Every month, our Safety guy sends out his monthly memo, which always includes a trivia question at the bottom. I usually don't answer the questions, because they're not all that challenging. But this one was different.
Who is Jervis Tetch? (it was actually spelled "Tesch" on the memo, but that's a minor quibble)
Gah, I should know that name, I said to myself. For some reason I was pretty sure it was a cartoon character, or a comic book, or something along those lines. I could have gone to Wikipedia and found out, but I knew it would come to me. And that moment of revelation when you finally remember something like that is so fantastic, its worth not looking it up on the Internet.
A couple of people in the office had the same inkling: that it was a comic book thing. So they came over and asked me, the resident expert on all things people under-30 years old would know in our office. One lady didn't say it was for the trivia question -- probably thought I wouldn't answer if I knew it was for the trivia contest, I'd just answer myself and get the prize -- just, "Hey, you know this stuff -- who's Jervis Tetch?"
"Oh, it just came up, and I was curious..."
But I still didn't know who it was.
Then, about an hour later, I'm in the bathroom, and while perusing some reading material, I came across an article about America's love affair with the baseball cap. And it hit me: Jervis Tetch is the Mad Hatter! Of course!
The Mad Hatter, introduced in Alice and Wonderland, and later turned into a Supervillian in the Batman comics and TV Show, was Jervis Tetch before he went insane and became the Mad Hatter. I remembered it because of the episode on the old TV Show, where he contaminates Batman's cowl turning it pink (the idea being if he doused the cowl with radiation, Batman would remove it to avoid being contaminated -- only the radiation turned it pink), and during one of Batman's monologues with Robin in the Batcave, Adam West drones out the name Jervis Tetch in his typical drawn-out-delivery. I loved that show. Still do, actually. I bet I saw every episode at least 6 times growing up. Can you tell?
The Infamous Pink Cowl
Anyway, I can hear Drew yelling "NERD" all the way from the Islands, so I better stop now.
So with the answer in hand, I did the noble thing and instead of answering the question myself, I went and gave the answer to the two people who'd asked me for help. Seemed like the right thing to do.
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