Friday, January 24, 2014

She Won on Jeopardy!

In the summer between my freshman and sophomore years of college, I went to Manhattan with two of my high school/college friends, and watched a taping of a game show called Jeopardy!

The set looked a lot smaller than I had expected, but I had a good time, and I came away wanting a job in television. (No, I never got one.) The Jeopardy! I watched being taped, incidentally, was the original Jeopardy! of the 60's and 70's - with the host Art Fleming, immortalized in the above video.

For those younger than 40:  yes, there was an original Jeopardy! that didn't have today's ageless host, Alex Trebek.

For the benefit of those who don't live in the United States, where Jeopardy! is an institution, the game is easy to explain.  You choose from a game board that gives you answers.  You must guess the question.  

The person at the end of three rounds (called Jeopardy, Double Jeopardy and Final Jeopardy) with the most money wins.

It's a game of trivia, and families will gather together to play, shouting questions at the TV screen.

Being able to get onto the actual game as a contestant is difficult. Quite difficult.  Winning is even more difficult.  But one of my high school friends, Priscilla, did it and, this week, her show aired. (Full disclosure, Priscilla is a faithful reader of my blog.  However I can not promise that all faithful readers of my blog will succeed on Jeopardy!)
Priscilla facing a Daily Double Question
She won her first game, beating out her two opponents in Final Jeopardy! by being the only one to question a tough answer correctly.    One of them was a six game champion who is going to use some of her winnings to build a memorial to her late mother. 
The next night, Priscilla was on again.  Someone even blogged about the game.

I wish I could say she went on to win five more games.  But she didn't.  She came in third. She didn't get the Turtle Wax or the Rice-A-Roni.  But, unlike the man in the music video, she was not a complete loser.

What can you say?  Many, many people were cheering for her.

Priscilla and I have some things in common.  We're from the Bronx.  We went to the same high school.  We both grew up "in the Projects" (different ones).  We both escaped.  She's a successful businesswoman. We are both smart, funny people. (I hope I'm funny, anyway). 

She took the leap of faith that she could succeed on Jeopardy!

As far as I'm concerned, she did just that.
(And, in case you are asking, I am not planning to follow her.)

Have you ever been on a television show?


  1. I first came across Jeopardy in North Dakota in the early seventies. For a little girl from the UK it was wild! That and The Days of Our Lives and General Hospital ensured I never wanted to go home and go back to school ever again!

    1. You can get quite an education just by watching Jeopardy!

  2. Very cool and congratulations to our friend!

  3. Great story about your friend. Thanks for explaining the rules of Jeopardy.
    My first husband worked as an advertising exec. in the late 60s. My son participated in a news sketch when he was about 3 years. He hated his part as a young groom wearing top-hat, tails and a nappie. At the end of the wedding ceremony, he stomped his foot and said, "No."

    1. I can almost picture it - great description, Francene.

  4. Wow this is fantastic!
    I had no idea about the rules of Jeopardy, so this has enlightened me a bit!

    1. Thank you. I didn't know how "international" Jeopardy is - but in the United States, it's an "institution".


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