Allen and Janet’s Excellent
Adventure
or
Jeopardy-land!
© Allen C. Goodman, 2008
Once upon a time in Cleveland
• 1960s – Jeopardy
was on during the
noon hour.
• Art Fleming/Don
Pardo!
• Allen Goodman
tried to get on.
Don
Pardo!
1985 - Baltimore
• Now married to Janet
(Jan) Hankin
• Jeopardy try-outs at
Channel 2 (the station
no one watches)
• Alex Trebek is the new
host!
• Around the corner
from home
• Made first cut … and
then …
Then – January 2007
Daughter Sara (age 17+) encouraged him
• Sara: Dad, Jeopardy! is having a
contestant search on line. You should
take the test.
• Allen: Sara, I’m 59 years old. Besides,
they don’t want white, Jewish, University
professors.
So,now
I took Dad,
the test!
• Sara: Oh c’mon
you can do it.
A 50 question short answer test
… and
• Allen: So, how did I do?
• Sara: I can’t believe that you didn’t know
Sheryl Crow.
• Allen: Did I miss a lot of others?
• Sara: I think you did pretty well.
• Allen: Well, we’ll see.
… and we waited
… and waited
… and waited
… and waited
… and waited
… and waited
… and waited
Sara: Dad, have you heard from Jeopardy!
Allen: No, Sara, they’re not going to contact me.
Sara: Dad, have you heard from Jeopardy!
Allen: No, Sara, they’re not going to contact me.
So, we went to Paris in June
• Great apartment.
• WiFi connection … but
we didn’t bring our
computer.
• So every once in a
while I walked up to
the Cyber-café up the
street to check the
email.
• … and one day!
At least 36 hours earlier …
•
•
Date: Mon, 2 Jul 2007 15:49:29 -0700
From: [email protected]
Subject: Jeopardy! Contestant Auditions in Chicago on Aug 7th at 930am
To: undisclosed-recipients:;
Wow, an
Congratulations! You have been selected for a follow-up appointment at an upcomingundisclosed
Jeopardy!
contestant search for the Chicago area, exclusively for those who successfully passed the online test.
recipient!
This is the next step in becoming a Jeopardy! contestant. We have reserved the following
appointment for you:
When: Tuesday, August 7th
Time: 9:30am
Where: Chicago, IL
You must RSVP within two business days of receipt of this email to secure your place in the audition.
When you RSVP via email, please provide the following:
•
1. Date and time of your invite
2. Your name
3. Your City & State
4. Your Phone Number
Due to overwhelming demand we can only hold your spot for two business days. If you respond after
that period of time, and if we still have space, we will be happy to provide you with an appointment.
Uh oh,
Was I within 2
business days …
The auditions will last about 2 hours.
Once you RSVP, we will email you a letter of confirmation within fiveshould
business days
that will
have
brought
give you the exact location and other information regarding trying out. Should you have a major
conflict with the time and date provided, you may respond to this email
to explain
the nature of the
the
computer
situation. Again, please provide your name, city, and phone number. If you do not receive a response
Your appointment is non-transferable, and only those who receive this invitation directly from Jeopardy!
may RSVP to book an appointment. Each RSVP will be matched against an invite list and forwarded
invitations will not be honored.
in ten business days, please contact us by phone.
Appointments are very limited, so please be sure you can join us before you RSVP.
If you are physically challenged in any way, please contact Corina Nusu at 310-244-5581 prior to the
audition to discuss any accommodations you may require.
We hope to hear from you soon!
Best Regards,
The Jeopardy! Contestant Department
So, I responded
•
Near …
although not too
I am responding from a cybercafé in Paris.near,
I willPlace
be back
Pigalle
… the
July 12. Look forward to participating.
“faded red-light
district of
ag
Paris.”
in US on
… and on July 5
•
Date: Thu, 5 Jul 2007 15:48:38 -0700
From: [email protected]
Subject: Confirmation - Jeopardy! Auditions in Chicago
To: undisclosed-recipients:;
PRINT OUT AND BRING THIS LETTER WITH YOU – ADULT INTERVIEW
Don’t f___ around with
these guys.
Congratulations! We are happy to confirm your appointment to participate in the full audition for Jeopardy!. That will consist of playing a “mock version”
of Jeopardy! to assess your game-playing skills, a short personality interview, and being re-tested with a new 50-question test. If you pass all the
requirements to become a contestant you will be entered into the contestant pool for one year. However even though you pass the test, we cannot
guarantee that you will be invited to do the show. In fact, even though you are invited to the studio, there is no guarantee that you will appear on the
show. You will be responsible for all expenses such as parking and travel to and from the audition center. If you are invited to Los Angeles to do the
show you would also be responsible for expenses to come to Los Angeles.
They mean business.
Your appointment is in:
CHICAGO, IL
THE WESTIN - MICHIGAN AVENUE
909 NORTH MICHIGAN AVENUE
CHICAGO, IL 60611
312-943-7200
TUES – AUGUST 7th - 9:30 AM
Please do not call the Hotel for appointment information. Please allow plenty of time for traffic and parking.
TESTING STARTS PROMPTLY AT THE APPOINTMENT TIME, AND NO ONE CAN BE ADMITTED IF THEY ARE LATE.
The full audition will take approximately 2 – 2 ½ Hours. This is the complete interview, no other interview will be necessary. Come dressed as you
might for an actual appearance on the show. Only the person with the appointment will be allowed in the interview room; guests cannot wait outside the
interview room.
Appointments are limited, so please notify us at 310-244-5581 if you cannot attend.
Eligibility: You must have only taken one adult online test. You must not have been to an in-person audition (where you took a 50 question
test) in the past year. You cannot appear on Jeopardy! if you have previously appeared on Jeopardy! from 1984-2007. You must not have done any
other game shows in the past year or more than 2 in the past 5 years. If we find that you have taken more than one adult online test or have been
at an in-person audition in the past year, you will be deemed ineligible.
August 6
and Anne (Delavigne),
Sara’s French sister,
So, on Monday, August 6,
piled into Lloyd (the family
Car) for a five hour trip to
Chicago.
Sara,
Allen, Janet,
Chicago
• We would stay with
Allen’s brother
Mark, and his
family.
G ale n a
20
94
Fox La k e
90
F ree p o rt
W au k e g an
12
R oc k f o rd
H igh la n d Pa rk
90
R oc h e lle
88
Ev an s t o n
D e K a lb
30
A uro ra
C hic a g o
30
R oc k F a ls
88
294
G en e s e o
80
J o lie t
L a Sa lle
80
57
M orris
74
K an k a k ee
39
67
1
G ale s b u rg
55
34
M on mo u th
El
Pa so
Pe oria
24
W at s e ka
24
M ac o mb
B loo min gt o n
67
74
55
Q uin c y
D an v ille
51
C ha mp a ig n
72
B ea rd s t ow n
24
J a ck s o nv ille
1
D ec a t u r
Sp rin g f ield
36
57
M ars h a ll
55
70
51
67
Ef fin g h a m
Va nd a lia
1
A lto n
70
50
E. St .
L o uis
L a wre n ce v ille
50
Sa nd o v al
Sa le m
M t .C a rme l
64
M t .Ve rn on
64
C armi
51
45
M ario n
C arb o n d a le
57
24
Westin Hotel – Chicago
• Maggie Speak
– Has been characterized on
other web sites as a Jewish
(although she’s not) mother
on steroids.
– Has a way of making you
feel she’s your best friend.
– You SO want to please her.
• Robert James
– Good looking AfricanAmerican guy from Battle
Creek
– Can’t find a picture – does
anyone have one?
– Is Robert James his real
name? Every time you
google him you get Kid
Rock (Robert James
Richey).
This
Should
FUN !
Be
Westin Hotel – Chicago
• Very structured affair
– 50 question test – did some precocious 18 year old stand over
our shoulder on the web-based test and feed us answers?
– Grade the questions.
– Hotter than hell outside, and about 62 degrees inside.
• After the questions, we “play” Jeopardy
– Called up the first group.
– Three of us.
– AG, a woman, and a local actor from Chicago (all names here
will be changed)
Westin Hotel – Chicago
• Maggie: Allen, what do you like to do for fun?
– AG: Recently I’ve been taking 1970s rock songs and arranging them
for my daughter’s string quartet.
• M: Really, like what?
– Rock on, by David Essex
So help
me!
AG: Hey hee, boogey, too, Rock On!
• Robert: What the --?
• M: Hey hee, Rock and roll, rock on, ooh my soul
–
• M: Still looking for that blue jean, baby queen
– AG: Prettiest girl I ever seen
• M: See her shake on the movie screen, JimmyPlayed
Beansome
– AG: James Dean
• M & AG: Rock ON!
Jeopardy. That
worked too.
Other Snippets
• What’s your name?
– Megan
• Can I call you Megallah?
– Sure, whatever.
• So, Megallah, what do you do?
– I’ve been unemployed for 6 years.
• Do you have any hobbies?
– Not much – it’s pretty depressing being
unemployed.
Toast!
Other Snippets
• What’s your name?
– John
• So you’re in the army?
– That’s right. I’m on duty. I haven’t seen my wife
in three months
• [AG: And you’re in Chicago trying out for
Toast!
Jeopardy!]
• [Also didn’t help that he was sitting there
reading a newspaper while everyone else
was paying attention]
Walking out …
• Impressions
• Did my damnedest.
• Did I get a figurative “wink” walking out?
– I’ve misinterpreted those before, from women.
– … like a million times … or more!
• Sara: Dad, how’d you do!
• AG: OK, I think.
So we waited …
… and waited
… and waited
… and waited
… and waited
Sara: Dad, have you heard from Jeopardy!
Allen: No, Sara, they’re not going to contact me.
Sara: Dad, have you heard from Jeopardy!
Allen: No, Sara, they’re not going to contact me.
January 26
At work … about 2:30 pm
Allen, this is Tony Pandolfo from Jeopardy!
We’d like to have you out on February 28.
Meaning:
I’d crawl over
AG: Yeah, I think I can
make it.
barbed wire from Detroit to
LA to get there.
We’ll send you out some material. What’s your
best address.
Thoughts
•
•
•
•
•
This is a joke … no …
They’re serious!
How will I know if it’s a joke?
…
The envelope with the materials in it
arrived on Monday. No joke!
The Contract
• Easily 10 pages.
• We MAY NOT use you (What does that
mean?!)
• If you know anyone at SONY, XCompliance, or have ever been in
Manitoba, you can’t be on the show.
• Just kidding about Manitoba.
X – Compliance ???
• In the 1950’s quiz shows were
BIG!
• They wanted to make sure that
contestants would look good, so
they fed them the answers.
• Charles van Doren was the most
famous example.
• On ‘21’ he took the answers and
then lied about it.
• Events like this killed off the quiz
shows.
X- Compliance ???
• Jeopardy! is pathological about security.
• X – Compliance is hired to maintain a
degree of separation between J! staffers
and the contestants.
• More about X – Compliance below!
How to prepare
• Google “Jeopardy!”. You’ll get about 1,500
blogs.
• Everyone who ever tried out for Jeopardy!
That’s
seems to want to write about
it. why this is a
PowerPoint!
• Do you read every book that’s ever been
written?
• Memorize the dictionary?
What to learn
•
•
•
•
Presidents! Know 'em.
State Capitals! Know 'em.
Oscar winning films! Better bone up.
Shakespeare! 37 plays – how do I keep
them straight?
• Supreme Court Justices – Never know.
OK, Which actor won 4 Oscars?
• Katherine Hepburn
Which actors won 3 Oscars?
• Ingrid Bergman
• Jack Nicholson
• Walter Brennan – yes Grandpappy Amos
McCoy.
What to wear
• No tweed. It looks
weird on TV
• No white shirts.
They make you
look washed out.
• No sneakers –
obvious reasons
It’s Obvious
• Navy blue blazer
• With my custom
Bunce Bros. brass
buttons!
• You can take the
boy out of
Cleveland, but …
• You can’t take the
Cleveland out of
the boy!
And on to LA!
• Gollee, Jan, how do we
get to California?
• We use Northwest
Airlines!
• Do you think we’ll get
there on-time?
• … w/o food poisoning.
• No problem – they
don’t feed you!
Culver City
• Somewhere near
LA!
• Hope the plane can
find it!
97
Cre s c e n t Ci ty
395
Yre k a
139
5
Al tu ra s
W eed
101
Du n s m u ir
299
89
Arc a t a
Bu rn e y
395
299
Eu re k a
299
W e a v e rv i ll e
Ri o De l l
Re d d in g
44
Su s a n v i ll e
44
101
36
W e s t wo o d
Ga rb e rv i ll e
89
Re d Bl u f f
395
Qu i n c y
99
Le g ge t t
70
Po rt o la
Ch i c o
5
Oro v i ll e
49
89
80
T a h o e Cit y
F o rt
Bra g g
T ru c k e e
Uk i a h
Gra s s
Va l l e y
M a ry s v i ll e
20
Po i n t A re n a
65
Au b u rn
1
101
So u th
La k e
Ta h oe
50
70
Ro s e v i ll e
Pl a c e rv i ll e
5
He a ld s b u rg
Sa c ra m e n t o
505
80
Sa n ta Ro s a
99
Va l l e jo
395
49
680
So n o ra
St o c k t o n
Sa n F ra n c i s c o
Be rk l e y
Oa k la n d
120
120
Yo s e m it e
Vi ll a g e
6
M o d e s to
880
280
120
580
Sa n
140
99
J os e
Bi s h o p
5
101
M e rc e d
41
1
L o s Ba n o s
Gi lro y
395
152
M a d e ra
Sa n ta Cru z
F re s n o
33
Sa l i n a s
180
M o n t e ry
L o n e P in e
Gi a n t
F o re s t
190
198
Ha n fo rd
De a th Va l le y J u n c t io n
Ki n g Ci ty
1
T u l a re
198
L u c ia
65
Co a li n g a
101
127
Sa n
Si m e o n
46
Pa s o R o b le s
178
15
14
M o rro Ba y
Sa n L u is Ob i s p o
Ba k e rs fi e ld
33
Ba k e r
395
58
5
M oj a v e
Sa n ta M a ri a
Ba rs t o w
101
40
Ne e d le s
15
1
14
Sa n ta Ba rb a ra
Ve n tu ra
1
95
101
Gl e n d a le
L o s An g e le s
Sa n Be rn a d in o
Ri v e rs i d e
Sa n ta M o n i c a
10
Sa n ta An a
Lon g B e a c h
I ndi o
Pa l m S p ri n g s
10
5
15
86
Oc e a n s i d e
Bra wl e y
Es c o n d i d o
El C e n t ro
Sa n Di e g o
8
Ca l e x i c o
Bl y t h e
Who will be the MC?
The Hotel – Radisson West Side
• Looked at reviews … they
were mixed.
• … they were right.
• Supposed to be a shuttle.
• After 25 minutes I took the
first shuttle that had
Radisson on it.
• Unfortunately it took us to
Radisson LAX.
• West side wouldn’t send a
van.
• LAX: We can give you a
ride back to LAX and you
can get the other shuttle.
• AG: We’ll take a cab.
Arrival – Radisson West Side
• $12 later!
• AG: We went to the wrong
hotel.
• Staff: You should have
called us.
• AG: We did. No one
would come and get us.
Would you give us an
allowance.
• Staff: We can’t do that.
Truth in Advertising!
A couple of weeks later, after
getting my (not terribly
satisfied) response on a
“Consumer Satisfaction
Survey”,
they removed $12 from my bill.
• AG: Hardly an auspicious
beginning.
• JH: Let’s see the room.
• Room was OK – mediocre.
Dinner
• Ford’s Filling
Station
• Ben Ford … you
know, Harrison’s
son.
• Heart of Culver City
• Sweet Waitress
• Righteous Salads
• … The last supper?
• … Fireworks at
dusk?
• … Why is everyone
from California so
damn good
looking?
Next Morning
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Supposed to be in lobby by 7:25.
Wake up at 5 am (8 am EST)
Might as well get up
Coffee, breakfast bar
Loosen up
Shave … don’t cut yourself
Shower
Get dressed
It’s 6:30 am – why didn’t I bring War and Peace?
Characters
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Emily – Idaho, France
Brielle – Dayton, OH
Donna – Bethesda
Dino – LA
Traci – Houston
Allen – C’est moi
Danny – Tampa
Jay – Philadelphia
Ilana – Portland
Lowell – LA
Debbie – NYC
• Marianne – LA
• Greg - LA
Stunning – 6’1’’ + 4” heels
Pretty, stay-at-home mom
MD/PhD Returning Champ
Asian – showed up at studio
Tall, slim, left after 1st game
Allen – C’est moi
In Navy, overseas next day
Harvard – PhD cand. in Clinical 
From Oregon, teacher
Also Goodman – Yale - writer
Admin. Jewish temple although she’s
Catholic!
Owns store; didn’t play until July 3
Infantry!; didn’t play until July 9
At Studio
• Dino shows up – hadn’t been at hotel.
• AG: He must be the champion. Wasn’t at
the hotel.
• Donna: Actually, I’m the champion.
• AG: I only open my mouth to change feet.
Why didn’t you tell me?
• Donna: I didn’t want to talk much about it.
• AG: [ok, I’ve been punked]
The Studio
•
•
•
•
Pass Security
To the Green Room
Lots of coffee
Decent food
– Fruit, yogurt, lots of California things.
– Last bagel was onion – no one would touch it.
Preliminaries
• Lots of preliminaries! Signed more forms.
• Started making people up … women first!
• There will be a studio audience. Lots of
people will know the outcome. Can we tell
anyone?
• We can tell our families what happened,
but we shouldn’t tell the press.
Control!
• No cell phones!
• Can’t talk to significant others, even when
they’re across the aisle during the taping.
• When the game is over, you are hustled
out!
• They don’t make it easy for you to find the
other contestants … afterward … although
of course Google works wonders.
To the set!
•
•
•
•
•
Practice! Practice! Practice!
Against each other.
Buzzer techniques.
Psyching each other out.
Platforms – Everyone should look same
height! Against Emily I had to stand on
one!
Aside, No Johnny Gilbert
• He wasn’t there. Had
the flu.
• Jimmy McGuire of
Clue Crew
announced.
• Seemed like a good
guy.
• They’ll splice Johnny
in … but we’ll know
the truth!
Who’s that Guy?
• After practicing, I saw a man sitting in the
audience who was a dead ringer for a
former colleague.
– AG: Sorry, I didn’t mean to stare, but you look
just like a former colleague:
– Guy: I hope not – if you know me you can’t
play … [and I may have to kill you!]
Who’s that Guy? – 2
• We head back to Green Room
• My friend from the previous slide is the
representative from X – Compliance. He is
introduced.
• HE picks 2 challengers for each game.
• HE picks the game
• Interesting tidbit: 6 games are prepared for each
week. Five are picked … at random. X –
Compliance guy does the picking.
• We are nothing … if not compliant!
High Noon!
Taping begins!
What’s Alex Like - 1
• Surprisingly, a little
edgy.
• He engages with the
audience before each
show, and they ask
him questions.
• Someone asked him
whether he would ever
have Sean Connery
on … and he carried
on some about having
a guy in a skirt!
Game 1 – June 9
Donna Vogel
Bethesda, MD
•
•
•
•
Traci Turnbaugh Siegel
Houston, TX
Brielle Maynor
Miamisburg, OH
Donna’s tough!
No one will beat her in this game.
Final – Easy question – everyone in audience got it.
Ilana turns to me and tells me Donna pegged me as the
one she doesn’t want to play. [I think I’m getting played].
• AG: She’s kind – she’d clean my clock.
Game 2 – June 10
Donna Vogel
Bethesda, MD
Emily Ochoa
Boise, IDdid Danny’s
Neither
wife, sitting in the
audience
Emily’s
smartwith
butJan.
she
• Danny’s sharp,
Donna’s getting a little tired.
• Final
Danny Whitehurst
Lithia, FL
won’t beat Donna,
– All in but Emily can win only if Donna and Danny miss.
– Danny hits.
– Donna hits – if Danny had bet enough he’d have beaten her.
• None of us can believe it!
Interim
• There are
of but
us. Did we come X miles
That’s12
a relief,
could have
told
(in AG’stheycase,
2,000)
not to get picked.
us earlier.
A little
game, I in the contract saying
• All kinds
of power
language
think.
they don’t have to pick us.
• Why wouldn’t they?
was pickedwe’re
for
• Finally between 2nd andLowell
3rd game,
Game 5.
told that all the out of towners
will July
play.
Marianne played
3.
9.
The LA folks will be heldGreg
offplayed
untilJulylast
game. One will be picked.
• Others will come back on March 18.
Game 3 – June 11
Donna Vogel
Bethesda, MD
Debbie Barnes
New
York, NY
Relief!
No one left
wanted
to play
Dino
(3 D’s)
Donna.
Dino Buenviaje
Riverside, CA
• Donna, Debbie,
• Debbie hits Formula 1 clue, goes ahead of Donna –
everyone cheers.
• At end, final Jeopardy category:
–
–
–
–
Only 3 films but #18 on all time actors
Debbie gets it (James Dean, obviously)
Donna (Jimmy Stewart)
Dino (Orson Welles)
Lunch
• It’s 2 pm (5 pm in Detroit and I’m eating
lunch – why am I eating lunch at 5 pm?).
I’ve got $10 in commissary money.
• Grilled cheese, about a pound of French
Fries, and an apple.
• Left half of the GC, most of the FF on the
plate.
• No one is very hungry.
Back to the Set
• Groggy
• Can’t get started.
• Serious caffeine deficit. Better chew 3
Penguins!
• Up there buzzing away, trying to wake up.
Always watch for
• This will be the Thursday game.
upsets on Thursday
games. First game
after lunch!
Game 4 – June 12
Debbie Barnes
New York, NY
•
•
•
•
•
•
llana Rembelinsky
Portland, OR
Jay Chaffin
Chester, PA
Pick the contestants
Debbie, Jay, Ilana
Good, didn’t want to play Jay
Know that I’ll be playing next
Slow game, Debbie can’t get started
Weird FJ (some kind of numbers category, that I can’t
figure out – answer is ‘one’). Jay can’t figure it either.
• Ilana wins! My turn next.
Game 5 – June 13
llana Rembelinsky
Portland, OR
Allen Goodman
Huntington Woods, MI
Lowell Goodman
Los Angeles, CA
• All made up and ready to boogie!
• Hometown “howdy”
– Short: “I’m Allen Goodman from Huntington Woods. Watch me
on Jeopardy!”
– Long: “Rock on Detroit!” – I’m Allen Goodman from Huntington
Woods. Let’s cruise on down Woodward. Watch me on
Jeopardy! (This played on Channel 4 three or four times).
• Trying to get a good necktie for Lowell. His first one
“crawled” on the camera.
Jeopardy!
Mythology
Hershey v
Nestle
Little
League
Baseball
200
200
200
200
400
400
400
400
400
600
600
600
600
600
600
800
800
800
800
800
800
1000
1000
1000
1000
1000
1000
Nations with
an “N”
5 letter words
Hodgepodge
200
200
400
This is Jeopardy!
•
•
•
•
•
Intro
Not too nervous
Look at categories
I can handle these
First answer
– What is Niger
– Whoops – correct answer is Nigeria
– Don’t want to end game in the red!
More to come!
• First answer – Niger – should be Nigeria.
June 21, 2004
– Uh oh, I’m -400, got to get outKen
ofJennings
here. (surprise!)
it right on a Daily
• A few later – Namibia – got it!got$1,000
Double!
clue.
– They’ve used this answer before
Little League Baseball!
6.
7.
8.
(Jimmy pitches one up from Williamsport, PA.) In the
major leagues, this goes to about halfway up the torso;
in Little League, it goes to the armpits. Allen What is
the strike zone?
(Jimmy lays another clue down from Williamsport, PA.)
Unlike Major League Baseball, Little League batters
may use non-wood bats; most are made of this metal
that has a distinctive sound when it meets the ball.
Ilana What is cork? Allen What is aluminum?
(Jimmy reports from a distance from Williamsport, PA.)
The distance between the bases in Little League is this
many feet, two-thirds that of Major League Baseball.
Allen What is 60 feet?
Little League Baseball!
9.
(Jimmy gives us another clue from Williamsport, PA.)
Little League games are shorter than big league ones,
so as a dramatic moment, as Kyle comes to bat in the
last regulation inning, the bottom of Lowell What is the
7th inning? Allen What is the 6th inning?
10. (Jimmy preserves another one for us from
Williamsport, PA.) I'm caught between the bases, and
I've gotten myself into one of these; it's also called a
pickle, because that's what I'm in? Allen What is a
rundown?
King of the Little League!
• Little League baseball – got ‘em all.
• Look at this – First Break
– Allen $3,400
– Ilana $1,200
– Lowell $ 600
At the break …
•
•
In 1990, Connie Chung was trying
As we prepare
J!, we’re
asked to
(very for
publicly)
to get pregnant.
As it
happened,
myfor
wifeAlex
had had
my us
prepare funny
stories
to ask
daughter Sara at age (almost) 42.
about at thePeople
break
Magazine did a feature on
Moms,
and sent
outwas
a
Mine: Onceolder
upon
a time
there
a
photographer to show us at home.
picture of me
in
People
Magazine
with
One of the pictures was “Sara [then
shaving cream
on my
18 months
old]face.
and Daddy sharing a
shave!”
• So …
what I got instead …
• Alex: “During the break I asked
whether you had a son who
plays little league?”
– Allen: … “and I said ‘no’, and I
always got cut when I tried
out!”
• Alex: Well I’ve got some other
bad news for you. The
producers have ruled that you
pronounced the $1,000 answer
“Nabibia” rather than “Namibia”,
so we have to take $2,000
away from you. But you’re still
in the lead with $1,400.
– Allen: [I don’t mispronounce words like this …]
Namibia!
• Bad news! I pronounced Namibia as
Nabibia. They’re taking away $2,000.
• I can’t believe it. I’ve seen the
clue before. I never
mispronounce places.
• If they couldn’t understand it,
have me say it again!
• I’m still ahead but by only
$200 and I’ve shot my best
category.
Like, would it have killed
them to tell me during the
break … before the
interviews.
You suck at baseball …
and guess what … we’re
taking away 60% of your
money!
After the Break
•
•
•
•
16 – Almond Joy for $800
18 – March, April for $200
That’s it.
Like stepping into a right cross.
After Jeopardy!
Mythology
Hershey v
Nestle
Little
League
Baseball
200
200
200
200
400
X
400
400
X!
400
400
X
600
600
600
600
600
600
800
800
X
800
800
800
800
X!*
1000
1000
1000
1000
1000
1000
Nations with
an “N”
5 letter words
Hodgepodge
200
200
400!
X = Triple
Stumper
! = Missed
J!
Archive
Scores after Jeopardy
• Lowell - $5,200
• Ilana - $4,800
• Allen - $2,400
– Get to pick first in DJ
#2
•
In the first break I had $2,000
taken away because I had
“mispronounced ‘Namibia’. I was
certain I hadn’t.
– I don’t mispronounce words.
– I had seen that clue from an
earlier game.
•
He came around for the picture
taking after the Jeopardy round.
• “The judges spent a lot of
time looking at the tape.”
• “I understand how you feel
about this. I mispronounce
clues too.”
• “I just don’t believe that I
mispronounced that word
[translation: what a bogus
call!]”
• “Somehow I’ve got to get back
into my game.”
After Jeopardy
•
•
•
•
•
I’m in third place … with $2,400.
Still bummed …
AG: I just have to get over that one.
Maggie: You can do it!
AG: Right!
Calm down …
Probably won’t
work …
New Clues … I
get to pick
Double Jeopardy!
Italian
Art
Pop Music
Bugs
Wear it Well
Trilogies
“I” Aye
400
400
400
400
400
400
800
800
800
800
Where on earth
800
800
did they get these
categories?
1200
1200
1200
1200
1600
1600
1600
1600
2000
2000
Next 2000
Thought:
2000
Alex, can you get
me six others?
What category do
1200know less1200
they
than I do? …
I’ll
take Trilogies
1600
1600
for 400.
2000
2000
Double Jeopardy
• Lowell’s in (whoops, so much for trilogies)
• Blur …
• Eight triple stumpers?
• 5. What is “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy?”
enunciate that s.o.b! $1200!
• 7. Who is Titian? enunciate that s.o.b! Got it!
$400
• 15. Who is Sartre? e.t.s.o.b. Got it! $1200
• 21. Fattening “illegal … and immoral” [Just] Got it!
$1200
Can’t put two together !?!?!?
Double Jeopardy
• 23. Eugene O’Neill’s Strange “Interlude”
Got it! $2,000
• 30. What is a sack dress? Got it! $1,200.
Last clue … gets me up to $9,600 … tied
with Lowell.
• $7,200 in DJ; No mistakes!
• Better than the others; still have a
chance!
Double Jeopardy!
Italian
Art
Pop Music
Bugs
Wear it Well
Trilogies
“I” “I”
400
400
400
X
400
400
400
800
800
800
800
X
800
800
1200
1200
1200
1200
1200
1200
1600
1600
X
1600
X
1600
X
1600
1600
2000
X
2000
X
2000
2000
X
2000
2000
X = triple stumper
J!
Archive
True Game Dynamics
Actual Jeopardy Sequence
Allen
Lowell
Clue Number
60
.5
59
57
55
53
51
49
47
45
43
41
39
37
35
33
31
30
28
26
24
22
20
18
16
15
13
11
9
7
5
;
3
17000
16000
15000
14000
13000
12000
11000
10000
9000
8000
7000
6000
5000
4000
3000
2000
1000
0
-1000
Ilana
1
Scores
20000
19000
18000
Final Jeopardy
• Ilana - $11,700
• Allen - $9,600
• Lowell - $9,600
Final Bet
• All in!
• Have to do that. If Ilana is right, she’ll shut
me out.
• Have to assume that Lowell will go all in.
If not, I’ll beat him.
• Can’t play for second.
Final Question
• The Society for Human Resource
Management says, of the 10 federal
holidays, it's the least observed by the
all of the
private sector? After
powder puffs earlier
• Answer ??
in the day, this is
what we get?
Little-Observed Holiday Poses
Problems for Parents
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
October 7, 2007
Little-Observed Holiday Poses Problems for Parents
By PATRICK McGEEHAN
For many working parents in the New York City area, the pickle presents itself
just a few weeks into each school year: What to do about Columbus Day?
It is one of those uniquely American holidays that reward whole classes of
people, while punishing millions of others.
Public schools are closed, as are government offices and most banks. But
most workplaces ignore the holiday, leaving employees with school-age
children the choice of burning a vacation day on the second Monday in
October or hiring somebody to mind the kids.
Other federal holidays, like Veterans Day and Martin Luther King’s Birthday,
pose this problem, but none so much as Columbus Day.
It is the major holiday least likely to be granted by employers, according to the
Society for Human Resource Management. Only about 1 in 10 companies
closes up shop for the day, the society’s recent surveys show, compared with
one in seven on Veterans Day, the next-least-observed federal holiday.
2008 Holiday Schedule
• Sample comprised of 542 randomly selected HR
professionals.
• Analyzing 542 responses of 2,885 emails sent, 2,726
emails were received (response rate = 20%).
• Survey fielded October 16 – October 23, 2007;
Appeared
in one issue
presentation
generated on November 14, 2007.
of the
• Margin
of error is +/- 5%.
NY Times
Pretty shoddy research!
They may be right, but
this isn’t good
evidence! Planck’s
constant, it’s not!
Wagers
• Ilana - $11,700
• Allen - $9,600
• Lowell - $9,600 (9,500) –
What is Columbus Day?
Correct!
Wagers
• Ilana - $11,700
• Allen - $9,600 (9,600) –
What is Presidents’ Day?
• Lowell - $9,600 (9,500) –
What is Columbus Day?
Wagers
• Ilana - $11,700 (7,501) –
What is Presidents’ Day?
• Allen - $9,600 (9,600) –
What is Presidents’ Day?
• Lowell - $9,600 (9,500) –
What is Columbus Day?
Incorrect!
Final Scores
• Elana - $11,700 (7,501) – $4,199
• Allen - $9,600 (9,600) – $0
• Lowell - $9,600 (9,500) – $19,100
What’s Alex Like – 3
•
When we sat in the audience,
audience members asked him
what people talk about after the
game. Here’s what we talked
about.
• We had shaken hands.
• Do you do a lot of work
around the house?
• Do you stay away from the
plumbing and electricity?
• I asked because you have a
really strong handshake.
• We share it. We’re an equal
opportunity couple.
MUCH !
• Sure I do. They could kill you.
One of my parents (I can’t remember
which) told me that a strong handshake
makes an important impression.
I guess I did … or maybe he thought
I was a sore loser … I was frosted, but I
don’t try to break people’s hands!
Arrière Pensées
• I wrote down “Presidents’ Day” quickly. I thought
about Columbus Day.
• I had time to make a change … and I didn’t. Usually
first impressions are right.
• Usually!
• Basically the choice was one in four:
–
–
–
–
MLK Day
Presidents’ Day (Formally, still Washington’s Birthday)
Columbus Day
Veterans Day
• Lowell made a good call. Ilana and I crapped out.
Epilogue
We aired on June 13.
He was
angry
because
Some really nasty
blog
stuff.
he pronounced it right!
“Why was Allen angry? He knew he was wrong.”
He was angry because
he wasknow
blind-sided
by of the country.”
“He probably didn’t
the name
the host!
“He was angry because it cut into his interview.”
Best-Week-Ever-TV – June 18
18 Wednesday
What Is Nabibia? Actually, No, It Is Not.
By Michelle Collins
On a very special episode of Jeopardy last week, our new favorite contestant
ever named Allen was faced with a very difficult situation. You see, when
given the following answer…
“In 1968, the U.N. called for South Africa’s withdrawal from the territory that is
today this country”
… Good Ol’ Alan rings in with unusual gusto and asks “What is Nabibia?”
Shockingly, he is awarded the money, and things continued on as planned,
even though Nabibia does not exist, nor has it ever existed.
It is only after the commercial break, when host Alex Trebek small talks the
guests in a segment I call “Pee Break”, that Allen was delivered the fateful
blow of the Jeopardy judges. The clip is notable not so much because
Trebek is forced to say “Nabibia”, but moreso because of the horrendously
sad and awkward segue used to deliver the news. It’s the kind of clip I’m
going to label a “must see”, if only for Allen’s crushed expression, which
basically says one thing: “You Canadian Son of a Bitch.”
I don’t often beg you to watch something, but having seen these clips no less
than 25 times, and having come to the conclusion that Allen may or may not
be “special needsish”, please click through and check em out after the jump.
http://www.bestweekever.tv/2008/06/18/what-is-nabibia-actually-no-it-is-not/
Meg (mamegmeg) says:
June 18th, 2008 at 2:49 pm
your mother, trebek
Morgy says:
June 20th, 2008 at 9:24 pm
So FIRST they brought up his
failure at little league, and
Zmonkey says:
THEN they took his money.
June 18th, 2008 at 5:58 pm
That is pretty effed up if I do
Hehehe I totally noticed him
say so myself.
looking at the other contestant
to say “WTF” and the other
dude looking away as quickly
as possible so as to avoid any
more awkwardness. Subtly
hilarious clip.
Yet … a couple of
defenders!
On Mon, Jun 9, 2008 at 1:31 PM, ALLEN GOODMAN <[email protected]> wrote:
Hi Ilana,
I've wanted to send you a note, but your last name is harder to work with than mine is! This should be an interesting week for us
TV-wise.
Can't say much ... except I still think that I pronounced Namibia correctly!
Wishing you the best!
Allen
How nice to hear from you. Yes, even watching on Friday with the returning champ brought back
memories. The NBA Finals have preempted my first game til later that night, if it's on at all. It's as if my 22
minutes of fame never happened. Our Friday episode should be on at the regular time. Fortunately, my local
ABC affiliate is kindly making a tape available, which has salvaged my viewing party for 70 of my closest friends.
(! - I didn't know I knew that many people).
I agree that you said Namibia and the judges were thrown off by your Midwestern/Jewish accent. Clearly, you
know there is no country called Nabibia. As they say, the ruling of the judges is final. You were a good sport
about it, and I thought Alex was kinda rude at the end chit chat to bring it up again.
Nothing else to say, except Damn Columbus Day - ever to be my least favorite holiday as not only do private
sector workers not get the day off, we public employees don't either - AND it cost me the 2nd win. Sigh. Just
glad we didn't have to face Larissa - don't know if you saw her run a couple of weeks ago, but she was good and
she racked up big wins each time.
By the way, my family enjoyed visiting with your wife during the tapings.
Take care,
Ilana
Epilogue
Gneq
Senior Member
Posts: 2,623
Join Date: Nov 2006
That "Nabibia" was the worst and meanest call by the judges ever. I am beginning to think that they have
a personal hang-up about people with colds, allergies or otherwise stuffed sinuses. If I were Dante, I'd
give them an eternal post-nasal drip in the Fifth Circle of Hell.
I can't believe that so many people here are supporting the decision. C'mon people, do you really think it
even remotely possible that he actually said "Nabibia" (as opposed to "Namibia" with a stuffed nose that
turned a nasal into a plosive)?
And the way to communicate the decision was just tacky.
On FJ, I tossed a coin between Veterans' Day and Columbus Day and it came down the wrong side.
Actually, I didn't toss a coin, I decided Veterans' Day would be a more interesting answer because it
would indirectly call attention to how quickly we tend to forget our veterans.
I didn't think any other choices were plausible - Presidents' Day is followed by the longest interval
between any two federal holidays; you could fit all of Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veterans' Day and
Thanksgiving in that interval. So it had to be one of those two. But how - other than by a lucky guess was one to pick between the two? What's next? English Universities: "There was celebration in Trinity
College when this team won the Oxford-Cambridge regatta in 1912"
__________________
Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future. -- Niels Bohr
Gnash Equilibrium - curmudgeonly contributions to a more positive-sum world
My defender
One
Gneq = Sven Sinclair, Washington Economist
heck
Champion, June 23
of a
Re: From one economist to another!
Quote: Originally Posted by 3318mead (ag)
ride!
My congratulations to you!
One
heck
of a
ride!
And thanks again for your support! I would have loved to play you.
Allen Goodman
Thank you. I am sorry your J! experience wasn't as good as mine.
And you can read about my pronunciation lapse in the daily
thread. Although mine went unnoticed by the judges (or was
perhaps considered fully acceptable), I think having the
experience made me understand much better what happened to
you.
I hope you had enough other good memories to partially offset
what I still think was a very bad call by the judges.
Sven
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Allen and Janet’s Excellent Adventure