Andy Gable, 25, spends most nights asking people questions like "What are the plastic thingys at the end of your shoelaces called?" (Answer: aglets.)
Gable is the manager of The Boulevard Woodgrill in Clarendon. He is known by many Clarendon residents as "the Quiz Master Extraordinaire." He leads trivia nights and Karaoke at bars around Arlington. "Once I show up, it’s all about being a big ham," Gable said. He started hosting the quizzes almost three years ago.
"He has a great voice," said Donagh Gilhooly, who is Gable’s coworker at Rí Rá Irish Pub in Clarendon. "The voice of an announcer."
Gable jokes that he is a glorified version of himself when he is on stage. "I’m not being Andy Gable, I’m being Quiz Guy Andy Gable."
The quiz topics range from pop culture and one-hit wonders to current events and geography. For instance, Gable might ask, "What movie just set up the record for the highest grossing film this weekend?" Gable generally hosts up to 30 individuals a night.
Whitlow’s on Wilson Bar & Grill as well as Rí Rá offer the winners of the quiz a $50 gift card to their restaurant.
"It’s a friendly competition," Gable said. Even though he admits, "there can be a lot of hollering and shouting when the beer is flowing and the tempers are flowing."
Gable is a theatre kid; he was involved in theatre throughout middle school, high school and at George Mason University.
One day he found himself at the restaurant Rí Rá watching former quizzer Patrick Doody leading the quiz nights. When Doody left to do quizzes at O’Sullivan’s Irish Pub in Arlington, Gable said he took the job and ran with it.
Gable has lived around the world. Both of his parents were members of the Foreign Service. He lived throughout Eastern Europe and discovered his love for theatre in Prague.
His travels have helped him interact with people. "I can deal with all kinds of different people from different walks of life," he said.
Gable has lived in Clarendon for five years. "He’s like the mayor of freakin’ Clarendon," said Rí Rá general manager Susan Spiwak.
"I’m a big fan of the neighborhood I live in" Gable said. "I love the people I work with and I love the people I work for."
On Saturday, July 17, Gable will host an All-Star Trivia Night at Rí Rá in Clarendon. All of the top quizzers from Rí Rá across the country will
compete for an all-expense paid trip to Dublin, Ireland. He was recommended to host the event by owners of Rí Rá in Dublin. "We’ll throw down," Gable said. "I’m psyched."
Gable sees the quiz nights as a time for people to de-stress. His philosophy: "Keep it simple, keep it fun, keep it loose."