Q: Note: This is a repeat of an old teaser that
was never answered correctly. One's T-shirt depicted the logo of the
University of California at Santa Cruz; the other's T-shirt said, "I'm
with stupid". What happened to Ed?
A: "Ed's dead." (Bruce Willis, in the movie _Pulp
Fiction_). The two hitmen wore the T-shirts.
32. A little nuts
Q: This future baron, on receiving a piece of
good news, threw down his spade with the words, "That's the last potato
I'll dig." Who was he and what was the news?
A: Ernest, Baron Rutherford, learning of a
scholarship to Cambridge. ("Little Nut" = nucleus, Rutherford's greatest
Q: This tourist went for his holidays to a beach
resort in a country where English is just one of the primary languages.
While on the beach, he heard a tour guide shoo away some persistent
beggars with the term "vamoose"--which surprised him, as he had only
encountered its use before in old cowboy films and novels about the Wild
West. Its origin, he was informed, was from the Spanish "vamos".
Some time later he heard another tour guide use the term "piss
off" under similar circumstances. The origins of this were clearly
A little later he heard another tour guide use another imperative in
similar circumstances. But this time the term sounded more like "foot
sack". At least--that's the phonetics he thought he heard.
What country was he in, and what are the accepted spelling and
etymology of this term?
A: South Africa. It is usually spelled "voetsek" or
"voetsak" and derives from when a farmer (or boer) might urge his oxen
forward in Afrikaans with "Voort se ek" which derives in turn from the
Dutch "Voort zeg ik" meaning "Forward say I"
34. What only your best friend will tell you
Q: Who judged the bad-breath contest, and what
was the MC's prophetic description of him?
A: Jonathan "Pyke" Hullah, who though a medical
student was referred to as a doctor by the MC. He's the title character
of _The Cunning Man_, by Robertson Davies.
35. Seeing ruby
Q: Who forgot to pass the port?
A: The Bishop of Norwich
36. Ecliptic analogy
Q: Agamemnon is to Gorgon and Hector is to Lion
as Ulysses is to ?
A: Dolphin Eclipse -blocking out -shield
Explanation: As described by Homer, the devices on these hero's shields
37. Capitalist pigs?
Q: Bourgeois tune of the century usually has
lyric adjuring whom?
All people that on earth do dwell, or alternatively, all who dwell
beneath the skies. Ref: "Old Hundredth" (tune of hymn based on Psalm
100), music by Louis Bourgeois, 1510-1561, words attributed to William
All people that on earth do dwell, sing to the Lord with cheerful
voice. Him serve with mirth, his praise forth tell; come ye before
him and rejoice.
Alternative lyrics to this same tune are "From all who dwell beneath the
skies" and "Praise God from whom all blessings flow". Accordingly
anything like "all creatures here below and ye heavenly host" would also
be correct. As long as it's some lyrics to Old Hundredth
38. Dancer's Delight
Q: Aue readers are certainly aware that regulated
house numbers were first introduced to central London in 1760. But how
were addresses found prior to this?
A:The fan patterns over the door
39. Sometimes a cigar is just...
Q: When Sigmund Freud moved from Vienna to
London, he was interviewed by a reporter from The Times. The reporter
asked him to describe the transition from fear to sex. The considered
response from the great man was ...?
A: Funf. (Ein, Zwei, Drei, ...)
40. The hostess with the mostest
Q: Please examine the photo which may be seen by
airline. Note that this question cannot be Googled, and
accordingly it's correct answer will count treble!
Hint: the colour of the jacket is one of the three colours in this
country's flag (which was designed by someone who died in 1821)!
41. Warning to STS sufferers!
Q: What tune are the following words sung to?
First came William, then a second William Henry, Stephen, then a
second Hank Next was Richard called the Lion-Hearted Evil John, then
one more Henry rose to the rank Three more Eds, and Richard came to
power Then three Hanks, one went to London Tower Two more Edwards,
Richard And another couple Henrys All together Kings and Queens of
England Next came Edward, Jane and Bloody Mary Then Elizabethan was
the style Next King James, two Chucks and one more Jimmy Then
together Will and Mary ruled for a while Then reigned Anne, four
Georges, and a Willy Queen Victoria lived near Piccadilly Then two
Eds, three Georges And Elizabeth the Second All together Kings and
Queens of England.
Henry Purcell's "Trumpet Voluntary" Caution The following links don't
work because the site does not allow references to these pages to come
from outside of the site itself - they are provided here for reference
Seems to be the same as Jeremiah Clarke's "The Prince of Denmark's
From the album _Beethoven's Wig_. The lyrics are by Richard Perlmutter,
copyright 2002 by Beethoven's Wig--how do we feel about posting
42. Inflammatory Subject
Q: This pioneer of women's assertiveness was the
inspiration for a poem by one of France's best known authors, a tragedy
by one of Germany's best known dramatists, as well as a poem and a play
by two English authors. Please identify the subject and each of the
A: St Joan of Arc. Voltaire wrote a satirical poem
about her (La Pucelle d'Orléans), Schiller wrote a tragedy (Die Jungfrau
von Orleans), there is a poem by Southey (Joan of Arc) and a drama by
George Bernard Shaw (Saint Joan).
43. One for the zipper
Q: Question: Please consider the following
members of an unordered list:
- Arlington National Cemetery - The USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl
Harbor - The Betsy Ross House - The Alamo Adding an item to this
list will make the list meaningful and complete. Would you be kind
enough to complete this list by adding the final item and explaining
your rationale? Note please that there will be extra credit awarded for
being *very* precise in your response.
A: The Moon. Rationale: These are the 5 places
where the US flag may not be lowered to half-mast.
44. Cryptids, Waltzes, and Hops
Q: Please examine the photograph which may be
seen by clicking here
http://www.totally-official.com/SDC2003/../sdc2003/suspensory.jpg and name the
We would be delighted for any background information you
can provide about this unique piece of urban art!
45. Famous niece
Q: In conjugating the verbs "to build" and "to
write", I used variants in my writings that would not be considered
standard today. Nevertheless my writings are still associated today with
a basic icon of American culture. Who am I?
A: Julia Ward Howe (Battle Hymn of the Republic,
Builded and writ are in the lyrics)
46. Oof dah. East Dakotan Language
Q: Name a vocabulary item used exclusively or
primarily in Minnesota, and provide evidence to that effect.
A: Two possible answers are "duck, duck, grey duck"
for the game everyone else calls "duck, duck, goose", and "whipping
shitties" to mean something like 'skidding around in circles in a car on
a muddy surface'.
47. Like Halma and Chinese Checkers
Q: What were the other names under which the
following games (with slight variations) were marketed and made famous
in the U.S.? * Five hundred * Categories * Salvo No sheep
till someone gets all the right answers in one post, but at least an
extra lamb for extra answers. (One of the games has two correct answers
that the panel knows of.)
A: Rook, Facts in Five or (I think) Scattergories,
48. A flat tonal performer
Q: This music-hall artist was only capable of
producing four distinct notes when performing a cappella. (do, mi, sol,
and the octave do) Nevertheless his fame as a virtuoso lasted for nearly
three decades until the outbreak of WW1. It is said that his dynamic
range extended from the delicate and almost inaudible, to something like
the sound of a dress-maker ripping 2 meters of cotton cloth. Who was
this person and by what stage-name was he generally known?
A: Joseph Pujol, better known as Le Petomane. see
49. Undisturbed in the channel
Q: I was born in the 1930s in the Big Apple, but
my ancestors originally came from a place in what some call "La Manche".
I was married in 1940 and my first daughter (whose name, although in a
different context, was sought in the 1998 SDC - and ultimately comes
from a Hebrew word meaning "married") was born in the same year. When I
went to Hollywood, my husband, whose name might mean "caretaker of trees
from Chichester" or possibly "protector", spent his evenings playing
poker. When I returned from Hollywood in 1941, I went on a tour of the
US. It was during this time that I began walking. After the War, I
returned to New York and had my second child. We named him after a
French word that means "Handsome Look". In 1957 I had twins in a place
that did not talk to Gimbels! Incredible to relate, in 1971 I was born
again(!), this time in a city whose name means "Land of Gold". I am
firmly entrenched in 20th century Americana, and of course you would
recognise my husband immediately as he gave his name to a common
household product. Who am I? My husband?
A: Elsie (the contented Jersey cow). Hubby Elmer
was transferred to Borden's glue division in 1940.
50. You don't know what it is, do you?
Q: Many of us in a.u.e. are of the opinion that
you should never write "Mister" before a surname--you should always
write "Mr. Doe" or "Mr Doe". But all of us would admit one exception to
this rule (other than in literatim quotations). In what situation is it
correct to write out "Mister" before a surname, and what does that
situation have to do with the slug line?
A: In sheet music. "Because something is happening
here,/ But you don't know what it is,/ Do you, Mis-ter Jones?"
51. On reflection
Q: Vampires don't have reflections, but who can
you see *only* in the mirror? (Not the trapeze artist in the corner.)
A: The man talking to the barmaid in Manet's
painting "A Bar at the Folies Bergere".
52. Not quite standard English, but on topic
Q: Two words have fallen off the following
roadside sign. What were they? "Rodeo Sept. 27-28! To sign up junior
for ______ ______', call 555-9876."
A: Mutton bustin'
53. How I wonder what you are
Q: Sometimes a well-known poem or lyric is
translated from its native register to one that reflects another
author's idiolect. For example, an inebriate might chant:
Starkle, starkle, little twink Who the hell am I d'you think? I'm
not under what you call The affluence of inco-hol ...
Please quote the first few lines of another such example of this
particular opus. (We're looking for something more radical than just a
few words changed here and there)
A: The astronomer's version:
Scintillate scintillate globule vivific Fain would I fathom thy
nature specific Loftily poised in ether capacious Highly resembling
a gem carbonaceous
54. Panelist's revenge
Q: It's well-equipped, with a working Audible
Warning Of Approach and other practical and pleasing adornments. You're
welcome to borrow it, but, despite my wishes to the contrary, I can't
give it to you. Why not?
A: I borrowed it. Lyrics: Bike, by Pink Floyd
I've got a bike You can ride it if you like It's got a
basket, a bell that rings, And things that make it look good. I'd
give it to you if I could, But I borrowed it.
PS: Answers must be exact, or arbitrarily close. A guess such as "It's
not mine" is not correct. There was too much of that going on last time
round - a panellist jumping in with a "Close enough" far too early.
55. Crystalline salts unidirectional
Q: Please consider the following unordered list:
Oath, Figure, Generous, Troy, Galileo. Removing an item will make the
list meaningful and consistent. Which item should be removed? Why?
A: Figure should be removed! The other horses have
won the Epsom Derby at Epsom Downs.
56. Eponymous kernels of leafy involucres in controlled
Q: This 17th century cleric used the various
fruits, herbs, and berries native to his home in northern Italy to
develop a beverage which now bears his name. Please name this beverage.
A: Frangelico Note - the reference in the slug
is to fermented hazelnuts
57. Ahi te guacho
Q: At a Sonic drive-in in northern New Mexico you
hear the following short dialogue. Please rewrite it so it can be
understood widely in the English-speaking world:
"How's it going?"
"ATM, carnal knowledge. Me and Michelle just cruised up to El Vado and
threw a fierce munch, and we had us a couple tallboys, and then she told
me she had go to Christine's, so I drove her to her cousin Christine's
in Dixon, no, but she's all, 'No, stupid, they're gonna put me the do!'
So then I snapped, and I took her to Christine's in Española and then I
was just peelin' it for a while, but now I gotta go pick her up, so
we'll see you later."
A: ATM, though pronounced in English, is short for
Mexican Spanish "a toda madre", excellently. carnal knowledge =
Mexican Spanish "carnal", brother (friend)
Cruise = drive
Throw a munch = have a snack or picnic
Fierce = excellent (can also mean striking, formidable, etc.)
Tallboy = long-necked bottle of beer
No = if you know what I mean
Put me the do = give me a new coiffure
Snap = understand suddenly, catch on
Peeling it = masturbating, wasting time
We'll see you later = I'll see you later
58. White men can't jump?
Q: Albino who jumped to the head of his class to
become a 20th Century world leader was best known by what name?
A: Pope John Paul I. Ref: Cardinal Albino
Luciani was elected Pope by the College of Cardinals on August 26, 1978.
(He died on September 28, 1978.)
Q: This businessman went down to the market-place
in the piazza to negotiate a loan from a fellow merchant. But the latter
demurred, saying "They have destroyed my counter!".
How would we express a similar piece of news in English today? And
please give any etymological connection to the above story.
A: The man had been declared bankrupt - from "banca
rotta" = a broken bench or counter. The word 'bankrupt' originates from
this term and refers to medieval times in Italy when it was the custom
to smash the counter of a banker or money-lender who became insolvent.
60. A rigged question
Q: You are magically transported to Kazan! In the
central part of the city, you encounter a well-dressed, middle-aged
woman who is walking a poodle. You notice that the poodle is male.
What's his name?
A: Jerry (or Cyrillic equivalent)
61. Black and White Cows
Q: This one's bigger brother is in Norfolk; this
one seems to be preparing to decorate; this one sounds like fun; this
one has twins everywhere. Where and what are they?
A: They are towns on The Isle of Wight, England.
Specifically Yarmouth, Sandown, Ryde and Newport (Cowes would have been
62. Royal Salute!
Q: On 14 May 2003, the Queen's Official Birthday,
the BBC reported the following:
"A 62-gun salute was fired from the gun wharf at the Tower of London, by
the Honourable Artillery Company. Its 105mm light guns fired one round
every 10 seconds and the salute took six minutes and 20 seconds to
fire." The editors at Totally Official believe this report is not
accurate and invite you to explain why.
A: The BBC made a cock-up. (62 - 1) * 10 = 610 = 10
minutes and 10 seconds.
63. Huckleberry resistance
Q: Please examine the photo that may be seen by
general locale. Promptness and exactititude would be
A: Peter's Fortress, Saint Petersburg, Russia
64. Who about who?
Q: Some folks at Totally Official dot Com enjoy
the Sunday Times! Here's an excerpt from a Sunday Times article that
appeared in the same decade that a US President was assassinated. Please
examine this excerpt and tell us  who was the author? and  who was
the author referring to? Of course this is a toughie (you can *forget*
Google), but it's fair; and the excerpt provides all the needed
Here's the excerpt:
"...Every time you get set he jabs you off balance by wanting to do a
love scene on top of the Jefferson Memorial or something like that.
...He has a strong feeling for stage business and mood and background,
not so much for the guts of the business. I guess that's why some of his
pictures lose their grip on logic and turn into wild chases. Well, it's
not the worst way to make a picture. His idea of characters is rather
primitive. Nice Young Man, Society Girl, Frightened Woman, Sneaky Old
Beldam, Spy, Comic Relief, and so on. But he is as nice as can be to
Panel hint if needed: Of course we could shower you with hints, or
bate you with tips. OK, here's a thought: a particular flower in a
particular pigment is used as a figure of speech in English usage to
mean "something impossible". Hope that helps!
Second Panel hint if needed: Of course we can provide another hint to
keep this question from going south. Rather than south, reverse your
direction by 180 degrees and then take that which is 45 degrees to your
left. That would be for air travel, for ground travel you might try a
train. Whilst on the train be careful that a bachelor with three sons
doesn't do something he will regret!
A: Raymond Chandler on Alfred Hitchcock
65. Reporters want to know
Q: Suppose, at a press conference, reporters ask
you the following series of questions: And? What? And?
What? And what? Yeah? When? What would be your answer to
the last question?
A: "When we both reached for the gun!" (These are
lyrics from the song "We Both Reached for the Gun" from the musical and
66. Not on first
Q: Add the missing clause at the beginning of
this sentence: "Me is who, who is he, and he is she."
A:'Oti is me. (We should probably accept any
reasonable spelling, including "oaty", and if we'll allow stretching a
point, maybe "li" or any homophone.) These are Hebrew words--'oti means
me, mi means who, hu' means he, and hi' means she. (Li means to me or
for me, but it's a more common word than 'oti, as I recall.)
The name of these ruins is reflected in the name of the country where
they are located. Where are they?
68. Care for a turn around the piano Darling
Q: Add another item to this series, and explain
why: 0. Strindberg 1. Evangelion 2. Jim Theis 3. Kal-El
4. Kirsten Storms 5. ?????
A: Any pop-culture reference to "Radon" will be
accepted as correct. (All the items in the series clue noble gases: the
online cartoon _Strindberg and Helium_; the Japanese anime series _Neon
Genesis Evangelion_; _The Eye of Argon_ by Jim Theis, reputedly the
worst fantasy story ever written; Superman is from the planet Krypton;
the TV-movie _Zenon, Girl of the 21st Century_, starring Kirsten Storms
as Zenon. If anyone can come up with a better clue than that for
"Xenon", I'm all ears.)