My husband found this trivia game app on his phone. He starts throwing out questions. I’m not paying much attention, intent on something else in the kitchen. But after I got like 29 of 30 answers right, he said, “You’re GOOD at this,” and my ears perked up. (Why do we say that? Human ears, unlike those of dogs, cats and many others, do not visibly “perk.”)
Anyway, he got tired of listening to me cast right answers over my shoulder as I bustled about. So he switched to a music trivia game. That’s when he got my attention and it got great fun! I can’t recall a lyric without singing it. And I can’t think without moving. So I’m dancing around our living room, warbling “Doodlang, doodlang, doodlang…” (“He’s So Fine,” Chiffons, 1963) Well, you had to be there. Or maybe not.
But, in retrospect, what struck is me is how easy the food trivia test was, marshmallow questions for anyone who’s a real foodie. I started thinking, what questions would be fun and also fair for people who know how to cook but aren’t trained chefs (DON’T ask me to name the five mother sauces!), who are Island foodies with a little travel in their backgrounds, and who… okay, let’s face it, love to get it right. (The thing I relished MOST about playing trivia with my husband was hearing him say, “You’re GOOOD” when I got something right in music trivia. I’d walk a mile for those moments.)
I came up with the following first, based on perhaps the most frequently asked question in my years of answering food queries at The late lamented Advertiser.
What is light, high, white, slightly sweet, spongy and a complete mystery to most people even if they’ve been eating it since childhood?
Got a clue? Buy you a vowel?
Got a question to ask others?
First, I thought ‘angel food cake.’ And then I thought, No, not every local has eaten angel food cake. So I thought, ‘Meringue, as on lemon meringue pie.’ Mmmm, mmmm. Lemon MERINGUE pie. It’s still one of my favorite desserts which I’ve only made ONCE, as a very young woman, for my father, who has been gone since 1980.
Or is it the steamed bread of a manapua?
You’ve got me puzzled.
Ooh! Ooh! Is it a Chinese rice cake? I introduced one of my coworkers to that about a month ago, and she loved it.