A rainy Wednesday evening, the early nightfall and cool temperatures tempt me to stay curled up on the couch as the safest bet for a good time. But plagued by a mid-week restlessness I decide to step out of the norm, brave the weather and head for Trivia Night at Fire on Water at 518 N. Water St.
Walking into Fire feels like a homecoming even when every face in the bar is unfamiliar. Within seconds of entering the bar, nearly every patron looks up, smiles and introduces themselves. Strangers are fast friends here.
Without a dress code, people comfortably sit in sweatshirts or with their work attire slightly rolled at the elbows. Everyone shares a similar goal -- to enjoy a bit of camaraderie.
First timers for the trivia game belly up side by side with the regulars. The bartender eagerly serves drinks to the players, reminding them that the winner of tonight's game will receive a $30 gift certificate to the bar, thus making it impossible for the few stragglers to not join the smaller teams.
At 8 p.m. sharp, the announcer of the game from Team Trivia of Wisconsin halts the music and explains the rules of the game. Using a cell phone to cheat will disqualify a participant and force him to consensually purchase a round of drinks for the entire bar. With some resistance, the crowd simultaneously houses smart phones in pockets and purses.
The game begins, and as expected, the questions are excruciatingly trivial. The competition requires players to recall the most useless facts that have been stored in the deepest recess of the brain; information learned in grade school geography and middle school social science.
Answers rest at the tip of the tongue, as participants bow their heads into their hands and furiously rub their temples praying the correct response will spill out onto the bar.
And then once again, the music stops as the leader announces the answer – the crowd collectively sighs, some in relief and others in frustration. A new level of fury is reached when a mistake has been made and it fuels the groups to charge forward demanding another question be posed.
While the tunes from late '80s play, fast scribbling of notes, hastened whispering and shuffling of the slip of the paper to the judge causes a palpable frenzy. Even late comers instantly jump into the game and quickly add their contribution of fragmented memories and miscellaneous facts.
Tension builds as two teams tie in scores in the final round of the game. The announcer taunts and teases during the song and purposefully leaves a pregnant pause before declaring the winner. High fives and hugs are shared by everyone as the victor calls to the bartender for another round. The ultimate goal achieved -- a good time had by all.
Fire on Water hosts Trivia Night every Wednesday from 8 to 10 p.m. Team Trivia of Wisconsin holds 90 live trivia contests in venues throughout the state of Wisconsin every week.
I love trivia and I think this will be a perfect place to unleash my pent up skills!
2 comments about this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Angela Damiani
It's a Saturday night film screening in the Third Ward and the standard elements are all in place: trendy hipsters with well-placed scarves and purposefully mismatched accessories, austere gallery walls with bright lighting, a step repeat backdrop for the who's-who to have their photo taken and, then, there's the tortoise. Yes, as in a live reptile, amidst the gallery-goers.
Inspired by two distinct passions, art and nightlife, the founders of Art Milwaukee have taken on a new challenge of exposing art to the masses. With the intention of expanding the traditional perception of what art is, this collective of artists hosts an event called Art Jamboree on the first Thursday of every month to showcase local art in an unconventional forum.
Clearly, because this was the first instance I had participated in a Park People event, I am not an expert and I do intend to scream atop of a soapbox of any kind. Instead I'll admit that I feel inspired, after seeing how few of my peers seem to care about this issue, to take the cause as my own.
The new owners of Milwaukee's Comedy Café have definitely stepped up the level of talent, and considering Wednesday nights offer free admission I can guarantee I'll be back again soon.
Last Saturday, while wallowing in one of these down-on-Brew City moods, Milwaukee and its brilliance slapped me upside the head once again during the Made in Milwaukee Special Edition event held at Turner Hall, 1032 N. 4th St.
I was invited to not one, but two state senate candidates' victory parties. Is it not cruel that these events are referred to as "victory" parties, given that inevitably someone will lose and the only victorious thing about the evening will end up being the bartender's tip jar?
Distraught with the thought of the rest of the week's workload, I seek out a relaxing evening of entertainment with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra Mondays at Alterra on the Lake.
Here's one solution to avoid trying to squeeze your way into a bar on Halloween.
Rustic wooden tables and railings encircle the main bar. The floor, unfinished in most areas, compliments the assortment of Jack Daniels paraphernalia on the walls along with smashed guitars and hundreds of custom vanity plates. This is, of course, Water Street's newest addition, the Red Rock Saloon.
In the last 23 years, Gallery Night and Day has become of the event of the season. Hosted by the Historic Third Ward Association, this quarterly affair opens the doors of the various art galleries (and other businesses) within the Third Ward and throughout the city to showcase art in all its forms.