Week 5 of the Trivia Unification Tournament

I gotta hurry.   I’m running late.  And the trivia host, Damon, starts a 7:00 p.m. game at 7:00 p.m. on the nose.

Pulled into Rivers Casino’s parking garage.  Quickly handed off my coat to Betsy the coat check lady, and got to Van Slyck Bar inside the casino – and made the game with two minutes to spare.

I’ll explain why I was running late in another blog post.  But for now… let’s recap.

I’ve been checking the TrivTrak.com standings for the Trivia Unification Tournament.  After four weeks, with 18 total overall tournament points, my one-man Street Academy trivia team is 52nd overall.  I’m leading all scorers at Rivers Casino, but compared to all the other trivia teams in the Capital District, I’m kinda mired.

Still, I was able to get several trivia questions right in this week’s tournament, including the city where the term “Black Friday” was first used to describe the traffic snarls after Thanksgiving (Philadelphia), and the titular despot who rules over the country of Latveria (Dr. Doom).

Now as I’m playing trivia, the host will break out various tracks and songs as atmospheric music.  And I’m getting a wee bit tired of hearing the tween-pop and chintzy crap music.  It’s hard to come up with answers to trivia questions when you’re hearing “Hit Me Baby One More Time” or “All About That Bass” or other musical assaults.  Blecch.

I couldn’t take it any more.  So as I handed in my slip for a round of questions, I politely asked host Damon, “Hey man, would it kill you to play a little Boston?”

A few minutes later, I heard the calming, dulcet tones of the classic Boston hit “Smokin’.”  Okay, host listens.  Let’s test this hypothesis and turn it into a theory.

“While we’re at it,” I commented, handing in another round of answers, “you got any Bachmann-Turner Overdrive in that deck?”

A few minutes later … I heard the stutter of Randy Bachmann charging through “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet.”  Ask, and ye shall receive thy classic tunes.  And for the rest of the night, Damon was spinning oldies like a man working the night shift for PYX 106.

Final question’s coming up.  I’m six points behind the leaders for the night, a team called “Teachers … Kinda.”  The category is “One More Thanksgiving Question.”

I’m feeling the mojo from the classic rock collection … let’s bet everything.

“What fast food restaurant chain has sponsored the Thanksgiving Day Parade in Chicago since 2006?”

Okay, Miller, use some deductive reasoning.  It would have to be a company that has pride in Chicago.   Possibly a company that got its start either in Chicago or in one of the surrounding areas.  Maybe someone who has their home offices in Illinois or something like that.

What the hell.  Write down McDonald’s.  They sponsor big events.  It’s either McDonald’s or Pizzeria UNO.  Go with the Golden Arches.

Handed in my slip.

And before the final answer was revealed, host Damon had one more track on the golden oldies audio background in his arsenal.

More Boston.  Specifically, the closing track on Side 2, “Let Me Take You Home Tonight.”  Could this be a sign?  Nah, I’m reading into too much.  Signs are on the road.  Signs are on the streets.  Signs, signs, everywhere a sign, blocking up the scenery, breaking my mind… do this don’t do that can’t you read the si-i-i-i-igns…

The answers submitted ranged from McDonald’s to Wendy’s to Chipotle.  Teachers … Kinda wrote down Chipotle.  They were ahead of me before the final question.

They were not ahead of me after the final question.

The correct answer was McDonald’s.  WHOO!  First place win, ten more tournament points, and a crisp $100 bill for my efforts!

And this morning, as I wrote today’s blog, I took a glance at the TrivTrak.com standings, which are updated every night.

Before I arrived at Rivers Casino for the trivia game, The Street Academy was mired in 52nd place.

This morning … I’m at #19 with a bullet.  Smooth like glass.

And in tomorrow’s blog … I’ll explain why I was rushing against the clock to make it to the trivia game on time.

But I will foreshadow that blog by saying that it involved dealing with one of my corporate tormentors.  The Big Red Check.