Welcome from Your Quizmaster

by yourquizmaster on February 7, 2012

Welcome to the website and blog for the de Vere’s Irish Pub Pub Quiz, held Monday nights at 7 at de Vere’s Irish Pub, 217 E Street in Davis. The most anticipated restaurant to come to Davis in many years, voted by Davis Enterprise voters to be the best 2011 addition to Davis, voted by The California Aggie to be the best bar in Davis, de Vere’s Irish Pub has room for 30+ tables and more than 200 Pub Quiz participants.


Launch Time: 7pm
Recommended time to claim a table: 6pm or earlier, but no earlier than 5:30
Team size: Up to six
Questions: 30 and a tie-breaker
Prizes: Gift Certificates worth $50, $25 and $15 for First, Second and Third Place
Bonus Prizes: A bonus 4th place prize of swag
Quizmaster: Your Quizmaster, Dr. Andy

Below please find the weekly Pub Quiz Newsletter, containing reflections on events of the week, hints about upcoming quiz question topics, and sample questions from the previous week’s quiz. If you would like to add yourself to the YourQuizmaster Mailing List, please do so by entering your name and email to the form on the right (and unsubscribing is just as easy). If you prefer, you can review future Pub Quiz newsletters via your RSS reader, and keep up with the Quizmaster by following him on Facebook and Twitter. You can also send him an email.


Too Many Zooz

Dear Friends of the Pub Quiz,


Typically on Sunday nights I hold office hours at Crepeville in downtown Davis. I am grateful that a musical opportunity interrupted my regular schedule this past weekend because of how I spent the night last night, discovering my new favorite House Brass band: Too Many Zooz.


It turns out that New York City-based Too Many Zooz actually created the genre of House Brass, so I don’t know how much competition they have. House music is that minimalist electronic dance music (or EDM) that is more rewarding to dance to than to listen to, many say. I’ve read pointed laments on the KDVS DJs listserv about the deleterious effect of EDM on the musical tastes of an entire generation of club-goers. I suppose the same has been said of every new genre of music: often it’s the young people in the know who embrace it, while an older generation notices only its faults (and perhaps its excessive volume).


Certainly the music was turned up too loud at Harlow’s last night, or so concluded my lovely date Kate and myself after we strolled in, some of the first patrons to arrive after 7. While first inadvertently sitting in the bands’ VIP section (before being redirected), we saw the scheduled performance times on the playlist, and discovered that a DJ and three other musical acts would take the stage before Too Many Zooz were to come out at 10:15. Could we last that long?


The best of the three opening acts was Big Sticky Mess, a Davis-based funk band (two guitars and a drummer) that I want to see again. Reminding me of some of the favorite musical acts that I was exposed to in Washington DC in the 1970s and 80s, Big Sticky Mess borrowed licks and tones from James Brown and Parliament Funkadelic. I was encouraged, and pleased that my home town had nourished such funky aspirants.


While BSM was terrific, Too Many Zooz trumped everyone we had heard so far, astounding everyone with their rich sound and energetic brass. David Parks, the drummer, came out first. I haven’t discovered why in the New York City subway, especially the Grand Central Station stop, he is called “King of Sludge,” and at first he didn’t look entirely regal while casually strapping on his huge drum, but before long he would show us that he has the endless energy and focus of all the best drummers. Next out was Leo Pellegrino, the baritone saxophonist who can make his sax sound like three instruments at once, and who sways like a caged leopard as he plays. Finally Matt Doe joined the other two on trumpet. He plays the horn the way that Davis poet Joe Wenderoth plays softball, with a beer bottle in his non-dominant hand.


Bill Mahr recently said that if you aren’t playing the drums or the trumpet in your marching band, you can go home because nobody can hear you. I’m sure that 90% of the 300 musicians who make up the UC Davis California Aggie Marching Band-uh! would disagree, but a casual listener of Too Many Zooz might see the perspicacity in Mahr’s assertion. Matt Doe’s trumpet screamed in a way that reminded me of Louis Armstrong, who was asked to play his horn outside the room of the first Hot Fives and Hot Sevens recording sessions that he made in the 1920s because of the overwhelming power of his unamplified song. Doe also flirts with the intense and almost shrill musical dominance of Stan Kenton’s original “wall of sound.” The real heart of Too Many Zooz, however, is the saxophone of Leo P., for he brings to the instrument the intensity of my childhood friend Ian MacKaye (of Fugazi fame) and the proficiency of a sax master such as Cannonball Adderley. Leo wisely keeps his impressive shock of purple hair under a baseball cap so that we could better see his intense eyes and showman’s bravado.


What a great show! I encourage you to see Too Mazy Zooz perform in person, to watch their videos of subway performances in their hometown of New York City, or to download one of their EPs, as I did last night. It has provided an energetic soundtrack to my morning!


Tonight’s Pub Quiz will feature questions on early internet properties, the telephone, Greek yogurt, musicals, what people are streaming in the UK, luxury boxes, family planning, basketball, the meaning of illness, bodies of water, filmmakers and their origins, mammals, stingers, eating habits, people who have commonalities with Kevin Kline, countries that are not Uganda, world leaders, newspapers, the word “cirrhotic” used for the first time in a Pub Quiz, spices, the police, notches, big cities, failures, friends of Obama, watery annoyances, downtown and uptown, seven times a charm, Watson, mottos and slogans, geography, and Shakespeare.


As you may have noticed, the Pub Quiz fills the Irish Pub every Monday night, some come early if you want a table. One of my favorite Theatre professors recently had to take his team elsewhere because he couldn’t get a table, and it was too cold to sit outside. If you love theatre, come by tonight for the show. There will be no questions about Stan Kenton.


Your Quizmaster






Here are five questions from last week’s quiz:



  1. Mottos and Slogans.   What brand was responsible for the slogan “Good to the Last Drop”?


  1. Internet Culture. What were the first and last names of the man portrayed by Benedict Cumberbatch in The Imitation Game?


  1. Newspaper Headlines. At 5 million people, the previous record for attendance at a Papal Mass was set by John Paul II in Rizal Park, but yesterday Pope Francis broke that record, with more than 6 million in the same location. Name the country.


  1. Four for Four.    Which of the following pop singers are over 21? Ariana Grande, Kesha, Lorde, Taylor Swift.


  1. Greek and Roman Mythology. Half human and half goat, what sort of monosyllabic creatures are featured in the films The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe and Pan’s Labyrinth?


P.S. Poetry Night returns February 5th with Indigo Moor. As with all the (mostly musical) names mentioned in this newsletter, you should look up Indigo Moor and then join us that Thursday at the Natsoulas Gallery for poetry. See you tonight!


The Slow Wheels of Justice Edition of the de Vere’s Irish Pub Pub Quiz Newsletter

January 20, 2015

Dear Friends of the Pub Quiz,   More cinematic controversy in my house! This time, discussions of racism, nationalism, and film award segregation!   You probably know what I’m talking about. As has been well documented, The Academy of Motion Picture Art and Sciences revealed the nominees for the 87th Annual Academy Awards, and somehow […]

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The Sharing Jukie with Everyone Edition of the de Vere’s Irish Pub Pub Quiz Newsletter

January 12, 2015

Dear Friends of the Pub Quiz,   Starting a week ago Saturday, strangers and acquaintances have been stopping me in the streets and restaurants of Davis to talk about an essay about my son Jukie that I published in the Sacramento Bee. Friends have been sending me supportive emails. Jukie and I have received invitations […]

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The Categories of Bragging Edition of the de Vere’s Irish Pub Pub Quiz Newsletter

January 5, 2015

Dear Friends of the Pub Quiz, My stepmother recently told me that she doesn’t care for all the bragging she sees in social media, and thus she rarely visits Facebook, Twitter, and other such social media sites. In 2013, Broadway performer John Carroll helpfully categorized the five types of Facebook braggarts: the work braggart, the […]

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The Holiday Debt of Love Edition of the de Vere’s Irish Pub Pub Quiz Newsletter

December 29, 2014

Dear Friends of the Pub Quiz,   Facebook makes it easy to review your friends’ holiday traditions. Children seem concerned primarily about the timing and quantity of presents to be opened, while many of the rest of us are more concerned with the timing and attendees of meals and reunions. I hope your holiday break […]

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The Welcome Torino Impertinence Edition of the de Vere’s Irish Pub Pub Quiz Newsletter

December 22, 2014

  Dear Friends of the Pub Quiz,   My wife Kate and I were up late last night, for she was counseling an anxious dad in the Italian city of Turin. As the Communications Director of the Smith-Lemli-Opitz Syndrome Foundation, Kate has welcomed a great number of parents to the SLOS Family, a Facebook group […]

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Hundertwasser on the QE2 Edition of the de Vere’s Irish Pub Pub Quiz Newsletter

December 15, 2014

Dear Friends of the Pub Quiz,   When most people are asked to name their favorite Austrian artists, they inevitably bring up Gustav Klimt and Egon Schiele, and I can see why, for they were both supremely talented, and their works are widely shared, especially on Tumblr. I myself much prefer the third most-famous Austrian […]

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The Alan Ternes Crackling Blows of Axes Edition of the de Vere’s Irish Pub Pub Quiz Newsletter

December 8, 2014

  Dear Friends of the Pub Quiz,   During one of my most recent trips to visit my mom (and the NIH) in Washington DC, we were treated to a visit from my mom’s brother, Alan Ternes. The Editor Emeritus at Natural History Magazine, and former Director of the Natural History Museum on the upper […]

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The Checker Marathon as Status Symbol Edition of the de Vere’s Irish Pub Pub Quiz Newsletter

December 1, 2014

Dear Friends of the Pub Quiz,   I read recently that a paid-off mortgage has replaced the BMW as the status symbol of choice (a few of you will catch that reference). Some people invest significant time and energy in their cars as status symbols, which is odd to me because of how quickly new […]

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The Customer Service for Supinators Edition of the de Vere’s Irish Pub Pub Quiz Newsletter

November 24, 2014

Dear Friends of the Pub Quiz,   My wife Kate spent about an hour this weekend comparison shoe-shopping online. In my family we have runners, hikers, pronators, supinators, and, no offense to us, shoe losers. In fact, once we bought an expensive pair of Keen sandals for Jukie, and then walked over to our favorite […]

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