Why you should look out for a pub with regular quiz night 

People enjoying their drinks in a pub. Photo | www.istockimages.com

What you need to know:

  • A quiz takes stress away and makes your poison of choice taste so much better.  And the competitiveness opens you up to people who you would never otherwise easily open up to.  There is something refreshing about a group of adults running against time, working together to come up with a right answer. 

We were sitting at our usual kafunda on a Thursday evening when a call came through for one of the guys at the table. When he got off the phone, he promptly announced that we would all be leaving to go take part in a pub quiz.

The pub was in the neighbourhood and we were all familiar with it so it wasn’t that hard to reach at a decision. Prior to the call, we had decided on a quiet evening, chilling with a nice bottle of gin but when the invitation to go participate in a quiz came, our original plans flew out of the window in a jiffy.

We arrived at the said pub shortly before 8pm, in time for the quiz to begin. The patrons, a nice blend of young working class Ugandans and a few expatriates (or tourists) were in the final stages of registering their group names with the quiz master. We unanimously agree to call ourselves the ‘Crazy Cocks’, for shock effect and staying power.

When it comes to pub quizzes, the group name is almost as important as the participants themselves.  It is your branding so choose it wisely. It has to be catchy yet not cheesy. Go for ‘Mad Dogs’ or ‘Hot Heads’ instead of ‘Achievers’. The former has a zany rebellious ring to it while the latter is simply forgettable. You get the picture.

Anyway, so when the quiz master read out our name, the crowd greeted us with such cheeky friendliness and laughter that we felt right at home.

Yes, we felt right at home among complete strangers because pub quizzes have that effect on participants. The fraternising that ensues, the arguing, the teasing all tends to pull complete strangers closer to each other and the last time I checked, that has never been a bad thing. Both the patrons and the pub benefit. If a pub can make people come back for two nights in a row, just to chase that alcohol-fuelled adrenaline rush to win, that pub may have itself committed patrons for life.

But it is not just the pub that wins. There is something refreshing about a group of four adults running against time, working together to come up with a right answer. And when you get the answer right, the joy of it all almost transports you back to the good old times when you had no responsibilities. A quiz takes stress away and makes your poison of choice taste so much better. And the competitiveness that it inspires opens you up to people that you would never otherwise easily open up to.

Having settled down into the game, it did not take us long to realise that the quiz was no walk in the park. It was professionally organized quiz. The questions were projected on TV screens, and the quiz master expected you to rush against time to write down the answer on a piece of paper before the question was replaced by a new one. Each successive round was harder than the last. You could see people almost shaking with restraint to not look at their phones as this could lead to a humiliating cancellation of the whole group.  

You sit there raking your brain looking for answers only to look up and find one tipsy man talking into his smart watch while being as discreet as a thief. Because the temptation to cheat can overwhelming especially after four beers. The smart watch is a loophole that escaped the quiz master’s mind when he was listing the forbidden gadgets. So do you just let him cheat and ultimately win? Yeah, you wish.

After reporting the guy and the cancellation of his group (‘The Achievers’), everyone had such a good laugh and teased the group to smithereens. They knew they deserved the jibes and so they took everything gracefully. The quiz transforms the bar from a place where we often go to lose our minds into a place of sharpening the mind.

A sense of community rises and gels the revellers together into an exclusive club of like minds. This is why you should seek out a pub that hosts quizes, because such a one is worthy of the name. A pub that hosts quizzes can be trusted.