Canberra Roller Derby League has been having a lot of success with its popular (and very nerdy) trivia night fundraisers. Earlier this year our team “William Shatnerface” tied first at their Star Wars trivia night only to lose the physical challenge tie-breaker. It seemed a bit unfair to subject people who are distinguished for their encyclopaedic knowledge of Star Wars to a plank-off so we returned to claim our stolen glory and prove our nerdy worth to the entire world – or at least one of the upstairs rooms at the Civic Hellenic Club.
Just as a jammer in Roller Derby can pass the star to their pivot at the beginning of a new round, this time Star Wars tagged out so that two new topics, Game of Thrones and zombies, could provide a double-header challenge. And so Ser William of House Shatnerface donned his frostwolf cloak, held his zombie-whacking cricket bat aloft and prepared to face testy conundrums. Like trying to remember the guy who did that thing in that episode of Game of Thrones.
In keeping with the of the theme of the night the tables received drink service from roller derby stars in costume. Our table was served drinks by zombie Unikitty (the cat unicorn from the Lego Movie). So that’s one more thing crossed off the bucket list. I composed a song for her to celebrate the occasion:
little ball of worms
brains, brains, brains
I don’t know how you spent your Saturday night, but I spent mine writing poetry for zombie cats.
The Roller Derby trivia nights are normally not that hard – nowhere near as ruthless as the kind of questions you find at the Phoenix Pub’s nerd trivia. This trivia is pitched at a general audience of fans, not at obsessive experts. The Game of Thrones questions in particular were approachable, the sort of things you would know if you watched the TV series and had a great memory. The zombie round was harder, demanding true knowledge of the genre. And as for the obligatory general knowledge round… well, let’s just say that our team should have spent more experience points levelling up that attribute.
The highlight of the night was the zombie-themed sound round. This was grotesque and amazing. We had to listen to squishy, pulpy sounds and then determine where that particular zombie execution came from. The sound of a zombie being mulched by a lawnmower came from Braindead. One of the sound clips was the Monkey Island theme and we reasoned that it was from Monkey Island 2 since in the first game LeChuck is a ghost pirate, it’s only in the second he became a zombie. QED.
Besides the four rounds of trivia there were pre-show quizzes and a scavenger hunt, both providing points towards the total on the “losers board” (after all, there’s only one winner). You could also pay a gold coin for clues, but since this is a fundraiser that was totally OK and not cheating. As trivia veterans we did very well in the scavenger hunt. Always bring a condom to a trivia night: not for sex – for victory. Finally there was the costume contest, which came down to an arm-wrestle tie-breaker between zombie Margery Tyrell and a white walker. Margery won after a fierce struggle, showing her resolve to be Queen both of Westeros and of the undead.
Overall it was a fun night. I miss the ambiance of the earlier Mount Stromlo location but the Civic Hellenic Club is much easier to access and the food there is always great. In the end we came second, although it was hard to feel any ire towards the victorious team – the Shawn of the Dead-themed “The Winchester”. William Shatnerface will be at the next one too, continuing to take trivia extremely seriously.
Canberra Roller Derby League’s next bout is September 20 at the Southern Cross Stadium. Tickets available at: http://www.moshtix.com.au/v2/event/canberra-roller-derby-september-20/71618