Questions for February 2017

As I keep saying, this quiz is doomed – I have been doing it for 20 years now – but I keep finding enough questions to make up a set. So here is February 2017 – have a go by posting a comment, or just enjoy it.

1. Erasmus, in 1526, wrote the first modern book of table manners. Including: Instead of licking ones’ greasy fingers, or wiping them on one’s jacket, one should … do what?

2. The British driving test was instigated in 1935. Who was the first candidate?

3. In 1970 the Cairo Opera House was engulfed by fire. Why didn’t the fire brigade attend?

4. Anders Celsius devised the centigrade scale for temperatures in 1742, but it had a flaw – how did Carolus Linnaeus improve it?

5. David Wolf was an astronaut on the Space Shuttle in 1997. What pressing need did he have, unique among astronauts, that was facilitated and enabled specifically for him?

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6 comments

  1. Dr Bob’s answers –

    1. One should wipe one’s greasy fingers on the tablecloth. Presumably, not in a conspicuous fashion. You do dine off a tablecloth, don’t you? Although I often dine in places where the tablecoth is plastic.

    2. A Mr Bean

    3. The fire station was inside the opera house.

    4. Originally the Celsius scale went the other way – water boiled at 0* and froze at 100*. Well, why not?

    5. To cast a vote in Houston’s mayoral election. (One wonders, after he cast the vote, how it was collected and confidentially processed. Nowadays cryptography provides all that, and in 1997 it was available but in its infancy).

  2. 1. Erasmus, in 1526, wrote the first modern book of table manners. Including: Instead of licking ones’ greasy fingers, or wiping them on one’s jacket, one should … do what?

    Wipe them on the dog. Isn’t that what dogs are for?

    2. The British driving test was instigated in 1935. Who was the first candidate?

    The guy who originally booked his test in 1925 – he was classed as ‘fast-tracked’.

    3. In 1970 the Cairo Opera House was engulfed by fire. Why didn’t the fire brigade attend?

    Couldn’t get past the crowds who had just heard someone was performing Fellatio.

    4. Anders Celsius devised the centigrade scale for temperatures in 1742, but it had a flaw – how did Carolus Linnaeus improve it?

    He made it sound really ‘cool’.

    5. David Wolf was an astronaut on the Space Shuttle in 1997. What pressing need did he have, unique among astronauts, that was facilitated and enabled specifically for him?

    Stuck a few posters on the wall and lit some candles to give it some ‘atmosphere’.

  3. OK, answers!

    1) Long shot guesses: You could wipe your fingers on someone else’s shirt-tails. Or you could get your manservant to lick them. Or the dog. That is, lick your fingers, not your manservant. Erk, how awful for the dog! What is it, Baldrick?

    2) Saw this on TV a while back. It was…Mr Been! Ha ha ha! *wipes tear from eye* I can imagine the film of the test, though. It would look like Mac Senate’s Keystone Kops only much more polite.

    3) I originally imagined something horribly sectarian, or that the Opera House was up some narrow streets in The Souk or something and they had to carry the water in by buckets. But no! It turns out the answer was self-obvious. The fire-station was housed in the same building. Although you could truthfully say they DID attend, just that they were bleeding useless.

    4) Freezing for 100 to boiling for 0 from numbered was it.

    5) I remember this, being a space-a-holic! I didn’t know they made special arrangements for him though. He voted in an American election from the Mir space station (what the hell was happening in 1997 that needed a vote?). Next question: What the hell difference did his vote make? And, of course, the Russkies knew!!

    Cameras shortly, Dr Bob!

  4. It can’t be doomed now that Trump is president of the USA! What a rich mine of lunacy he provides! The comedy writers and cartoonists are having a field day! And most of it writes itself!

    Oh, answers shortly, too.

  5. 0. Dr Bob’s Quiz finishing? The streets are dark and people fear to walk the streets. Dogs are howling at the blood moon. Idiots are running countries. The walls are closing in.

    1. Eating is the first priority, all that cleanup can wait – you never know when your next meal will arrive.

    2. Adolf Hitler? King wasshisname, the one that left? Or someone from Iceland?

    3. Something to do with ‘Twilight of the Gods’ I’d guess. Or perhaps they were angry they didn’t get free tickets.

    4. Originally it was upsidedown, which means it would only work in countries that had not yet been discovered properly.

    5. Calculations for finding Mecca from space and defining sunrise, noon and sunset were a bit of a pain.

  6. 1. My mum used to go ballistic when I let Toby (Labrador) lick my fingers at the dinner table.

    2 .Dunno, but was the first graduate Dustin Hoffman?

    3. Guess, all in the chorus? Caught in floods (I’ve seen fire and I’ve seen rain)

    4. Had it manufactured in an Asian sweatshop thereby creating the first capitalist contradiction – make it cheaper, sell it cheaper, make more money.

    5. As a devout follower of the Church of the ArthurCClarkians, he was required to present his arse to Ceylon every orbit. Special viewing windows had to be installed.

Have a go!

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