Man, I've been going over the archives and testing myself with a few trivia books and online quizzes, and it seems like seriously, I know absolutely nothing. I've never heard of major stuff like John Logie Baird (inventor of first TV set), or Grace Metalious, the woman who wrote Peyton Place, or Peter Paul Reubens' 24-painting cycle of Marie de Medici, or Beaujolais Nouveau, or first black ambassador to the UN Andrew Young, or, or, or...
And the stuff I have heard about before, I can't recall quick enough or at all. I've read Ivanhoe, and could not recall the name of Ivanhoe's inamorata Rowena. I'm sure I've heard a dozen times that Kiev is on the Dnieper river, but I might as well have never learned it. And which condemned Soviet writer won the Nobel prize first, Pasternak or Solzhenitsyn (the former --- I am amazed to learn that Solzhenitsyn died August of this year!). And Percival Lowell's name rings a dim bell, but try getting me to recall within three seconds that he's known for his belief in the canals of Mars. Go on, try. And the Prado's pride and joy "Las Meninas" and on and on.
On the other hand, I was watching Who Wants To Be a Millionaire at my parents' house the other day (they've revamped it: there's a 30 second limit for answering the questions and a couple of new lifelines). Human encyclopedia Ken Jennings was a lifeline choice (Ask the Expert) and he had no idea who oil tycoon T. Boone Pickens was! And Pickens has even been in the news lately for his cockamamie wind schemes!
So maybe there's hope yet.