Wednesday, February 11, 2009

I do not know how far it is to the center of the earth.

Tuesday night trivia at the Liberal Cup has been on a break for the last six weeks, which is fine because I've been too busy to go in any case. Last night, however, Quizmaster Geoff invited the most competitive teams back for a "Tournament of Champions," before the regular pub quiz resumes next Tuesday.

My team, Clueless, competed against four others, and finished in a shameful (but close) fourth place. One of the questions we got wrong was this one, which I gave a completely incorrect answer to because I forgot the difference between diameter and circumference.

Even if I had remembered that circumference = pi x radius-squared, I would not have been able to back out the radius from remembering that the earth is approximately 25,000 miles around (actually, 24,859.82, but what's a hundred miles among friends). These spacial concepts are something my brain just doesn't do. I am bad at space and bad at time, and if I didn't have a near-photographic memory for words, I'd be sweeping streets for a living.

Actually, street sweepers have a pension plan and better health insurance than I do. It's probably time for me to think about a career change.

Five Random Songs

"I'll Meet You Halfway," The Partridge Family. I'm not ashamed of this being in my iTunes. Not a bit. If I had a Shaun Cassidy record in my iTunes, I might be ashamed of that... good thing I only have those on cassette.

"Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues," Bob Dylan. Great bar music. I don't miss a lot about Los Angeles; I miss Barney's Beanery, which for some reason I think of when I hear this song.

"It's Alright Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)," Bob Dylan. Some early Dylan is so self-conscious, so fraught with the effort to be meaningful, that it's hard for me to listen to. This goes in that category.

"Johnny Strikes Up the Band," Warren Zevon. Warren Zevon's first major commercial release may have been his best cohesive work. Not that he didn't write great songs after this -- and Sentimental Hygiene is a beautiful album -- but I'd put Excitable Boy on a list of top ten rock albums of all time. Hard to start so high.

"Loco-Motion," Little Eva. This song reminds me that it's NCAA basketball season. Only 27 days until the Big East tournament begins!


Karen Olson said...

We've got the first two seasons of The Partridge Family on DVD. And my daughter's got one of the albums on CD.

And I remember every word to every song. Scary. I will be singing these songs in the nursing home, since they will be the only things I will remember when I'm old.

Anonymous said...

Too early to make the brain drag up old formulae
Isn't the radius
the circumference divided by 2 pi?

annoying RBo

Anonymous said...

I hate to make my first comment in months and have it be a correction, but "Johnny..." was on "Excitable Boy," W.Z.'s second Elektra/Asylum album...its predecessor, the self-titled "Warren Zevon," was pretty swell in its own right.
Scott P.

AnswerGirl said...

You are correct, Scott, which is why I said "first _major_" -- hedging my bets there -- because "Warren Zevon" was out of print for some time, and the audio quality on the CD I have is very poor. Yes, it does include "Hasten Down the Wind," "Mohammed's Radio," and "The French Inhaler," but I stand by my assessment of "Excitable Boy" as his strongest single album.