Clegg Ivey knows a little somethin’ about trivia.
“In high school and college, and then in law school, I was trivia champion at like every level,” the Guild Hall’s owner recalls. “I was always on a trivia team. I was always the trivia hound.”
So when the Chromatic Dragon’s original trivia host got a job offer from Nintendo, Ivey jumped the trivia ranks and became host.
Two and a half years in, the Dragon’s trivia night is successful thanks to Ivey’s unconventional approach to hosting.
“I’m a trivia omnivore, so I love stuff like, ‘Which Supreme Court justice ruled on this case and in what year?’ I’m also perfectly happy with nothing but pop culture stuff,” Ivey shares. “The thing that makes our trivia fun is you can have a good time, even if you don’t know a lot of stuff. I tell them, ‘If you don’t know the answer, put something funny.’ If it makes me laugh, I give it partial credit.”
Ivey remembers a night where he asked players to name a character, a lion from The Lion King, but one team didn’t know the lion, so they put Lionel Richie.
“That’s really funny!” Ivey laughs. “So I had time while I was scoring to call up the ‘Hello’ video. That team, they got their asses kicked in terms of points, but they came up after and were like, ‘That was the best that you turned it into a funny thing.’ There are more ways to have fun at our trivia night than just to get the right answer. I think that’s the secret, honestly.”
Ivey caters to the serious trivia folk as well.
“Some people at trivia are competitive, right? One of my rules is, if you have a quibble with one of my answers, bring it on,” says Ivey. “I love when people argue. I’m not afraid to say, ‘You know what, my question was ambiguous.’
“Honestly, since I know lots of stuff, I’ll write a question from my own knowledge bank, and I can be out-of-date. There was one recently where I asked how many smells the human nose can detect. Up until three or four years ago, the conventional wisdom suggested ten thousand. Now, there’s scientific studies that are like, ‘Hey, it’s actually in the billions.’
“Competitive people know it’s nice to have a host that was also a competitive trivia guy.” — Rachael Flora