Catcher in the Quiz

Don Pepper

by Don Pepper

Over a loud speaker came an announcement introducing the host Harry Ainsworth, followed by loud canned applause. Harry Ainsworth appeared, a somewhat smarmy character, singing and walking around the pub shaking customers hands and greeting them. The persona was that of a game show host who can make some people cringe.

The quiz started with canned music, canned cheering and laughter. It consisted of eight rounds, with five questions in each round. There was a general knowledge round and a sports round, but most of the quiz was based on music, cinema and TV.

The quiz is held every Tuesday night at The Catcher in the Rye, 315 Regents Park Road and starts at 9pm.

I took part in the quiz and scored abysmally, although I was playing on my own and my team name is ‘Crap at Quizzes’. Personally I felt it was aimed at a younger audience than myself ( I am getting on a bit), but I still found it to be great fun. The host was extremely funny, and after only a short while he had the audience eating out of his hands.

My description of a quiz night as a show may sound a little strange; yes, you do answer questions in teams, but on the whole it is a theatrical performance by the host. Harry Ainsworth, as played by Garth Cruickshank, was a character of Garth’s invention that won him a Perrier Award at the 2001 Edinburgh Festival.

It is probably the most unusual pub quiz I have ever attended. I would recommend it to anyone young enough at heart to be able to answer questions on modern pop music, who watches a lot of TV and visits the cinema more than once every couple of years.

Photo of Harry Ainsworth

Quiz host Harry Ainsworth

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