Friday, May 29, 2009

May 29, 2009 question - Asleep at the Trivia wheel

And not the big Venezuelan kind that beats up Gatorade
The sleep thing last night? Not so much. So the shoe is on the other foot. And you're the other foot. And the shoe is . . . well, only vaguely defined. Today, you're gonna annoy bore force to scroll through the ramblings or just plain skip the question altogether entertain me.

Today's Question
What is racketeering? The answer that is most entertaining (and more or less correct) wins.

Yesterday's Answer
And the people who knew it
When in Rome, Zeus is Jupiter. Here's who knew:

Heather M (the M stands for Mars; More Candy Bars)
Nancy K (the K stands for Kit Kats On Pluto . . . Try Telling Those Chocolate-Covered Crispy Wafers It Ain't A Planet)

I'm overwhelmed by your intellect (although, on one hour of sleep, pretty much everything's overwhelming, so don't get all swept away or anything). Congrats.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

May 28, 2009 question - It's Okay. Let Out the Anger.

Mt. Zambrano
And the Cubs' Mt. Rushmore of Volcanic Personality
(also appears here)

All of you who had "Jake Fox's Bat Cooling Off" in yesterday's pool lost miserably. No, Lou didn't have one of his sweet explosions, but big Z picked up the slack. Pretty much the whole world has now overreacted to Carlos Zambrano's overreaction to the disputed out call in Wednesday's victory over the Pirates (it's just a big globe full of hypocrites, no?).

And now it's time to reflect on the simmering stew of tempers now residing in Wrigleyville and just how tasty it really is. If you filter through the extreme snobbery of moderation sermons being preached all across the Chicago and sporting airwaves this morning, you might actually notice that everything about yesterday's Mt. Zambrano eruption is hilarious.

There was Lou, unable to suppress the giggles during his post-game press conference.

There was Milton, also chuckling, and approving of the impressive nature of the explosion, adding, "It was on a Bradley level."

And of course, there was Carlos himself, pointing, gesticulating, ump tossing, incidental bumping, ball hurling, Gatorade bashing, and pitching-coach endangering. Yes, he'll be suspended. So what? The fresher he'll be in September and October. His tirade didn't hurt the Cubs. It helped humanity.

Maybe I should be sorry for enjoying a fit of childish rage, but I'm not at all. I love the fact that the Cubs now have three of the most volatile characters in baseball on their squad, ready to combust at any moment.

Cub baseball just became fun to watch again.

Today's Question
Greek/Roman Mythology
Who is Zeus's counterpart in Roman mythology?

Tuesday's Answer
And the people who knew it
Technically, the easternmost province in Canada is Newfoundland and Labrador, but we had no Lab lovers. So I'll give credit to the Newfoundland-only crowd:

Steve J (the J stands for Just A Newfy)
Karen H (the H stands for Halifactually Correct)

Good job, eh?

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

May 26, 2009 question - Forgetial Day

Memorial Day to Forget
For the Cubs anyway
Maybe the true meaning of Memorial Day has nothing to do with baseball, but they're both very American institutions, so it's hard to separate my feelings, especially when the two intersect. So regardless of how enjoyable most of the day was, I just can't set aside my disdain for the way the day ended: with miserable Cubs baseball.

The big problems had nothing to do with the play on the field and the eight-game losing streak the Cubbies plopped upon the Wrigley grass. The real shocks were A) the fact that on Memorial Day, the Cubs played at night, presumably to keep their national broadcast from interfering with the evil MLB network's 2 day-game telecasts; B) the Cubs wearing . . . prepare to gasp . . . red hats.

I know, right? The Reds wear red hats. The Cardinals wear red hats. Sophia Loren has been known to wear a giant red hat, but that doesn' t excuse everybody in baseball being forced to don the crimson caps of doom.

The forces of good must unite to ensure this never happens again.

Today's Question
What is the easternmost province in Canada?

Yesterday's Answer
And the people who knew it
Chowder comes from the French chaudière, a kettle or pot . . . B. Even though they knew, these people are far from being chowder heads: Steve J (the J stands for Jambalaya), Steve T (the T stands for Tomato Basil), Micaela, and Elena. Y'all are souper duper geniuses.

Friday, May 22, 2009

May 22, 2009 question - Shameless Plugs

Other Stuff
While we're on the subject of unimportant things . . .
As part of my continual thirst for glory this laid-back Friday, I just wanted to take a brief moment to promote myself highlight some other content you might find of interest online (if you've visited these before, deal with it, post glowing comments under a pseudonym, consider yourself blessed, I apologize):

Musical Ripoffs: a look at songs that rip-off plagiarize steal seem inspired by other songs. The latest one kinda shocked me, even though the newer song is all but unknown.

v34: Why I hate LOL and you should, too. And there will be a Lost update soon, I promise.

AndCounting: It will be at least 101 #@&! years between #&*$@*^$#@ championships, and Tony LaRussa is the Devil. (Did I forget to strike that? Hmm. Whoops.)

Today's Question
Food and Words (how awesome is that?)
From what does the thick soup chowder derive its name?
A) The name of the chef who, according to folklore, concocted the original New England clam version
B) The pot or kettle in which it is cooked
C) The traditional base of salt pork
D) The traditional inclusion of seafood

Yesterday's Answer
And the people who knew it
Billy Idol. A man who needs no introduction (by definition that's something you should say after you say the person's name) and the answer to yesterday's question. If today's question were, "Who knew?" the answer would be Kyle. The both of you rock.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

May 21, 2009 question - Large Print Edition

No, no. No. No way. No, no, no.
It was bad enough bringing bikini girl back to the Idol Finale along with her two knew buoyant friends (although Idol did do a good job of inviting just about all the right people to put on a great show). And I'll admit, the singing duel between judge Kara DioGuardi and the bikini-clad wanna-be (nee, Bikini Girl) was hilariously scripted and very naturally catty.
But when Kara quickly ripped open her little black dress to reveal an even littler black bikini (to win a bet, for a good cause . . . ?!?) I just couldn't stop saying no. Apparently I still can't. No. No, no.

Today's Question
What is the stage name of the musician born William Michael Albert Broad?

Yesterday's Answer
And the people who knew it
First of all, I typed "advice" yesterday when I meant "device." So for those of you who guessed Ann Landers yesterday, I apologize. It was actually Alexander Graham Bell (nee Abigail Van Buren) who attempted to save the prez by trying to detect the bullet lodged in his Garfieldian body. Only Karen H (the H stands for He Should Have Taken One Large Step To His Left, That Advice Could Have Saved Him, No?) knew. She feared she would guess wrong, so big congrats to her for dodging that bullet!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

May 20, 2009 question - Support Your Local President

Heads of State
Aw Hail No to the Chief
It was a tough weekend to be a U.S. President on a college campus. Barack Obama got heckled, picketed, and generally protested on the campus of Notre Dame (apparently they like their anti-Catholic entities on the football field but not at commencement). But Obama had it easy compared to President James Garfield, whose statue was beheaded just a week after being placed on the campus of Hiram College in Ohio. Police have had extreme difficulty apprehending the perpetrator(s) or locating Garfield's dome due to the proliferation of detached, brainless heads swarming the campus on a regular basis.

Today's Question
Presidential Trivia
Who attempted to save Garfield's life (the real guy, not the statue) with an induction-balance electrical advice?

Yesterday's Answer
And the people who knew it
Arizona is the most identity theft . . . or at least the most people complaining about it. According to Discover's Identy Theft Protection telemarketers, however, my state is the one with the highest rate of Identity Theft. Big fat liars. Indiana isn't even in the top half. Nobody knew the answer, but I attribute that to Discover calling everyone and lying to them.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

March 19, 2009 question - Do Not Adjust Your Trivia

Please Stand By
We are experiencing trivial difficulties
Possible explanations for the horrendously long trivia drought:

10. So many people got the Indian Ocean question right, I drowned.
9. After my DVR went down, spent all my time trying to catch up with my stories online.
8. Swine flu
7. Man-crush on Al Gore led me to recycle myself.
6. I'm staging a poorly organized trivia strike to free Darfur
5. Originally planned to do this top 10 after missing last Thursday, and it's just taken a lot longer than I thought.
4. I'm out of deodorant, and when I extend my arms far enough out to type, I pass out from the stench.
3. Too busy using up free Kentucky Grilled Chicken vouchers and the subsequent finger licking has occupied me ever since
2. I just ran out of questions. You guys know everything.
1. I don't know. Isn't this weird?

Today's Question
Current Events
According to the FTC, what U.S. state had the highest rate of Identity Theft complaints per capita in 2008?

Last Wednesday's Answer
And the people who knew it
The Indian Ocean surrounds Madagascar. Almost all of you knew. Consider your name bolded.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

May 13, 2009 question - Buh-bye, Tuesday

Tuesday Deleted
Maybe I should do that every week
I'm just gonna pretend like yesterday never happened. In the trivia world, it didn't. But in the real world, the day just wound up being less than trivial. So . . . look at that: My calendar has a hole in it where there should be a 12. I guess yesterday really didn't happen after all.

Today's Question
What ocean surrounds the island of Madagascar?

Monday's Answer
And the people who knew it
Crabs are crustaceans, not mollusks. And let me tell you, it kills them. Here's who's more happy about it:

Paul C (the C stands for Crabby And Loving It)
Karen H (the H stands for Halibuthian Empire)
Karen M (the M stands for Mollusk, By Mennen)
MB (the M B stands for Mollusk, Brut, Same Diff)

I'm so proud of you all, I have goosebumps on my exoskeleton.

Monday, May 11, 2009

May 11, 2009 question - Trick or Trivia

I Tricked You
And I feel really bad/good about it, too
I ask trick questions all the time. Not all the time, I mean, not every question is a trick question. But I like throwing them in there from time to time. Friday's was a trick. It was so tricky, in fact, that I've been debating all weekend whether to award credit to the people who knew the non-trick question but failed to spot the trick.

Because, you see, nobody guessed the trick answer. If you suspect a trick question's coming, you can employ a trick guess without even reading the question. Any of these are very likely to garner a correct answer to a trick question: zero, one, none of them, all of them, himself, herself, never.

But if you get tricked by a trick question and you knew the non-trick answer, whew . . . the only genuine responses seem to be @#!&, &#!^, &@#$, and #$##&@^ &!^%#@*. As you can see from the answer below, I'll have to accept any of these. Sorry.

Today's Question
Which of the following is not a mollusk:

A. Crab
B. Cuttlefish
C. Giant Squid
D. Slug
E. Snail

Friday's Answer
And the people who knew it
None of King Henry VIII's marriages ended in beheading. The two ex-wives who were beheaded became just that—EX wives—shortly before becoming ex-living. King Henry Ocho was a big fan of annulling marriages that didn't work out, the tricky little bloke.

Friday, May 8, 2009

May 8, 2009 question - Off with his head!

Drew the Short Straw
I really hope this doesn't delay his next wedding.
First of all, thanks to everyone who went outside yesterday and came back to tell me of the beauty you beholded. It certainly made my day better.
Second of all, raise your hand if your day didn't get just a little better when you heard about the arrest of Drew Peterson, the ex-cop with a marital record worthy of Henry VIII? Anyone . . . anyone? Bueller?

It's very tempting to ramble on about what a jerk this guy is, but it's Friday. So why not just silently savor the image of a crooked ex-cop spending the rest of his life surrounded by people who don't really like crooked ex-cops . . . ah, justice.

Today's Question
How many of Henry VIII's marriages ended in beheading?

Yesterday's Answer
And the people who knew it
Ladybugs eat aphids and mites and buggy little pests in general. Here's who knew:

Karen H (the H stands for Have An Aphid)
Karen M (the M stands for Mites Are Ready!)
Steve J (the J stands for Juicy!)
NC (the N C stands for No Cheezburgers)

I'm so impressed, as is my son who supplied the question. Congrats!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

May 7, 2009 question - Get Out!

The Sun beckons
When I first started trivializing via email, I was a recipient not a sender. And the thing I loved about getting a trivia question every day was the simple fact that it was one small thing to look forward to. It made the day just a little better.

So when I started sending these mind-bending missives, I took the responsibility very seriously: it became my mission to make everybody's day just a little better with something that bore no other relevance to your life than the simple fact that you expected it to come. And if the intro, the question, the answer or just a non-work-related email elevated the experience of your day . . . success!

Well I'm still going to provide a question today, and I hope you get it right. But I'm going to ask something else of you right now, something that I hope will make your day a little better:

Stop what you're doing. Go outside for just a minute. Enjoy the weather, rain or shine. Then come back here and tell me about it.

If there's a reason you just can't go outside, I'd like to hear that, too (though I suspect you could at least get to an open window or something). But there's a reason people talk about the weather when they've got nothing else to talk about. It's not small talk. It's just nice.

It's nice to know that however we compartmentalize ourselves throughout the course of the day, there's a big ol' natural world out there just waiting for us to enjoy it. Be it weather, be it trivia, it's ready for us to partake of its goodness. If that one-minute break from your self-made cell doesn't improve your day even a little bit, I'll give you your money back. Every penny.

So get outside. Tell me what it's like. This is trivia; there's no such thing as small talk.

Today's Question
What do ladybugs eat?

Yesterday's Answer
And the people who knew it
Don Ho, the flyin' Hawaiian, was the only person on yesterday's list to shed this mortal coil. Some of you owe Cronkite and Bordot a long-overdue visit. Here's who knew:

Karen M (the M stands for Morbid)

Congratulations on your genius that has yet to flatline!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

May 6, 2009 question - Not Dead Yet

Dom De Dom Dom Doooooooom
Seriously, why didn't someone tell me these people were alive?
First Bea, now Dom. I just don't get it! Dom DeLuise died yesterday in yet another death I call shocking only because I thought he had died a long, long time ago. His body wasn't exactly screaming, "I'm gonna make it to 76," you know?

But I have to accept that this is news and not just an accidental reprint of an old story, and I must hope that the DeLuises accept my apology for condolences delivered way too early.

Today's Question
Dead or Alive
Which of these celebrities is (are) dead:
A. Brigitte Bardot
B. Walter Cronkite
C. Don Ho
D. Omar Sharif
E. Twiggy

Yesterday's Answer
And the people who knew it
Waterloo was the last French military defeat before christening Cinco de Mayo. It's also one of the only French military defeats people can remember other than, you know, their general existence in the modern era. Here's who knew:

Karen H (the H stands for Happy Sixth Of May)
Nancy K (the K stands for Knows Who's Living)

Very good, all of you. Except Napoleon.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

May 5, 2009 question - Cinco de . . . um . . .

Down the Stretch They Come
And by "they" I mean society
I know it's Cinco de Mayo, but now that I'm half conscious, I want to talk about Dos de Mayo and the running of the Kentucky Derby. The most telling thing about that race was not the 21-hour drive the owner and his horse made from New Mexico (or the hobbled hissy fit he threw when asked about it for the twenty-first time after winning). It wasn't the 50-1 odds Mine That Bird overcame. It wasn't even the fact that the winning horse was in dead last 3/4 of the way through the race (or the fact that, after Kyle mockingly said he bet on that horse, I told him not to worry, he was going to do a Black Stallion and win this thing).

No, the very best part of the race, the part that summed up the improbability of it all, was the call Tom Durkin made once Mine That Bird opened up a three length lead--a lead he would more than double down the stretch. Yes, with about 100 yards left in the race, Durkin's call went like this:

"And out in front is . . . uh . . . "

Yeah, the reason he was searching for a name was the simple fact that the last time he had referenced that horse was in this sentence: "And behind the rest of them is Mine That Bird."

That's how unexpected and lightning fast his surge to victory was. I had to rewind it multiple times to verify that what I had just seen was really what my mind was assuming it was.

And it was. And it was hilariously awesome.

Today's Question
Prior to their defeat in the Battle of Puebla (on Cinco de Mayo) what was the last military battle the French Army had lost, almost 50 years prior?

Yesterday's Answer
And the people who knew it
Yes, you can see the Andromeda Galaxy with the naked eye. It's right . . . there. Here's who spotted it:

Steve T (the T stands for Two Hundred Fifty Light Years Away, Making It One Of The Most Distant Objects Visible From Earth WTNE)
Steve J (the J stands for Just Wave So I Can See Where You Are)

Congratulations on your intergalactic genius.

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Monday, May 4, 2009

May 4, 2009 question - No Disguise Necessary

Back to Normal
Friday tried its best, but it will never be Monday
Make no mistake. This is Monday. It's soporific! Yeah . . . that word sounds a lot more exciting than . . . mmm. Yawn.

Today's Question
Can the Andromeda Galaxy be seen from earth with the naked eye (as embarrassing as it is for eyes to walk around like that)?

Friday's Answer
And the people who knew it
E-I stands for Educational & Informative, not Elmo Initiative as previously believed. Paul C (the C stands for Cookie Monster) and Heidi both knew because they're smart like that. Congrats!

Friday, May 1, 2009

May 1, 2009 question - Fronday

Friday in Disguise
If I didn't know better, I'd swear this week was just beginning.
Here's how today started: our five-year-old hopped in bed with us at 6:00 AM and I sent him back to bed. Next thing I knew, he was climbing back into our bed and making me give up the idea that the morning had any sleep left in it. What I failed to realize, as the rest of the house slept and he and I sat poised to fall back into R.E.M. land, was that two hours had passed. We try to get him out the door at 8:00, definitely no later than 8:10. But it was 8:11 and not a creature was out of bed.

Uh-oh. Looks like our whole family's got a case of the Monday's. And it's Friday.

Today's Question
What does the e-i stand for in the "e-i bug" found in the upper-right corner of the screen during some television programs?

Yesterday's Answer
And the people who knew it
Jamestown was the original capital of Virginia, followed by Williamsburg and the current capital, Richmond. But the capital of Trivialand is Charlestown, because Charles was the only one who knew! Congrats, Governor!