Ladies and gentlemen, dust off your keyboard and calibrate your mouse. It’s time for a “View from the Cutting Room Floor” pop quiz.

Like the Native American windtalkers in World War II, post production professionals often speak in code only intelligible to other members of our “tribe.” To evaluate your level of submersion into television post culture, define the following terms by picking the multiple choice answer that is most appropriate to the profession.

1. Supertease

  1. The flashy montage at the beginning of a reality show (usually in the first episode) that informs the viewer of the premise of the show and what to expect from the rest of the season
  2. A men’s hair product that was forced out of business by Vitalis in the 1950’s
  3. The guy or girl in high school that flirted with you all the time but always had “other plans” on Friday and Saturday night

2. Cue

  1. The wooden pole you use to poke the white billiard ball
  2. A piece of music added to a show in post production
  3. The 17th letter of the alphabet

3. Sting

  1. A brief sound effect or music cue that is used to transition between scenes or accentuate a particular moment
  2. A singer famous for practicing tantric sex and advising people not to turn on red lights
  3. The painful reminder that bees are not to be messed with

4. Bay

  1. Manny Ramirez’s replacement on the Boston Red Sox
  2. a body of water, often cold and dark, which shellfish call their home and leave only for the purposes of sustenance and mating
  3. a secluded room, often cold and dark, which editors call their home and leave only for the purposes of sustenance and mating

5. Online

  1. The high-resolution edit (usually performed on an expensive finishing system) to finalize the color correction, titles, and effects of a show before it airs
  2. Where Philippe Petit finds himself in James Marsh’s new documentary “Man on Wire”
  3. What an editor is usually doing on his laptop instead of working when the executive producer or post supervisor peeks into his bay.

6. Layback

  1. How Snoop Dogg feels when he’s got his mind on his money and his money on his mind
  2. What you wish you could do on the sofa in your bay after lunch
  3. The process of re-recording the final sound mix to your high resolution master tape, after both audio and video have undergone separate finishing processes

7. B-roll

  1. The Honor Roll’s slightly less prestigious relative
  2. The Coffee Bean’s newest pastry, available in chocolate or almond varieties
  3. Footage that is not story specific and can be used in a variety of situations in multiple shows (for example: sunsets, traffic, building exteriors, people walking down the street, etc.)

8. Lower third

  1. If you finished in this portion of your graduating class, you are more suited to running for President of the United States on the Republican ticket than being an editor
  2. A graphic near the bottom of the screen (also called a chyron), often used to identify a person or place
  3. The part of an editor’s body most likely to fall asleep after 14 hours straight in an Aeron chair

9. In sync

  1. A band you pretend to hate but secretly sing along with in your car when you think no one is watching
  2. The perfect harmony between audio and video that prevents your show from looking like a poorly dubbed Japanese film
  3. The place you wash your hands after using the restroom

10. Air date

  1. The only thing (besides money) preventing your three-month job from turning into a six-month job
  2. The rare day that you can actually breathe in the city of Los Angeles without coughing
  3. A candlelight dinner with Michael Jordan

To read the answers below and determine your score, simply flip your computer monitor upside down.



0-3 points: You’re either drunk or asleep. Seriously, the quiz was not that hard.

4-7 points: Do you even own a TV?

8-10 points: Congratulations. Either you work in the industry, or you cheated. Both are equally dishonorable.