May 18, 2012

Quiz Marathon strategy!

As I prepare for my massive undertaking of quizmastering for ten straight hours (dear God…), I'm fielding oodles of logistical questions about our Tenth Anniversary Quiz Marathon Spectacular: How does it work? Do I have to be there the whole time? How can I win the $1,000 grand prize?, etc. This FAQ should illuminate you, but let me break it down in terms of strategery, as a noted leader once didn't actually put it.

So the strategic question to ask yourself is: What kind of geek are you?

1. For the lazy geek—hang out for a few hours and have an awesome time: The show runs noon to 10pm total at 92YTribeca. A single ticket (available here, and cheaper in advance, mind you) grants you all-day, come-and-go access. Any given two or three hours will give you all the quizzing delights you expect from the BQT: world-class multimedia trivia, video and audio puzzles, a Text-Message Challenge or two, the odd Lightning Round, etc. Plus prizes: We're not limiting the goodies to the end of the show, so there's always a chance of scoring something nice to bring home to Mama. (This blog has already covered Lionel Trains and Birch Coffee, and we've got old favorites Geek Treats, Thumbs and On Location Tours will represent, and way more are on the way.) And check it: Guest performers will include magicians, jugglers, comedians, etc., scattered throughout the day. That said, prime time (8–10pm) might be your best bet, since that's when the live band will be doing its thing, and you'll be able to firsthand see the effects that a nonstop quiz marathon have on the body of a man in his mid-thirties. True, you'll probably not make it into the big Six-Way Finale, and thus claim the grand prize, but considering this will pretty much going to be the greatest quiz event since the sinking of Atlantis, I think you'll leave happy.

2. For the tireless geek—stay the whole damn ten hours: Make no mistake, a passel of nerds are seriously planning on doing this—arriving around noon, grabbing a piping hot coffee from Cafe 92YTribeca (which will basically be my life-support system that day), and settling in for ten hours of butt-numbing quiz joy. Naturally, playing the whole time will considerably up your odds of your team making into the finale, so this is also a good strategy for the excessively greedy geek. (And yes, the cost is the same as just swinging by for an hour or two.)

3. For the crafty geek—organize!: This might, strictly speaking, be the smartest strategy, but it's also the one that requires the most advance planning. Form a team as you would for any other BQT event, perhaps drafting in a few more ringers than usual, and divvy up the hours of the Marathon into shifts. If you spread out the brain talent wisely, you can make sure to cover every round of the quiz, and receive points throughout the day (as long as we receive an answer sheet with your squad's name on it for a given round of the quiz, you'll receive the points). If you relay like this, bringing in fresh players every couple hours, you'll just rack up the score and be primed for a top showing come Finale time, and possible glorious victory. (Indeed, this strategy is not mutually exclusive with the lazy one above, so long as you're lucky enough to glom onto a team with some of the smarties.)

But really, all strategies are welcome and valid; I guarantee a good time no matter what. Get your tickets now and start figuring out which kind of geek you are. See you there, if I retain the ability to see.

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