How does a regular, hardworking host wind up featured as a Last Call HOTM? Hosts must be nominated by their regional manager, undergo a proprietary winnowing process, endure the physical challenge, and then, of course, TRIAL BY COMBAT!
This month’s champion is Terrie McGoron. She hosts in Cincinnati. Here’s what her manager had to say about her:
“Terrie goes above and beyond at each and every show she hosts. Though she calls it bribing, Terrie brings candy to all of her teams each week. She also puts a lot of creativity into her playlists. Terrie truly cares about her teams, hosting, and Last Call. She is a pleasure to work with, and I consider her a friend and a ‘surrogate mom’ for her expert advice and our personal relationship. Terrie truly touches everyone in her life and makes each individual feel special. You don’t find many people like Terrie anymore!”
That said, here’s her take on my inane questions:
What’s your favorite Last Call show to host? Feud? Tunes? Trivia?
Trivia. I have been playing in the league for many years so was part of a loyal trivia league long before hosting. I play with my family (grown kids and husband) and we all love the thrill that comes from knowing something no one else knows. We have come close to winning in the finals a few times (don’t mention Brian Bosworth to me under any circumstances).
What question types/categories do you love/always get right?
I’m our go to person for movies and literature. Whenever I miss a movie question I have to hang my head in shame.
What gaps are in your trivia knowledge / questions you suck at?
Easiest question ever. SPORTS. When I am hosting and read the categories, I will say, “And my most favorite category of all” and my teams will yell ” SPORTS.” Sometimes I say let’s get this one out of the way, or something like that. And, when I’m playing, a sports question is a great time to go to the ladies’ room.
What’s the best *wrong* answer a team has given you? (Or even just a few funny ones, if you remember.)
There was a question about what was the boy’s name in the song Leader of the Pack. I do play musical hints often and played “The Middle” by Jimmy Eat World (the answer was Jimmy). One of my teams said “Malcolm.”
The funniest times are when I am able to call someone out on their crazy or ridiculously wrong answers and the rest of the teams join in (good-naturedly, of course).
What are some of your favorite/funniest/filthiest team names?
One of my regular teams changes its name every time they play, and it’s always something related to the last week’s pop culture. When Mad Men started a new season, they were the “Bob Bensons.” After Lizzie died on The Walking Dead, they were “Look At the Flowers.” They always put a lot of thought into their name. I love all the names related to Arrested Development and The Big Lebowski. We are the Mickbastards, taken after our last name (McGoron), and my youngest son being called a Mickbastard by one of his friends.
Do you try to tailor your setlist to the questions? (Not exactly for clues, but even thematically?)
Yep, I’m very well known for my playlists. I play clues (although usually obscure and hard to find). When I can’t, I play a song that relates to the question. One of my teams tell me that they have to “channel their inner Terrie” to figure out what I am hinting at with a musical clue. A very good league team member once told me that one of my songs was about four layers deep to find the clue in there. I take these comments as wonderful compliments.
Do you have favorite songs to include or theme music that you start with every week?
I start one of my shows and most of my sub shows with Steely Dan music because one of the teams loves Steely Dan. I start another show usually with Jason Mraz for the same reason. I try to remember musical tastes from my regular teams and/or requests or recommendations. It is an amazing feeling to see someone’s face when they realize you are playing “their” song. My trademark trivia song is Gimme Shelter by the Rolling Stones, for a very similar reason. A former host where we played regularly played that song once and came over after the show and said, “I saw you rocking out to the Stones earlier.” I told him it was my favorite Rolling Stones song and he played it every single week after that. I would look up when it came on and he would be pointing at me. I knew how great that made me feel, so I try to do that for my teams when I can.
What are some ways a team can get on your bad side? / What do successful teams do well?
The worst thing for me is when people want to complain about a question that is too hard and not understand that I do not write the questions, maybe other people do know the answers, or follow the protocol for appeals. Successful teams are there to have fun and know that even the best league teams have off nights, sometimes the questions are too hard, but that the host is there to help them have fun. The most successful teams have their bases covered – someone who is good at history, music, movies, etc. And, yes, even (especially) someone who is good at SPORTS.
What is your favorite power-up in Super Mario Brothers? Fire-flower? Tanooki/Flying Raccoon suit? Star of invincibility?
Fun fact. I have never played a video game since the original Mario Brothers. For real. It is not something I am especially proud of. Maybe I’ll put that on my list.
Don’t you hate it when a team folds their answer sheets into something the size of an aspirin with a thousand folds in it, and it takes half a song to unfold it so you can see what their answer is?
Yep. Just don’t get it. What is the point?
Any favorite / funny stories from hosting? Mispronouncing a key word in a question?
I mispronounce words all the time. I don’t get flustered. I just try to say it or spell it and then ask someone in the crowd to tell me what it is.
Hecklers are the worst. I had a woman once insist that I was talking too much and everyone hated me. I tried to explain to her that everyone was there to hear me talk (she was sitting at the bar not playing).
My biggest pet peeve is people who sit close to the table/speakers and then complain that it is too loud. I’m still at a loss as to how to handle that. I feel really bad for my teams when the venue is not doing its part to make the place a successful trivia site (bad/changing prizes, etc.).
I’ve facilitated a marriage proposal. I’ve grown close to someone who died unexpectedly and felt like he was part of my family. I’ve been humbled by compliments, presents, cards, drinks, even one team that changed its name to “Terrie 4Eva” on my last night at a venue. When I started doing this, I really thought I was too old. I love hosting. Even on the not so good nights, it is a great gig and always gives me a story to tell. I have some crazy loyal teams that I love.
But, to be fair, it’s probably just because I bring them candy.
As is tradition, we end these with a trivia question:
Terri mentioned Bob Benson. 80’s sitcom Benson is a spinoff of what earlier sitcom?