(Karthik Narayan)

“Are you crazy?” is what my wife asked me as I stepped out the door. It was evident – who wants to be away early on a sunday morning for back-to-back quizzes that will consume the entire day!! Nobody is everybody’s answer, but there were hundred others who had taken a similar bold decision as I did. So that made me feel better.

The Sports and entertainment tag of the quiz pulled quite a few people out of their bedside this sunday morning, I guess. Sumo, Sreeram, Vijay Sarathy, Vinod Ganesh and Krishnamurthy Ganesh were the quiz research team for this quiz, their reputation carrying more weight than their combined weights; though I felt Sumo had slimmed down quite a bit and this might be one of the reasons why my previous statement might hold good.

The quizmaster for the day was Sumo, his first time hosting an Open quiz, admitted by the quizmaster himself along with a request for us to be nice to him. Actually, it was the other way around, you expect a guy that huge with a name that sounds more bears down on you to be nice to you.

The team stuck to their timeslots – Prelims started and ended on time, as did the finals. The sports and entertainment theme did not sink in for a lot of us, stuck in the “general quiz category”, so the prelims was a bit tricky to think and answer. Teams of two meant more teams were present with a lesser chance of qualifying (the probability gets slimmer these days). 30 questions with a cutoff of 16 points meant that some of us in the cusp had just missed out. The questions were a mix of current and solid-gold questions, which some of us relished answering. For school teams though, some of the questions seemed quite tough.

8 teams qualified for the finals, and I was not in any of them. But my team of Patrick and I were happy that we were constantly improving in the quizzing field. JK and Aswath won the quiz, followed by Kabala and Harish.

Tongue in cheek, sense of humour and presence of mind are the assets of any good quizmaster. Good content comes next and then finally the presentation itself ends it.

This quiz had all of the above ingredients in it – but somehow we felt some of the questions had answers that made one feel – “eh?”, “oh?”, “so”… you get the picture. This is as opposed to the usual “ooh”, “aah” and the like. However, we got a lot of that in the second quiz of the day.

There was one particular round in the finals that was brilliant – actors playing sportspersons. We look forward to similar themes in future quizzes as well. While I may be rubbishing a portion of the quiz, full credit to the research team, they have done the hard work, as a cynic or a critic (depends on how you take this review), my work is very easy. But as a quizzer, I would have expected the following:

1. Quiz to be more interesting, have more clues in-built to faciliate answering
2. Hinged too much on Hollywood, questions on carnatic bunched together
3. Questions well spread, but would like to have it answerable; One felt the questions were too tough sometimes.
4. More audience involvement – written rounds make audience more restless.
5. Lot of scope in the theme to make it fun oriented rather than being too serious.
6. Ent questions were sci-fi based rather than general.
7. Connect sequences were a bit vague at times and we as audience felt there were more than one possible connect.

I mean, no offence meant, but the questions were sometimes too arbit. Maybe something to look back at for the organizers. At the end of the day, we felt it was just a day we SPENT at the quiz….

Each journey begins with the toughest first step. The first step is usually the hardest to make, since it makes one seek direction and most probably stick to it. From Quizzing For Intellectuals to Quizzing Fun Intended – the gap could have been bridged…