defamation after he appeared in the video game? ( 4 points)
4. In 2013, what hard rock band played a concert in Antarctica and became the first band ever to play concerts on all seven continents? ( 4 points)
5. What HBO series centered on the hunt for a serial killer named "The Yellow King?" ( 4 points)

Answers
Current Events
1. The Cranberries; 2. Chile; 3. Moscow; 4. Apple; 5. Michael Douglas; 6. Afghanistan; 7. "Transformers: The Last Knight."

Grammy Awards Trivia
1. b; 2. c; 3. a; 4. a; 5. d; 6. c; 7. b.

The Q Train: True or False Trivia
1. false, Atlantic; 2. true; 3. false, Maryland; 4. true; 5. false, speed reading; 6. true; 7. true; 8. true; 9. false, high speed flashing; 10.false, The Wallflowers.

General Knowledge
1. "Jaws;" 2. Delaware; 3. mosquito; 4. "The Blacklist;" 5. Brazil; 6. Rhianna; 7. Finland.

IQ Trivia
1. Judo; 2. "Back to the Future;" 3. Manuel Noriega; 4. Metallica; 5. "True Detective."

Monday, January 22, 2018

A Trivia College of Musical Knowledge

Trivia will be happening this Tuesday night, January 23rd, with "Grammy Awards Trivia" as the Special Category. It will be seven questions about music's biggest awards, which will be happening the following Sunday night. The questions will also be multiple choice. The Q Train lightning round will be "True or False Trivia." I'll give you ten statements and you have to tell me if they are indeed true statements, or I am just making them up.

The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
"The West Nile Virus is primarily transmitted by what insect?"


We'll get going at 8:30 PM on Tuesday night at Professor Thom's, and I hope many of you can join us for what should be a great night of Trivia Q&A!

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Trivia Q&A: January 16

We had another good crowd in for Trivia on Tuesday night, with 13 teams playing, and another night of many people on each team.  The scores were really good for Black and White Trivia (I guess I made that too easy), and rather low for IQ Trivia (I guess I made that too hard), as five teams didn't answer even one question correctly. But we ended up having a tie for first place, the first time that has happened in a long time. Both DIMS and Turkey Club ended up with 45 points, so we had a tie-breaker question: "How many windows does the Empire State Building have in total?" The answer is 6,514, and the team of Turkey Club was closest in their guess, so they won the night. Congrats to Bob and Cato on the victory.

Third place went ot Nuclear Winter Games: Seoul 2018 with 42 points.

Best Team Name: Yoko O'Know It Alls

Current Events
1. What man recently passed Bill Gates as the world's richest person, and is worth $105 billion, the richest man ever?
2. What female pop singer was chosen to sing the National Anthem at next month's Super bowl in Minneapolis?
3. A 7.6 magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of what Central American country last Wednesday?
4. What Oscar-winning actor went on an epic rant during an awards show in NYC last week, calling President Trump "baby-in-chief" and "jerkoff-in-chief?"
5. What retail chain announced that it will be increasing employees' starting hourly wage from $9 to $11 per hour, but will also be closing dozens of stores in the mean time?
6. Variety magazine said last week that what Oscar-winning actor will star in Quentin Tarantino's upcoming film based on the life of Charles Manson?
7. What male R&B singer posted an Instagram video of his 3-year-old daughter with his pet monkey and it led authorities to seize the monkey because he had no permit and he could face jail time?

Black and White Trivia
1. What cocktail is made with vodka, coffee liqueur and cream?
2. The All Blacks are New Zealand's national team for what sport?
3. What was the name of the fast-food restaurant Harold and Kumar always wanted to go to in their movie series?
4. Fergie was the only female member of what hip-hop group?
5. What 1982 hit song by Billy Idol is often considered to be his most popular song?
6. What disease reached its peak in 14th century Europe?
7. The novels "Charlotte's Web" and "Stuart Little" were written by what author?

The Q Train: Name the Month
1. Germany surrenders to the US in WWII in 1945.
2. Autumn begins in the Northern Hemisphere in this month.
3. The Boston Marathon is always held in this month.
4. The Roe vs. Wade abortion decision by the Supreme Court is handed down in 1973.
5. "Saturday Night Live" debuts on NBC in 1975.
6. Fathers Day and Flag Day are celebrated in this month.
7. Women's History Month and Pi Day occur in this month.
8. Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin are the first men to walk on the Moon in 1969.
9. Guy Fawkes Day is celebrated in the UK every year in this month.
10. The Zodiac signs Leo and Virgo occur together in this month.

General Knowledge
1. The Iran-Contra scandal occurred during what president's administration? ( 1 pt)
2. In the US, a 100 proof bottle of liquor contains what percentage of alcohol? ( 1 pt)
3. Through what part of their bodies do crickets hear? ( 1 pt)
4. "That Thing You Do" was a feature film directed by what actor in 1996? ( 2 pt)
5. Recorded over 3000 times, what Beatles song was originally titled "Scrambled Eggs?" ( 2 pt)
6. "The Best a Man Can Get" is the slogan for what company? ( 2 pt)
7. According to Shakespeare, who said, "Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears?" ( 3 pt)

IQ Trivia
1. In what country does Mount Kosciuszko claim the title as the highest mainland mountain? ( 4 points)
2. Martin Luther King Day was the most recent national holiday, signed into law in 1983. What national holiday is the second most recent, becoming one in 1968? ( 4 points)
3. What supermodel testified about blood diamonds at the criminal trial of Liberian dictator Charles Taylor in 2012? ( 4 points)
4. In 1946, the US attempted (and failed) to buy what strategically located island from a European ally for $100 million? ( 5 points)
5. What actor founded the Sundance Film Festival in 1978? ( 3 points)

Answers
Current Events
1. Jeff Bezos; 2. Pink; 3. Honduras; 4. Robert DeNiro; 5. Walmart; 6. Leonardo DiCaprio; 7. Chris Brown.

Black and White Trivia
1. White Russian; 2. rugby; 3. White Castle; 4. The Black Eyed Peas; 5. "White Wedding;" 6. The Black Plague; 7. E.B. White.

The Q Train: Name the Month Trivia
1. May; 2. September; 3. April; 4. January; 5. October; 6. June; 7. March; 8. July; 9. November; 10. August.

General Knowledge
1. Ronald Reagan; 2. 50; 3. legs; 4. Tom Hanks; 5. "Yesterday;" 6. Gillette; 7. Mark Antony.

IQ Trivia
1. Australia; 2. Columbus Day; 3. Naomi Campbell; 4. Greenland; 5. Robert Redford.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

A 2004 Red Sox Moment In Minnesota

As many of you may know, I have been a fan of the Minnesota Vikings for quite a long time. I go back to 1972 with them, when Fran Tarkenton was traded back to the Vikings by the Giants. The Giants were awful back then, and I "followed" Fran back to his old team, and I really got to like the Vikings, with their Purple People Eaters and dominance in brutally cold weather. I became a fan, and have stuck with them ever since, through the Super Bowl losses, mediocre teams, and other near misses from years such as 1998 and 2009.

I've actually been a Vikings fan 5 years longer than I've been a Red Sox fan. (I hooked up with these long-suffering franchises when I was just a youth. Little did I know the misery I was in for going forward.) I was absolutely thrilled when the Red Sox reached the Promised Land in 2004, with the greatest comeback in history and the first title in 86 years. But I remember saying to my friends that night, "Now if only the Vikings can one day win a Super Bowl..."

It's been an amazing season for the Vikings in 2017. They lost two key players early in the year in QB Sam Bradford and rookie RB Dalvin Cook. I thought each injury would derail any chance the Vikings had, but their amazing defense, ranked number one overall in the NFL, has kept the dream going, not to mention the incredible play of QB Case Keenum and RB Latavius Murray. They stepped in, and the team didn't miss a beat, winning eight straight at one point.

As the second round of the playoffs was about to begin, and the Vikings would face the New Orleans Saints, I couldn't help think of the 2004 Red Sox. Both the Red Sox and Vikings fan bases have been through absolutely interminable long stretches of waiting and hoping to see their teams win it all. I thought more and more about the ecstasy of the Red Sox 2004 World Series win, and how I want to relive that feeling again, this time with the football team I have supported for 46 years. I even got slightly emotional at the thought this might finally be the Vikings year. I just wanted to see happen now. Just ONCE.

Could the 2017 Vikings be the 2004 Red Sox?

The way Sunday's game finished, they sure could be.

It was a crazy game. The Vikings dominated the first half, taking a 17-0 lead at halftime, playing an almost perfect half of football (except missing a field goal at the end of the half). I started thinking that it was coming too easy, and that the Saints aren't as bad as they way they played the first half.

And they came back. New Orleans scored a TC at the end of the third quarter, scored another early in the fourth, and blocked a Vikings punt and later converted that into another TD, and grabbed a 21-20 lead. But they left too much time on the clock, and Keenum drove the Vikings down to the Saints 35, where Kai Forbath kicked a 53-yard FG to put the Vikings out front again.

But they left too much time on the clock, too. New Orleans drove down the field, and Mike Lutz' 43-yard FG seemed to give New Orleans a 24-23 win. But there was still 25 seconds to play...

At that point, I sank in my chair at home, thinking the season for the Vikings was over. I was going over in my head the reaction to this loss, how the Vikings were "chokers" again, giving up a 17-point lead, and this would be another in the litany of painful Vikings losses. I was even thinking how I'd react to this on Facebook, and what should I change my FB profile picture to?

I half-heartedly watched the final seconds, and it looked like the Vikings were going down without a fight. They got to their own 31 with 10 seconds left, and I had the TV on mute, as I didn't want to hear it.

Then Keenum finds Stefon Diggs at the Vikings' 35 yard-line, and nobody touches him, and he's running down the sidelines with no one behind him. Am I really seeing this??? I grabbed my TV remote and turned the sound back on, and Joe Buck was screaming about the Vikings winning! I fell to my knees in front on my TV and just started laughing and yelling "I can't believe this just happened!!" over and over again.

I replayed the score, and recorded for my friends on FB. My iPhone exploded with friends and family congratulating me on the win. It was the greatest moment in Minnesota Vikings history, and now they head to Philadelphia on Sunday to play the Eagles for the right to play in the Super Bowl, on their own home turf.

The game put a smile on my face that stayed there the rest of the night, and is still there. And I couldn't help think of the 2004 Red Sox again on Sunday night, and experienced the joy I felt when the Red Sox came back from a 3-0 deficit against New York to get to the World Series. This time it was with the Minnesota Vikings. They pulled a rabbit out of the hat like the Red Sox did back then, and gave the fans a moment we'll always treasure.

It was a gift to all their long-suffering fans, and now we will see if they can parlay this absolutely unbelievable moment into their first Super Bowl title ever. Like the Red Sox winning the 2004 AL pennant, the Vikings still have lots of work to do before they can claim the ultimate victory.

But Stefon Diggs' TD on Sunday will go down in NFL playoff lore, no matter what happens from here on in. Thank you, Vikings, and now let's go get the Lombardi Trophy.

Just once before I die!

Monday, January 15, 2018

It's All In Black or White on Tuesday

Trivia will be happening at Professor Thom's on Tuesday night, January 16th at 8:30 PM, with "Black and White Trivia" as the Special Category. It will be seven questions on various topics that are connected to the colors black or white in some way, shape or form. The Q Train lightning round will be "Name The Month Trivia." I will give you ten events from recent history and various other topics and you have to tell me the month of the year it occurred in. Every answer will be a different month.

The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
"The Iran-Contra scandal occurred what president's administration?"

I hope to see many of you for what should be another great night of Trivia on Tuesday night. See you then!

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Trivia Q&A: January 9

The brutally cold weather finally abated on Tuesday, and we had 13 teams come out for Trivia. It was a late arriving but a spirited crowd who came in. We had a close three-team race to the finish, but the team of DIMS pulled out a razor-thin one point win, grabbing 44 points and the weekly title. Congrats to Ken and Michael on a hard-fought win.

Second place went to Chicken Club with 43 points, and third place went to You Go Girl, 2020 (who also won for Best Team Name) with 42 points.

Current Events
1. What Hollywood actor said he would kill Harvey Weinstein if he ever met him on the street for blacklisting his Oscar-winning daughter?
2. What game show host revealed last Thursday he is on medical leave after he underwent surgery in December for removal of a subdural hematoma he suffered after he fell and hit his head?
3. What US senator announced he is retiring from the Senate later this year and Mitt Romney is rumored to be running for his seat?
4. What troubled retail chain announced they will close another 100 stores on top of 250 stores they closed last year?
5. According to the moving company United Van Lines, what midwestern state was the most moved-out-of state in the US in 2017?
6. ABC recently canceled a 50th anniversary tribute show to what magazine after the founder of the magazine was hit with sexual misconduct allegations?
7. What film won four awards at the Golden Globes last Sunday, including Best Movie Drama?

January 9th Trivia
1. President Richard Nixon was born on this date in 1913. In what year was he first elected to the presidency?
2. On this day in 1977, what NFL team lost the Super bowl to the Oakland Raiders, their fourth Super Bowl loss, and haven't been to a Super Bowl since?
3. In 1991, what MLB star was officially barred from being elected to the Hall of Fame?
4. On this date in 2009, Gov. Rod Blagojevich of what US state was officially impeached (and later removed) on various charges including attempting to sell a vacated US Senate seat?
5. On this date in 2007, Steve Jobs of Apple introduced what device for the first time?
6. What actor, born on this day in 1955, won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in 2014 for the film "Whiplash?"
7. In 1988, what female singer had her sixth straight number one single with "So Emotional", and until that time, only the Beatles and Bee Gees had six straight number ones?

The Q Train: Birthday Boys Songs (Elvis Presley, David Bowie or Jimmy Page)
1. Suspicious Minds
2. Modern Love
3. Whole Lotta Love
4. Hound Dog
5. Heroes
6. Heartbreak Hotel
7. The Immigrant Song
8. Let's Dance
9. Burning Love
10. All My Love

General Knowledge
1. What university do Rhodes scholars attend? ( 1 pt)
2. What legendary actress was the first Playboy playmate? ( 1 pt)
3. What US state has the slogan "Great potatoes, tasty destinations?" ( 1 pt)
4. What US president's image is on the Purple Heart medal? ( 2 pt)
5. Russia and what other European nation claim to have invented vodka? ( 2 pt)
6. What gas helps potato chips stay fresh inside of bags? ( 2 pt)
7. How many triangles are on a standard backgammon board? ( 3 pt)

IQ Trivia
1. Longacre Square in New York changed its name in 1904 to what name it is known by today? ( 4 points)
2. The Palme d'Or is awarded every year at what event? ( 3 points)
3. Jeanette Jerome was born in Brooklyn, NY on January 9, 1854. Her famous son was what world leader? ( 4 points)
4. The kuna is the name of the currency of introduced in 1994 in what Eastern European country? ( 5 points)
5. Ruth, Anita, Bonnie and June are four sisters who are part of what 1980s pop singing group? ( 4 points)

Answers
Current Events
1. Paul Sorvino; 2. Alex Trebek; 3. Orrin Hatch; 4. Sears; 5. Illinois; 6. Rolling Stone; 7. "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri."

January 9th Trivia
1. 1968; 2. Minnesota Vikings; 3. Pete Rose; 4. Illinois; 5. iPhone; 6. J.K. Simmons; 7. Whitney Houston.

The Q Train: Birthday Boys Songs
1. Elvis Presley; 2. David Bowie; 3. Led Zeppelin; 4. Elvis Presley; 5. David Bowie; 6. Elvis Presley; 7. Led Zeppelin; 8. David Bowie; 9. Elvis Presley; 10. Led Zeppelin.

General Knowledge
1. Oxford; 2. Marilyn Monroe; 3. Idaho; 4. George Washington; 5. Poland; 6. nitrogen; 7. 24.

IQ Trivia
1. Times Square; 2. Cannes Film Festival; 3. Winston Churchill; 4. Croatia; 5. Pointer Sisters.

Monday, January 08, 2018

Birthday Trivia On Tap This Week

Trivia will be happening this Tuesday night, January 9th at 8:30 PM at Professor Thom's, with "January 9th Trivia" as the Special Category. It will be seven questions about that date in history, sports, music, movies and more. The Q Train lightning round will be "Birthday Boys Songs Trivia." January 8th and 9th is the birthdays of legendary rockers Elvis Presley, David Bowie and Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin, and I will give you the names of ten hit songs from those three, and you have to tell me which one (Elvis, Bowie or Zeppelin) had the hit.

The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
"What university do Rhodes scholars attend?"

The cold weather is finally abating, and it should be a lot better by Tuesday night, and I hope to see many of you for a great night of Trivia then!

Wednesday, January 03, 2018

Trivia Q&A: January 2

It was another brutally cold night in New York City on Tuesday night, and the day after New Year's, so I feared we might not have Trivia for a second straight week. But, many hardy souls came out and braved the elements and eight teams took part. I thank all of you for the support.

We had a close three-team race to the finish last night, and they were just two points apart. But the team of Room 119 emerged victorious, running the table in the IQ Trivia round and ending up with 49 points. Congratulations to my old friend and Trivia regular Charles Evans, who came with two of his former students from the high school where he teaches, and grabbed the win. It was great seeing a longtime regular after so long!

DIMS finished in second place with 42 points, and third place went to Whole Milk and Steak with 37 points.

Best Team Name: The Browns are Winless and So is Our Trivia Team

Current Events
1. A new high-speed rail station is being built at the Western Wall in Israel and the nation's transportation minister said the station maybe named in honor of what man?
2. Who was selected by a poll from Gallup as the most admired man in America for 2017?
3. What baseball player was named the AP Male Athlete of the Year for 2017?
4. What rock singer told Rolling Stone magazine he recently had a near-death experience, and it influenced his band's newest album that came out this past November?
5. Guests on what talk show claim that the show's staff procured drugs and alcohol ahead of show tapings that focused on addiction?
6. Name 1 of the 2 music superstars who will be knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2018, as they were part of her New Year's Honors List.
7. What male action star was named Forbes' highest grossing actor of 2017, as his films grossed $1.6 billion in worldwide ticket receipts?

The Year 2017 In Review
1. What pop singer had the best-selling album of 2017?
2. What group of people were selected as Time magazine's "Person of the Year" for 2017?
3. What film won the 2017 Best Picture Oscar last February after "La La Land" was mistakingly announced as the winner and the producers of the film realized it in mid-speech?
4. The New England Patriots won their fifth Super Bowl in February, with the greatest comeback in history against what NFC team in overtime?
5. Chester Bennington, the lead singer of what commercially successful 2000s rock band, died this past July at the age of 41?
6. As of December 15th, what live-action version of an animated classic was the number one grossing film worldwide for 2017?
7. Name 1 of the 3 nations that officially legalized same-sex marriage in 2017.

The Q Train: Albums of 2017
1. Strength of a Woman
2. Songs of Experience
3. Divide
4. Revival
5. Reputation
6. Concrete and Gold
7. Damn
8. 4:44
9. 24K Magic
10. Now

General Knowledge
1. What color is PacMan in the classic video game ( 1 pt)
2. In front of what famous structure did Martin Luther King deliver his "I Have a Dream" speech in 1963? ( 1 pt)
3. Columbia is the capital of what US state? ( 1 pt)
4. Tierra Del Fuego is located in what two South American countries? ( 2 pt)
5. What was the name of the first man made satellite launched into orbit? ( 2 pt)
6. Elton John won an Oscar for the song "Can You Feel the Love Tonight" which was featured in what film? ( 2 pt)
7. On what day will the Spring Equinox occur in 2018? ( 3 pt)

IQ Trivia
1. In 2002, what PBS TV character became the only nonhuman to testify before Congress? ( 5 points)
2. Who is the only person currently prominently pictured on US currency who was not born in what is now the continental United States? ( 4 points)
3. Jinko Tabei of Japan was the first woman to accomplish what feat in 1975, 22 years after the first man did it? ( 4 points)
4. In which of Martin Scorsese's films do his parents both appear: his mother serving pasta and his father in jail? ( 3 points)
5. "Banned For Life From All Holiday Inns" was the alternate title for what classic rock guitarist's 2012 memoir? ( 4 points)

Answers
Current Events
1. Donald Trump; 2. Barack Obama; 3. Jose Altuve; 4. Bono; 5. Dr. Phil; 6. Ringo Starr & Barry Gibb; 7. Vin Diesel.

The Year 2017 In Review
1. Taylor Swift; 2. "The Silence Breakers"; 3. "Moonlight"; 4. Atlanta Falcons; 5. Linkin Park; 6. "Beauty and The Beast;" 7. Australia, Germany and Malta.

The Q Train: Albums of 2017
1. Mary J. Blige; 2. U2; 3. Ed Sheeran; 4. Eminem; 5. Taylor Swift; 6. Foo Fighters; 7. Kendrick Lamar; 8. Jay-Z; 9. Bruno Mars; 10. Shania Twain.

General Knowledge
1. Yellow; 2. Lincoln Memorial; 3.South Carolina; 4. Argentina and Chile; 5. Sputnik; 6. "The Lion King;" 7. March 20.

IQ Trivia
1. Elmo; 2. Alexander Hamilton; 3. Climb Mount Everest; 4. "Goodfellas;" 5. Pete Townshend.

Tuesday, January 02, 2018

As We Begin 2018...

Trivia will be making its 2018 debut tonight, January 2nd at 8:30 PM. We will be doing the same Trivia Night we would have done last Tuesday (but with a new "Current Events" round) when unfortunately the cold and the day after Christmas kept almost everyone home. So it will again be "The Year 2017 In Review" as the Special Category. It will be seven questions about the current year coming to a close, mostly in pop culture. The Q Train lightning round will be "Albums of 2017". I will give you the names of ten popular albums that were released this past year, in all types of music, and you tell me the artist who recorded it.

The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
"What color is PacMan in the classic video game?"

It will again be a cold night on Tuesday, and just the day after New Year's. But I hope some of you can make it out for our first Trivia Night at Professor Thom's for 2018. And thanks to all of you for making 2017 a great year for me hosting Trivia again at Thom's. Happy New Year to you all!

Sunday, December 31, 2017

As 2017 Makes Its Exit...

This is my 108th and final post on my blog for 2017. I want to thank all of you who supported me here. It was great getting back into being a Trivia host at Professor Thom's again, and I did some great gigs in my background acting career, some of which were nothing short of unforgettable. I didn't write a lot about the Red Sox on my blog in 2017, but hope to do more of that in 2018.

I don't write nearly as much as I did back in the early years of my blog, as my life changed over the years. But I thank all of you who still do check out my ramblings from time to time. And I wish you and yours all the best for the upcoming New Year.

Stay safe, stay warm, and be well!

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Post-Christmas & the Cold: Trivia Doesn't Happen

Well, last night was one of those nights: the combination of the extreme cold and the day after Christmas left Professor Thom's a ghost town last night, and Trivia Night didn't happen, as just a handful of friends turned out for the night. We gave them free shots and did a round of Current Events for fun and gave a free beer to the winner. 2017 ends with a bit of a thud, but hopefully we get 2018 off to a good start with our first Trivia Night of the year next Tuesday. We will most likely have the same Trivia Night next Tuesday that we would have had last night (except with a brand new Current Events round). I'll post all the details here on Monday. Happy New Year to all of you, and thanks for making 2017 such a great year for me on my return to hosting at Professor Thom's. Be safe on Sunday night everyone, and I hope to see many of you next Tuesday!

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

As We Conclude This Year...

Trivia will be happening tonight, December 26th at 8:30 PM, with "The Year 2017 In Review" as the Special Category. It will be seven questions about the current year coming to a close, mostly in pop culture. The Q Train lightning round will be "Albums of 2017". I will give you the names of ten popular albums that were released this year, in all types of music, and you tell the artist who recorded it.

The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
"What color is PacMan in the classic video game?"

I look forward to seeing many of you tonight for our final Trivia Night of 2017. And let me wish all of you a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, and thanks for making 2017 such a great year!

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Have a Merry Christmas Everyone

I want to wish all of you out there a very Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and a wonderful holiday season.

As I always do every Christmas, here is the WPIX Yule Log (the original one will be broadcast tonight at 6 PM on WPIX Channel 11 here in New York).


Be well, be safe, and Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Trivia Q&A: December 19

We had our "Christmas Extravaganza" Trivia Night on Tuesday night, and we had nine teams take part. It was close throughout the night, and three teams neck-and-neck going into IQ Trivia. But the team of Turkey Club got 4 of 5 correct in that final round, and eked out a one-point victory, getting 43 points of the win. Congratulations to Bob and Cato on another great win.

Second place went to Lettuce Goes In The Teeth with 42 points, and Omarosa, You're Fired Again (also won for Best Team Name) finished in third place with 34 points.

Merry Christmas and Happy Festivus to you all, and we'll see you on December 26th for our next Trivia Night!

Current Events
1. What cable news host claimed that his Twitter account was hacked last week and a tweet was posted calling President Trump "a pathetic loser?"
2. What event from last September was the number one globally searched trend for 2017 on Google?
3. What TV legend will be given the Cecil B. DeMille Award at the 2018 Golden Globes for her lifetime achievement to television?
4. What media mogul is one of the latest men accused of sexual misconduct, this time by at least 12 women going back to 1991, some of whom accuse him of rape?
5. Sarah Idan, who was a Miss Universe contestant this year, was forced to flee what country, her homeland, after receiving death threats over a photo she took with Miss Israel she posted online?
6. The Walt Disney Company announced last week its intention to buy the entertainment division of what mass media company, valued at about $52 billion?
7. Dan Johnson, a Republican member of what southern state's House of Representatives, committed suicide last Wednesday after being accused of sexually molesting a 17-year-old girl five years ago?

Christmas Trivia
1. What Oscar-winning actor starred as Scrooge in the 1992 Muppet movie "The Muppet Christmas Carol?"
2. What 20th century US president once banned the Christmas tree from the White House?
3. What country created eggnog, the favorite beverage of Christmas?
4. The Vince Guaraldi Trio did the score to what classic Christmas TV special?
5. What Tchaikovsky ballet is a favorite during the Christmas season?
6. In what country is the Christmas tree believed to have originated?
7. What was the name of the group of pop music stars who came together to record the 1984 hit single "Do They Know It's Christmas" for African famine relief?
8. Name 2 of the 3 rituals associated with Festivus.

The Q Train: Christmas Movies By Decade Trivia
1. It's a Wonderful Life
2. Home Alone
3. The Santa Clause
4. Scrooged
5. Love Actually
6. A Christmas Story
7. Miracle on 34th Street
8. How the Grinch Stole Christmas
9. The Nightmare Before Christmas
10. White Christmas

General Knowledge
1. What planet is nicknamed "The Red Planet?" ( 1 pt)
2. Hudson Bay is located in what nation? ( 1 pt)
3. How many squares are there on a standard chess board? ( 1 pt)
4. The Maurice J. Tobin Bridge is located in what major US city? ( 2 pt)
5. An otoscope is used for examination in which part of the human body? ( 2 pt)
6. France and what other European nation claim to have first invented French fries? ( 2 pt)
7. When ordering a dish "a la crecy", what is it garnished with? ( 3 pt)

IQ Trivia
1. What is the only organization to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize three different times? ( 5 points)
2. What cartoon character was the first to appear on a US postage stamp? ( 3 points)
3. Stretching over 4400 miles, what is the world's longest mountain range above sea level? ( 4 points)
4. "Luckiest Man" and "Iron Horse" are titles of two biographies of what famous athlete? ( 4 points)
5. In 2006, a National Geographic map had soccer as the most popular sport in nearly every nation of the world. What team sport tops the list in just three: Latvia, Lithuania and the Philippines? ( 4 points)

Answers
Current Events
1. Anderson Cooper; 2. Hurricane Irma; 3. Oprah Winfrey; 4. Russell Simmons; 5. Iraq; 6. 21st Century Fox; 7. Kentucky.

Christmas Trivia
1. Michael Caine; 2. Theodore Roosevelt; 3. England; 4. "A Charlie Brown Christmas;" 5. "The Nutcracker;" 6. Germany; 7. Band Aid; 8. The Festivus Pole, Airing of Grievances and Feats of Strength.

The Q Train: Christmas Films By Decade Trivia
1. 1940s (1946); 2. 1990s (1990); 3. 1990s (1994); 4. 1980s (1988); 5. 2000s (2003); 6. 1980s (1983); 7. 1940s (1947); 8. 2000s (2000); 9. 1990s (1993); 10. 1950s (1954).

General Knowledge
1. Mars; 2. Canada; 3. 64; 4. Boston; 5. ears; 6. Belgium; 7. carrots.

IQ Trivia
1. International Red Cross; 2. Bugs Bunny; 3. Andes; 4. Lou Gehrig; 5. basketball.

Monday, December 18, 2017

A Christmas Extravaganza On Tuesday

Trivia will be happening this Tuesday night, December 19th at 8:30 PM, with "Christmas Trivia" as the Special Category. It will be seven questions connected to the holiday, with a special bonus question to conclude the round. The Q Train lightning round will be "Christmas Movies By Decade Trivia." I will give you the names of ten famous Christmas-themed films throughout the years, and you'll tell me what decade it was originally released in, and it will be the original films only (no remakes).

The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
"Hudson Bay is located in what nation?"

I look forward to seeing many of you Tuesday night for another great night of Trivia!

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Trivia Q&A: December 12

We had a good crowd last night for Trivia on a cold night in New York and it also being the first night of Hanukkah. 13 teams took part in the festivities, and it was good to be back in the saddle hosting after being away last week (and thanks again to Matt for doing the hosting duties last week). It was also nice to see my old friend and long time Trivia Night supporter Dave Lipman back in the bar for Trivia last night, as he moved away from New York earlier this year. We had a close three-team race into the final rounds, but the team of DIMS pulled out the win, after getting off to a slow start. They were the only team to get 4 of 5 correct in IQ Trivia, and won the night with 45 points. Congrats to Ken and Derek on another great win.

Second place went to Turkey Club with 41 points, and third place went to Roy No More with 35 points.

Best Team Name: Her Name is Molly, If I Make It The Team Name, I Won't Forget It

Current Events
1. The city council of what major US city voted last week to become the nation's largest city to license marijuana sales beginning in 2018?
2. What Central American country had a presidential election last month but still has no official winner over claims the vote was fraudulent and it led thousands to protest and the police to go on strike?
3. What country's parliament legalized same-sex marriage last Thursday after years of fierce public debate?
4. Doctors recently discovered brain abnormalities in 24 diplomats who recently worked in the US embassy in what country and many are convinced these were targeted attacks?
5. Rep. Trent Franks, from what western state, is resigning from Congress amid reports he offered an aide $5 million to be a surrogate for his child?
6. What game show host is being sued by a former employee who claims the host never paid him for the thousands of dollars he raised for the host's charity?
7. Sports Illustrated picked two athletes from two different  sports teams from what US city as their co-winners of the "Sportsperson of the Year" for 2017?

Pennsylvania Trivia
1. Carnegie-Mellon University is found in what Pennsylvania city?
2. What yearly sporting event is held in Williamsport, PA?
3. What 19th US president is the only one born in the state of Pennsylvania?
4. Pennsylvania was the second US state to ratify the Constitution. What state was first?
5. Within three, how many electoral votes does Pennsylvania have in the Electoral College?
6. The Ben Franklin Bridge is found at what Pennsylvania city?
7. Of all the current pro sports teams in PA in the 4 major sports, which won has won the most titles in their history?

The Q Train: True or False Trivia
1. Singer/songwriter Paul Anka wrote Frank Sinatra's hit song "My Way."
2. Dueling is legal in Paraguay, as long as both parties are registered blood donors.
3. Yale University is America's oldest university.
4. John F. Kennedy was the first US president to be born in a hospital.
5. The dog was the first domesticated animal.
6. Twinkies have a shelf life of nearly 20 years.
7. Dallas is the largest city by population in the state of Texas.
8. Coca-Cola at one time actually contained cocaine.
9. The host of the children's TV show "Blue's Clues", Steve Burns, died of a heroin overdose.
10. George Orwell got the tile for his novel "1984" by reversing the last two numbers, as it was written in 1948.

General Knowledge
1. What is the last letter in the Greek alphabet? ( 1 pt)
2. Keyzer Soze was a mysterious character in what 1995 film? ( 1 pt)
3. What sign of the Zodiac is the Archer? ( 1 pt)
4. "Bad Medicine" was a 1988 number one hit by what rock band? ( 2 pt)
5. What immortal figure was credited with saying "Genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration? ( 2 pt)
6. The game of jai alai originated in what country?( 2 pt)
7. At over 42,000 square miles, what is the largest island in the Caribbean in area? ( 3 pt)

IQ Trivia
1. What eastern US state is the country's major producer of cranberries? ( 4 points)
2. Bedloe's Island is currently known by what name, which was changed in 1956? ( 4 points)
3. Which highly anticipated day is the busiest of the year for plumbers? ( 5 points)
4. "Mookie Blaylock", a former NBA player, was the original name of what 1990/2000s superstar rock band? ( 4 points)
5. What Hollywood film director directed Michael Jackson's 1988 video "Bad?" ( 3 points)

Answers
Current Events
1. Los Angeles; 2. Honduras; 3. Australia; 4. Cuba; 5. Arizona; 6. Steve Harvey; 7. Houston (Jose Altuve & J.J. Watt)

Pennsylvania Trivia
1. Pittsburgh; 2. Little League World Series; 3. James Buchanan; 4. Delaware; 5. 20; 6. Philadelphia; 7. Pittsburgh Steelers (6).

The Q Train: True or False Trivia
1. True; 2. true; 3. false, Harvard; 4. false, Jimmy Carter; 5. true; 6. false, 25 days; 7. false, Houston; 8. true; 9. false; 10. true.

General Knowledge
1. Omega; 2. "The Usual Suspects;" 3. Sagittarius; 4. Bon Jovi; 5. Thomas Edison; 6. Spain; 7. Cuba.

IQ Trivia
1. Massachusetts; 2. Liberty Island; 3. Black Friday; 4. Pearl Jam; 5. Martin Scorsese.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

As 2018 Dawns, A New Sheriff's in Town

I haven't written much about the Red Sox this year, as the return of my Trivia Night has taken up much of my time on the blog. But with the Winter Meetings now in full swing, it's time to catch up on a few things.

Alex Cora replaces John Farrell as Red Sox manager for 2018. It seems to be a widely popular move, especially with the Red Sox going out in the first round of the playoffs for the second straight year. Farrell can be proud of what he accomplished in Boston, winning a World Series in 2013 and three division titles. As time goes on, he will be more appreciated for what he did in Boston, being just the second manager in recent times to lead the Red Sox to the Promised Land. But it was clear the Sox needed a change, and a new voice in the manager's office.

Cora played for the Red Sox from 2005-2008, mostly as a utility infielder. I remember Peter Gammons calling Cora the smartest player in baseball, and that he would be an MLB manager one day. He comes to the job with very little managerial experience, having just managed in the Puerto Rican Winter League, and was the bench coach for last year's World Series champions in Houston. Of course, turning the keys of the kingdom over to someone who hasn't managed in the majors before is a risk, but there are recent examples of men who have succeeded with no managerial experience anywhere (Dave Roberts and Mike Matheny come to mind). Cora knows what fishbowl he's walking into, and left a great impression on everyone at his press conference.

More changes are coming to Boston, that's for sure. NL MVP Giancarlo Stanton was just traded to New York this past weekend, and by checking with some on social media, the Red Sox shouldn't even bother playing next season, and the Yankees should be awarded the 2018 World Series trophy right now. Calm down folks.

I remember back in 2004 when Alex Rodriguez was traded to New York, and I saw a similar reaction. I wrote one simple line on email to my friends who were worried about this: "Alex Rodriguez can't pitch." And now I substitute Stanton's name in that sentence. I'd be more worried if New York had acquired a 20-game winner like Corey Kluber, because as we all know, pitching (and defense) win teams championships. And I am glad the Sox didn't bring in Stanton, as the Sox have had way to many odious contracts over recent years, and Stanton's maybe the worst. He's still owed $295 million for ten years. And given Stanton's injury history (he's only played 150 games once in his career and that was last year). I really thought he'd stay in the NL, but once he turned down the offer from the Giants and Cardinals, and Dodgers passed on him, the Yankees were really the only team who could take his contract.

And to those "worried" about the new combo of Stanton and Aaron Judge playing for New York, Peter Abraham posted this stat on Twitter this past weekend: Stanton and Judge combined lifetime against Red Sox pitchers currently on their roster are 17-for-93 with one home run and 37 strikeouts.

Now, the ball is in Dave Dombrowski's court.

So what does he do? J.D. Martinez is the most attractive free agent out there, and his numbers are even better than Stanton's over the past three years. But he has Scott Boras as an agent, and you know the price for the Red Sox will be very high. The Sox also have a crowded outfield, so does Martinez DH, and if he does, what happens with Hanley Ramirez? If he gets 497 plate appearances, his option for 2019 automatically kicks in.

I'm not sure what DD will do, but he has a history of making big trades that no one saw coming, and the pressure is squarely on him with New York making such a big splash this past weekend. And you can just bet if the Winter Meetings pass with no big deals happening, social media will scream bloody murder for DD to do SOMETHING.

Dombrowski has plenty of time, as Spring Training doesn't begin for over two months from now. He should make the right moves, not those to please the fans. I offer no suggestions, as I'll just sit back and see what the Red Sox do. A new man's in charge, and the rivalry with the behemoths to the south is sure to be ramped up in 2018.

Stay tuned folks, it should be quite a ride.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Keystone State Trivia On Tuesday

Trivia will be happening this Tuesday night, December 12th at 8:30 PM, with "Pennsylvania Trivia" as the Special Category. I will ask you seven questions connected to our neighbors in the Keystone State. The Q Train lightning round will be "True or False Trivia."

The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
"What is the last letter of the Greek alphabet?"

My thanks to Matt Solowey for his hosting last week in my absence. Glad that everything went very well, and I am happy to be back. Looking forward to seeing many of you on Tuesday for a great night of Trivia Q&A!

Monday, December 04, 2017

Pinch-Hitting for Me on Tuesday

Trivia will be happening on Tuesday night, December 5th, at 8:30 PM at Professor Thom’s, and as many of you know, I’ll be away on assignment this week and will not be hosting. But Trivia regular Matt Solowey will be taking over hosting duties, and I will return next week. So, this week’s Special Category will be “Cocktail Trivia”, in honor of the 84th anniversary of the end of Prohibition on Tuesday. Matt will give you the ingredients to seven classic cocktails, and you name the drink it makes. The Q Train lightning round will be “Which Is Taller Trivia.” Matt will give you ten pairs of people, places and things, and you have to say which of the two is the taller one.

The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
“What is the fewest number of Oscar nominations a movie received while still winning Best Picture?”

Matt will be doing the same format that I do on Trivia Night, and the prizes will be the same as well. I hope that many of you will come out for Trivia on Tuesday, as I’m sure Matt will do a great job in my place!

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Trivia Q&A: November 28

We had a good crowd in for Trivia on Tuesday night, with 13 teams taking in the festivities. The scores were good for "Who's Older Trivia" (the regulars know their celebrity ages), but no team cracked double-digits for General Knowledge (that rarely happens). The boys from DIMS led through the night, and posted the win with 43 points, getting a five point win. Congrats to Ken, Michael and Derek. Second place went to The Giants are So Sad Even Eli Manning Doesn't Want to Play For Them (also won for Best Team Name), and third place went to What, No F**kin' Ziti? with 38 points (nice to see longtime regular and my friend Larry back last night).

Just a quick note to let you all know I will be away next week on assignment, and will not be hosting Trivia Night next Tuesday. However, Trivia will go on as scheduled, as Trivia regular Matt Solowey will be hosting in my place next week. Everything will be the same in terms in format and prizes. I will be posting the Special Category, Q Train Lightning Round and a Sneak Peek question here early next week. I will be back hosting again on Tuesday, December 12th at 8:30 PM. Good luck, Matt, and thank you!

Current Events
1. The US last week called what Asian country's military operation guilty of "ethnic cleansing" against members of its population and was considering sanctions against them?
2. Robert Mugabe, the world's oldest ruler at the age of 93, and president of what African nation since 1980, resigned last week before lawmakers could start impeachment proceedings against him?
3. Over 300 people were killed and more than 130 injured after Islamic militants attacked a mosque in what Middle Eastern country last Friday?
4. What actress, who worked on 7 films with disgraced mogul Harvey Weinstein, ripped him on Facebook on Thanksgiving Day, saying she was glad things were going slowly against him and he "didn't deserve a bullet."?
5. What Oscar-winning actress gave an interview earlier this week saying that if Hillary Clinton had been elected president, the US would be at war right now?
6. What female pop singer canceled three more shows in anticipation of her current Christmas tour due to a respiratory infection she's currently battling?
7. A volcano at Mount Agung, in what Asian country, erupted last Saturday night, forcing tens of thousands to evacuate and leaving tourists stranded there?

New Jersey Trivia
1. After Newark, what is the second largest city in New Jersey in population?
2. True or False: The first officially recorded baseball game in history was played in New Jersey.
3. Within three, how many counties does New Jersey have?
4. What city was Frank Sinatra born in New Jersey?
5. "Queen's College" was the original name of what New Jersey institution of higher learning?
6. What New Jersey town is in the title of Bruce Springsteen's debut album in 1972?
7. Name 1 of the 2 current senators from the state of New Jersey.

The Q Train: Who's Older Trivia
1. Keira Knightly or Bruno Mars
2. Jay Z or P. Diddy
3. Adele or Lady Gaga
4. Michael J. Fox or Barack Obama
5. Madonna or Sharon Stone
6. Al Pacino or Robert DeNiro
7. Matt Damon or Ben Affleck
8. Christina Aguilera or Britney Spears
9. Oprah Winfrey or Whoopi Goldberg
10. Harvey Weinstein or Al Franken

General Knowledge
1. What is the Jewish holiday "Day of Atonement" called? ( 1 pt)
2. What nickname is given to London's Underground? ( 1 pt)
3. Deborah Harry was the lead singer of what 1970s rock band? ( 1 pt)
4. A portobello is a popular type of what food? ( 2 pt)
5. What was the name of the casino that infamous gangster Bugsy Siegel opened in 1947? ( 2 pt)
6. Newton's Second Law of Motion states that force equals mass times what? ( 2 pt)
7. Billy Batson was the alter ego of what comic book character? ( 3 pt)

IQ Trivia
1. In 1997, what entertainer became the first person named an honorary veteran of the Armed Forces by Congress? ( 4 points)
2. Josephine Cochrane invented what household appliance in 1886? ( 5 points)
3. What cherished Christmas song was originally inspired by an annual horse race in Medford, MA in 1850? ( 4 points)
4. "Rush to Judgment" was a national best-selling book about what famous event? ( 4 points)
5. What is the southernmost state capital in the continguous United States? ( 3 points)

Answers
Current Events
1. Myanmar; 2. Zimbabwe; 3. Egypt; 4. Uma Thurman; 5. Susan Sarandon; 6. Mariah Carey; 7. Indonesia.

New Jersey Trivia
1. Jersey City; 2. true; 3. 21; 4. Hoboken; 5. Rutgers; 6. Asbury Park; 7. Cory Booker and Robert Menendez.

The Q Train: Who's Older Trivia
1. Keira Knightly; 2. P. Diddy; 3. Lady Gaga; 4. Michael J. Fox; 5. Sharon Stone; 6. Al Pacino; 7. Matt Damon; 8. Christina Aguilera; 9. Oprah Winfrey; 10. Al Franken.

General Knowledge
1. Yom Kippur; 2. The Tube; 3. Blondie; 4. mushroom; 5. The Flamingo; 6. acceleration; 7. Captain Marvel (Shazam).

IQ Trivia
1. Bob Hope; 2. dishwasher; 3. "Jingle Bells;" 4. JFK Assassination; 5. Austin, TX.

Monday, November 27, 2017

Honoring the Garden State Tomorrow

Trivia will be happening this Tuesday night, November 28th at 8:30 PM, with "New Jersey Trivia" as the Special Category. It will be seven questions about the Garden State in all things. The Q Train lightning round will be "Who's Older Trivia." I will match two current celebrities of similar age and you will tell me which star is the older one.

The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
"What nickname is given to London's Underground?"

Looking forward to seeing many of you at Professor Thom's on Tuesday night for a great night of Trivia!

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Trivia Q&A: November 21

The crowd was down a bit from last week for Trivia last night, as the Thanksgiving holiday probably kept some folks away. But we still had a great night of Trivia, with 10 teams taking part. We had two teams in a mad dash to the finish, with the team of Turkey Club getting the win, as the ran in the table in the IQ Trivia round, winning the night with 49 points, edging out our friends from DIMS, who missed one question in that round to end the night with 47 points. Congrats to Bob and Cato on another great win.

Third place ended in a tie between the teams of Nacho Average Team and Do Your Job both getting 41 points. We broke the tie with the question: "How many individual times has Sherlock Holmes been seen on TV and in the movies around the world?" (Based on an IQ Trivia question last night.) The answer was 254, and Do Your Job was closest with their guess, so they finished in third place for the night.

Best Team Name: Et Tu, Charlie?

Current Events
1. Three basketball players from what college in the US returned last week after being detained in China on a shoplifting charge?
2. What country music singer was selected as People magazine's "Sexiest Man Alive" for 2017?
3. Last June, the Tappan Zee Bridge was renamed for what New York politician, and now a new petition with over 50,000 signatures wants to restore the original Tappan Zee name?
4. The painting "Savior of the World" by what legendary artist, sold at auction last week in New York for a record $450 million?
5. What late entertainer topped the list in Forbes magazine's annual roll call of the "Highest-Paid Dead Celebrities" for this year?
6. The Keystone pipeline leaked over 200,000 gallons of oil for the third time since 2010 in what Midwestern US state?
7. Malcolm Young, a founding member and guitarist for what popular hard rock band, died last Saturday at the age of 64?

Thanksgiving Trivia
1. Which giant balloon character has flown in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade more times than any other?
2. What Midwestern state is the largest producer in the US of turkeys?
3. What 19th century president issued the "Thanksgiving Proclamation" making the last Thursday in November the holiday?
4. The first Thanksgiving celebration in America took place in what current US state?
5. Of the three utensils we use to eat (fork, spoon and knife), which was not present at the first Thanksgiving feast?
6. Canada celebrates its Thanksgiving in what month?
7. True or false: The turkey was domesticated in the nation of Turkey.

The Q Train: Country Nicknames Trivia
1. The Red Dragon
2. The Lucky Country
3. The Gift of the Nile
4. The Boot
5. The Rainbow Nation
6. The Hermit Kingdom
7. Land of the Incas
8. Graveyard of Empires
9. Land of Hope and Glory
10. Land of Milk and Honey

General Knowledge
1. What Peanuts character famously played the piano? ( 1 pt)
2. Temple University is located in what US city? ( 1 pt)
3. The Twitter logo sports the name "Larry" after what famous person? ( 1 pt)
4. "Live Free or Die" is what US state's motto? ( 2 pt)
5. Who succeeded King George VI as England's monarch? ( 2 pt)
6. What is the most consumed fruit in the US? ( 2 pt)
7. What color are sunsets on Mars? ( 3 pt)

IQ Trivia
1. In 1982, Charles Brooks became the first person in the US to be executed by what method? ( 3 points)
2. What fictional literary character holds the world record for the most depictions in film and TV? ( 5 points)
3. "Backrub" was the original name of what online technology company? ( 4 points)
4. What is the largest country in area in Central America? ( 4 points)
5. The 1966 film "The Fortune Cookie" was the first of ten cinematic pairings of what two Oscar-winning actors? ( 4 points)

Answers
Current Events
1. UCLA; 2. Blake Shelton; 3. Mario Cuomo; 4. Leonardo daVinci; 5. Michael Jackson; 6. South Dakota; 7. AC/DC.

Thanksgiving Trivia
1. Snoopy (38 times); 2. Minnesota; 3. Abraham Lincoln; 4. Massachusetts; 5. fork; 6. October; 7. false, Mexico.

The Q Train: Country Nicknames Trivia
1. China; 2. Australia; 3. Egypt; 4. Italy; 5. South Africa; 6. North Korea; 7. Peru; 8. Afghanistan; 9. England; 10. Switzerland & Israel.

General Knowledge
1. Schroeder; 2. Philadelphia; 3. Larry Bird; 4. New Hampshire; 5. Queen Elizabeth II; 6. bananas; 7. blue.

IQ Trivia
1. Lethal injection; 2. Sherlock Holmes; 3. Google; 4. Nicaragua; 5. Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau.

Monday, November 20, 2017

We Give Thanks For Trivia On Tuesday

Trivia will be happening this Tuesday night, November 21st at 8:30 PM at Professor Thom's, with "Thanksgiving Trivia," seven questions connected to that great American holiday coming up this week. The Q Train lightning round will be "Country Nicknames Trivia." I will give you the nicknames of ten countries around the world and you have to tell me which one I'm talking about.

The Sneak Peek question for this week is:
"What Peanuts character famously played the piano?"

We had a huge turnout last week, so make sure you get in early to grab good seats or a table. I look forward to seeing many of you this Tuesday night for another great night of Trivia Q&A as we get ready to celebrate Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 17, 2017

"The Chicago Cubs: Story of a Curse"

On November 2, 2016, history was made that night that no living person could ever say they had previously witnessed. The Chicago Cubs, billed for years as "The Lovable Losers", had finally reached the mountaintop and gave their long-suffering fans the thrill of winning their first World Series since 1908.For me, it brought back memories of watching the Red Sox win the World Series back in 2004, ending their own 86-year dry spell. I was pulling for the Cubs, and was thrilled for them and their supporters.

In the aftermath of the Red Sox win 13 years ago, there were a whole slew of books released about it from every conceivable angle you can think of. And with the Cubs' victory, it brought lots of reading material to hit the store shelves. And one of them was just released last month, by author Rich Cohen called "The Chicago Cubs: Story of a Curse" (Farrar, Straus and Giroux).

Cohen, who grew up in suburban Chicago and authored such books as "Monsters" (about the 1985 Chicago Bears) and "Tough Jews" (about the Brooklyn Jewish mob of the 1930s), takes us on a tour of his Cubs fandom, as well as a history of the star-crossed franchise he fell in love with. At the age of 8, he was warned by his father NOT to become a Cubs fan after taking young Rich to his first game at Wrigley Field. But a lifelong love of the team was born for him.

Cohen starts with those Cubs teams that dominated the National League in the latter part of the first decade of the 20th century, that featured such stars as Frank Chance, Joe Tinker, Johnny Evers and Mordecai "Three Finger" Brown. (And he goes into detail about how Brown got the nickname). The Cubs would would rule the NL from 1906-1913, winning two World Series and winning more games than any other club in the league.

The good times of dominance didn't last, as the Cubs won sporadic pennants over the next 30 years, but no World Series. And Cohen hits the "Curse" section of the book by retelling the story of tavern owner William Sianis and the story of his goat, which he brought to Game 4 of the 1945 World Series, but was ejected as the goat got many complaints from neighboring fans. Sianis then supposedly put the whammy on the franchise, whether you put any stock in curses or not (I don't), it makes for an entertaining retelling.

1969 is the next stop on the Cubs storied history of futility, blowing a long lead to the Mets that summer, then over to 1984 when the Cubs made it to the postseason for the first time since 1945, only to blow a 2-0 NLCS lead to the San Diego Padres, topped off by Leon Durham's memorable Game 5 error, and then to 2003 and the Steve Bartman Affair.  Cohen goes into plenty of detail about all of them to make every Cubs fan who remembers living through them shake their head in utter disgust. (He also goes into plenty of background on Bill Buckner, as remembers him from his Cubs days, as he has a photo taken with him in 1979.)

Cohen is clearly a devoted fan who has stuck with his team through thick and thin, and brings readers to his days at Wrigley Field as a youngster, cutting out of school to catch games in the bleachers with other diehards, especially during the days the Cubs were fighting to stay out of the NL East basement.

The book concludes with the 2016 championship season, and breaks down each postseason game. I did find the ending a bit surprising, as he was present in Cleveland for the Game 7 win, but didn't celebrate with other Cubs fans. He recalls being sad, like his childhood had disappeared once Anthony Rizzo caught the last out.

I definitely enjoyed "The Chicago Cubs: Story of a Curse." part of it might be the connection that Red Sox fans have with Cubs fans, with all the futility stretched out over the generations. But it is a great baseball story from a man who finally saw it  all come together for his beloved team.