The Vetting the Red Envelope Edition of the de Vere’s Irish Pub Pub Quiz Newsletter


Red Mailbox


Dear Friends of the Pub Quiz,


Happy Oscars aftermath day! Typically I would devote an entire newsletter to the Academy Awards, but I have too many topics to cover.


Can it be that, in the restricted-press Trump era, even the Academy Awards have become political, partisan, and divided? Dressed in a coat and tie to watch the “returns,” my 11-year-old son Truman had actually seen LaLa Land, so he yelped with joy when the film was named best picture. Later he was disappointed (again!) when the mistake was corrected and explained to the confused celebrities. It will be at least a handful of years before Truman gets to see Moonlight on Video, even though all but a few scenes are appropriate for him right now. Then he can learn why it is such an important film. Until then, we will always have “City of Stars” to play and hum around the house.


By the way, what was Warren Beatty thinking? Was there a conspiracy? These are some of the questions I’ve seen asked on social media in the last 12 hours. Someone suggested that a different Best Picture winner should guide the process in the future: No Country for Old Men. This incident made me wonder: if someone handed me a doctored pub quiz answer sheet with an incorrect answer on it, would I read it out loud? Maybe if I were reading the answer to a billion people, I would confirm with my producer first. Poor Warren. I can see why people have become so distrustful of the (any?) electoral process.


I got to host the Patwin Elementary School PTA Fundraiser this past Saturday night. I have learned that while hosting a pub quiz can be exhausting, hosting a pub quiz, live auction, and raffle results read is even more exhausting, especially when one is master of ceremonies for the entire evening. I don’t know where Davis Enterprise columnist for life Bob Dunning finds the energy to have hosted so many events for our city and our schools over the years. Of course, he does have his columns to call upon for material. At least Saturday night we raised a boatload of cash (maybe $10,000?) for the Patwin Elementary PTA. Arts education has to come from somewhere, and I don’t sense that it the arts are a priority of the current administration.


Speaking of Pub Quiz fundraisers, the Trivia for a Cause fundraiser takes place this coming Saturday night, March 4th, at 7 PM. Here’s how the Davis Enterprise puts it:


“Davisites are certain they’re smart. Those looking to prove it should play Sunrise Rotary’s “Trivia for a Cause” at 7 p.m. Saturday, March 4, at the Davis Senior Center, 646 A St.


Now in its eighth year, the contest is emceed by Andy Jones, Davis’ poet laureate emeritus [Editor’s note: I am the current and reigning poet laureate] and doyen of the city’s quizmasters. Seats are $30 and teams should be between six and eight people, though individual players are welcome. Table sponsorships are available for $400.


The top three teams will win money for a public service project or nonprofit organization of their choice. First place will win a minimum $2,000.


And the more teams that play, the higher the possible payout. The winning team also will earn the title of ‘Smartest People in Davis.’”


I hope you can join us for that event. Rotary representatives will be available to share details, and Davis City Councilman Lucas Frerichs will be on hand to crown the “Smartest People in Davis” this evening at about 6:45. Come early for the fun and the gloating.


Finally, I will close with some advice. Before you hire someone for a big job, such as handing Warren Beatty a red envelope or running a branch of our military, confirm that the person to whom you plan to give the responsibility is qualified. So far, poor vetting has now cost Donald Trump his Labor Secretary, his Navy Secretary, his Army Secretary, and his National Security Advisor. It’s almost that he and his campaign team could not have foreseen that they would won the election. Only Steve Bannon, Breitbart visionary, might have had an idea of what was coming. I suppose that every film needs a script-writer.


Tonight’s Pub Quiz will feature questions on some of the topics raised above. I even borrowed one question from the Patwin event, so if you attended that, you will have a deliciously unfair advantage. Expect also questions on the following: Star Wars (not prequels), four primary characters, Bizarro World fallout, a late pass for victory, The H.M.S. Titanic, Puerto Rican representation, successful genera, interrupted dreams, Burkina Faso and Benin, Brexit complications, returning cages, country music that I can stomach, unique misfortune, spending the second quarter of 2016 on your phone, close shaves, outlaws, Bruno Mars, glamour, unusual pairings in upstate New York, old crushes, Daniel Radcliffe, first alarms, previous occupations, horror television, A-Listers, instability, miserable manias, tick tock, opening numbers, cinematic commitment, and Shakespeare. I have not yet written question 25.


See you tonight!


Your Quizmaster


Here are three questions from last week’s quiz:


  1. Presidential Politics on Presidents Day. As no presidential candidate received a majority of electoral votes in the election of 1824, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to elect as president the candidate who had won fewer votes than his main competitor in the popular election. Who became U.S. President in February of 1825?     


  1. Science – Strong Winds. A hurricane is a storm that occurs in the Atlantic Ocean and northeastern Pacific Ocean, a typhoon occurs in the northwestern Pacific Ocean, and a two-syllable synonym for these occurs in the south Pacific or Indian Ocean. Name it.


  1. Books and Authors. Which Virginia Woolf book features Septimus Smith & Clarissa Dalloway?  


P.S. Also join us for Poetry Night on March 2nd. Amos White and Emma Fuhs will be featuring.