Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Quiz Nation

I know I normally post updates of what I've been doing, but this blog is equally about my observations of down under and I found this amusing.

One thing I've noticed since I got to New Zealand is that the New Zealanders love their quizzes. Nearly every restaurant/ bar I've been into has a weekly quiz night. I mentioned participating in one during Fulbright orientation. My officemates attend a quiz night every Tuesday and my landlord's wife mentioned meeting a guy I'd gone tramping with when he joined her quiz team at the pub. I've seen advertisment for quiz night fundraisers. Everyday at lunch, I and a large portion of the chemical genetics lab do the 5 minute quiz included in the newspaper. Quizzes are everywhere. A popular beer brand, Tui (named after an ubiquitous bird with an awesome vocal repertoire), has questions under its bottle caps that Marcus, my former flatmate, would always test me on.

However, despite all of this, I failed to notice just how much the Kiwis love their trivia until tonight. *If you were the giggling kid in 7th grade health class, you might want to skip this part.* I opened a pad and found the backing of the adhesive strip, instead of being plain or printed with a logo, was printed with trivia facts. I don't know who figured out that lettuce has been grown and cultivated for more than 2500 years, nor do I know why Barbie's being 25cm tall or Kermit having 11 points on his collar is noteworthy. But if I'm ever called upon to use that information, I'll have it at my disposal. Thanks, Libra pads.

*You can come back now.* In other news, we finally have our wireless network set up. For some reason this task fell to me, as the most technically proficient member of the flat. (We are in serious trouble.) I managed to get it working by *shock! horror!* reading and following the directions. Unfortunately I'm better at the direction following than the creative thought. When it came time to pick a network name, I thought, "I know. I'll call it 359A (our address)." Julie rejected that as boring; we ended up with "Lady Gaga" (my blindly typing in Julie's 8th suggestion -- at least I rejected "Brangelina").

The installation guide then instructed me to come up with a network key. It suggested something with punctuation and words not in the dictionary -- possibly a short phrase. Stupidly not realizing that this would be our password, I wrote a sentence that has 3 capital letters, several spaces and a word that few people can spell. It took my friend Ben 7 tries to enter the password and he knew what it was. Guess people won't be stealing our internet. Michael wasn't around for the set up. Upon arriving home and finding this out, he gave me a goal for the year, "Less book smarts, more street smarts." We'll see how it goes.

- Kiwis love their trivia. I knew there was a (or 200) reason(s) I love this country.
- We have a wireless network! You can't read its poker face, it'll follow you until you love it and it's harder to break into than Fort Knox.

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