Thursday, March 22, 2007


No, it wasn't a football match, but 9.15am in the Finance Department of the Firm where I work in London. "Barry" my 46 year old colleague had just arrived and wanted to celebrate the result of the office quiz the night before.

Yes, Barry and I were on the team that marginally won the quiz. I had decided to keep things under my hat "the morning after" as the "night before" had ended with emotions running high. The quiz was basically a general knowledge quiz between 9 different teams drawn from the Finance Department in order to raise money for Comic Relief Day.

The team I was on had the advantage of a relatively high age, giving a boost where general knowledge was concerned. Barry even came within 3 of guessing how many countries in Africa there were- his 56 to the actual 53. We barely put a foot wrong in terms of silly mistakes although some questions were beyond our "senior" age profile. Despite being the "baby" of the team even I was stumped on the name of the newest "Sugarbabe". Slightly creepily but uselessly Barry said "I can picture her right now".

Despite these minor failings we scraped into a half point victory over our nearest rivals. At that point, under the influence of alcohol, rolled up balls of paper and accusations of cheating began flying.

I had to leave quite promptly for the journey home but not before "a good looking but knows it" female colleague had demanded my chocolate egg prize on the basis "that I'm 22 today". That seemed a flimsy excuse so much to her disappointment I declined. She ran out and angrily smoked a cigarette. Angry, because she had drunk a little too much of the Firm's alcohol and because she couldn't get her way simply by being 22 and pretty. Besides I had to take the chocolate egg to Mrs. Donatella !

I felt a little deflated. Such a fuss and all over a quiz that was to raise money for charity- Red Nose Day.

So Barry's loud victory chant the next morning was not too welcome as far as I was concerned. Everything's been forgotten now and all are friends again. Even my feisty young colleague is being more friendly- obviously trying hard now that she knows I don't give chocolate eggs away to people just for being pretty and 22 !

The last word had to go to Barry. The next day the result was still leading to controversy with the team, half a point behind. Barry's final retort to the Captain of the "We woz robbed" team was "I've got a chocolate egg, what have you got to show for it ?".

When it comes to office quizzes, winning a chocolate egg is all the proof you need !

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