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Tuesday, October 05, 2004

The Test Tube Fiasco

My quizzing abilities are one of the things I am extremely proud of (my headband hairstyle is climbing up the list very fast) but as they say, "You are as good as your last quizzing performance". Considering the amount of quizzes that I have attended it's hard to believe that I never got a negative marks on a question and how I wish that someone had told me in the morning to play it safe tonight. I was sure of landing in one of the top three spots and I gave our team a 25% chance of being at the top (Azad 50 %, RP 25 %) and if some other hall students are reading this post, lets face it, "Your team is not good enough".

First of all when I entered the auditorium I was surprised to see that the number of finalist teams was not six or eight, which is the usual number going by previous statistics, but a whooping 12. Participating in a quiz with 12 teams on stage gives a whole new perspective to the game. As soon as the first round got over we realised that this was going to be a very high scoring quiz as the questions were a bit too simple. There is something wrong when 12 out of 12 questions are answered by the teams and not a single one passes to the audience and to further validate my point, 8 were answered direct and did not even pass. It was 20 for the direct, 10 for the pass and you could double a pass-question but which also had the risk of a - 10 for a wrong answer.

At the end of second round, Patel was leading which was a big shock to nearly everyone sitting there and I think that even the Patelians were a bit surprised at that. That was exactly the kind of thing I was worried about because of a 12 team and a ridiculously easy quiz. On a long enough timeline things always sort out and after the fourth round Azad and Nehru(my team) were joint leaders on the board and RP was just 30 points behind us. Then something happened which would be hard to forget, atleast till the next quiz.

The screen displayed a test-tube, a plain simple test-tube wrapped in a brown paper which had Ford Museum written on it and the quizmaster fired the question "What does this test-tube contain?" I knew that the question will come to us and I was quite sure about it and before the quizmaster even asked me I yelled out, "I'll like to double on this". This was as easy as it gets and hence I did not want to miss out any points. With full enthusiasm and zeal I answered, "This contains the last breath of Albert Einstein" and a big smile from Azad's team members told me what the quizmaster was about to say, "Surely you are joking Mr. Handa" The question passed on and Azad also doubled on it and gave the correct answer that it was the last breath of Edison. UUUUUUGGGGGGHH How could I of all people do this? Ford and Einstein? What the fuck was I thinking?

I got a - 10 Azad got a + 20 on a question where I could have got a +20 and Azad 0. Its not tough to come to the conclusion that this single question made a difference of 20 + 20 + 10 = 50 points between the two teams. Final scores were Azad 270 Nehru 220 and RP 180. It feels bad that I could not beat Azad but then again they a very strong team which has been on a winning streak for the past 10 quizzes.
But hey as I have always said before, the bottom line counts.
We came second and I am extremely happy (because if we had not secured a position in top 3, a few fingers were bound to be raised against my captain position)

PS
a) Star of the quiz was Debjeet Sen(popularly known as Funda Man and I have strong suspicion about the second word in his nick.
b)There was only 1 girls team in the12 finalists which came 12th with the score of 20 points. I don't know why but the previous sentence brought a big smile to my face.
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