Friday, December 21, 2007

December 21, 2007 question

Believe it or not, the last ex-Beatle big hit was "I Got My Mind Set On You" by George Harrison. It's been so long that only Heidi remembered . . . and Jessie, calling it "the Money song" which is good enough this close to Christmas.

See, this is that time of year when Santa expands his "Good" list just to up his quantity for lower production costs. It's the same thing with trivia. If we go through a right-answer dry spell, it starts costing me a lot more per correct response, and I really need a higher conversion rate to justify the continuation of this here trivia game. Sorry to reveal the business side of trivia, but if we have to make some cutbacks in 2008, it's best that you're prepared with a little foundational knowledge.

What the heck are you talking about, Adam? Oh, right . . . thanks, internal voice. On to trivial matters. Here's today's question:

Who is Roger Clemens' lawyer?

A) Rusty Harden
B) Rocky Rhodes
C) Dusty Stifle
D) Eugene Stone
E) Buster Yucks

Thursday, December 20, 2007

December 20, 2007 question

Clement Moore or Henry Livingston Jr.? That's another question surrounding our last trivia subject, " 'Twas the Night Before Christmas," or as it was originally titled, "An Account of a Visit from St. Nicholas." No one got it quite right, but Pat was closest.

I had forgotten the hubbub from seven years back when Don Foster, an expert on authorial attribution, claimed that there was no way that Clement Moore wrote the poem. He was a stern, unimaginative, stick-in-the-mud Bible professor who would never have written the poem and probably never could have.

I love a good Christmas controversy. Here's a yet-again unrelated bit of trivia for you:

What was the last song performed by an ex-Beatle to top the Billboard pop chart?

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

December 18, 2007 question

Here was the inaugural class of the Songwriter Hall of Fame:

Ahlert, Fred; Ball, Ernest; Bates, Katharine Lee; Berlin, Irving; Billings, William; Bland, James; Brockman, James; Brown, Lew; Brown, Nacio Herb; Bryan, Alfred; Burke, Joe; Burke, Johnny; Caldwell, Anne; Carroll, Harry; Clare, Sidney; Cohan, George M.; Conrad, Con; Coslow, Sam; Danks, Hart P.; De Koven, Reginald; De Rose, Peter; De Sylva, B.G. (Buddy); Dixon, Mort; Donaldson, Walter; Dresser, Paul; Dreyer, Dave; Dubin, Al; Duke, Vernon; Edwards, Gus (The Star Maker); Egan, Raymond B.; Emmett, Daniel Decatur; Fiorito, Ted; Fisher, Fred; Foster, Stephen; Gershwin, George; Gilbert, L. Wolfe; Gilmore, Patrick S.; Gordon, Mack; Grofe, Ferde; Guthrie, Woody; Hammerstein II, Oscar; Handy, W.C. (Father of the Blues); Hanley, James F.; Harbach, Otto; Harris, Charles K.; Hart, Lorenz (Larry); Henderson, Ray; Herbert, Victor; Hill, Billy; Howard, Joe; Howe, Julia Ward; Jacobs Bond, Carrie; Johnson, Howard; Johnson, James P.; Johnson, James W.; Johnston, Arthur; Jones, Isham; Joplin, Scott (King of Ragtime); Kahal, Irving; Kahn, Gus; Kalmar, Bert; Kern, Jerome; Key, Francis Scott; Ledbetter, Huddie (Leadbelly); Lewis, Sam; Loesser, Frank; MacDonald, Ballard; Madden, Edward; McCarthy, Joseph; McHugh, Jimmy; Meyer, George W.; Monaco, Jimmy; Moret, Neil; Morse, Theodore; Muir, Lewis F.; Nevin, Ethelbert; Norworth, Jack; Olcott, Chauncey; Payne, John Howard; Pierpont, J.S.; Pollack, Lew; Porter, Cole; Rainger, Ralph; Revel, Harry; Rexford, Eben E.; Rodgers, Jimmie (Father of Country Music); Rodgers, Richard; Romberg, Sigmund; Root, George F.; Rose, Billy; Rose, Vincent; Ruby, Harry; Russell, Bob; Schwartz, Jean; Smith, Harry B.; Smith, Samuel Francis; Snyder, Ted; Sousa, John Phillip; Sterling, Andrew B.; Tierney, Harry A.; Tobias, Charles; Turk, Roy; Van Alstyne, Egbert; Von Tilzer, Albert; Von Tilzer, Harry; Waller, Thomas ("Fats"); Ward, Samuel A.; Weill, Kurt; Wenrich, Percy; Whiting, Richard; Williams, Clarence; Williams, Hank; Williams, Spencer; Winner, Septimus (Sep); Woods, Harry M.; Work, Henry C.; Wrubel, Allie; Youmans, Vincent; Young, Joe; Young, Rida Johnson; Young, Victor


And here's who knew: Reg, Micaela, Gene, and Charles. They didn't know all of them. But they each got one. Now here's a Christmas question that I'm regifting, because I'm sure it's been asked many times, many ways:


What is the original title of the Clement Clarke Moore poem commonly referred to as " 'Twas the Night Before Christmas"?




When was it written?

Monday, December 17, 2007

December 17, 2007 question

How did I not give you the answer yet? It's unfathomable, especially if you're new at fathoming. If you can remember back to Thursday when we last plumbed the depths of trivia, I had asked you what kingdom was founded on Christmas of 1000. The answer was Hungary. Nobody knew that. But you know what? That's okay. It's Christmas time. Were it not Christmas time, it would still be okay.

What's not okay? Performance enhancing drugs. I'm thinking about adding a rule to the trivia bylaws. Baseball and the rest of the sporting world has inspired me. I'm going to hire an impartial investigator (me . . . but just the part of me that is impartial) to look into allegations of rampant trivia cheating. I will question some of you, I won't expect a response from any of you, and then I'll make a final conclusion that affects all of you.

Gag. I think the thing that bothers me most about the state of baseball is the attitude of the press, particularly the voters for the Baseball Hall of Fame. Many of them (and enough of them to matter) refuse to cast a Hall of Fame vote for anyone mentioned in the Mitchell report. They compare this scandal to the Black Sox scandal of 1919. But you know what the biggest difference between the scandals is? The fixed World Series story broke because of a newspaper article alleging the fix. The steroid scandal story broke because Jose Canseco published a book.

Don't you point the fingers, baseball writers of America. On the whole, you stink at your job, you fell asleep on the job, and electing members to the Hall of Fame should no longer be your job.

Okay, who's happy? Here's today's question:

Who is one of the 121 artists (any name will do) inducted to the inaugural class of the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1970?

Thursday, December 13, 2007

December 13, 2007 question

"Wild Thing" was written by Chip Taylor, younger brother of Jon Voight, uncle of actress Angelina Jolie and her actor brother James Haven and brother-in-law to actress Marcheline Bertand. The last name they could have all gone by if they so chose is Voight, but you know how these things go. Here's who knew:

Heather M (the M stands for Makes a Keen Observation About How Every Woman Brad Pitt Is Involved With Suddenly Loses All Traces Of Body Fat Not Located In Their Lips)

And now for some Christmas trivia. Here's today's question:

What kingdom was founded on Christmas Day in the year 1000? (In the year one thousaaaaaaaand)

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

December 12, 2007 question

The Grinch has termites in his smile. I guess you could say he also has them in his teeth. Here's who has seen them up close:

Paul C (the C stands for Christmas Is Cancelled)

Now on to a quick story out of the football world. Over the last year and a half, Bobby Petrino has signed contracts totalling 20 years of alleged commitment to three, count 'em, three different football teams. It started with a 10-year contract extension at Louisville, followed six months later by a 5-year contract with the Atlanta Falcons. Now, eleven months later, he's jumped ship yet again back to the college ranks, having just agreed to a 5-year contract at the University of Arkansas.

I don't think I even have to comment on how lowly and despicable that track record is. If my spit could reach Arkansas, I'd be expectorating in his general direction right about now. Here's today's question (and, yes, it's completely unrelated . . . I just had to get that off my chest):

The younger brother of what actor composed the song "Wild Thing," recorded by the Troggs? Hint: this actor is part of an acting family with at least three names you might know, and none of them share the same last name.

Monday, December 10, 2007

December 10, 2007 question

This is the way December plays out. I'm sorry. Here you all sit waiting for glory for knowing your longitude (the right answer) from your latitude (the wrong answer), and I just make you wait.

Unfortunately, it's not coming. The list is too long, and time is too short. I only received one wrong guess. It's crazy . . . we just had a week with one 50/50 question that only one person got right and another 50/50 question that only one person got wrong. That's crazy. But I won't cancel Christmas, or trivia, just because of the craziness and the extended lapses of productivity. Here's today's question:

According to the Christmas special song, the Grinch had termites in his what?

Thursday, December 6, 2007

December 6, 2007 question

What is happening to trivia? Either I'm sending you three messages or none . . . get your act together, me!

I'm sorry you had to witness me losing my temper with myself. Hopefully you won't lose yours when you learn that only Norris knew that Georgia has the most land area of any state east of the Mississippi, or that I have to give special credit to Neil for guessing tricky Alaska, which could technically be interpreted as a state east of the Mississippi since part of it extends so far West it becomes East again. But since Georgia is larger than the part of Alaska that extends beyond 180 degrees latitude . . . or is it longitude? Looks like I got myself a question. Here goes nothing:

If an armadillo travels due East with no variation North or South, which changes: its latitude or its longitude?

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

December 4, 2007 question

Believe it or not, the entire statement yesterday was true. Comiskey really did make his players launder their own uniforms, they didn't really do it very often, and people really did start calling them the Black Sox before they were crooks. Even if the socks didn't, the name fit quite well after they threw the World Series. What is even harder to believe is that Karen H (the H stands for How Well You Know Me) was the only one who suspected I would trick you in that way. I guess it's easier to believe that only one person was willing to guess that I'd say something true. Be that as it may, I can't decide if I'm offended or disappointed.

Here's today's question:

Not including water area, what is the largest U.S. state (by area) east of the Mississippi River?

Monday, December 3, 2007

December 3, 2007 question

Ah, winter time, when the trivia nights are longer, the trivia glory a bit duller, and the trivia questions covered in hoary powder that is either a cold morning frost or just a bunch of dust. Whichever, here's the answer to the last question I asked you: Universal Product Code, and here is the list of brilliant people who knew:

For those non-UPC readers out there, that translates to Heidi, Nancy K (the K stands for Kmart), Charles, Steve J (the J stands for JC Penny), Micaela, Reg, Karen H (the H stands for Hook's Drug Store), Konrad, Steve T (the T stands for T. J. Maxx), Paul C (the C stands for Cafe Cou Rouge). For those UPC readers out there, I know, it doesn't really.

And a brief note on the news that Senator Larry Craig has 8 new male accusers. If there isn't a headline somewhere in this country reading "Eight Men Out," I declare myself extremely disappointed in the state of American journalism. Here's today's question:

True or False: Charles Comiskey, the longtime owner of the Chicago White Sox and former pro baseball player and manager, was so budget-conscious that he required his players to launder their own uniforms, which led to their perennially dirty wardrobes and the nickname "the Black Sox."

If any part of that is false, answer false--bonus points if you can tell me which part is false. Of course, if it's all true, answer true.