Archive for February, 2017

Winner: Pluto
also in photo: our waiter, Juan; the Driver (2nd), and Babs (3rd).

Sure there was a game tonight, but it was Fat Tuesday and I want to talk about that traditional king cake so kindly provided by New Orleans native, Rhys. The cake was from Copenhagen, and like everything from Copenhagen it was delicious. Thanks so much, Rhys. And to top it off the cake was served by two sexy Mardi Gras ladies.

Mistress Daphne and the Driver returned tonight from their journey through the Far East and seemed to be still a bit sleep deprived. That did not stop them from bringing some special prizes for the winners and traditional Korean delicacies for all.

Good Question!: This relatively small country features one of the largest carnival celebrations in the world?

Choices: a. Jamaica  b. Granada   c. Trinidad and Tobago  d. Haiti

Answer: Trinidad and Tobago


Known as the biggest street party on Earth- Trinidad and Tobago’s Carnival is officially celebrated on the Monday and Tuesday before Ash Wednesday every year. The Carnival festivities start just after Christmas and continues until Ash Wednesday-loaded with dozens of high energy parties and premier cultural competitions.

Carnival Monday opens with J’Ouvert at 4am, when revellers parade through the streets immersed in paint, grease and mud until sunrise. Later in the day on Monday and all day on Carnival Tuesday, thousands of masqueraders flood the streets throughout the islands in bold, colourful costumes, dancing through the parade routes to the exhilarating sounds of soca, steelpan and calypso music.


If you want to take part in the parade, you can purchase a costume of your choice from the many Carnival bands available. Then, you can collect your costumes just before the festival. Many Carnival Bands are all-inclusive, which means on Carnival day, food and drinks and other amenities are provided. There are also package deals for the J’Ouvert, but remember to book early! Sign me up Coach!


bloggers note:
Pluto, a regular at Main Street Café’s Tuesday night trivia, headed in to NYCity over the weekend and helped his team finish first with a perfect score at the 10th annual Panorama Challenge Trivia Night.


The competition was fierce with 14 teams and over 120 very serious NYC know-it-alls and geography geeks. Players had to be serious to even show up – wind chill that night was below zero.



What is the Panorama Challenge?
“Come to the Queens Museum to participate in the world’s only geographical trivia-based game night involving the world’s largest panorama – The Panorama of the City of New York! Participants will compete in teams of 10 (more or fewer people is OK too!) to test their knowledge of New York City geography and celebrate the geekiness of their native or adopted hometown.

The Panorama Challenge involves audio clues and laser-pointers highlighting assorted NYC landmarks, bridges, neighborhoods, parks and more. Its your team’s job to identify all 30 locations.”

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Winner: Pluto

It was a close game, decided only when Pluto remembered that Black Monday, a day when the New York Stock Exchange fell by 33%, happened in 1987. Not a day you forget, if you had any money in the market.

Almond Joy just missed the winners podium tonight, but he was happy with his fourth place finish. Of course, he would’ve been even happier if he hadn’t finished tied for last with a few others.

Tonight’s first question caused the most controversy, so let’s get right to it.

Good Question!: What was the name of the very first ocean-going vessel built by Englishman in the new world?

Choices: a. Jamestown  b. Virginia  c. Hampton  d. Hope


Answer: Virginia

We were told the ship was built by settlers landing in Maine in 1607, who found life too harsh and built a ship to escape a second winter.

Now in 1607 we figured there was no state of Virginia, there was no colony of Virginia, there was no Virginia! So we all wondered – how the heck did this ship built in Maine get named Virginia?

Well Virginia, there was a Virginia.

Virginia was the mother of the colonies. Each of the other original colonies was directly or indirectly carved out of Virginia. It was the first territory to be claimed by England in North America. At its maximum extent, Virginia encompassed most of what is now the United States, as well as portions of Canada and Mexico.

The Founding of Virginia

When Sir Walter Raleigh founded the first English settlement on Roanoke Island, there was no Virginia. There was only America. The English had gradually settled Newfoundland as a fishing community starting in the 1550’s. This island was chartered as a colony in 1585, the same year that Roanoke Island was first settled. The Spanish had established Saint Augustine, Florida in 1565 as a strategic outpost to protect Spain’s Caribbean empire from English privateers.

Between Newfoundland and Spanish Florida was a vast unsettled territory. Raleigh named this area Virginia an honor to Queen Elizabeth, (the Virgin Queen), with whom he sought favors. For many years thereafter the vast temperate region of North America was referred to as Virginia. It had no boundaries, and no government – but it did have a small ship named after it!

All this talk of colonial Virginia has me thinking of Pocahontas:

A brief history of early European colonization of North America

in 1606 King James I, Elizabeth’s successor, chartered two joint stock companies for the purpose of establishing colonies in Virginia. Each was granted a tract of land extending along the Atlantic coast, and extending inland for 100 miles. The Virginia Company of London was granted a southern tract from Cape Fear to Long Island Sound. The Virginia Company of Plymouth was granted a northern tract extending from Assateague Island to Passamaquoddy Bay, Maine (near where our ship builders had landed.)

When the Virginia Company of London sent out its first expedition to begin colonizing Virginia on December 20, 1606, it was by no means the first European attempt to exploit North America.

Basque, English, and French fishing fleets became regular visitors to the coasts from Newfoundland to Cape Cod. Some of these fishing fleets even set up semi-permanent camps on the coasts to dry their catches and to trade with local Indians, exchanging furs for manufactured goods. For the next two decades, Europeans’ presence in North America was limited to these semi-permanent incursions. Then in the 1580s, the English tried to plant a permanent colony on Roanoke Island (on the outer banks of present-day North Carolina), but their effort was short-lived (it is now known as the “Lost Colony”)

In the early 1600s, in rapid succession, the English began a colony (Jamestown) in Chesapeake Bay in 1607, the French built Quebec in 1608, and the Dutch began their interest in the region that became present-day New York. Within another generation, the Plymouth Company (1620), the Massachusetts Bay Company (1629), the Company of New France (1627), and the Dutch West India Company (1621) began to send thousands of colonists, including families, to North America. Successful colonization was not inevitable. Rather, interest in North America was a halting, yet global, contest among European powers to exploit these lands.


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Winner: Droppin’

For some reason tonight’s theme was Valentine’s day and to celebrate, Darin served a very delectable selection of petit four pastries. Droppin’ nipped Erik and Rhys for the win, but each of us received a chocolate heart, so we were all winners.

Tonight’s stunner question – who created the first Valentine’s Day candy? It was Richard Cadbury. Who knew.

Good question!: Who was Saint Valentine?

Choices:  a. soldier    b. roman senator    c. roman martyr        d. roman emperor


Answer: roman martyr

Best we can tell, because so little is reliably known of him, St. Valentine was a Roman priest martyred during the reign of Claudius Gothicus. He was arrested and imprisoned upon being caught marrying Christian couples and otherwise aiding Christians who were at the time being persecuted by Claudius in Rome.

Since the high middle ages he has been associated with a tradition of courtly love.

The romantic nature of Valentine’s Day may have derived during the Middle Ages, when it was believed that birds paired as couples in mid-February. According to English 18th-century antiquarians, Valentine’s Day was most likely created to overpower the pagan holiday, Lupercalia.

Many of the current legends that characterize Saint Valentine were invented in the fourteenth century in England, notably by Geoffrey Chaucer and his circle, when the feast day of February 14 first became associated with romantic love. Although the exact origin of the holiday is not widely agreed upon, it is widely recognized as a day for love, devotion and romance.

For a treat, try this haunting “My Funny Valentine” by Chet Baker, who definitely was not a saint.


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Winner: Droppin’
Followed closely by Nancy, Rosebud, Donna, newbie Diana and most shockingly, Chris.

While it’s never surprising to see Droppin’ win, it is quite astonishing to see Chris finish a strong second. Maybe that was due to the good Karma he earned by buying the bar a drink to celebrate his Super Bowl box win. Classy move, Chris.

Tonight we learned that Victorian Pythagoreans were not mathematicians, but were, in fact, vegetarians. Who knew. And let’s not forget that all the numbers on a roulette wheel add up to 666. We’ve seen that question before.

Mike, the mild mannered moderator, continued to hold court, while Mistress Daphne continues her census of all the Buddha’s in Bangkok. She is up to 22 and says she isn’t coming home until she visits them all.

Good Question!: Which European city has more bridges inside its city limits then any other city in the world?

Choices: a. Rome  b. Amsterdam  c. Hamburg   d. London

Hamburg Blue Port - KšhlbrandbrŸcke

Answer: Hamburg

You think that Venice, Amsterdam, or St.Petersburg have lots of bridges? Then you don’t know Hamburg! There are so many bridges that I can’t find a reliable source about the exact number of them. According to one source there are exactly 2579 bridges within the city limits, other sources just state “over 2300 bridges” or “over 2500 bridges”. Can’t say they are all beautiful, but some of them are worth seeing.





Hamburg-City of Bridges

Hamburg is the second largest city in Germany and considered to be one of the most beautiful in the country. It is also a popular tourist destinations because of its scenic beauty and unique blend of historical monuments and modern pubs and nightclubs, including the world-renowned red light district, the Reeperbahn.

Despite being located astride the River Elbe, some 100 kilometres from the North Sea, Hamburg is a major port city. It has the country’s biggest port – the second-busiest in Europe and the third largest in the world, after London and New York. For those who love water, ships and harbors, Hamburg is hence, a must visit.

Hamburg is practically surrounded on all sides by water. The Alster river has been divided into two lakes that lie on either side of the city, the Binnen and Aussenalster (Inner and Outer) and the River Elbe flows right through into the North Sea. All this water means an abundance of canals, streams and bridges. In fact, it’s a little known fact that Hamburg has more bridges inside its city limits than any other city in the world and more canals than Amsterdam and Venice combined. The number of bridges has been put somewhere around 2,300 to over 2,500 – more than London, Amsterdam and Venice put together.

source: amusingplanet.com/2012/11/hamburg-city-of-bridges.html


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