On a more cheerful note

Put your average person in a television studio, pin a microphone to his chest and – well to be fair, how many of us would be up to the challenge? Not many, judging by these replies.

University Challenge

Bamber Gascoigne: What was Ghandi’s first name?
Contestant: Goosey, Goosey?

The Weakest Link

Anne Robinson: In traffic, what “J” is where two roads meet?
Contestant: Jool carriageway.

Anne Robinson: Which Italian city is overlooked by Vesuvius?
Contestant: Bombay.

Anne Robinson: What insect is commonly found hovering above lakes?
Contestant: Crocodiles.
Anne Robinson: Wh…?
Contestant (interrupting): Pass!

Anne Robinson: In olden times, what were minstrels, travelling entertainers or chocolate salesmen?
Contestant: Chocolate salesmen.

Anne Robinson: The Bible, the New Testament. The Four Gospels were written by Matthew, Mark, Luke and…?
Contestant: (long pause) Joe?

Anne Robinson: Who was a famous Indian leader, whose name begins with G, revered by millions, who was assassinated and received a state funeral?
Contestant: Geronimo!

National Lottery Jet Set

Eamonn Holmes: What’s the name of the playwright commonly known by the initials G.B.S.?
Contestant: William Shakespeare.

Chris Serle Show, BBC Bristol

Searle: In which European country is Mount Etna?
Caller: Japan.
Searle: I did say which European country, so in case you didn’t hear that, I can let you try again.
Caller: Er… Mexico?

Family Fortunes

1) Something a blind man might use? – A Sword

2) A song with the word Moon in the title? – Blue Suede Moon

3) Name the capital of France? – F

4) Name a bird with a long Neck? – Naomi Campbell

5) Name an occupation where you might need a torch? – A burglar

6) Where is the Taj Mahal? – Opposite the Dental Hospital

7) What is Hitler’s first name? – Heil

8) A famous Scotsman? – Jock

9) Some famous brothers? – Bonnie and Clyde.

10) A dangerous race? – The Arabs

11) Something that floats in a bath? – Water

12) An item of clothing worn by the Three Musketeers? – A horse

13) Something you wear on a beach? – A deckchair

14) A famous Royal? – Mail

15) Something that flies that doesn’t have an engine? – A bicycle with wings

16) A famous bridge? – The Bridge Over Troubled Waters

17) Something a cat does? – Goes to the toilet

18) Something you do in the bathroom? – Decorate

19) A method of securing your home? – Put the kettle on

20) Something associated with pigs? – The Police

21) A sign of the Zodiac? – April

22) Something people might be allergic to? – Skiing

23) Something you do before you go to bed? – Sleep

24) Something you put on walls? – A roof

25) Something slippery? – A conman

26) A kind of ache? – A fillet of fish

27) A jacket potato topping? – Jam

28) A food that can be brown or white? – A potato

29) Something sold by gypsies? – Bananas

30) Something red? – My sweater

Radio Lincolnshire phone-in

Presenter: Which is the largest Spanish-speaking country in the world?
Contestant: Barcelona.
Presenter: I was really after the name of a country.
Contestant: I’m sorry, I don’t know the names of any countries in Spain.

Steve Wright Show, Radio 2

Wright: On which continent would you find the River Danube?
Contestant: India.

Wright: What is the Italian word for motorway?
Contestant: Espresso.

Wright: What is the capital of Australia? And it’s not Sydney.
Contestant: Sydney.

This Morning

Judy Finnegan: The American TV show ‘The Sopranos’ is about opera. True or false?
Contestant: True?
Judy Finnegan: No, actually, it’s about the Mafia. But it is an American TV show, so I’ll give you that.

BBC Radio Newcastle

Paul Wappat: How long did the Six Day War between Egypt and Israel last?
Contestant (after long pause): Fourteen days.

Bob Hope birthday quiz, LBC

Presenter: Bob Hope was the fifth of how many sons?
Contestant: Four

BBC GMR, Phil Wood Show

Wood: What “K” could be described as the Islamic Bible?
Contestant: Er…
Wood: It’s got two syllables… Kor…
Contestant: Blimey?
Wood: Ha ha ha ha no. The past participle of run…
Contestant: (Silence)
Wood: OK, try it another way. Today I run, yesterday I…
Contestant: Walked?

Daryl’s Drivetime, Virgin Radio

Daryl Denham: In which country would you spend shekels?
Contestant: Holland?
Daryl Denham: Try the next letter of the alphabet.
Contestant: Iceland? Ireland?
Daryl Denham (helpfully): It’s a bad line. Did you say Israel?
Contestant: No.


But the best, best, bestest of them all is a wonderful lady from Liverpool faced with this question:

Sir Walter Raleigh is credited with introducing tobacco to this country. What else did he bring?

Go on, have a listen.

5 Responses to “On a more cheerful note”

  1. Alison
    June 20th, 2006 19:27

    This one got me laughing:

    Wright: What is the capital of Australia? And it’s not Sydney.
    Contestant: Sydney.


  2. jan
    June 20th, 2006 23:54

    All too funny, but “Heil” Hitler actually made me lol and I seldom lol.

  3. Karan
    June 21st, 2006 06:31


  4. Clair
    June 21st, 2006 09:57

    Oh dear. Love the pot ate toes.

  5. Gert
    June 23rd, 2006 10:47

    Some of them are obviously people taking the piss. Some people betray a current preoccupation (decorating hte bathroom!). Some are perhaps genuine mistakes in the heat of the moment (I took years to live down my answer on Fifteen to One that Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia are the Balkan states).

    But far too many betray a basic lack of knowledge of language or a total lack of actual general knowledge outside a very narrow reference of popular culture. Or a total inability to think in the slightest bit laterally.

    These people get to vote.

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