Sep 23, 2011

Prelims questions from the Brand Equity Quiz 2011 Pune round

Unlike last year, I was a professional spectator this time at the Pune round of this year's BEQ (results here). Questions (answers in a comment; Prabhakar has the finals ):
1. who owns a farmhouse in khadakwasla, sai service petrol pump
2. deutsche welle gives the BOBs awards. Best of?
3. longest reigning monarch, also has a large fortune
4. batata wada, what does batata mean in eng
5. which former employee of ad dept of GE worked with Al Ries for over 26 years
6. victorian author worked at warren blacking factory for 6 shillings a week -
7. bcos they were constantly touched by hands and feet of ppl, which mughal ruler did away with the quranic kalima from coins
8. which tight-fitting trousers and short riding boots shares its name with an indian city
9. which prog topped last week's TRPs on Indian TV
10. how many vincent van gogh sell in his lifetime
11. mark zuckerberg is on google+ (y/n)?
12. which org did gandhi praise as medium of unparallele
d immediacy, intimacy, and power
13. tax on which edible item did naoroji refer to as: most cruel revenue imposed in any civilised country
14. on a qwerty keyboard, the keys for typing which of these currencies (euro/yen/dollar) appear on the same row
15. in 2010 who earned the most among female tennis players (out of sharapova, li na, serena)
16. which refrigerator brand named after the person who developed the concept of absolute zero
17. which fruit is the 4th most valuable food after rice, wheat, milk? (choices: apple, banana, mango)
18. who painted his 1st cinema hoarding for v shantaram's prabhat studio
19. in which 2011 film does the air hostess Sonia agree to deliver a package for Vladimir Dragunsky
20. liverpool has an airport named after which Beatle
21. (v) identify the advertiser: 'passion to perform' tagline
22. (v) id the person
23. (v) logo for what ipl team
24. (a) which entertainment co's brand identity
25. (a) id the voice
26. the word ___ originates from goldsmith's hall in london where articles were tested and stamped with such a mark
27. on whose death on nov 29, 1993, was parliament adjourned for a day in India
28. 1874, a british bakery created which biscuit to celebrate marriage of Maria Alexandrovna to Duke of Edinburgh
29. which e-commerce co's logotype is an arrow leading from A to Z representing customer satisfaction
30. which painkiller also marketed as Panadol in other countries, is the leading paracetamol brand in India
Highest score by a team was 29, cut-off must have been 26 (after tiebreaks) or above.

Last year's prelims

Want more daily quizzing? Try Infinite Zounds, my daily quiz blog on events in the news

Sep 17, 2011

Yeh hai dungistan ka wow

The only thing keeping pace with inflation is the sales in pet dogs. Each morning (and doubly so on weekends), the streets are filled with pooches attending to nature's urgent calls, while their masters (or more commonly their slaves) remain on call waiting. Observe these masters and you will realise that to them, the pet dog is a true member of the family. As the humorist Pu La wrote, they talk to them in intimate tones and adamantly claim the pets can understand them.

But I have never seen pet owners lead their kids or any other equally prized members of their family out to relieve them in the middle of the roads. The morning constitutional belongs not just to them, but to us as well, but we are forced to slalom past remains of their privileged motions. The yellow road is not one that leads to Oz, but to public nuisance.

Of course, one can claim that pets are merely following citizens in a country long used to treating outdoors as the natural repository of the insides. When can we expect that owners don't take our streets for granted and teach both pets and children the value of the commons? Perhaps it is time to raise an equal and opposing stink of some kind.

The last word belongs to that great philosopher of our age, Jerry Seinfeld, a citizen of a city where they make you clean up after your pet:

On my block, a lot of people walk their dogs, and I always see them walking along with their little poop bags, which to me is just the lowest function of human life. If aliens are watching this through telescopes, they're gonna think the dogs are the leaders. If you see two life forms, one of them's making a poop, the other one's carrying it for him, who would you assume was in charge?

Sep 16, 2011

Faaaast and slw

From The Economist's column on language, an interesting pointer to a study paper in the "Language" Journal on why certain languages sound faster than others. Japanese is one of the fastest, and curiously Mandarin is on the slower side.

It's got to do with syllables, number of available sounds, and information density. Fascinating stuff. See The Economist for a summary and this TIME article for the details..

Sep 15, 2011

Be there, be square

Each Saturday, when I receive my copy of the Indian Express, I turn, not to the sports pages or the Page 3 party news (this being the IE, there is none of course), but to read Mihir Sharma rip into the Indian TV news media. I derive a nasty form of pleasure from it, and I'm sure I'm not alone in it. In recent times, spurred by what we saw, heard, and winced during and after L'events D'Anna, his tone has become as militant and mocking as that of some Kejriwal-Bedi offspring. And this is one campaign I wholly support.

Take for instance Sharma's take on the ever increasing panel sizes of 'experts' on Times Now. There were days when the 9'O Clock show looked more like a set from Hollywood Squares: there were many boxes on screen and each box had someone answering questions, sometimes simultaneously. But unlike that TV show, the responses were not funny and the viewers never got any answers at the end.

Indeed, I call upon Mihir Sharma to go on an undeclared, unwarranted, infinite fast against such news programmes. For that is what the Nation Demands.

Incidentally, I have been on a zero-TV diet for the last 2 weeks. And realised it's very easy to achieve an immediate improvement in one's life.