I received an invite from my friend Sunny, the one who last year tried to kill me in a trek at Green Lakes, to break out of my mold and participate in what I’m calling Trivia Night at Wise Guys, the comedy club/restaurant that has made its way around the city and multiple locations over the past, what, at least 25 years? Now it’s located at 201 S Salina St in the location of a restaurant that’s also gone by multiple names over the years, whose name I had trouble remembering but now remember it was the former Traditions Restaurant; I’m even in a video somewhere eating there.

On the weekends the basement is home to the comedy area, but on Tuesday nights the trivia is in the bar area, where they’ll serve food and of course drink, but it’s all about trivia. The guy running the questions is named Steve, and he was kind of a whirling dervish of energy as he worked the game and kept everyone juiced up, which has to be a challenge for a Tuesday night at any time of the year.

What you do is break into teams or play as an individual. There’s a theme for each night, and when I went the theme was James Bond, which I thought would immediately mean I was going to lose because I’ve never really seen a James Bond movie (I saw Goldfinger when I was 5 years old but remember nothing except a lady covered in gold). Anyway, he asks a question, you have a couple of minutes to come up with an answer that you write down on a Post-It note and take to the front, and you get so many points for getting it correct. At the end of a round, of which there are 3, you have the opportunity to bet as many points as you’ve accumulated towards a final hard question, and the team that comes out ahead wins.

Sunny and I were initially the only ones on our team, but we were eventually joined by two other people, a guy named Ethan and his girlfriend Kaleigh, an actress who had a prominent role in the production of Urinetown I saw last year that Sunny was also in. Turned out Ethan knew his Bond stuff so we actually tied for the lead at round two, which led to each team picking a representative to answer a bunch of questions in 30 seconds from a chosen field. Kaleigh turned out to be the winner, and our team won a round of shots, which didn’t help me because I don’t drink, but that’s not what it’s all about anyway.

It was a fun time, and as it turned out we weren’t the only people there, as it seems that every bar has regulars and this one was no exception, as it included a lady wearing the shoes I got a picture of. Unfortunately, lighting wasn’t great, so none of the pictures I took, including of the little sign that was just to the right of the table we were sitting at, came out great.

I might have to try it again some day, but I’ll admit that I missed watching both poker and the Olympics that night. Still, the night included my getting a bag full of Doubletree chocolate chip cookies, for whom I have to thank vociferously the lovely Kevin Magdon (you get called lovely if you give me a bunch of free cookies), so I’m not close to complaining. 😉

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