There is no institution quite like the British Pub Quiz, an event which brings together people from all walks of life (and all levels of knowledge) into one social environment for an evening of brain stimulation and good company. I was delighted to hear that there was a well-established pub quiz happening on a monthly basis in Munich, organised by a chap called Malcolm Phillips, and I thought I would head out to Zum Wilden Mann in Anzingerstrasse near Karl-Preis-Platz to see if it was any good.
The pub normally has its Ruhetag (day off) on Sundays, but it always opens for the pub quiz, and it was not difficult to see why, with some 50 people forming nine very competitive groups. Average age was the wrong side of 50, which also seemed to be the age group for many of the questions (at least that was my defence for not knowing many answers...). At 5 euro per person entry fee, it was a very affordable evening's entertainment.
It was also very well thought out by Malcolm, with lots of diversity, and each group started with these photos to identify. Nobody got Jihadi John or Wallace Simpson, and it was an early indication that this was going to be tough!
In addition to the rounds (I think there were 8 in all), there was a nice addition of a 'spot question', where people could buy as many blank pieces of paper as they wished for a euro a time, then enter a guess to Malcolm's spot question. First up was 'How many Sultans were there in the Ottoman Empire?'
While some tried to employ logic and analysis, others simply plucked a number from the air, and I was astonished to hear that my second guess of 37, was just one off the correct answer, 36. It put me in a tie-break with a lady across the room, and we both showed that our guesses had been lucky when challenged by the tie-break question: How many countries in the world have an IKEA store, with my wildly inaccurate guess of 41 only marginally closer to the correct answer of 23 than that of my rival.
My prize was 10 euro and a 20 euro voucher from British Allsorts, a shop for expat needs, which describes itself as Purveyors of Soulfood to the Needy, and I stocked up on all sorts of forgotten goodies for my team - chocolate Buttons, Salt and Vinegar crisps - from the available selection. Many thanks to British Allsorts for their generosity. It is a shop we will be checking out, but you can learn more on their website www.british-allsorts.com
There were one or two contentious answers (who IS the manager of 1860 Munich), but Malcolm had done his homework and preparation extremely well. Each team got a joker, and we played ours on Geography which, coupled with a few very lucky guesses, catapulted us into the lead, and we just held on at the end to win the quiz, and a prize of 5 euro per team member.