Questions for all 2001


Win Fowles Jan 2001
Michael O’Sullivan Feb 2001
Roger McEvilly March 2001
Roy Thearle April 2001
Leon Down May 2001
Joanne Kelley June 2001
John Coffin July 2001
Robert McMartin August 2001
Steve Symonds September 2001
Jay Scrivener October 2001
Michael Witry November 2001
Paul Kyle December 2001


Q1 In Iceland in Viking times, a Lawgiver was appointed for 3 years. One of his duties was to stand on the Law Rock at the annual gathering and recite the whole body of law. What happened if he forgot to mention a law?

Q2 When the Hindenburg caught fire, the cabin boy fell burning from the wreck. How was his life saved?

Q3 (literature) What is special about 16 June 1904?

Q4 Did Adolf Hitler appear in any films in an acting (rather than documentary) role?

Q5 Which country first invaded or occupied a neutral nation or state during world war 2?



Q1 What common thread links the films directed or produced by Alan Smithee?

Q2 What European country exports hippopotamuses?

Q3 Francois Truffaut’s famous film The 400 Blows (1959) end with a famous lengthy shot where the hero runs along the streets and on to the beach, stops, turns to look tellingly at the camera and is then frozen in time. What did this signify?

Q4 Is it true that Viagra in the water makes pot plants stick up better?

Q5 Why did the Moon appear blue over Scotland on the afternoon of 26/9/1950?


MARCH 2001

Q1 (Apart from the needle) the pop singer Boy George was injured by what object?

Q2 Does Norway export camels?

Q3 In Iceland people bathe in the famous Blue Lagoon thermal pool. What is the pool heated by?

Q4 What culture pervades the town of Intercourse, Pennsyvlania?

Q5 Where can’t you fight? (Apart from the territories of neutral states, in what two places is warfare forbidden by global treaty)


APRIL 2001

Q1 In Humphrey B.Bear’s name what is the middle “B” said to stand for?

Q2 US President Harry S.Truman’s middle name?

Q3 What was the origin of the myth that some people in Georgia (Russia) lived to an extremely old age?

Q4 What animal has the highest blood pressure?

Q5 What nation has a flag of only one color?


MAY 2001

Q1 What colour are the stripes on a zebra?

Q2 In the Biblical story of the Exodus, did Moses actually set foot in the Holy Land?

Q3 What was the reaction of the contemporary scientific community when Newton published his theory of gravity?

Q4 Who holds the record for killing the most people by genocide?

Q5 In about 3000BC how did King Menes, of the first dynasty of Ancient Egypt, die?


JUNE 2001

Q1 How long did the Golden Age of Ancient Greece last for?

Q2 James Smithson (1765-1829, died aged 64) who bequeathed the funds to found the Smithsonian Institute – how old was he when he went to America?

Q3 How did Dr Joseph-Ignace Guillotine, inventor of the execution device, die?

Q4 Moses Cleaveland founded the Ohio city named after him in 1796 but why was the spelling changed to Cleveland?

Q5 If you fly south from Detroit what is the first country other than USA that you cross?


July 2001

Q1 What was Jeff Kennett’s defence when Aboriginal activists accused him of genocide?

Q2 Suppose you go out with a Pitjantjatjara lady and she says “Nyuntu mala tunni”. What is she getting at?

Q3 According to Mayan calculations, when (in our calendar) is the world due to end?

Q4 In a recent survey who did the British public name as the most prominent Christian?

Q5 The 1933 movie of the ill-fated last living Thylacine suddenly ends after 62 seconds, why is this? And no, they didn’t run out of film.


August 2001

Q1 If a baby is born during an international aircraft flight, what nationality would it be?

Q2 If the Earth’s rotation (about its own axis) were stopped and all rotational energy converted into heat and evenly distributed throughout the planet, how much hotter would the planet get?

Q3 In doctor’s scripts to pharmacists, what does the abbreviation “ADT” denote?

Q4 For the bomb dropped on Hiroshima, where did most of the uranium come from?

Q5 The late Princess Diana carried an amethyst crystal at all times to treat “lead poisoning,” and she told everyone that it worked quite well. Why did she believe that she suffered from lead poisoning?


Sept 2001

Q1 We all know St Thomas is the patron saint of Skeptics. Who is the patron saint of computers and the Internet?

Q2 How many times have steel elevator cables actually broken?

Q3 On what day of the year do more deaths than average occur?

Q4 There are two different versions of the Ten Commandments – what major commandment is missing from the second version?

Q5 These words, for example, have no rhyme : month, rhubarb, orange. What rhymes with Australia?



Q1 If Churchill’s speech “We shall fight on the beaches / the landing grounds / the hills / the fields / the streets and we shall never surrender” had been delivered to Englishmen in 1066, they would have understood every word except one. Which word?

Q2 The civil war fighting in Beirut used to cease for a while on Monday evenings, why was this?

Q3 Working buildings must provide a certain number of lavatories per employee but the Pentagon has more than necessary – why?

Q4 (Assuming that they had existed in the first place) what difficulty would King Arthur’s knights have had with their armour?

Q5 In ancient times what was the accepted time of year (season) for fighting battles?

Q6 <Photo of Tree> This is a tree in southern Russia. Why is it so special?



Q1 In the 17th century, how did the denizens of a Swiss Alpine town reverse the apparently inevitable advance of a nearby glacier?

Q2 In Tupelo, Mississippi in 1946, what did a child’s bicycle cost?

Q3 If the integer numbers are written out as text “one” “two” etc what is the first number to have the letter ‘c’ in it?

Q4 What is the name of George W Bush’s pet dog?

Q5 A Jew and a Scot were dining out; the Scot said “I’ll pay the bill”; next day’s newspaper headline “Jewish Ventriloquist Mysteriously Strangled Behind Restaurant”. Why was this ancient joke famous again recently?

Q6 Picture question: (Reykavik church) Where’s this?



Q1 At the Battle of Maldon (991 AD) the invading Vikings landed on a small island separated from the shore by a narrow channel of water. The resident Anglo-Saxon army drew up on the beach. What happened next?

Q2 King Gustav III, who ruled Sweden in the latter half of the eighteenth century, was so convinced of the particular perils of coffee over all other forms of caffeine that he devised an elaborate experiment. He sentenced a convicted murderer to drink cup after cup of coffee until he died, with another murderer sentenced to a lifetime of tea drinking, as a control, under the supervision of doctors. What happened?

Q3 Of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s three houses in Edinburgh, his first one got demolished to make way for a roundabout, his second home became a ladies’ loo; in late 1999 what nearly happened to his third home?

Q4 In Russia on 24/10/1917 (old style) the October Revolution began with the storming of the Winter Palace. At this event how many people were killed? Sergei Eisenstein’s epic film “October” relates the scene.

Q5 In 1986 Andrej Tarkovsky, the film director, was dying of cancer and had only a few days to live; his amazing last film ‘Sacrifice’ was being shot. The script called for it to end with an essential seven-minute long take where a character sets fire to his house and we see the house burn down, people run amok, an ambulance arrives, etc. Now everything went very well in filming this scene, except that the camera jammed just after the house caught fire. How did they fix it?

Q6 Picture question (house.jpg – a pink house) Q: In the late 1960’s what (non violent) event happened in this California house?