Sunday, 3 June 2012

a hard question

I shall shortly be embarking on my annual pilgrimage to my home town in the UK, and while I’m there I shall be tuning in to one of my favourite programs, Radio 4’s Round Britain Quiz, which is unlike any quiz show airing on mainstream media. It pits two teams drawn from the UK’s regions against each other, and in the space of 30 minutes only eight questions will be asked.

You might suspect that the questions will be fiendishly difficult, and you would be right. Each question requires that the two people in the team being quizzed piece together a series of convoluted connections. A correct answer is worth six points, and each clue provided by the questionmaster entails a one-point deduction. This method of playing the game is made necessary by the time constraints of the program, but the game is far more interesting, and challenging, if both the time allowed is unlimited and no clues are given.

With this in mind, I offer the following conundrum:
How might a Greek letter, a saddle, a member of the human race and three points in the English Premier League lead you to the Christian name of an American president?
I could have posed one of the many questions used on Round Britain Quiz, but then the answer might be available either online or in one of the books published to accompany the program, so this is one of my own devising. In terms of difficulty, I think that it is on a par with the program’s usual fare, although the answer should be screamingly obvious once it has been explained.

As noted above, I will not provide any additional clues, and because I will be travelling, it may be several days before I am able to respond to any comments. Correct answers will be acknowledged but not published until the end of the month. Please note that in order to gain six points, all components of the question must be identified, but points will be awarded for partial answers.


  1. This is what you call mind-boggling. I have been working on this for a while now, and even got my friends involved but still can't work out the answer. I know I'm going to slap myself when you tell us what it is. Can't wait. It's given me a good brain workout though.

  2. i like that word "mind boggling", can't wait to see the answer

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. Nice try, but unfortunately incorrect (1 point for win though).


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