Teacher participates in trivia contests

Eda Sezer, Staff Reporter

A number of people across the world happen to know random little facts due to their experiences in life. Nick Kos, an English teacher at Revere High School, uses his knowledge about categories such as sports, pop culture and literature to compete in trivia. As he receives the trophy with his team, he walks tall, smiles and cheers as their team wins $3,600.

Kos has competitively participated in trivia for about eight years. As an English teacher, he uses his knowledge in things like literature to his advantage in competitions. He also uses his interest in music, movies, sports and pop culture to answer questions. He explained learning has always interested him and that he is inquisitive in nature, which made watching Jeopardy fun for him. He described how he was recruited by a family member who also competes in trivia to start competing.

“My uncle approached me because they needed someone who was kind of up on pop culture and literature . . . so who better than an English teacher, I guess. I like to read but I also listen to a lot of hip-hop music and a lot of music that students listen to today. [I also] watch a lot of movies and stuff so I’m also pretty hip or [up to date] on pop culture,” Kos said.

Kos revealed that he was hooked on these competitions from the first time he ever attended one. He also expressed that he is happy that Karl Mews, Kos’s uncle and one of his trivia partners, recruited him because he believes that attending trivia competitions together has resulted in a close bond.

Kos disclosed that he was on a trivia television show and won. He explained how the show worked.

“It was a sports trivia show. . . . The first question is worth ten dollars, the second round is worth twenty dollars [and] the third question is worth one hundred dollars. . . . Each time you go up or advance . . . [the questions] get harder and if you don’t get a question right, you have to give your money back. That was the premise for the show, but I won because I kept going and I got all three of my questions right,” Kos said.

Mews discussed what he finds a bit difficult while competing with teammates that one has not played with before and is not familiar with.

“The hardest thing is when you’re playing with a team and you think you know the answer and someone else is disagreeing with you and they think they know it and you’re trying to decide which one it is,” Mews said.

Clarence Johnson, another one of Kos’s trivia partners, mentioned one of the things he does not like about trivia, which is using phones to cheat as it is against the rules of any trivia competition.

“I don’t like when other teams cheat and I don’t know why they do that. You’re not supposed to have any phones or anything out, [but] you’re going to have some people that cheat,” Johnson said.

Kos also touched upon his favorite parts about taking part in trivia with his teammates, including the friendships he has built through the activity.

“I think it’s just the camaraderie [and] just meeting up with my uncle and other friends that I’ve made. . . . Even the other teams, you talk to them and you just talk about certain subjects and just life in general so it’s a good social atmosphere [as] you get to know people,” Kos said.

Kos talked about how his thirst for knowledge motivates him and keeps him participating in competitions throughout his life.

“[What keeps me motivated is] my thirst for knowledge. . . . I just like to learn things so it just keeps me going back. Even though people might think it’s nonsensical jargon, I still enjoy it and . . . I also like applying stuff that I’ve learned to class because sometimes when I’m teaching I learn stuff . . . about the literature that I’m teaching . . . and that helps me motivate my students and reflect upon that stuff and use it as a learning tool as well,” Kos said.

With his teammates, Kos pursues an activity he finds fun and challenging. Throughout the course of his trivia experience, he has built new friendships and bonds with people who have some of the same interests and hopes to continue learning new information and meeting new people.