At first I was enthusiastic about this competition, since my brain is crammed with useless knowledge that no one will ever pay me a dime for acquiring. However, the trivia competitions consisted solely of a Power Point presentation of various images you needed to identify. There was a Superhero competition, where you had to write down the character name of the movie superhero as he or she appeared on the screen. Answers like "Jessica Alba," even when the image is quite clearly Jessica Alba's, or "The guy with the way stretchy arms and legs" were not permitted, otherwise I would have done better.
But the worst was the cheese test. The cruise guests were overwhelmingly American, and the cruise employees, who concocted the tests, were overwhelmingly not, and this particular test was designed to show the guests they knew nothing about cheese, which apparently Americans don't, even though they melt or sprinkle it over every meal.
It consisted of pictures of cheeses, which we were expected to name. Perhaps you have never noticed this, but many cheeses look alike. Furthermore, the smarmy little Latvian woman who tested us had failed to include any cheeses that Americans could immediately identify, such as cake, nacho, steak, burger or Velveeta.
You could have given me a test on quadratic equations and I would not have flunked it nearly as miserably as I did the cheese test. You'll note I wrote both "Swiss" and "Brie" down three times. "Brie" was correct once, even though all three pics showed a white wedge of cheese covered by that nasty brie crust.
"Swiss" was never correct, even though on number 17 our East European torturer showed us a pic of a light yellow cheese triangle with characteristic Swiss holes in it. When she corrected our work, she told us the true name of the cheese, which elicited loud boos from the audience, every single one of whom had written down "Swiss."
"The Swiss make many different cheeses with holes in them," she replied aloofly. At this, the booing only got louder, and someone shouted "Go back to Latvia!" at her. I am sorry to have to admit that was me.
But a careful observer of my answer sheet will see that I had lost hope in the test as early as #3, to which I answered "Some fucking cheese." Answer #15, "Wad o' cheese" and #18 "Something cheesy" were scribbled down in a similar, beaten frame of mind, while #6 "Goat" and #10 "Pig" were more of a tribute to our animal friends than an actual effort to be accurate. #13 "Brown cheese with little squares" was a nice description of the cheese depicted, although I knew it was unlikely to be called that. By #12 "Barbecued" I meant cheese that looked like it had slipped between the grates of a propane grill and had been burnt to a smoky crisp. I can't imagine anyone eating that stuff.
#19 looked like a puffy, self-important cheese, so I called it Donald Trump cheese.
Besides the one Brie, I only got #7, "Edam" right, and that was because while the red waxy coating of the cheese had been hacked into, the letters "D," "A" and "M" could still be clearly seen on its surface.
Fortunately, the next day the test was on beer, and consisted of naming the country of origin of pics of beer bottles as they Power Pointed by, and while the beers were obscure and so were some of the nations, I got ten out of twenty and finished second.
I'm back in the game.
BTW, "Cujo" is the name of our Chihuahua