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Harburn Village Hall - Quiz

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Yes, the highest number of teams that I have ever seen at the Quiz! writes Chairman Dave
16 teams, most local, but some from as far away as West Calder and Edinburgh. Around 70 bodies crammed into the Hall, most brought food, so we were okay if we had become trapped for several days.
Thank you to all who provided a fantastic supper...thank you to our Lunch Klub members( you know...the auld yins that use the Hall on a friday to save on their heating and food bills) for putting all the tables out...and thank you to all who turned up on our changed date, I hope you enjoyed the evening and thank you for contributing £160 to the Hall, which is a great result as the Quiz Nite is just for a convivial get together for the Community rather than a serious money earner.
A special thanks to Bamber Dobson for providing his question master skills, some easy questions, some hard, some controversial and some downright daft....but the highlight was the music round...no guitar only drums.
To the Quiz itself...some new teams, some new pairings of teams, and great to see some new residents...Lynsey and Jim, newest to the Harburn row unfortunately were teamed up with the remnants of "the greatest quiz team ever"Smartypants who reduced to just pants last year, with the help of Lynsey and Jim have become the Fresh Pants of 2016.
So would the fresh pants be pulled up from the ankles of despair to enable a proud display or would they receive a good spanking...
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New pairings of "a well struck iron" (they were stuck in a bunker after round 3), "odds and sods"(dug their own hole in round2), "pretenders"(said they did well but they didnt, "FARS" (found round 5 more of a farce) and "the David Dobson Fan Club"(were too busy trying to get selfies with their great hero) would be up against regulars such as the 2 Idle teams, who as usual, are anything but, however, perhaps Roan had had a late night as not firing on all cylinders they both idled in the background. Also 2 Ross teams, new to the quiz, and it showed as they were preoccupied by Festival matters...11th June, Volunteers still required...see Joe for details...
Great to see Nicola with the "Google it" team, but their signal was not strong enough. 2 WRI teams, as always entered, but the "not the calendar girls" struggled with being reduced to the WI earlier in the year. "The Crafters" usually near the top three just didnt have the materials this time.
So, to the top three...
Fresh Pants could not be pulled up any further and were left exposed in third place.
Four points ahead of them were last years 1st and 2nd, Haritt Remains and the Torphin Ringers...after a tie break that went into the wee small hours...the teams that finished 1st and 2nd last year stayed 1st and 2nd this year.
A great challenge by the Ringers but not enough as (including the smart element of Smartypants) the Haritt Remains were worthy winners.
quiz 16 quiz 16



Extra Time and Sudden Death Shoot Out at The Hall.

A record entry of 16 teams took to the Hall on Friday evening to partake in the annual joust for Quiz Supremacy, writes Allan Maclauglan and in true Harburn tradition a nail biting and entertaining evening of Quizzing ensued.
The title was retained at the 11th hour, but this 'match' was won earlier in the evening at the toss of the coin. 
Team captain (and former Smarty Pant) John Wilkinson's selection of the table between the the Torphin Ringers and the Fresh Pants teams, thus gaining the strategic advantage of holding the middle ground throughout the evening, before leading the surge which saw team Harrit Re Mains retain their title was the critical tactical factor.
Tied on 62 points each, extra time was tied on a further 3 each, it took a sudden death shoot out to settle the outcome as the holders swept past The Torphin Ringers by a single point to retain the trophy. The newly laundered Fresh Pants team, bolstered by the recruitment of Harburn newcomers Jim and Lynsey, finished in third place.
Quiz impresario David "Bamber" Dobson presided over a very mixed and varied eight rounds of Quizzing including his own unique take on the Music round which held his audience spell bound as he augmented the soundtracks with a display of his own percussive virtuousity.
The evening concluded with yet another post Quiz feast of snacks, sweets and savouries provided washed down with teas, coffees and soft drinks. In a convivial atmosphere tactics were reviewed, heads were shaken, and transfer fees negotiated for next year's eagerly awaited event.




The first part of the sensational story appeared ON THIS SITE a matter of hours before the Quiz Night itself:

Who would believe in 2003 that twelve years later Rangers would not be in the top flight football league and that the Labour Party would only have 1 MP in Scotland.
One further change that seems inconceivable...Smartypants...the finest Quiz team in Quiz history are no longer in existence.
One thinks back to their many wins at the Harburn Quiz...in fact, in their twelve years were never out of the top three.

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Then there was the Intergalactic Quiz and victory at the prestigious Tarbrax Quiz.
Where did it all go wrong...
Smartypants were made up of David McDonald, manager. John Wilkinson, star player. Linda McDonald, first aider. and a guest player, depending on their form...usually a MacLaughlan or a Vernham.
It was reported on SKY News yesterday that star player Wilkinson claimed that "McDonald had lost the dressing room" and that Wilkinson was looking to secure his future elsewhere, perhaps a big money move to Europe.
Meanwhile the Edinburgh Evening News said that Wilkinson had been approached by the MacLaughlan team and had signed before the end of the May transfer window and that would allow him to play in the Harburn Quiz.
The Courier were told by an insider that McDonald claimed "It was time for Wilkinson to go, he was even forgetting to bring a pencil to training" Linda McDonald added "on one occasion I had to treat him for a splinter injury during a quiz, he was becoming a liability"
However, the Harburn Times revealed that the McDonalds had approached the Vernhams in a last gasp attempt to enter Smartypants in the 2015 Harburn Quiz...but a spokesman for the Vernhams said "we told them to piss off".
BBC have just reported, that this week, as well as Ed Milliband and Nick Clegg, David McDonald has handed in his resignation and plans to serve teas and sausage rolls at the Quiz night.

Intrigued by this last point (see red above) we sent our Quiz Mole to investigate. Did this in fact happen, we asked. The following was released from the McD Press Office.........Indeed...Mrs McDonald did warm the sausage rolls....and Mr McDonald, instead of serving the said sausage rolls , actually ate them!


Thank you to all the participating teams, to the Ladies of Harburn for the food, to Helen Bissett for providing a magnificent new Trophy and, last but not least, David Dobson for a well constructed quiz that gave all the teams a feeling of...we are doing well here...we may even beat the Smartypants.
12 teams, a great turn out, many familiar names...Not the Calendar Girls, Google it and  The Crafters...some new...Guys Guys...Harritt ReMains and Pants (formerly Smartypants...but without the Smart element...see Press release).
As already mentioned David (Bamber) Dobson served up, possibly his best ever quiz questions...well done David.
The Hall, in the beginning, starting off..quiet, respectful and serious...but as the night continued drink took hold...especially with the WRI teams... a small fight broke out, but fortunately Guy Vernham  was close to a fire extinguisher and quickly calmed the situation by pointing it at the combatants.
The question on the New the Testament...how many books??...some of us, who had won the Bible prize at school, found this difficult but young Roan Idle was the only one that knew it was 27...well done Roan.
At the end of the night Harritt ReMains were the winners... was it due to having 2 previous Smartypants members in their team or because Andrew and Lorna are smarter than the ol d bearded one s .
Second were the Torphin Ringers, last years winners, who, suffering from "baby brain" (first night out after new baby) found it difficult to keep up with the Harritt squad.
quiz 15 Pictures: Top Left: David 'Bamber' Dobson managed to keep an unruly congregation in check. Almost.
Top right, the TORPHIN RINGERS cogitate. Other people consider, the Ringers cogitate. First night out for new baby couple, Kirsty and Ian
Below left: Mary warms up for her now-notorious victory dance celebrating her in-depth knowledge of her specialist subject: The Life and Times of Peppa Pig.
The Idle team pictured bottom right, with their Expert on the Bible, Roan.
Finally, left, Lorna picks up the trophy for the top team, the Harrit ReMains. Little do the team members realise that McDonald, ex manager of SmartyPants, is close colleague of Vladimir Putin. Will they be round to participate next year one wonders?

Third were Guy and his Guys, who sneaked past the Crafters in a tie break...Mary MacL  was over the moon that she knew the name of Peppa Pigs brother...sadly, I also knew it was George...
Interestingly, 5th were the Pants team...if only they had their Smart element...
All the other teams were not far behind as only 2 points separated third to sixth.
A great night...
Two interesting points...5 cars were abandoned at the Hall, new drink driving rules seem to be working...and one of the Torphin Ringers was accidentally locked in the toilets when we were leaving...luckily his cries were heard, as we estimate the toilets would not have been used until the Festival on June 13th...
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D MCD et al


What a night, as always, good food, good chat, and a well constructed quiz from Bamber Dobson.
Mr Dobson...Bamber...gave us all a chance of winning by a mix of easy, not so easy and a few head scratchers. As usual his music round was greeted by a mix of "no, he's got the guitar out" and "brilliant".
I think, the highest number of teams entered ever...emergency photocopies were rushed off for...and £130 was contributed to the Hall.
The Good Ladies of Harburn were also on top form, their food was lovely...but remember they also clear up, do teas and are last to leave...I think we underestimate the amount of effort they put in to an evening like this. Message to other ladies of Harburn...you know who you are...come forward. (end of grovel from Chairman D........whether he has done enough to save himself is another matter - Ed)

As for the men of Harburn, they ate, drank, chatted and cleared away every table and chair...all done in a manly fashion.
So...to the teams...I may forget some names...two Idle teams...even Roan struggled with the cartoon questions...a Milne team, very well mannered...the Harburn Blues were pushed back into the lower divisions and are in administration, Hermand and Shuttlehall, were they a firm of solicitors...the Crafters again a good performance, and of course the  Not the Calendar Girls...girls eh...

Now we move from the others to...in a particular order...the top six...David Dobson Fan Club, clearly not enough fags and booze was offered as a bribe as they ended up sixth, next Harburn Accies...history reveals they did win it once but have been off form for a while...in fourth place, the first time since 2004...ten long years...they have been out of the top three, yes, Smartypants, seen in complete disarray drinking Whisky, eating cheese and generally arguing about Benny Hill.

Third place went to "Google It" and many thought they might have...but if they did surely they would have won. Well done Nicola and family.
Second were "The Luvvies" Jeff and his acting pals went for the lead role but fell slipped down below the title, just.......still at least they weren't the comic duo (see smartypants).
Top dogs this year were "The Torphin Ringers"...newcomers to Harburn, Ian and Kirsty, had clearly brought in friends who had seen action on University Challenge or Mastermind as they swept aside all the other teams to win by quite a margin...well done, a deserved and well earned victory.
Stop Press/Keyboard...Smartypants...off for some warm weather training...can they once again be pulled up from the ankles of despair to top the Ringers next year...or will the Accies burst through from the rear...


You are invited to send a team(s) to our annual Quiz Night on Saturday 26th April 2014 at7.30pm.  The format  will be similar to last year ie. Teams may consist of up to 6 members,cost per team being £25 ,which includes tea etc.,and the prize for the winning team is £75.

If you would like to take part but cannot get a team just let me know & we will complete your team for you on the night.Our annual Easter Draw takes place at this event,1st prize £50,so you might like to try your luck at that.  

Also you may want to have a refreshment & relax for a little while afterwards.If you think this might be your cup of tea please reply to the address or telephone number below,if not please pass the invite to a friend,thank you.

Grace Kenneway, 234 Woodside Terrace,Tarbrax, West Calder.EHSS 8XB Or Tel. 01501785500.

InterGALActic Quiz...or may the Forth be with you.
A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away...(West Lothian)

It is a period of civil war (Gala Quiz night). Rebel spaceships( Davids Laguna Estate), striking from a hidden base (Harburn Festival), have won their first victory against the evil Galactic Empire (2008 was the only time!).

During the battle, Rebel spies managed to steal secret plans to the Empire's(Torphicen) ultimate weapon, the Death Star( Bottle Bank Competition), an armored space station with enough power to destroy an entire Cooncil.

Pursued by the Empire's sinister agents, Princess Leia(Linda McDonald) races home aboard her starship, custodian of the stolen plans that can save her people and restore freedom to the galaxy...

Okay, I have got a bit carried away with the Starwars  theme but this must be the umpteenth quiz report and I am running out of scenarios.

We did find out Torphicen use the Torphicen Inns empties to win the Bottle Bank Competition.
So this was our chance to get revenge in the InterGALActic Quiz. The team...Han Solo (David McDonald), his trusty side kick Chewbacca (Guy Vernham), the one with the knowledge Yoda (John Wilkinson), Princess Leia (Linda McDonald) and their mascot R2D2 (Lilian Vernham).
Torphicen hosted a good varied quiz...good stovies...good company and good fun.
The competition is open to all GALA committees in West Lothian. Harburn has won (2008), and has finished second six times and fourth twice...yep, this time was our second fourth place.
The venue was the Torphicen Inn, and guess what, we had lots of empties but forgot to take them...thus helping Torphicen in next years Bottle Bank Competition...now you see why we were fourth.

Already the Festival Committee are looking for new volunteers...not just for the Festival...but the Quiz too.
May the fourth be with you.

Dave McD


A request by Quizmeister David Dobson to state who we were and where we came from revealed that the 8 competing teams came from as far afield as the Lang Wang and the Hermand Hinterland. Strangely, Smarty Pants’ declaration was greeted by boos from the assembled, otherwise amiable, contenders – something perhaps to do with the fact that they had placed themselves in the front row in the best “Teacher’s Pet” tradition?


Formalities over, we settled down to the usual wide ranging questions, interrupted only occasionally by those who like to rule out any ambiguity and entertained by answers such as that supplied by one team to the question, “What do the initials OS stand for in Computing?” It is enough to say here that the second word suggested contained 4 letters, the last of which was T. A break for some really excellent food and we reassembled for the results. Not the Calendar Girls were well pleased with themselves by beating last year’s champions, Harburn Accies, into 4 th place. Third came The Crafters (aka The Crofters, David can be excused a slip of the tongue at the end of a long night) and then the tension mounted. The Bogsiders , having had an illegal half mark disallowed, had tied for 1 st place with, yes you’ve guessed it, Smarty Pants! After a 5 question tie breaker, yes, you’ve guessed it, Smarty Pants had done it again. It was another greatly entertaining evening. Our thanks to Davids D and McD for the organisation and questions and to those who provided the much needed refreshments. JB

Another View or The Biggest Comeback since the Spice Girls

As usual the atmosphere of friends, drink, village hall food, and good chat, the signature of the Harburn Quiz night, once again made this an excellent way to spend a spring evening. Our Quiz Master David (Bamber) Dobson was on top form, the questions were well worked, all the teams were within around ten points of each other, everyone was in with a chance of being second. The Ladies of Harburn "just made the food appear" and it was gone... Bamber's idea of having the quiz followed by the food is so much better than a "half time" approach as people could relax and chat before the announcement of who would get the second and third place trophies. The teams this year were of good quality and quantity. Many new faces came along and we hope they enjoyed the quiz and will return next year. The Tuxworth team put ina great effort but we fear Nicola was concentrating on her performance at the Howden Park Centre in "Blackfriers Wynd" Bruce and Jo had guests in their team, and Guy reported an excellent middle section of the quiz but that a poor start and finish dropped them back. The WRI Calendar Girls led by El Presidente Juliet, were on top form and finished 4th ahead of last years winners Harburn Accies who were off form...too many holidays in the sun and fun running. John and Tilly were joined by two Tarbrax Lazy Y saloon girls (see Tarbrax quiz report in the HT) so were out of the running. The Dobson and McChesneys, even with questions on Panto songs, electricity and BAE equipment for aircraft...related to the quiz master too...still came up short. The Idle team were anything but as Roan did his best to help them with his knowledge of Mr Men. The Church team that always supports us by coming along each year found that like an internet signal, divine intervention doesnt work in the Hall. Third place went to the Crafters, a well constructed effort as they manufactured a good finish. Well done to Sue and Frank.

quiz nites

Second place, after a nailbiting tie break, went to the Bogsiders, Jerry and Denise were joined by the "Wooley Jumpers" duo of Ray and Peter, but jetlag may have affected Peter's performance...

The Winners... Who else... the original... the best...the one and only...they are back...with a vengeance...remember the quotes from last year..."aye, they are too old", "ah never liked them anyway", "served them right" and "aye, right up thim"... Well, over the past year "The Special One" John W was taken by Heather to a retreat in Wales where a combination of therapies including yogic flying, meditation, welsh rarebit and copious amounts of red wine has seen his Mojo return. Allan MacL "The Big One" visited a Malawi witch doctor where after living with a pride of Lions and drinking copious amounts of red wine has come roaring back. Linda McD "The Pretty One" went off to an Astrological retreat where she reconfigured her position within the Cosmos and absorbed the power of the stars with copious amounts of red wine, so we knew May 17th was our destiny.

David McD "The Stupid One" visited both the Caucaus Mountains and his spiritual home of Madeira where he found himself questioning the absorption of knowledge...is it better via the flat screen or the cathode ray tube and he too had copious amounts of red wine. Pulled up from the ankles of despair...the SMARTYPANTS once again are the team to beat. So next year...SMARTYPANTS will be back...think you could spank them? Go on...they are already looking forward to it.

DMCD (Photos: Heidi)
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Two Reports …………….

Once again a great Quiz Nite. A warm Hall, a wet night, a few drinks, a bit of a laugh, good conversation, much head scratching, great food and great friends...a fine end to a busy week. David "Bamber" Dobson, a fine quiz master, gave us an array of questions that were sometimes easy, sometimes hard and sometimes confusing but always entertaining...although when he fires up his guitar you know he will play every note and more. Well done David.

The food, to use a well worn phrase, "just appears". Sandwiches, sausage rolls, cakes and tea, the very essence of Village Hall food. Brilliant and thank you to all the ladies of Harburn for making it "just appear". The men of course made it disappear. Congratulations to the Winners "Harburn Accies" who managed to dip for the line just ahead of the formerly "Smartypants" who were a nose in front of "the ragged troosers". The Accies consisted of John and Moira (our newest residents) and Agnes and Rob (previous newest residents)...is there a theme here...the longer you live in Harburn the more your mind empties! I thought it may be nice to look back on the history of the Quiz Champs.

1992...The Thinking Thespians 1993...The Galloping Farmers
1994...The Galloping Farmers 1996...The Galloping Farmers
1997...Brookbank Cottage 1998...Brookbank Cottage
1999...The Flounderers 2000...The Chocoholics
2001...Us 2002...Port William Extension
2003...Smartypants 2004...Smartypants
2005...Phil, Bill and Ben 2006...The Chancers
2007...The Rejects 2008...Smartypants
2009...Smartypants 2010...Smartypants
2011...Stargazers 2012...Harburn Accies.



quiz winners


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