It was a chilly December evening and the snow lay crisp and even around The Colly, as our Quiz Teams arrived on sleighs pulled by horses, to the sound of church bells ringing and carol singers singing it was like a scene from a Christmas Card…

Naaaa, it was a cold, pitch black Monday night in December no snow to be seen – the Quiz Teams arriving bit was true though but not in sleighs! 

We had a decent turnout of nine teams for our Christmas Special all looking to win the £200 cash or the many other prizes on offer. There was a £158 rollover last week so 30+ entries to the Quiz and and a generous donation from The Colly Boss Freda made the prize money up to the £200. We were giving £150 for first place, £50 for second and a tray of beer for third. We also had a prize donated by Richard from Peacock Carter so we decided to give that out for the best name in the quiz on the night.

Once Quiz master John, in Seasonal form, had explained the array of prizes on offer we were off just after nine.

The Christmas Picture Round was Secret Santa's and behind the Beards and Hats were the faces of people who had been in a picture Quiz during 2013, no clues this week it was all about memory (or a good eye for faces).

John gave our Teams a few minutes to peruse the Secret Santa's before he got our Chrimbo Special underway with a set of ten Festive questions on General Knowledge. 

You know the script by now, the round starts reasonably easy but soon descends into quite 'challenging', here's two Yuletide examples:

Q1 In Charles Dickens A Christmas Carol where did Ebeneezer Scrooge first see the ghost of Jacob Marley?

Q9 Which Apollo mission made ten orbits of the moon in late December 1968 during which time the crew made a Christmas Eve brodacast?

After the Festive General Knowledge Round John gave our teams a few more minutes to study the Secret Santa's before calling in the Picture Round and the teams Answer Sheets for the first round of marking up. 

The Secret Santa Picture Round wasn't too difficult if you were a regular Quiz goer with a good memory but there were a couple of obscure ones in the twelve!

Top of the Festive Tree for the Secret Santa's we had We've Got Roy Rogers In Our Team on an 11… yes, not the most Chrimbo orientated team name granted but if you'd seen Phil the Mac's fantastic embroidered shirt and cowboy boot combination you could see where the team had taken their inspiration from! Second There Is No Sanity Clause on 10 and then five teams on nine.

The majority of teams did okay in the Festive General Knowledge with four teams getting seven (swans a swimming), Nigella's White Christmas Is No Joke, Lawrence Of A Labia, The Colly & The Ivy and Too Long Too Dark Not Enough Egg Nog Stops. In second place we had Nigella's White Christmas and We've Got Roy Rogers In Our Team on six (geese a laying).

Following reading out the scores for the Round Quiz Master John decided to award the spot prize Best Team Name. After carefully considering some of the clever and witty monickers he plumbed for The Colly & The Ivy as it was both seasonal and original, Richard from Peacock & Carter took their prize, a huge lego set, to their table and as they posed for pictures we moved on.

The first round's scores meant it was pretty close going into Round Two Christmas Hits. We've Got Roy Rogers In Our Team led the field with 17, followed by Lawrence Of A Labia, The Colly & The Ivy and Too Long Too Dark Not Enough Egg Nog Stops on 16. Nigella's White Christmas Is No Joke had 15 and the rest were bringing up the Festive rear on 14's. 

The Christmas Hits Round covered six decades of seasonal music, here's a couple from the eighties:

Q13 Which former model sang Mistletoe And Wine in a 1987 musical before Cliff Richard turned into the most hated Christmas tune in 1988?

Q19 In 1983 which group had a UK Christmas number one with the song Only You?

Top Yuletide Pop Pickers this week were the appropriately named There Is No Sanity Clause and The Colly & The Ivy. We had a multitude of teams in second on eights, She & Him, We've Got Roy Rogers In Our Team, Nigella's White Christmas Is No Joke, Did Mary Have A Hairy Fairy (Idiots), Lawrence Of A Labia and Too Long Too Dark Not Enough Egg Nog Stops!

All of this Festive cheer meant that our leader board going into the seasonal break looked like this: Leading were We've Got Roy Rogers In Our Team and The Colly & The Ivy on 25 and in second Lawrence Of A Labia along with Too Long Too Dark Not Enough Egg Nog Stops on 24. There wasn't much in it to be honest going into our seasonal break, all nine teams were within five points of each other and there were still at least twenty points to play for.

The Seasonal break arrived and the whole bar seemed to disappear for a Festive Fag, before heading out Quiz Master John reminded our crowd that The Colly had a bar where there were a cavalcade of seasonal drinks available to purchase such as mulled wine, Yuletide real ales and lager! Then the Christmas Snacks were distributed...

The snacks for the Christmas Quiz were sensational, Boss Freda pushed the boat out with Thai Crackers, Cashews in a sweet spicy coating and… chocolate! There were intakes of breath when chocolates were placed on our nine teams tables, some even cutting their Festive Fag break short to sample the chocolate delights.

Next up we had a bit of a break from the norm, no Festive Sport this year but a round of Festive themed audio – Sounds Like Christmas. We had a set of back up questions just in case it went pear shaped but it actually went very well, heres a couple of Xmas samples (excuse the pun):

Q25 This is the intro to a very popular Christmas hit… played backwards! What is the name of the song? (and for a bonus point the artist?)

Q26 This is an excerpt from an Alternative Christmas Message never broadcast by Channel Four on the grounds that the content was in poor taste… (it must have been flipping shocking). Who is it?

There were a few Chrimbo bonus points to be had in this round and There Is No Sanity Clause took full advantage getting an excellent round winning score of 13. We've Got Roy Rogers In Our Team, There Is No Sanity Clause and Lawrence Of A Labia were close behind with 12s but the rest of the teams fell away with tens to eights.

Going into the final round it looked like there were five contenders for the £150 first prize, the £50 Second Prize and the third place prize of a slab of beer. Top of the Christmas tree were We've Got Roy Rogers In Our Team on 37, close behind in second There Is No Sanity Clause, Lawrence Of A Labia and Too Long Too Dark Not Enough Egg Nog Stops on 36 with The Colly & The Ivy in with a slim chance on 35. 

It was close, very close. Here's a sample couple of seasonal TV & Film questions the contenders faced in the final round:

Q36 In the 1992 Christmas special, what did Mr Bean give his teddy bear as a Christmas present?

Q39 What is the name of the sadistic, gambling villain in Tim Burton’s 1993 film The Nightmare Before Christmas?

There were a few difficult questions in the ten, well there was a serious amount of winnings at stake, but Lawrence Of A Labia fared best in this final round with a score of seven. In second place we had Nigella's White Christmas, not in contention for the Festive number one but well done all the same. Third with fives, She & Him, There Is No Sanity Clause and Too Long Too Dark Not Enough Egg Nog Stops. Where were our former leaders, regulars We've Got Roy Rogers In Our Team? They unfortunately had a Christmas Meltdown, only scoring two in the final round which meant winners of The Colly Christmas Quiz were the not so seasonally named Lawrence Of A Labia with an excellent 43 points. Joint second we had There Is No Sanity Clause and Too Long Too Dark Not Enough Egg Nog Stops on 41 which triggered a Seasonal Dart Off!

A few of Lawrence Of A Labia the Christmasd Quiz Winning Team

After a round of applause for our £150 winners Lawrence Of A Labia we had the Dart Off for second place. 

First up we had Stick from There Is No Sanity Clause who scored a reasonable 27 first throw. Our Team Member from Too Long Too Dark Not Enough Egg Nog Stops responded with a not great 22, so it was down to Sticks final throw, it was £50 or a slab of beer riding on it and he scored 30 for a total of 57. This left the team member of Too Long Too Dark Not Enough Egg Nog Stops a target of 36 to win. His Team colleagues were crowding in willing him on, he threw a poor first dart, a better second dart and then with his final throw nailed it for Long Too Dark Not Enough Egg Nog Stops with a double 17 and took the £50 second prize. Unlucky Stick, Beers for your team but well done all the same.

The Second Place Dart Off

Up next, The Wild Card, which is open to anyone in the bar. To enter is just £1 per person and for that you get a little coloured Post-It, this week a nice (Seasonal) dayglo green, on which to write the answer to a single question that John reads out. The answer is a number or a date and closest to it wins all the money that's been collected in for The Wild Card. It's usually a very obscure question so it's more of an inspired guess than something you would actually know, and, as with all of the questions in The Colly Quiz, there is absolutely no Googling.

For this weeks Christmas Special Wild Card we not only had a cash prize but there was a portable DVD player for second, a set of crystal glasses for third and a Bottle of Gin for fourth.

Chris had been busy getting The Wild Card entries in while the Dart Off took place and after the money was counted up John announced there was a massive £45 in cash for the closest answer to the following question:

In the Film and TV Round we asked a question about the film Elf.

Starring Will Ferrell and James Caan the film Elf opened in the States on November 7th 2003 and took over $31 million over it’s first weekend in the US. The film was a big hit and over the next 16 weeks of release grossed over $220 million worldwide.
    
The Wild Card Question for our Christmas Quiz is how much did the film gross in the week running up to Christmas Day 2003 (19 – 25 December) in US Dollars?

A fairly straightforward Christmas teaser we thought, $31 million in its first week and $220 million over 16 weeks meant an average would have been around $13 million per week. How would our quizzers fare after a few beers!

After a few minutes thinking time all of the little dayglo green Post-It's had near filled John's desk when he asked if everyone was in. Once a couple of late comers had added their answers John started to whittle the 45 entries down to our winners. Firstly everyone with an answer over $30 million was off, there were quite a few and John named the entrants as he disposed of the Post-It's to groans from the crowd. Then everyone over $25 million was off, again sighs as the names were read out. 

We were getting close now, there were only seven Post-It's left and once those over $19 million were taken off we had our four winners. In joint fourth with the same answer we had Mary Poppins and AMH, so before announcing the other winners John had the two pop up for a quick dart off which Mary Poppins just won to claim the Gin. 

The tension was high, our remaining three contestants knew who they were and when third place was announced as Mrs Whiplash there was a bit of nervous excitement as there were two people pretty sure it was one of them who was going to get the cash but couldn't be 100% certain until John read out their names. 

Mrs Whiplash collected her crystal glasses from John to a round of applause from the crowd and then second place was announced as Ronan. As Ronan collected his Portable DVD from John there were whispers from the back of the bar, "It's me… I think it's me" followed by a loud "Get in!" as Quiz Master John announced Jay as the Wild Card winner. 

Jay with his £45

There was a big round of applause for Jay, a regular fixture at The Colly bar who joked "I can buy some Christmas Presents now!" as he went up to collect his £45 from Chris behind the bar. Fantastic, great news for Jay, that's the second time he's won the Wild Card (or third… the Idiots will keep us right) and it's the second highest amount ever won.

To round the Quiz off Boss Freda gave all the teams that hadn't won anything a free bottle of Pinot Grigio, how generous was that! 

It had been a tremendous Quiz, hilarious, exciting, tense and even controversial at one stage but it was definitely a good night out. John announced the Quiz would return on Monday January 6th wished everyone a Merry Christmas and then signed off with a Good Night and God Bless. 

Thanks to everyone for turning out and supporting The Colly Quiz throughout 2013. All of us involved hope you have a cracking Christmas and a Happy New Year and look forward to seeing you all back on the 6th where it could be a Remember 2013 Special.


The Answers:

Q1 In Charles Dickens A Christmas Carol where did Ebeneezer Scrooge first see the ghost of Jacob Marley? He appeared as his door knocker

Q9 Which Apollo mission made ten orbits of the moon in late December 1968 during which time the crew made a Christmas Eve brodacast? Apollo 8
Q13 Which former model sang Mistletoe And Wine in a 1987 musical before Cliff Richard turned into the most hated Christmas tune in 1988? Twiggy
Q19 In 1983 which group had a UK Christmas number one with the song Only You? The Flying Pickets
Q25 This is the intro to a very popular Christmas hit… played backwards! What is the name of the song? (and for a bonus point the artist?) Jona Lewie - Stop The Cavalry
Q26 This is an excerpt from an Alternative Christmas Message never broadcast by Channel Four on the grounds that the content was in poor taste… (it must have been effing shocking). Who is it? Frank Gallagher from Shameless
Q36 In the 1992 Christmas special, what did Mr Bean give his teddy bear as a Christmas present? A pair of drawing pins (a new set of eyes)
Q39 What is the name of the sadistic, gambling villain in Tim Burton’s 1993 film The Nightmare Before Christmas? Oogie Boogie
 

The Christmas Wild Card Answer: The Total Weekly Gross for the week running up to Christmas Day was $11,432,332


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AuthorGraham