Bright & Brief


The Associated Press, January 31, 1984.

Name the two pigs and the man who slaughtered them in 1942 on the grounds of the Wimbledon Tennis Club, then being used as a military base by the British.

That was the kind of question tossed out over the weekend at the 19th annual Midwest Trivia Contest at Lawrence University, a 50-hour marathon devoted to useless information.

The answer?

"Jenny, Joey and Mr. Higgins," of course. Kim and Mark Koepke, who have visited Wimbledon, called it in to win 100 points and finish third.

Once a year, thousands of students, alumni and residents of Appleton and surrounding communities gather for the contest sponsored by the campus radio station.

The competition at Lawrence, a liberal arts school of about 1,150 students, is sponsored by WLFM, the campus radio station. Questions, usually assigned point values of 5 to 25, are read over the air.

Teams, ensconced in headquarters around the city and campus with newspaper clippings, encyclopedias, other reference books and card indexes, have tup to five minutes to phone in their answers to the station.

The best teams, according to trivia grandmaster Kurt Schwarzkopf, a senior majoring in political science and German, are those that have enough members (20 to 50) to work in shifts and are most proficient at rapidly combing reference materials.

Teams come back year after year, but usually change their names. Some names from past and present include: Infomaniacs, Ignorance is Strength and Drunk Drivers Against Mothers.

This year's top team was AFL, a group of students, former students and staff members of the Fox Valley Center of the University of Wisconsin.

Team member Stephen Weis, a psychology student at the center, attributes the team's victory to "about six people on our team with photographic memories."