Marking its third anniversary, the Maryland News Quiz celebrates the end of a year, a century and a millennium. But don't worry: We're going to quiz you only about the events of 1999. You do remember 1999, don't you? Let's find out.
Here are some questions about the famous as well as the forgettable occurrences of the bygone 12 months. Score one point for each correct answer. But first ask yourself, "Is that my final answer?"
The real answers can be found on Page 5.
1. A judge ordered Annapolis lobbyist Bruce Bereano--who was on work release for a 1994 mail fraud conviction--to be confined to his Baltimore halfway house after he was seen:
a. Picking up a stack of manila envelopes at Mail Boxes Etc.
b. Distributing cigars and cigarettes without paying the tobacco tax.
c. Lobbying legislators in the State House.
d. Arranging for clandestine midnight lawn watering at key lawmakers' homes, in violation of the state's drought restrictions.
2. According to comments Lt. Gov. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend (D) made at a public forum on the upcoming census, Latinos speak:
e. East Timorian.
3. Montgomery County parks officials were so upset that deer were eating the flowers at Brookside Gardens that:
a. They brought in police sharpshooters to eliminate them, in what animal-rights protesters dubbed the "Brookside Bloodbath."
b. They sent the deer to Robin Ficker's upcounty spread, where the U.S. Senate candidate painted campaign slogans on them and then released them.
c. They sent in police cadets armed with noisemakers to shoo them away.
d. They brought in mosquitoes from New York City's Central Park, hoping to infect the deer with the deadly West Nile virus.
4. A Ku Klux Klan member vexed Anne Arundel County officials this year by:
a. Continuing his efforts to have the KKK participate in their adopt-a-road program, prompting them to kill the program altogether.
b. Entering Annapolis's weekly sailboat race and then crashing into City Dock because his hood obscured his view.
c. Nearly winning the Annapolis mayoral race by promising to force all tourists to park in Glen Burnie and take a shuttle bus into town.
d. Sculpting a larger-than-life-sized Klansman out of snow in his front yard.
5. One-time Monica S. Lewinsky pal Linda R. Tripp was indicted in Howard County on charges that she:
a. Illegally taped her phone conversation with the former White House intern.
b. Filled her backyard swimming pool in violation of Maryland's drought-driven watering ban.
c. Talked children in her Columbia neighborhood into "lending" her their Pokemon cards, which she then sold on eBay to help defray her legal expenses.
d. Violated Columbia noise ordinances by holding a backyard fund-raiser and loudly playing portions of Lewinsky's taped conversations.
6. Elfreda Massie, a top Baltimore County educator who last spring emerged as the front-runner to lead Montgomery County's $1 billion-a-year schools system, withdrew her candidacy after it was revealed that:
a. She and her husband were embroiled in a bitter custody battle over their pet keeshond.
b. She and her husband were more than $800,000 in debt and had twice filed for personal bankruptcy.
c. She was demanding a compensation package so outrageously huge one angry board member quipped that "she might as well be the NBA's top draft pick."
d. She thought Latinos spoke Latin.
7. Police dogs in Montgomery County were each issued their own:
a. Personal Web pages.
b. Bulletproof vests.
c. Polarfleece "Gardez Bien" uniforms.
d. Supply of soy-based dog food.
8. Why were the following politicians gathered under one roof, on one September day, in Anne Arundel County: former Baltimore state senator Larry Young, former governor. Marvin Mandel and million-dollar lobbyist Bruce Bereano?
a. They were speaking at a seminar on ethics.
b. They were performing a comedy skit in the annual legislative follies.
c. They were hosting an Al Gore fund-raiser featuring a group of Taiwanese priests.
d. None of the above.
9. The city of Rockville enacted a temporary ban on the building of "big box" stores along Rockville Pike because:
a. The huge stores threatened the quaint charm of the town's main street.
b. City officials wanted to study what these stores would do to the Pike's aesthetics and already heavy traffic.
c. They might detract attention from the Pike's colorful human billboards.
10. Even though a judge ruled that a referendum would be invalid, Takoma Park activists stayed on course anyway and staged their own plebiscite on the issue of:
a. Declaring the tiny enclave a nuclear-free zone.
b. Imposing trade sanctions against Burma.
c. Granting non-citizens the right to vote in local elections.
d. Banning guns within the city limits.
11. At the start of this year's football season, Redskins fans attending the season opener at the team's stadium in Prince George's County were frustrated by:
a. The team's inconsistent play.
b. Severe problems with parking and traffic jams on the Capital Beltway.
c. Confusion over what to call the home field.
d. New owner Daniel M. Snyder's demand for a meeting with coach Norv Turner every time the Redskins fell short on a third-down conversion.
Answers to the News Quiz
2. d. Townsend was speaking at a conference on Latinos. It was Republican presidential hopeful George W. Bush who came up with b, c and e.
4. a. But county officials canceled the whole program, dashing Klan member Gene Newport's plan to see a county road sign emblazoned with the name of his white supremacy group. As for d, that actually happened, but in 1994. Newport was the sculptor.
8. d. They were actually in the same Annapolis courthouse: Young was on trial on bribery charges. Down the hall, Bereano was fighting to keep his law license, in the wake of his mail fraud conviction. Also present was Mandel, convicted years ago on bribery charges but freed from jail after Bereano and others persuaded President Ronald Reagan to pardon him. Mandel was there as a character reference for Bereano.
10. d. In this unofficial referendum, voters elected overwhelmingly to ban all handguns in Takoma Park. A, b, and c all are policies that are currently in effect in the small Montgomery County town.