Quiz on those who got left behind

Joy Bhattacharjya | Updated on October 30, 2020

Holding fort: Michael Collins (centre) stayed in the command module of Apollo XI while Neil Armstrong (left) and Buzz Aldrin walked on the moon   -  REUTERS/ NASA/ HANDOUT

It’s the 90th birthday of Michael Collins, the third astronaut on the Apollo XI Mission, who stayed in the command module while his colleagues Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin walked on the moon. This quiz is all about those who got left behind, for better or for worse.

1 Ravish Malhotra was an IAF pilot who later commanded the Hindon Air Force base. Which specific opportunity did he miss out on in 1984?

2 On February 3, 1959, American rock and roll musicians Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valence and the Big Bopper died in a plane crash in Iowa, and it has since been referred to as ‘The Day the Music Died’. Which country music legend was supposed to be on the flight but gave up his seat at the last minute?

3 Still on music, who was supposed to be at a meeting at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, but couldn’t because he stayed up late the night before talking to his mother Katherine and sister Rebbie. The story is mentioned in another sister, Jermaine’s, biography.

4 Which Indian film actor later described himself as ‘The Fourth Idiot’ for refusing the role of Rancho in 3 Idiots?

5 Joe Green created a product named Facemash with a friend on campus. The product got them in trouble and when his friend wanted him to work on another project, Joe’s father reportedly asked him to stay away. Name the friend and the product.

6 Ronald Wayne sold his 10 per cent stake in a company for $800. He later gave up all claims of ownership for $1,500. Had he hung in there he would have become a billionaire. In which company did Wayne hold 10 per cent?

7 This Hungarian-Argentine genius had this universally used product named after him, but sold all the rights to a Marcel Bich, whose company made billions from the product. Who was the inventor and what was the product?

8 This left-handed batsman from Baroda forced himself into national contention with his performance in the 2001 Irani Trophy and was picked for a tour of South Africa. His only chance was in an unofficial Test match at the Centurion, where he got 43 and was never picked again. Name this unlucky cricketer.

9 In 2012, this Indian shooter came out of nowhere to make it to the finals of the 50m prone rifle event at the London Olympics. Unfortunately, he was pipped to fourth place by Slovenian Rajmond Debevec by just 1.9 points. Who was this Indian shooter?

10 Which hugely popular video cassette and, later, video CD renting company was offered a partnership by Netflix in 2000, which was turned down by the then DEO John Antioco. In 2010, it filed for bankruptcy, while Netflix currently has assets of over $30 billion.


1 He was the other pilot with Rakesh Sharma who was trained to be an astronaut. Sharma was finally chosen to become the first Indian in space.

2 Waylon Jennings, who switched places with the Big Bopper, JP Richardson.

3 Michael Jackson.

4 Shah Rukh Khan.

5 Mark Zuckerberg; Facebook.

6 Apple, along with Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs.

7 The ballpoint pen, invented by Lazlo Biro. Ballpoint pens were called Biros and Bich named his company Bic.

8 Connor Williams.

9 Joydeep Karmakar.

10 Blockbuster.


Joy Bhattacharjya is a quizmaster;

Twitter: @joybhattacharj

Published on October 30, 2020

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