Tuesday, 7 February 2012

The Calling

It looks as though the Calling has re-branded themselves as "The Three Brits," and in decidedly un-British fashion, eliminated the pub quiz. You can catch the quiz at The Bimini, if you need a dose of quiz in Donnelly-approved environs

Where: The Calling. Located at 1780 Davie Street

When: Every Wednesday. Starts at about 7, 7:30ish.

Web Presence: Here's a facebook group for the guys who run it

Registration Fee: I don't think so. That's nice.

Team Info: I'm pretty sure you can have as many players as you want.

Prizes: First place gets free beer, sometimes beer company swag as well. There are a lot of chances to win free beers aside from winning, which is handy.

Format: 6 or 8 rounds, I can't quite recall. 2 or 3 of them are Music rounds, one of them a photo round, 3 are general knowledge, and one is a completely useless round that draws questions from the day's Province. I haven't been here in a while, so they may have changed things up a bit.

Food and Drink: It's a Donnelly Group pub. Sub-average food, expensive beers save for the specials . But there's a pretty good chance at getting a free pitcher here.

This quiz is run weekly by Nice Guys, Inc., two Aussies who  also run quizzes at some of the other Donnelly Pubs, the Academic, and the Lamplighter. They are in fact, very nice guys. The quiz, I can't quite say the same about. When I was last there (which was about a year and a half ago), they were running a Pubstumpers quiz. For those of you not aware, they're a company that you can buy a"Quiz in a box" (no relation) from, and then have people read them out at your establishment. Personally, I think the pubstumpers quizzes are kind of shitty, but the point of them isn't to be the best and most interesting questions, the point is to increase your food and drink sales. The music rounds are plentiful and not usually terribly difficult, with such deep cuts as "Enter Sandman," "99 Problems," and "Hey Jude" being found here. I haven't tried it out, since I don't hate myself, so I don't know for certain, but I would guess that the Academic, Lamplighter, and Calling all have pretty much the same quiz on a weekly basis, presumably differentiate by the round involving "headlines" from the Province, a round so execrable I won't discuss it here. I'm being a bit harsh here, so please don't think it is all bad, because I've had some fun questions here. It just happens that know the cost of flight to Cancun this week wasn't one of them.

The places is usually pretty full, so get there early if you want to get a seat. The quizmasters mark all the quizzes themselves, which makes for a very long evening. There are a few minigames, from which pitchers can be won. With the glacial pace of this quiz, you would almost think they want you to stay and get as drunk as possible. Insert winking smiley face. If you like watching hockey, they have a pretty good selection of games showing here before the quiz, from a variety of different stations. If you want to get a free answer for the week's quiz, look at their facebook page. Still not sure why quizzes do this, but perhaps some folks need the help. Like most Donnelly pubs, this is a good place to go and get drunk in a place that is pretty much devoid of atmosphere. If you like pub quizzes themselves, you might be disappointed, as the emphasis seems to be on keeping people around and drinking for as long as possible, and not on having interesting rounds and questions. That might be your thing, however, and if it is, the Calling is a good place to go and do that thing. Besides, the view out the window is pretty amazing on a summer's evening, seven dollar Red Racer in hand.

IN CONCLUSION, I don't like it much, but if you like Donnelly pubs you'd probably like the quiz.

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