(Image Courtesy- Travel Quest)
Mukund Choudhary is an ardent quizzer. He has taken part in several quizzes and won most of them. “Quizzing is addictive, it’s very addictive”, that’s how Mukund Choudhary of Raipur defines quizzing.
How addictive you ask, and he promptly replies “So, there is a word in the film Mary Poppins, supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, which means extraordinarily wonderful. That’s what quizzing is for me.”
He started quizzing very early, and his achievements are quite lofty, “I won the Travel Quest season 1 and I won RBI Q season 3. Since these wins, the quizzing bug has bitten me, and I want to participate in as may quizzes as possible.”
As far as life after winning these quizzes is concerned, he says, “As a person who has won two major quizzes I am clearer about the knowledge I want to gather. I know too many facts so now I can learn and look around for newer bits of information and definitely work on them.” His equation with his friends has remained the same, but their methods of having fun now are a little different. Mukund says, “My friends and I, initially used to have fun playing games, but now we rely on quizzing for that fun factor. We all quiz together as well. The usual is a two to three-hour slot each weekday and on Sunday we spend around four to five hours on quizzing.”
Ask him about the pressure of having a dad who’s a quizzer as well, and he says, “Well, it is not at all pressurising. In fact, it is a lot of fun. I observed him as a quizzer, and through him I entered the world of quizzing. I love it so much because of him.” His advice to the upcoming quizzers is simple, yet powerful, “Definitely do not give up. It is not always about winning. You must learn a lot and, through this medium, you can. And once you get eased into it, you will love it.”
Dilip Choudhary, Mukund’s father, as mentioned earlier is a quizzer himself. He has had a great influence on his son and they both quiz together on several occasions. He joined in with his son, “I am an avid quizzer, just like my son. I have been quizzing for the last 8 or 9 years and I love business and finance quizzes. Just like we have Crucible, I wish we had more quizzes. My first cheque came through a quiz, you know. So, I have been quizzing sporadically before I started it formally.”
Beyond quizzing, he trains young kids in different fields of quizzes, like the travel quiz, finance quiz as well as heritage quiz. “While training them, I also get to learn a lot. But, when it comes to Mukund and I, the quiz bug has bitten us both. It is a lot of fun. It is satisfying to see your son do so well in a realm you enjoy too. It is very refreshing for me.”
“I would like to tell parents that they should try and inculcate a spirit of quizzing in their children. And this becomes easier if they start taking interest in it themselves too. It is a positive addiction and it helps everybody. This works well because you learn the best when you help others learn, so it’s a two-way street.”
Renu Chaudhary, mother of Mukund Choudhary has had an incredible journey herself surrounded by quizzers. She has trained her son and has even helped other students in Raipur to explore their passion for quizzing. Not one to be left behind, she pitched in with her own thoughts.
“I have two quizzers in my family and I am really proud of them. These two quiz so well and so much, that they have made me an ardent amateur quizzer! Because of this, our family is immersed in quizzing and facts. This is something you can only experience when you live with quizzers. I remember the first time Giri Sir said, that this is the only positive addiction of the world. This was a statement made rightfully, and our family is a perfect example for this.”
Mukund’s father inculcated the habit in Mukund and she’s experienced first-hand how every small question feeds into the habit that becomes quizzing. “Not only do you keep learning new things, but even the level of your curiosity changes immensely. It is rightfully called an addiction because we give up on a lot of things and spend most of our time reading, researching and understanding facts. We absolutely love it.”
This love for quizzing not only remained in their family but also spread around, people around them, their relatives, family friends and even Mukund’s friends, all started getting influenced by quizzing. This has led to the creation of an ecosystem of quizzing and this has been possible due to Mukund’s success as a quizzer.
Having a medium is an important factor, the family feels. “If the platform was not there, we would not have been able to learn or teach so much. Generally, we learn little and don’t push ourselves. But with quizzes like these, every competition, every win makes us want to learn more. Once you become a zonal or a state winner, your thirst for knowledge reaches another level altogether.” Renu quipped.
Mukund has not given up on his studies. It has been their experience that if a child is learning positively through his quizzing, their studies do not get affected, in fact they study better. “Their thinking style and capacity changes, making you more prone to grasping concepts better. Off the record, I think many parents put the condition that we will let you quiz only if you perform well at academics. So, many students take it upon themselves to be good at studies so that they are allowed to quiz (laughs). I have seen this.”, says Renu.
As parting remark, she closes with this note, “If you want to be in the top 6, you have to perform well, and you have to work that hard. All this amounts to making these quizzers hardworking in all spheres of life. These students are learning to balance their work and their quizzing well, so as to not lose out.”