Vonnegut Trivia – Week of April 15, 2018

This week’s question is from the world of film:

Q: In the 1999 film version of Breakfast of Champions, which actor plays Dwayne Hoover?

a) Nick Nolte

b) Albert Finney

c) Jerry Lewis

d) Bruce Willis

Check back next week for the answer (or watch the video clip below).  The correct response to last week’s question was B – Helga Noth was Howard W. Campbell’s wife.

If you’ve never seen the film version of Breakfast of Champions, it is available in full, for free, on YouTube.   Be warned: in an interview included with the audiobook of the novel, Vonnegut and his longtime friend Donald Farber described the movie as “painful to watch.”

Here’s a clip of the trailer.

Vonnegut Trivia – Week of April 8, 2018

This week’s question is from Mother Night, published in 1961, the novel Vonnegut famously deemed “the only story of mine whose moral I know …We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be …”

Q: What was the name of Howard W. Campbell’s German wife?

a) Eva Noth

b) Helga Noth

c) Resi Noth

d) Wanda Noth

Check back next week for the correct answer.

For more, here’s a 1997 interview featuring writers Bruce Jay Friedman, Dan Wakefield, and Kurt Vonnegut with host Charlie Rose discussing film adaptations of their work.

 

Vonnegut Trivia – Week of March 25, 2018

On this Palm Sunday, our question of the week comes from Vonnegut’s 1981 “autobiographical collage,” Palm Sunday.

Q: Palm Sunday includes Vonnegut’s update, in script format, of which classic work of literature?

a) Moby Dick

b) Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

c) Romeo and Juliet

d) A Christmas Carol   

Check back next week for the answer.  The correct response to last week’s question was D – Winston Niles Rumfoord’s dog’s name was Kazak.

For more, here’s a clip of actor Benedict Cumberbatch reading a letter from Kurt Vonnegut to the headmaster of a school who had burned copies of  Vonnegut’s books.

Vonnegut Trivia – Week of March 18, 2018

This week’s question is from The Sirens of Titan, first published in 1959.

What is the name of Winston Niles Rumfoord’s dog?

a) Duke

b) Malachi

c) Beatrice

d) Kazak

Here’s a clue: A dog by the same name also appears in Breakfast of Champions and Galapagos.

The answer to last week’s question was A – Wanda June was hit by an ice cream truck.

If you missed the recent interview with Professor Kevin Brown on minor characters’ narratives in Slaughterhouse-House Five, you can read it here:

Harmful Untruths – An Interview with Kevin Brown

For more, check out this strange clip featuring Vonnegut,  his wife Jill Krementz, and author Gore Vidal.

Vonnegut Trivia – Week of March 11, 2018

This week’s question visits the theater:

In Kurt Vonnegut’s play, Happy Birthday, Wanda June, we meet Wanda June in the hereafter.  How was Wanda June killed?

a) Hit by an ice cream truck

b) Struck by a random bullet fired out a window

c) Killed during the bombing of Dresden

d) Poisoned by swallowing Drano

Check back next week for the answer.  The correct response to last week’s question was B– Edgar Derby, in Slaughterhouse-Five, was executed for stealing a teapot in the ruins of Dresden.

Here’s a clip from the film version of Happy Birthday, Wanda June.  Vonnegut himself disliked the film.

Vonnegut Trivia – Week of March 4, 2018

This week’s question is from Slaughterhouse-Five:

Which character was executed for stealing a teapot in the ruins of Dresden?

a) Paul Lazzaro

b) Edgar Derby

c) Joe Crone

d) Bernard B. O’Hare

Check back next week for the answer.  The correct response to last week’ s question was B- Homelessness, the topic for which Lee Stringer was known.  A conversation between Stringer and Vonnegut is featured in the book  Like Shaking Hands with God, published in 1999 by Seven Stories Press.

For more on Slaughterhouse-Five and the significance of its minor characters, see the recent interview with Dr. Kevin Brown of Lee University.

Harmful Untruths – An Interview with Kevin Brown

Finally, here’s a  lecture by Charles Shields, author of the 2012 Vonnegut biography And So It Goes: Kurt Vonnegut, A Life

Vonnegut Trivia – Week of February 25, 2018

Here’s this week’s question:

In 1999, Seven Stories Press published Like Shaking Hands with God, a conversation about writing between Kurt Vonnegut and Lee Stringer.

What subject was Lee Stringer known for writing about?

a) Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

b) Homelessness

c) Civil Disobedience

c) Military intervention in Central America

Check back next week for the correct response.  The answer to last week’s question was C – Vonnegut’s essay “Teaching the Unteachable” was about learning to write well.

Here’s a 1999 clip from a commencement address delivered to Agnes Scott College in Georgia.  The text from the speech appeared in 2014 in If This Isn’t Nice, What Is?, a collection of graduation speeches published by Seven Stories Press.