Sunday, December 10, 2006

A chastened quiz-aholic

I am aware of something of a weakness for, almost a fatal fascination with trivia and trivia quizzes. There was a period - when I was living and working in Oxford back in the early '90s - when I was playing regularly for one of my favourite pubs in the local quiz league, and playing in 2 or 3 prize quizzes around town every week (and winning quite a few of them: my buddies and I established such a domination of the event at the 'Lamb & Flag' that they introduced a rule that the winning team had to sit out the following week and provide the questions instead; so, we could only win in alternate weeks).

I came to think that that was overdoing it rather, and I deliberately stepped back from a potential addiction (I am a very anti-addictive personality, on the whole).

I hope I was never as nerdy as many quiz-obsessives become (the star player on our league team at 'The Black Swan' actually used to read Burke's Peerage and the Encyclopedia Britannica in idle moments!). And I don't believe I am as ruthlessly competitive as..... well, the Nemesis who stole our glory from us last Monday, for example (a rather lovely lady journalist - but man, she's mean when she's quizzing!!).

However, my girlfriend, The Artist, after reading of my misadventures in quizdom this week, commented quite aptly that quizzing seemed to bring out a side of my personality that she hadn't seen elsewhere - a scary single-mindedness, a steely focus. She said I became "something between a bloodhound, a racing driver, and an assassin".

I am duly warned. I shall try to steer clear of the dratted events in future.

I think "assassin" was a bit harsh, though.

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