I think one of the most depressing jobs currently has to be that of a gameshow host on some of the afternoon and evening quiz shows. Quite how they manage to listen to people getting basic stuff wrong without slamming their heads into the desks, or making comments along the lines of “How the fuck do you not know that?!?”

For me, the real trigger points are where it’s a question about (usually) books – although several other subjects get the same kind of responses – and the competitor says “Oh, I’m not really a reading person”. Rage ensues.

Please note, I’m not saying that reading should appeal to everyone, I get that there’s umpteen reasons why people don’t read as much. That’s fine. But still – and maybe it’s me being unrealistic – I kind of expect/hope that people would at least know that Shakespeare wrote Macbeth and Charles Dickens wrote Oliver Twist. You don’t have to have read them to know at least the basics about authors of classics, surely? (After all, I haven’t read either of those, but still know who wrote what)

I think it’s perhaps that the ‘general knowledge’ of a lot of the competitors is really quite focused, that there’s huge gaps in what they know. (And again, yeah yeah, everyone’s different, etc. etc.)  In most rounds – hell, even some of the less-specialist sport ones – I can get a number of correct answers.  OK, I’m lucky enough to be a complete bobble-hat with a decent memory – but I don’t believe I’m that exceptional.

I don’t really know where I’m going with this (you may have guessed) but it’s just something that’s been rattling round my head and annoying me for a fair while.

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