“Eh?” responded Justin
“We’ll do Japanese” she insisted
“I think I’d prefer an Indian tonight”, I still missed the point.
“No, hülye, the theme for the quiz this year, we’ll do Japanese this time” And so it came to pass, Katalin, the (largely unseen) creative force for the RRC quiz for the last few years decided our clubhouse would have an oriental flavour on March 14. After Irish, Russian and Roman themes I found myself researching the Honshu Wolf and the films of Kurosawa.
Of course the quiz is only half of the night, this was to be the major club fundraising event of the year and for that to happen you need a good auction and a well stocked bar. Asking Vicki to stock the bar is like asking a panda to grow bamboo but it was still good of her to do it amongst the other things she does for RRC. She has organised the auction in the last few years but this time it was the turn of Lindsey and Emily who put the War of 1812 well and truly behind them to form a powerful North American alliance. No auction is complete without its auctioneer; Simon took the gavel as he has done for the last eight years.
And you need people too, the talented Ainsley produced a fantastic poster to bring in the punters while Shern masterminded the bookings. We have our friends at MRC to thank for lending their tables while Interior designer Laurent probably found himself with his least creative role of lumping their tables into our clubhouse.
So the night began with a record a hundred and ten members and guests packing into the hall, the bar buzzed and the quiz began. Lecturer Matt marked the papers and accountant Jon added the scores. Most teams did well and each round was punctured by productive auctions with our fundraising gauge slowly rising under Nic’s supervision. Of course there were accusations of ‘phone a friend’, allegations of cheating in the origami and twice I wanted to garrotte someone with the microphone lead (a reduction on most years) but the bow balls surged to the line…and two of them finished level.
So there they were, some of the club’s newest members against a couple of the old stagers, the tie-break question the height of Mount Fuji. The prizes sat before them, a dozen chocolate roses, a year with a wombat and of course, eternal glory. The warm March evening turned cold with tension as I read the right answer… 3766 metres, old guard triumphant, DS denied.
Thanks to all that came, especially those that worked behind the bar and of course a very big thanks to all those who generously donated auction prizes. Over $8,000 was raised on the night, exceeding the target, this is being put to immediate good use. The committee’s deliberation wouldn’t have disgraced the World Trade Organisation for detail, producing the question “Could we have the short answer first next time?” at one point. Women’s sweep oars and two new ergos have already been ordered.
Justin Thomas, RRC VP