By Josh Rivera, Lifestyles Editor
What movie has the quote “Ray, if someone asks if you’re a god, say yes?” Who is the most western NFL team? Who was the Titan condemned to hold the heavens on his shoulders? What company uses the jingle “I have an annuity but I need cash now?”
The answers are Ghostbusters, the San Francisco 49ers, Atlas and the J. G. Wentworth Company, respectively. If you knew these answers, you could have won in their respective rounds at the trivia night held by Fire Street Pizza, every Thursday at 6 p.m. Emceed by quizmaster Kyle Gonzales, the trivia nights consist of four rounds of general topics: movies and television, sports, music and “stuff we should have learned in school,” a catch all for history, math, geography, and other academic topics. The final round is whatever topic strikes Gonzales’ fancy. In the case of the trivia night ran on Dec. 20, that topic was “commercial jingles.”
Gonzales uses his past experience as a DJ to hype up his audience, while his brother Kevin Gonzales helps distribute notebooks and pens while watching the crowd to make sure their phones aren’t out on the table.
“People are really telling me they really like my attitude, which is awesome,” Gonzales said. “I’ve always had this affinity and passion for music. I’ve always DJ’d for people’s weddings before; people I went to high school with, people I’ve known for years and years. I started to really think about it, and how I could make a lifestyle out of this.”
Gonzales, who works as a banker for First National Bank, was first approached by Fire Street Pizza owner Jason Brumbalow in October. Three days after their first conversation, Gonzales emceed the first trivia night with equipment purchased at a conveniently-timed Guitar Center Halloween sale.
“Trivia night’s happening every week, it’s free to play, it’s family friendly,” Gonzales said. “The environment definitely does cultivate that.”
Fire Street Pizza has a following that packs the tables and the walls even at 8 p.m. on a weekday night. Their pizza ingredients are made in-house, fresh from the greenhouse in the backyard. Their front yard is spacious enough for children to play in, with their parents watching from a comfortable distance outside.
“Even if trivia night wasn’t happening, they succeed at bringing the crowd in,” Gonzales said. “Originally we wanted to do trivia nights with themes. But if you do the music theme, you’ll only get the music people. If you do the sports theme, you’ll only get the sports people. They’ll wait for the sports night because they know they’ll kill it. Doing diverse topics and categories definitely helps level the playing field. I always wanted to make sure everybody walks away with something, which is tough when you have 12 teams and you can only have one winner.”
The subject of the fifth bonus round changes every week. Adam Sandler movies, The Office, and Harry Potter have been topics for consideration, but Gonzales is wary of having rounds of questions too insular for a general audience.
“Everybody like the fact that the questions I ask are things that everybody can get,” Gonzales said. “I’ve gone to certain trivia nights and it’s like, ‘nobody knows that. Why are you asking that?’ No one wants to feel like they’re stupid. People like hearing the answer and saying, ‘yes, I got that right!’ If anybody had a How I Met Your Mother round, I’d get all that. If anybody had a music round, I’d get all that. But my dad always taught me that whenever I play music, I need to entertain an entire crowd, not a specific group.”
Gonzales, however, still uses the trivia night to express his enthusiasm for certain subjects.
“Every now and then, I’ll ask questions about Pulp Fiction or Forrest Gump, which are my favorite movies,” Gonzales said. “Sometimes I’ll try to throw in some stuff for me.”
Trivia nights traditionally inspire creative names for their teams, like Team Ramrod, Team PTA Moms, or Team Josh & the Joshettes. One team name from a night past struck a chord with the quizmaster.
“The one that sticks out is, ‘Team I Missed Grey’s Anatomy for This,’” Gonzales said. “I say it over the mic, ask ‘hey, who is this?’ There was this couple and it was the man’s idea to go to Fire Street. The woman said, ‘I had work last night and I didn’t get to watch Grey’s Anatomy.’”
Fire Street Pizza hosts their trivia nights on Thursdays at 6 p.m. They are located at 10310 FM 439 in Belton, and can be reached at 512-910-4676, firestreetpizza.com, or on facebook.com/firestreetpizza.