How To Write a Trivia Game Re-Cap (Redux)

Editor’s note: This is a repeat of a post from 2015, with some minor revisions/additions! Also, this is a lame attempt at satire, so do not take TOO seriously!
I have a special tutorial for all of you trivia players out there. You’re going to learn how to do a trivia game re-cap! Think it’s just as simple as “write down all of the questions/categories/answers scores/teams and then type up everything later?” Yes, that’s basically the gist of it, but I’m going to share some of my “pro” tips for writing trivia game re-caps with all of you!

1. Think outside the box. Don’t have paper? Playing in a tournament where “regular” paper isn’t allowed – and you haven’t smuggled enough inside your knee socks anyway? Trivia note, during Prohibition, smugglers who used their boots to smuggle hooch were called “bootleggers.” For note-taking if you don’t have “real” paper, use anything else available on which you can scrawl your questions. Napkins will work if you write carefully, but be sure to find the ones most soaked with beer, pizza sauce, tears of shame for forgetting Parker Posey’s name, you get the drift.

Parker Posey and Danny DeVito in “The O In Ohio.” Yes, these two had an affair in this film, and now you are guaranteed to NEVER be able to un-see this! You’re welcome!
Paper beer mats (or coasters, if you’re unrefined) also work great for taking notes. Be sure to use the printed side of the beer mats, not the plain side. You don’t want things to be too easy, do you? While we’re on the subject of beer mats, did you know the collection of paper beer mats is called tegestology?
A beer mat from Mountain Town Station in Mount Pleasant, MI. Perfect for using as a surface for writing trivia questions, since it has a lot of printing on it and should be really easy to read (not)!
2. Don’t be too perfect. You should not be able to actually read your drunken, heavily abbreviated, smeared handwriting the next day. Use shorthand that you don’t understand, spell proper names incorrectly and be fuzzy and vague about numbers (the qualifier “ish” works great here).
Ensure that your teammates always have a reason to feel superior to you by being able to make fun of your horrible handwriting! The joke’s on them – you’re doing it on purpose to make sure teams next to you can’t cheat off your paper, just like that jock guy who sat next to you in high school history class – right?

3. Questions do not need to be written down word-for-word – if you have enough key information and write down the correct answer, you can always “reverse engineer” the question when you’re typing the re-cap.  There was a finals game in May, 2016 that asked about a quote by a scientist that I didn’t write down word-for-word. So instead I used a different quote by the same person in my recap (and indicated that I’d done so).   Remember, you can always Google everything when you’re typing it up anyway. Also, those little (or big) mistakes that wind up in your published re-cap are great for testing whether your page’s followers are actually reading your re-caps!

4. Include lots of commentary on questions, especially on the questions you missed. Your trivia rivals will love reveling in your misery and learning your weaknesses. It’s called “schadenfreude.” Google that. And like Don Henley said, people love dirty laundry. Also, putting in lots of commentary guarantees that if other teams copy and paste your re-cap to post on their pages, they will have to do at least a little bit of work editing it out and putting in their own. And this means you get to experience some schadenfreude yourself!

5. Use a photo that has only a tenuous connection to the questions that were asked – or even better yet, no connection at all. Christopher Lee is always a great go-to photo because he was just such a bad-ass. Did you know he recorded a heavy metal album when he was in his ’90s? More than one, as a matter of fact. He was also related to author Ian Fleming, who wrote the “James Bond” books. Now who can name the character Christopher Lee is playing in the picture at the top of this post?

Christopher Lee in the 2012 remake of “Dark Shadows,” which has one of the best PG-13 sex scenes. Note: Christopher Lee’s character is NOT involved in that sex scene, but these two people are:


To view that scene, click here:

6. I don’t actually have a sixth tip for you guys. But if you bothered to read this far,  thanks for continuing to read our game re-caps! Go Pods!

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