Archive for April, 2018

Winner: TomTwin, followed by Pluto and Rosebud

It was almost too close to call. First a 3 way tie in regulation, then many rounds of playoffs. Finally the game was decided on a bogus question – “What is the only common non-domesticated animal not mentioned in the Bible?” Tom answered “rat” and was judged the winner. Pluto’s strenuous objection was dismissed.

Here’s what the authority says: “You’ll find lions, leopards, and bears (no tigers), along with nearly 100 other animals, insects, and creatures in the pages of the Bible.” Which means of course, that there must be hundreds of non domesticated animals NOT listed in the Bible. So that makes Pluto’s objection valid, and Tom just a “dirty rat.”

Good Question!: What is the only U.S. state without a rectangular flag?

Choices: a. Arkansas   b. Ohio   c. Michigan   d. Tennessee

Answer: Ohio

Who knew? What’s up with those buckeyes?

The Ohio Burgee is the official flag of the U.S. state of Ohio. Ohio’s swallowtail flag is the only non-rectangular U.S. state flag. Its red, white, and blue elements symbolize the state’s natural features and order of admission into the Union. A prominent disc in the flag’s triangular canton is suggestive of the state’s name.

Ohio’s flag is a rare example of a non-quadrilateral civil flag, another well-known example being the flag of Nepal. According to vexillologist Whitney Smith, it may be loosely based upon cavalry flags of the Civil War and Spanish–American War. The flag has been officially defined as a “burgee” since 2002, even though burgees are typically pennants used as maritime flags or for recreational boating organizations. Its shape, lack of text, and mirror symmetry allow it to be flown or hung in various orientations without affecting legibility.

What is a buckeye?

Buckeyes. A small, shiny, dark brown nut with a light tan patch that comes from the official state tree of Ohio, the buckeye tree. According to folklore, the Buckeye resembles the eye of a deer and carrying one brings good luck.

Editors note: in April we celebrated the ninth anniversary of the Tuesday Night Bar Exam blog with over 300 posts. You keep reading, we’ll keep writing.


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Winner: TJ, followed by Carol St. Martin, Rosebud and Tall Paul.
with well behaved photo bomber Chris and not well behaved photo bomber Mike.

TJ is headed to Las Vegas to begin his career as an environmental engineer, so it was only fitting that he would win his last game. Chris rejoined us because he heard there would be some maggot questions, and there is no one who knows more about maggots than Chris.

Good question!: In 1993 San Francisco held a referendum over whether a police officer, Bob Geary, was allowed to patrol while doing what?

Choices: a. yodeling   b. reciting bible verses   c. dancing   d. carrying a dummy


Answer: Carrying a dummy


Vote for Officer Brendan O’Smarty

Yes, San Francisco voters in November,1993 got the chance to vote for a dummy.

A real dummy, of the wooden, Pinocchio variety. Only this one is dressed like a San Francisco cop, wears a star and goes by the name Officer Brendan O’Smarty. The dummy’s “partner” is Officer Bob Geary, a 24-year veteran of the San Francisco Police Department who wanted to do some arm-twisting of his superiors via the ballot box.

Geary, a self-taught ventriloquist, started working with the 38-inch tall puppet about two years before when he started walking the North Beach beat in the department’s community patrol program. The hand-carved dummy cost $1,750 because Officer Geary wouldn’t hear of the $700 molded particleboard version. He spent $125 more for three audiocassettes called “Welcome to the World of Ventriloquy” and practiced talking without moving his lips in front of the bathroom mirror.

“Brendan is a weapon, a soft weapon,” who has helped break up fights and done wonders for community relations, said Geary, 53. Geary once walked into the middle of a bar fight with Officer O’Smarty, who began “telling” the combatants to knock it off. Geary then had the men put their hands on O’Smarty’s badge and swear they wouldn’t fight anymore. They complied, and the fight ended in laughter.

But Geary’s commanders still did not like the idea of a dummy on duty and ordered O’Smarty out. In stepped the Board of Supervisors, which threw its support behind the dummy last October, and spurred new thinking by department brass: Geary and O’Smarty could partner up – as long as advance permission was granted. But that didn’t set well with Geary, who wanted to be the one to decide when and when not to bring O’Smarty to life.

How ridiculous, Officer Geary said, that a cop is trusted to decide when to use his gun but not his dummy! So he spent $10,000 of his own money to gather the 9,964 signatures necessary under California law to qualify his initiative for the ballot – to create city policy that would allow Geary “to exercise his professional judgment as to when he will team up with his `partner,’ puppet Brendan O’Smarty, during the course of his police duties . . .”

And the votes are in

On Nov. 2, the dummy won 51 percent of the vote. Police Chief Anthony Ribera, on television a day after the election, sounded a conciliatory note: “The voters have spoken. … ‘Let’s loosen up a bit.’ ”

The mayor’s press secretary, Noah Griffin, says the dynamic duo could get a beat change. “We’re not trying to be the Grinch that stole Christmas. But this is a paramilitary organization. This is a dangerous precedent. The next person will want to come to work on roller skates or cross-dress so they can relate better to the gay community.”

When he bought the puppet and learned how to use it two years ago, Geary insists, all he wanted was to do his job better. The puppet, he says, makes him more human. Dirty Harry Callahan, though, would never understand this 24-year veteran, New Age cop.

Speaking of Dirty Harry:

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Winner: Matt, followed by TomTwin and son TJ.

Last week Peter on the podium, this week Matt and TJ. The NextGen is making an impact. Let’s see if Matt can come back next week and defend his trophy.

Spiderman villains, the tagline in the 2014 film “Whiplash”, and the director of “Black Panther,” were all questions that required you to be on top of your pop culture tonight. For some players (we’re looking at you Carol St. Martin and 10 O’clock Bill) that means they should’ve stayed home or “shoulda stood in bed.”

Mistress Daphne and the Driver returned from their slow boat to China with some local liquor for us to sample. It was nice enough and served from a museum quality ceramic container. It was certainly much nicer then that kerosene liquor with the scorpion in it that they brought back from Vietnam a few years ago.

Good Question!: The penny-farthing was a popular type of what?

Choices: a. ancient coin   b. measure of beer   c. bicycle   d. sailboat

Answer: Bicycle

The penny-farthing, also known as a high wheel, high wheeler and ordinary, was the first machine to be called a “bicycle” It was popular in the 1870s and 1880s, with its large front wheel providing high speeds (large distance for every rotation of the legs) and comfort (shock absorption through the wheel). It became obsolete from the late 1880s with the development of the modern bicycle, which provided similar speed amplification via chain-driven gear trains and comfort through pneumatic tires, and were marketed in comparison to penny-farthings as “safety bicycles” due to the reduced danger of falling from height. The name came from the British penny and farthing coins, one much larger than the other, so that the side view resembles a penny leading a farthing.

The birth of the bicycle

Eugène Meyer, a Frenchman, invented the high-wheeler bicycle design in 1869 and fashioned the wire-spoke tension wheel. Around 1870 English inventor James Starley, described as the father of the bicycle industry, and others, began producing bicycles based on the French boneshaker but with front wheels of increasing size, because larger front wheels, up to 1.5 m (60 in) in diameter, enabled higher speeds on bicycles limited to direct drive. In 1878, Albert Pope began manufacturing the Columbia bicycle outside Boston, starting their two-decade heyday in America.

Although the trend was short-lived, the penny-farthing became a symbol of the late Victorian era. Its popularity also coincided with the birth of cycling as a sport.

No penny farthing, but it’s my fave bicycle scene:


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