Friday, August 15, 2008

Monosyllabic quiz idea mooted

Related news:- Henry Blofeld shot down

In an effort to improve representation of poorer and less educated classes of society in top quiz programmes across the country, Union Minister for nothing Somnath Chatterjee yesterday mooted the idea of a country-wide monosyllabic quiz contest in English, saying those who had been denied higher education could participate in this quiz and make do with whatever limited English vocabulary they had. Termed "Quiz" by famous advertising firm McCann-Ericsson, the competition will be held in centres spread nationwide and will be open for lower-primary to middle-school children. Kids will be expected to crack tough, ambivalent questions such as "What?" "Who?" "Why?" "Where?" and "When?" and provide the correct answers. Topics as wide-ranging as geography, French literature, early German Expressionism in film, the poems of Allasani Peddana and the best field hockey goals by Ric Charlesworth will be hurled at the contestants in the form of these seemingly simple questions and they will be given little time to come up with the right replies. The contest has garnered interest everywhere and even television channels are reported to be vying with each other for telecast rights.

In an avant-garde advertising campaign, McCann-Ericsson has unleashed a series of dull, taciturn posters and plastered them on walls across the country with the hope of reaching a wider audience. The posters are emblazoned with monosyllabic words exhorting students and their parents to join the contestant. Typical examples include "Join," "Win" and the rather suggestive and widely condemned "Come."

Top quizmasters and mistresses across the quizzing circuit are said to baffled by the government's move and are questioning its usefulness and efficacy. "Quizzing is already becoming highly specialised," said leading Chaucerian-literature-plus-Shakespearean-allusions-to-racism-plus-twentieth-century-Urdu-
poetry-plus-etymology-of-Bangalore-roads quiz mastermind Arul Mani. "We don't need the government creating these even more narrow-focused, one-word quizsmiths, who're just going to confuse the hell out of everybody. Plus, they will soon drain the prize corpus of our quizzing organisation. We cannot suddenly increase the first prize amount from the Rs. 18 we currently hand out to Rs. 26. That's daylight robbery!" Meanwhile, his quizzing comrade and fellow quizmaster Avinash "The Bash" Mudaliar was also quick to condemn the government's move. "Please, I can't go back to middle school quizzing. They're idiots out there. I left as soon as one guy said the composer of the Moonlight Sonata was Thiruvalluvar and the home of Tchaikovsky was Saravana Bhavan. Those twits must be dealt with by someone with an iron-hand."

"Ooh let's call Robert Downey Jr.," he quipped and chuckled, only to be quickly subdued, tackled and handcuffed by a man who would identify himself only as Pickbrain.

Meanwhile, former Indian cricket captain Mohammed Azharuddin is said to be extremely enthusiastic about the contest and is said to have hired a team of crack lawyers to find a loophole which would enable him to participate in the contest. "Azharuddin's famed staccato speaking style would serve him well in this quiz," remarked renowned cricket commentator Henry Blofeld, who is now so rarely seen he was mistaken for a panda at Delhi's Indira Gandhi International(IGI) airport and shot on sight. (The above was his last remark. We mourn his passing.) When questioned about the competition, Azhar, flanked by wife Sangeeta and a muscular man with a gun who mysteriously kept murmuring "The boys played well" into Azhar's ear, said "No comment," making this longest sentence ever conceived independently by the cricketer.


Prasad Subramanyan said...


"[L]eading Chaucerian-literature-plus-Shakespearean-allusions-to-racism-plus-twentieth-century-Urdu-
poetry-plus-etymology-of-Bangalore-roads quiz mastermind Arul Mani."

Class stuff. I cracked a couple of ribs doing that....

BTW, I await more videos on mindryin on Youtube. My brother & I (or the other way around, i slept in English classes!) are big fans and have exhausted all the 21 viedoes present.

The best ones are "Bharat Mindry Ratna" ("Eee Preashne nanna yelllooo kadutha idde!"; "Kaddli"),
"Taking over Google" ("So? What can I do?") etc etc.

All of them are superb stuff.

Harish said...

noDu namma bagge jana eshtu abhimaana, aasakti, atishayokti, aaraadhane, aalapane ellaa iTTkonDidaare anta. Ellaa aa Bhagavantha mattu naavu!

About the post, I would like to remark, 'Haasya'. Also, I firmly believe that monosyllabic quiz, by its very nature, represents the monolithic identity of the Indian nation which has diversity the single bedrock on which it(this nation) not only rests but also stands tall and has been standing tall despite the provocative divisive forces and the disruptive forces of globalisation and has withstood the vagaries in the time space continuum. Paapa.
Thank You.

Anonymous said...

Globalization - andre Janakikarna athwa crass consumerism ... superrr!

a million different people said...


Malaveeka said...

You're funny, monkey. :)

Anonymous said...

Funny. Brilliant.

Loved the bit about Azharuddin.


Aliya Baptista said...

You're ridiculously smart. It's ridiculous. Mch.

Sorry, but, Varalakshmi Vratam???Say what?

Yes, that (fake)lead singer was rather strange. Didn't so much pick up the Janis Joplin vibe of the version however...but okay.

Okay bye. I'm going to bed.

Arjun Sharma said...

[p s] He he, thanks for watching, my friend. There's a new one up. It's getting mixed reviews, so see which side you land up in.

[harish] You must be shot.

[p s] Jaagati-karaNa*

[a million different people] Heh...

[malaveeka] Thank you, tomato.

[Sandeep] He would have been a mighty warrior in this quiz. Pity he's not under twelve. And they're judging this strictly by age, not IQ.

[aliya] Varalakshmi vratam

The Janis Joplin vibe was because of the sound of the guitars. Sounded like the guitars on 'Summertime.'

Fake lead singer? Why aren't the real lead singers in the video? Was he not 'TV-savvy' enough for MTV? I condemn this, although I have no stake in it. I also condemn ace Indian cricket opener Vikram Rathore.

Going to be at 9:52 PM? Don't you want to finish a bit of knitting before that?