So. It’s a Tuesday or a Sunday night. The only thing on TV is a repeat of ‘How to Look Good Naked.’ Things could go one of two ways. You might learn whether a pencil skirt really is right for your shape – despite the fact you’re a man (and your legs really need toning) – or you get in touch with someone, go to your local and take on the pub quiz.
I love pub quizzes. I get a spike of adrenalin from the cocktail of trivia, stout and competitive tension. There’s nothing like trying to pick the questions out of the quizmaster’s broad accent and a crackly AV system whilst recounting the Eurythmics’ discography or pretending to know the capital of Luxembourg.
Even if I haven’t caught one in a while, I’ll watch the Kamikaze Lager episode from Phoenix Nights.
“And the answer is the Shroud of Turin”
“What did we have down?”
I cry with laughter every time.
Sitting down to BBC Breakfast this morning, groundbreaking US research made me think of a good, old fashioned 40-questions-with-picture-round. It would seem that cheeky quiz cheats that depend on their smartphones are officially missing out, in the grand scheme of things.
Academics from Columbia University have announced that “people are adapting their ability to remember because of the formidable power of search engines such as Google to remember things for them.” In other words, the brain’s faculty to recall stored information is compromised if we depend too much on the internet as a resource. Use it or lose it.
I admit that this will hardly make people, when they’re stumped, think twice before reaching for an iPhone. In fact, that’s the beauty of something as powerful as the internet being available on a mobile phone/tablet/whatever.
However, when information is accessible 24/7, challenging your faculties and retaining basic brain function is as important as ever, as reported in this article. Next time I lose – which will probably the next time I compete – it was not have been in vain. I’m so proud of myself. In fact, it could even be said that missing out on the gallon of beer prize will help me retain brain cells. Clutching at straws? Yep.
The smartphone’s future appearance at the pub quiz is inevitable although, when I’m landlord, it’ll be put to much better use. Mashable posted details of a new wireless headband that displays brain activity via an android app today. Hardly the halcyon days of Britain’s first pub quiz, but the cheat’s aid could well be their undoing at The Cooledge Arms.