In my youth, I was a quiz enthusiast. I rarely left a bookshop without buying a quiz book. On Emirates flights, I would much rather play the quiz game on their in-flight entertainment than watch a movie. We had quizzes at home, complete with dinner and prizes; not just for the winners but for all participating teams. Then gradually, as some of those ‘teams’ migrated, it became less regular and then unraveled completely.
Recently, the old enthusiasm suddenly surged when I met a young quiz-whiz who had formed a quiz group in Dubai; one whose members take turns to conduct fantastic quizzes. He was kind enough to invite me. Eagerly, I paid up and presented myself at the venue five minutes before the scheduled start, all set to show off to the youth. I was sure the old fire still lingered. Once a quizzer, always a quizzer, right, like cycling and swimming?
We started out as equals because no one at my table knew one another. Some team-mates suggested answers and looked in my direction expecting either an affirmation or an alternative. But nothing was forthcoming. I stared at them dumbly. Time had apparently taken its toll. This was a different level of quizzing altogether, well above my league. They were quick to drop me from their discussions and half way through the quiz, I was all but invisible. I sat there quietly feeling sad, small and lonely engulfed by the flood of animated discussions around me. But I persevered. I sat through it holding my tears back and was rewarded at the end by huge, delicious, samosas and dhoklas along with two types of chutneys along with masala chai.
Quiz Time: Which four countries celebrate their independence today, the 15th of August?
PG Bhaskar is a private banker and has authored several books. He tries hard to keep up with the times @bhaskarpg and www.pgbhaskar.com. Look out for his weekly humor column on B-Change Saturdays.