New club iQuiz takes Ames High by storm

In the volatile world that is American popular culture, it’s not always easy to forecast what might wiggle its way into the hearts of many to become the next big trend or cultural movement. Needless to say, it’s even harder to predict at Ames High, where the eclectic student body has embraced everything from mainstream fashions like Uggs to off-the-wall styles like, well, Man Uggs. Ames High’s latest pop culture phenom, the brand spanking new intramural quiz bowl league, iQuiz, has already caused a hurricane of sugary-competitive-hysterical-brain-juice-fun, securing its place in the miscellaneous pretentious free-for-all that is pop culture at Ames High. “Unlike at most other schools, at Ames High there are far more people interested in joining the Quiz Bowl team than we can take on. iQuiz is an opportunity for a much, much larger audience to have a try at quiz bowl,” said Lawrence Chiou, senior and founder of iQuiz. Currently, the league is comprised of 23 teams and over 100 students, making it among the largest clubs at Ames High. “Including myself, all who have been involved have been very surprised at the success of iQuiz,” Chiou said. The matches in iQuiz are set up exactly like those of a normal interscholastic quiz bowl tournament with less difficult questions. Each team has the opportunity to answer a series of “pyramid style” tossup questions–obscure information is placed at the beginning of the question. As the question proceeds, more common facts are read, giving more players a chance to answer. Bonus questions are given to specific teams after a correct answer. “Part of the fun of iQuiz is the excitement of participating in a buzzer competition; many matches are very close (within one or two questions), and the tide can turn at any moment,” Chiou said. He also added that “it’s comforting to win over other teams and gain a little bit of selfish pride. ” Despite the overwhelming success of Ames High’s latest intramural competitive outlet, like with any new born child (in this case, the result of iBall and Trivial Pursuit reproducing) , there have been a few hiccups along the way. “Scheduling has been a problem for us. Many teams are prompt about notifying us when they have a conflict with a scheduled match, but teams often tell us the night before a match,” Chiou said. “The frequent rescheduling is inconvenient for iQuiz teams and organizers.” Along with scheduling issues, Chiou emphasized that question writing has been hectic. As he put it, “Putting together 20 quality bonuses and tossups for each round is more difficult than one might imagine.” Cheating has been a potential source of trouble as well. “We’re seeing allegations of question leaking, and the statistics definitely back that up. We have a pretty good idea of who’s cheating, and cheaters will be dismissed from iQuiz,” Chiou said. Ultimately, iQuiz’s recent emergence as Ames High’s hottest new student organization suggests that it is here to stay as a legitimate outlet for intramural student competition and more importantly, for some good old fashioned fun. As Chiou put it, “I hope that when all is said and done, students, after having gotten their hands dirty, realize why we love quiz bowl.”