Saturday, 6 April 2019

Week 32/33 - A grambling good quiz night


Welcome to The Grambler, the most ill-informed blog you are ever likely to see.

Stewart was an amazing person - A wonderful husband, a fantastic brother, a loving son and an adored uncle. He was also a brilliant friend and colleague and is missed by so many people. His family are determined that his death will never be in vain and are doing their part to beat bowel cancer for good. We are fundraising for the Bobby Moore Fund which is part of Cancer Research UK and specialises in research into bowel cancer. If you wish to donate to the fund, you can via https://www.justgiving.com/Geraldine-Smith3 .

If you haven’t already done so, please read the article which appeared in the Daily Record and learn from Stewart’s story that you must never be complacent. It makes grim reading for us, his family, even though we were beside him throughout his ordeal, or battle; call it what you will. http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/lifestyle/heartbroken-widow-geraldine-smith-raises-3452997

Similarly, if you haven’t heard it, please listen to Geraldine’s moving radio interview which was on Radio Scotland recently.


Stewart began writing The Grambler when he was between procedures and hoping for some form of recovery. He loved all aspects of football and was a lifelong Motherwell supporter. His wish was that The Grambler should continue after his death and I have been happy to oblige. Read on and enjoy

 

 

Did you miss The Grambler's rant last week? Who said no? Come on. Own up.

Anyway, there was a very good reason for there being no edition of your favourite blog last week. Last Friday was the sixth annual Kick Cancer's Backside Pub Quiz run in Stewart's memory by his friends.

Stewart, the founder of the world’s greatest ill-informed blog, had he lived, would have been 34 years old this week. It is, then, rather apt that his life was celebrated this very week.

It was rather a busy time for Mrs G and myself together with many others who were preparing everything to ensure that the evening went without a hitch.

This year we 'supersized' by holding the quiz in a venue that held 180 people instead of previous years' venues which held between 100 and 150. It shouldn't have presented any problems, after five quizzes, those involved knew the ropes, so to speak.

The venue was our local British Legion social club. That reminds me of a joke... Did you hear about the bloke who ran away from home to join the British Legion?

No, I don't believe I harve.

Hello Arthur. You don't believe you have what?

Heard about the charp who ran away to join the British Legion. What about him?

No no, it's a joke. He ran away from home to join the British Legion. Instead of the Foreign Legion. He was daft. That's the joke.

Well it doesn't sound very armusing to me. The poor fellow must harve been an trifle confusled.

No. It's only a joke. You know how people used to run away from home to join the French foreign legion... or the army or navy for that matter.

Ah, he was in the army. An ex sarvicemarn. Ooh well, he wasn't making an mistake. He was perfectly entitled.

To what?

To join the British Legion; a socianal club where ex sarvicemen carn meet up with old colleagues to chart about their time in the sarvices.

He isn't real. He didn't do it. It's only a joke.

It may be an joke to you but it's very important to any old soldier... or sailor... or royal airforce... erm... whatever it is they're called... to meet with old friends.

Look! It's a joke. I wish I hadn't told it now.

I wish you hadn't, and all. It's not ars if it's even funny.

I think I should move on quickly.

Yes the venue was the local British Legion... shut up Arthur... which was new to us.

One area where we always seemed to have problems was with the sound systems in previous venues. I don't have the strongest of voices as quizmaster so a good sound system is a must.

No problem, we were assured, this place has got a terrific sound system.
All the organisers got there nice and early and put out all the nibbles on the tables, pictures of Stewart on the wall, food for the buffet on tables in a cool part of the hall. Raffle prizes were placed near the stage so that everyone could see what they wouldn't win.

Everything was all set for the start of the biggest quiz yet.

I started my spiel with a joke... Fred Flintstone went to a party in the Middle East - it was an Abu Dhabi do.

Not that funny, but I thought it might get a laugh.

Unfortunately, it came out as Fred.... tone....twap.... in.... least....san... bidoo.

The ghost of Norman Collier was abroad. (Ask your dad.) The allegedly terrific sound system was playing silly beggars.

We muddled through for a while with this very frustrating set-up until the music round when, right in the middle of Wake Me Up Before You Go Go, the system just packed in. [In the middle of Wake Me Up Before You Go go? Who could blame it? - Ed.]

Thus, less than halfway through the quiz, we had no mike and it was a big hall; people had been struggling to hear me when I was using the microphone, now, they couldn't hear a thing. And to compound the problem, a party was kicking off in an adjacent room with music loud enough to force Manuel Noriega to surrender (Ask your dad.).

Things were looking bleak.

Who could help to sort out this shambles? Enter superhero Andy. He told us that they had a speaker and microphone at his church and that he could go and get it...

'They have a speaker and microphone at my church; I could go and get it.'

So Andy hotfooted it to his church in search of the said gear.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, we had to do something to prevent the mob from getting angry. Food. That was the answer. Time to unwrap the buffet. Phew. Just what we needed.

By the time Andy returned with the mike and amp, the mob were suitably subdued thanks to the food and the copious amounts of booze consumed during this unscheduled interval.

The second half of the quiz was certainly an improvement on the first, although those seated close to the adjacent venue still had difficulty hearing me above the racket from next door.

The event turned from being something of a disaster into a not quite resounding success.

What was a success, however, was the amount raised for the Bobby Moore fund...

£2432

raised on the night. Not bad in the circumstances. Stewart would have been proud to see that his friends were working so hard to raise money for the charity which was so close to his heart... and bowels.

People's reactions to this year’s quiz? Mixed, I think...

‘The long breaks gave us a chance to have a wee chat with each other rather than having to concentrate totally on the quiz. Best one yet. Save us tickets for next year.’

That was nice. Then there was...

‘We were totally put off by the interruptions; we couldn't concentrate on the quiz. The worst one ever. We won't be back.’

Geez! You can't fn win.
 
Te..ing, ...ting, ....ing
 

 

 

.....oooOooo.....
 

Let’s move on to the birthday honours, shall we? And, as there was no edition of the world’s greatest ill-informed blog last week, you are treated to two weeks of birthday honours... again.
Were any famous or notorious people born on the 30th of March? Of course, here are some I’ve even heard of. Francisco Goya 1746 (Painter... very reasonable rates.), Robert Bunsen 1811 (Chemist... Guess what he invented.), Anna Sewell 1820 (Orfer. Factoid - Only had one book published in her lifetime and died before benefitting from its success. That book was Black Beauty.), Vincent van Gogh 1853 (Another painter. Cue dreadful joke - ‘Hey up Vince; want a pint?’ ‘No thanks, I’ve got one ‘ere.’), Seán O’Casey 1880 (Another orfer.), Sergey Ilyushin 1894 (Plane maker.), Ted Heath 1902 (Bandleader and prime minister... hang on, that can’t be right. Have a clip Here’s Sucu Sucu. [Ooer missus. - Ed.] It's pronounced sookoo sookoo and not what you were thinking. [Oh. - Ed.]), Albert Pierrepoint 1905 (Executioner.), Frankie Laine 1913 (Chanter who seemed to corner the market in ‘cowboy’ theme toons. Here’s an example. All together now... Rolling, rolling, rolling...), Sonny Boy Williamson 1914 (Singer/songwriter. Here’s a song which was later recorded by the Yardbirds... Not too sure about those lyrics.), Tom Sharpe 1928 (Yet another orfer.), John Astin 1930 (Ectaw. Gomez Addams. That was him.), R*lf H*rr*s 1930 (Nonce.), Warren Beatty 1937 (Ectaw. The man with the golden globes, apparently.), Norman Gifford 1940 (Crickety bloke.), Graeme Edge 1941 (A Moody Blue. Here he is In Dreams), Eric Clapton 1945 (A geetarist, apparently. [Apparently?!! Apparently?!! He’s God, is Eric Clapton! God! - Ed.] Calm down... I gather you’re a fan. You’d better have a clip, then. Here’s Layla. Who’s the baldy bloke on drums?), Eddie Jordan 1948 (Racey car bloke.), Mervyn King 1948 (Ex-Bank of England boss and darts player... hang on, that can’t be right.), Jim ‘Dandy’ Mangrum 1948 (A bit of Black Oak Arkansas.  Hey Y'All.), Dana Gillespie 1949 (Singer, it says here. Have a clip. Here’s Andy Warhol.), Robbie Coltrane 1950 (Danny McGlone.), Randy Vanwarmer 1955 (Musician. Had one big hit. He got it just when he needed it most. Is that Pan’s People?), Martina Cole 1959 (Orfer.), Stanley Burrell 1962 (Who? Better known as MC Hammer. A clip?  Hammer time...), Tracy Chapman 1964 (Musician. Here’s her fast car.), Piers Morgan 1965 (Complete and utter cu... [Enough! - Ed.] I was going to say colourful individual.), Celine Dion 1968 (Chanter. Another clip? I suppose it has to be this one.), Karel Poborský 1972 (Fotbalista.), Jan Koller 1973 (Další fotbalista.), Norah Jones 1979 (Musician. Have another clip. It’s Sunrise.), Sergio Ramos 1986 (Matón.) and Calum Elliot 1987 (Ex-Motherwell footballer.).
And now, April 6th...
Raffaello Sanzio da Urbino 1483 (Who? Oh, Raphael... the painter.), René Lalique 1860 (Glazier.), John Parry-Thomas 1884 (Racey car bloke. He was the first driver to be killed in pursuit of the land speed record.), Anthony Fokker 1890 (Aircraft manufacturer. Began building planes when he was just 20.), Erwin Komenda 1904 (Car designer.), Ian Paisley 1926 (Shouty man.), Willis Hall 1929 (Orfer.), André Previn 1929 (Musician.), Merle Haggard 1937 (Curntry sanger. Time for a clip. Here’s Working Man Blues. Could do with some sub-titles, there.), Billy Dee Williams 1937 (Ectaw. Lando Calrissian. Guess what the Dee stands for. December. That’s his real middle name.), Paul Daniels 1938 (Entertainer. I liked him... not a lot.), Gheorghe Zamfir 1941 (Panpiper. Here’s a lonely shepherd.), Anita Pallenberg 1942 (Girlfriend of various members of the Rolling Stones. This was purportedly written about her.), M*x Cl*ff*rd 1943 (Nonce.), Roger Cook 1943 (Journo.), John Ratzenberger 1947 (Ectaw. The voice of Hamm.), Patrick Hernandez 1949 (Chanteur. Here’s his hit, Born to be Alive. [Erm... Isn't that generally how life works, or am I missing something? -Ed.]), Pascal Rogé 1951 (Ivory tickler. Have a bit of Debussy.), Christopher Franke 1953 (Musician. Have some prog.  Here's Purple Waves.), Dilip Vengsarkar 1956 (Crickety bloke.), Rory Bremner 1961 (Impressionist.), Jonathan Firth 1967 (Ectaw.), Zach Braff 1975 (Ectaw. A scrubber.), Georg ‘Goggi’ Hólm 1976 (A bit of Sigur Rós. Time for another clip. Here’s the rather beautiful Hoppípolla.) and Robert Earnshaw 1981 (Pêl-droediwr.).
 
I’ve received a letter...
Dear Mr Slučakockar,
Thank you for the clip from my very favourite singer, Frankie Laine. He was a big star in the nineteen-fifties when I was a gel. He had a few number one discs I well remember. One of them was also recorded many years later by that fine Scottish songstress, Barbara Dickson. However, the memory is fading a bit these days and I can’t remember which. Can you help?
Yours sincerely,
Anne Surmy.

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Let’s move onto grambling matters. What happened a fortnight (and a week) ago? A total of only £5.80 back from our £4.40 stake money. Yay! A profit. I won’t bore you with details. Instead, let’s see this week’s predictions. Remember all matches kick off at 3pm on Saturday the 6th of April.
 
 
Game - Result - Odds
Fleetwood Town vs Southend - Prediction Home win - 5/6
Luton vs Blackpool - Prediction Home win - 11/20
Peterborough vs Gillingham - Prediction Home win - 19/20
Rochdale vs Sunderland - Prediction Away win - 4/5
Shrewsbury vs Scunthorpe - Prediction Home win - 10/11
 
The bets have been placed (10 x 20 pee doubles plus 1 x 20 pee accumulator) and if they all go according to The Grambler’s Prediction, the Bobby Moore Fund stands to receive a whopping...
 

£10.32

 

I’ve seen more whopping.

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

Teaser time. Yay! Last week... sorry two weeks ago... I asked you to work out some anagrams. How did you get on?
Craves Clement - Steve McClaren
Lay Frames - Alf Ramsey
Oven Ride - Don Revie
A Huge Ghost Treat - Gareth Southgate
Goody Horns - Roy Hodgson
Clams Already - Sam Allardyce
Enters Bravely - Terry Venables
Capable Folio - Fabio Capello
One Wrongdoer - Ron Greenwood
 
One for this week? Here’s another list type teaser for you. What are the nicknames of the following clubs?
West Bromwich Albion
Sheffield United
Fleetwood Town
Scunthorpe United
York City
Derby County
Reading
Bury
Blackpool
Burnley
Try that without resorting to Googly.

 

.....oooOooo.....

 

As usual, I remind you of the main reason for continuing to publish this blog – to raise awareness about bowel cancer. If you have any bowel problems, don’t be fobbed off with the line that you are too young for bowel cancer to be a consideration. Just point your doctor in the direction of http://www.bowelcanceruk.org.uk/campaigns-policy/latest-campaigns/never-too-young-campaign

 

…..oooOooo…..
 

 

And finally Cyril? And finally, Esther, I am indebted to a Mr A. Previn for this week’s closing item. Andre Previn died just over a month ago aged 89 and as this extract from Wikipedia attests, he was respected musician...
 
André George Previn, born Andreas Ludwig Priwin; April 6, 1929 February 28, 2019) was a German-American pianist, composer, arranger, and conductor.
His career was three-pronged. Starting by arranging and composing Hollywood film scores for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Previn was involved in the music for over 50 films over his entire career. He won four academy awards for his film work and ten Grammy awards for his recordings (and one more for his lifetime achievement). He was also the music director of the Houston Symphony Orchestra, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the Oslo Philharmonic, as well as the principal conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. In jazz, Previn was a pianist-interpreter and arranger of songs from the ‘Great American Songbook’, was piano-accompanist to singers of jazz standards, and was a trio pianist. All along the way, his efforts were recorded; much of the way, they garnered acclaim and awards.
 
Quite a career, I am sure you would agree. His personal life was no less colourful having been married five times. He famously fathered twins to third wife Mia Farrow while she was still married to Frank Sinatra (Brave man messing with ‘the hoodlum from Hoboken’.).
And yet his most celebrated moment of all was in 1971 when he became Mr Andrew Preview  for the night.
Unfortunately, that sketch is not available on-line in its entirety. Hopefully, that short tribute gives you a taste of the moment when Andre Previn became a comedy legend.
 
That’s all for this week folks, but remember you can read the musings of The Grambler every week by going to the blog at www.thegrambler.com
 
Happy grambling.
 

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