girafferty: (wheel)
So I had to sign a bunch of scary non-disclosure agreements when I tried out for The Chase, so there's not much I can talk about the actual audition process. But I'll talk about all the other stuff.

The night before, I went to bed at 8 p.m. so I could wake up bright and early. It was a good thing I did, too, because Greg woke up at 2 a.m. and threw up all over me. I cleaned him and me up but couldn't get back to sleep. That gave me plenty of time to get a shower and pretty myself up for the audition.

 photo fdae1398-7193-43a4-a161-3a8f79934ede_zpsf1c64ccd.jpg
I had my nails retweeted by The Chase's twitter account.

There was construction going on near the hotel, so I had to park a half-mile away. I'm glad I went to the 8 a.m. because I'm sure parking was even worse later in the day. I met Andy Gefen, who runs the JBoard discussion forum on Jeopardy!, as well as Candy, the only other woman there and a fellow LLama (LearnedLeague).

The audition was finished in time for me to get back home for Brendan's Trike-a-thon at 11, then at 4 I went to my trivia semi-finals for my pub team. We won, so we're going on to finals this Saturday and a chance at the $1000 prize.

I got a callback, and once again I chose the earliest time. I feel like it went okay, so now its all up to casting. They're doing 13 episodes this season, so they only need 39 people. Jeopardy! by comparison chews through 400 contestants a season. But I have one thing most auditioners don't-two x chromosomes.
girafferty: (wheel)
At 3:30 the doors opened at the hotel conference room in Baltimore. There were about 50 people in our group, some from the Wheelmobile event in October, and some from the "Face of the Fan" video entry that I did. We all got called to stand up where we were and call letters for the puzzle on the overhead screen. I was surprised by how many people still called letters that had already been called or didn't speak up at this audition.

Read more... )
girafferty: (wheel)
WOF

Profile pic by my friend LB, "Evil Squirrel", 
http://www.cafepress.com/evilsquirrelsnest

This is fast becoming a game-show blog.

So a few months ago the Wheelmobile came to Baltimore a few months ago.  I was intrigued, but I had already made plans to go out with my friends that weekend, and reading up on the event it sounded like a huge headache.  You go and stand in line and wait in a big room, and they draw a few names out of a hat to play the game, but most people don't even get a chance to play. 

But they also had an option for people in the Baltimore area to send in a video.  I meant to do it, but I kept pushing it back hoping for inspiration to strike.  It never did. Finally, on the day it was due, I went outside so I didn't have to clean my house and said, "I'd like to be on the show because I want to win a fabulous vacation."  I never heard back from them so I figured that was it.

Then yesterday I got an e-mail inviting me to the callback auditions!  They're coming back to town in a few weeks and I guess they just went through the videos to pick a few people.

I'm nervous.  I really need to work on my word puzzle skills.  And excited to get the chance to be on a game show again!
girafferty: (jeopardy)
First, the most important thing of all-we moved our TV to the other wall in the living room and rescanned the channels.  Now we get ABC and thus I can get my Jeopardy! fix.  Whew.

I am good and out of the running for the Tournament of Champions now, with the five wins of Dr. Jay Rhee from Annapolis and the amazing 4-day, $153,800 total of cute college student Mark Runsvold from Idaho.  I think there's only been five times in the past 28 years that they've had to dip into the three-time winners for the TOC, and this is not one of them.  I'm still happy with my big pile o' cash.

Finally, an update to my first game.  Tom Kunzen got a letter from Jeopardy saying that after further research, they determined that his answer of "sari" should have been deemed correct.  To remind you, the Final Jeopardy clue was:

The custom of hijab, Arabic for "veiling", can include this garment, mentioned by Kipling.

Jeopardy! is very highly researched, so its rare when the response they are going for is wrong, but sometimes it happens that there is another response they didn't think of that is just as right.  In this case, saris were definitely mentioned in Kipling's works, and some Muslim Indian women do wear saris as part of their veiling.  I still would have won the game, as I bet to beat Tom's doubled score by a dollar, but it means Tom would have come in 2nd place instead of 3rd, so they sent him a check for $1,000 to make up for it.
girafferty: (jeopardy)
First, the most important thing of all-we moved our TV to the other wall in the living room and rescanned the channels.  Now we get ABC and thus I can get my Jeopardy! fix.  Whew.

I am good and out of the running for the Tournament of Champions now, with the five wins of Dr. Jay Rhee from Annapolis and the amazing 4-day, $153,800 total of cute college student Mark Runsvold from Idaho.  I think there's only been five times in the past 28 years that they've had to dip into the three-time winners for the TOC, and this is not one of them.  I'm still happy with my big pile o' cash.

Finally, an update to my first game.  Tom Kunzen got a letter from Jeopardy saying that after further research, they determined that his answer of "sari" should have been deemed correct.  To remind you, the Final Jeopardy clue was:

The custom of hijab, Arabic for "veiling", can include this garment, mentioned by Kipling.

Jeopardy! is very highly researched, so its rare when the response they are going for is wrong, but sometimes it happens that there is another response they didn't think of that is just as right.  In this case, saris were definitely mentioned in Kipling's works, and some Muslim Indian women do wear saris as part of their veiling.  I still would have won the game, as I bet to beat Tom's doubled score by a dollar, but it means Tom would have come in 2nd place instead of 3rd, so they sent him a check for $1,000 to make up for it.
girafferty: (jeopardy)
Photobucket

I should wrap up my story here.  I had a great viewing party for my first game.  We took over a bar in Charles Village connected to a pizza place (Maxie's). I bought pizza and beer/soda for everybody, as well as Smarties and these neat Trivial Pursuit chocolates.
 

Photobucket

About 25 of my friends made it on a Tuesday night, from as far away as Pennsylvania, DC, and Boston.  I don't get a chance to go out much these days, so it was great to get together with everybody.  They were so great cheering me on, and of course it was down to the last minute before they found out I won, so that was fun to see everybody's expression.

When I got home I had about 35 posts on my facebook wall.  I even got messages from people I didn't know!  I discovered that I don't really like being the center of attention for that long, though.  I had a constant ball of anxiety in my stomach that whole week.  I was even anxious watching my shows, even though I knew what had happened. But it was great connecting with practically everyone in my life.  My freshman year roommate found me on facebook.  I lost touch with her after college, so I'm glad we reconnected.

I was surprised to find out that some people don't think stay-at-home-mothers are very smart.  I hadn't run across that before.  I'm still the same person I was when I had a paying job!  One blogger even suggested that Tom must have thrown his final game.  How else would he have lost to a "mere housewife"?  One woman of my mother's acquaintance even came up to her and said "I knew Megan was too smart to be a stay at home mother.  I know she went to college."  Gee, I thought all that Mommy War stuff was over in the 1980s.  I just assumed that every woman was doing the best she could for her family.  Well, maybe I caused a few people to rethink their prejudices.

I also had many people I don't know say such nice things about me.  One poster on a message board said I was "cute in a hot nerd way," which is exactly what I've been going for, so thank you!

I made the Jeopardy!  Hall of Fame four times!  Three times for highest one-day totals, and once in the  $50,000 plus winners list.  I'm one of only four people this season to break 100k.  Tom Kunzen is one of the others.  Its neat that two of us were in the same week.

I was interviewed (with Matthew and Biggie) on the 11 o'clock news .  I like how Cheryl introduced me as "mother by day...Jeopardy! champion by night!".  I also was featured in my high school alumni newsletter, and just interviewed with a reporter from my hometown paper.

Right now, I'm on the list for the next Tournament of Champions.  I'm only 11th out of a possible 13 right now, and they rank us first based on number of wins, and then by money won.  So unless something really wacky happens in the next six months and there aren't more than two 4+ winners, I'm out of contention.  I think that they'll be taping the TOC around my due date, so I probably wouldn't be physically able to travel cross-country then, anyway.  I'll be rooting for Tom to take it all!

I still don't have the money.  Its going to take 120 days to arrive, they said.  And I'll have to set aside a good chunk for taxes, but we'll still have a big bundle left over after that.  We were so happy when we figured we could live on one salary and I could stay home with the babies, but we neglected to include plans for how we were going to save for a house.  But now we have a hefty downpayment.  We're hoping to find a place and move in before the new baby arrives in September.

Its even better than if I was working, because then we would have to pay for daycare and gas and clothes, but now its coming to us all in one chunk.  So I'm thrilled this windfall fell in our lap.  I feel really lucky.  I thought going out that maybe I would win one game with the average 20k.   I never dared imagine I'd win six figures.  

Now, my goal is coach all my friends who want to be on Jeopardy!  So let me know if you want any advice! 
girafferty: (jeopardy)
Photobucket

I should wrap up my story here.  I had a great viewing party for my first game.  We took over a bar in Charles Village connected to a pizza place (Maxie's). I bought pizza and beer/soda for everybody, as well as Smarties and these neat Trivial Pursuit chocolates.
 

Photobucket

About 25 of my friends made it on a Tuesday night, from as far away as Pennsylvania, DC, and Boston.  I don't get a chance to go out much these days, so it was great to get together with everybody.  They were so great cheering me on, and of course it was down to the last minute before they found out I won, so that was fun to see everybody's expression.

When I got home I had about 35 posts on my facebook wall.  I even got messages from people I didn't know!  I discovered that I don't really like being the center of attention for that long, though.  I had a constant ball of anxiety in my stomach that whole week.  I was even anxious watching my shows, even though I knew what had happened. But it was great connecting with practically everyone in my life.  My freshman year roommate found me on facebook.  I lost touch with her after college, so I'm glad we reconnected.

I was surprised to find out that some people don't think stay-at-home-mothers are very smart.  I hadn't run across that before.  I'm still the same person I was when I had a paying job!  One blogger even suggested that Tom must have thrown his final game.  How else would he have lost to a "mere housewife"?  One woman of my mother's acquaintance even came up to her and said "I knew Megan was too smart to be a stay at home mother.  I know she went to college."  Gee, I thought all that Mommy War stuff was over in the 1980s.  I just assumed that every woman was doing the best she could for her family.  Well, maybe I caused a few people to rethink their prejudices.

I also had many people I don't know say such nice things about me.  One poster on a message board said I was "cute in a hot nerd way," which is exactly what I've been going for, so thank you!

I made the Jeopardy!  Hall of Fame four times!  Three times for highest one-day totals, and once in the  $50,000 plus winners list.  I'm one of only four people this season to break 100k.  Tom Kunzen is one of the others.  Its neat that two of us were in the same week.

I was interviewed (with Matthew and Biggie) on the 11 o'clock news .  I like how Cheryl introduced me as "mother by day...Jeopardy! champion by night!".  I also was featured in my high school alumni newsletter, and just interviewed with a reporter from my hometown paper.

Right now, I'm on the list for the next Tournament of Champions.  I'm only 11th out of a possible 13 right now, and they rank us first based on number of wins, and then by money won.  So unless something really wacky happens in the next six months and there aren't more than two 4+ winners, I'm out of contention.  I think that they'll be taping the TOC around my due date, so I probably wouldn't be physically able to travel cross-country then, anyway.  I'll be rooting for Tom to take it all!

I still don't have the money.  Its going to take 120 days to arrive, they said.  And I'll have to set aside a good chunk for taxes, but we'll still have a big bundle left over after that.  We were so happy when we figured we could live on one salary and I could stay home with the babies, but we neglected to include plans for how we were going to save for a house.  But now we have a hefty downpayment.  We're hoping to find a place and move in before the new baby arrives in September.

Its even better than if I was working, because then we would have to pay for daycare and gas and clothes, but now its coming to us all in one chunk.  So I'm thrilled this windfall fell in our lap.  I feel really lucky.  I thought going out that maybe I would win one game with the average 20k.   I never dared imagine I'd win six figures.  

Now, my goal is coach all my friends who want to be on Jeopardy!  So let me know if you want any advice! 
girafferty: (jeopardy)
For some reason this game wasn't as fun for me to write about.

The paperwork they sent us said to bring two changes of clothes.  Now, they tape five shows a day, so conceivably you might need 5, but by the fourth show the viewers at home will have forgotten what you wore on the first.  I wasn't going to tempt fate by bringing more clothes than they asked and losing my first game, then having to haul my sad unworn clothes back through the airport.

But I didn't want to rewear any of my clothes, so Rose literally gave me the shirt of her back the night before so I would be prepared.  I got more compliments on that shirt than anything else I wore.  I should have just raided her closet when I got to L.A.

I was going against Eric, the opera-loving pig farmer, and Julie, a managing editor of BlogHer.    That morning when we were rehearsing I was sitting next to contestant coordinator Robert and Julie.  Robert asked me about my time on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire.  I was telling him that I liked the format of the clues on Jeopardy! more than on WWTBAM.  On Millionaire, they might ask "The American Visionary Art Museum, which only shows untrained artists, is located in which city?"  and give you  four choices.  If you didn't already know it was in Baltimore, there would be no way to figure it out.  While on Jeopardy, they would say "The American Visionary Art Museum is located in this largest city in Maryland."  Much easier to figure out.

"Blah blah blah largest city in Maryland," Julie said.  The way she phrased it immediately reminded me of Prisoner of Trebekistan, which is a fantastic book to prepare for being on the show.  I highly recommend, nay DEMAND you read it if you ever want to be on Jeopardy!

"You've read Bob Harris's book, haven't you?"  I said, and she said yes.  We had a nice chat about it, but I was mentally making a note that she would be tough.  As she proved to be.

Watching the game now, it wasn't as bad as I remembered it.  I was actually very close to Julie through most of the game, until she went on a tear through INDONESIA.  I am in awe of her Indonesian knowledge.  Then I made a guess on the 2k clue which turned out to be wrong.  The big difference in this game from my others were my number of negs.  I rang in and guessed wrong four times this game, equal to my number wrong in my first three games total. Julie's skill had me running scared, and I was flailing around up there.

Including the last clue of the game, the Daily Double.  I looked up at the scores and saw I was ahead of Eric but behind Julie by quite a lot.  I was having trouble doing the math. so I just bet 6,000 because I knew that would put me in the lead.  I was so overwhelmed by by huge wager in a science category that I had trouble focusing on what Sarah was saying in the video.  "Bleep bloop bloop particles in the sky," and she put her thumb up.

Photobucket

All I could focus on was "particles", so I guessed "dust".

"Ooh, sorry," Alex said, and I dropped down to $2800.

When they brought out the scrap paper for figuring our wagers, I realized I was screwed.  Julie only had to wager $1801 to cover Eric, and I knew from talking to her before that she wouldn't be so foolish to give me a chance to gain on her.  The only way I could even advance to 2nd place was for Eric to get it wrong, and since if he bet to get higher than Julie's pre-FJ score he would drop below my $2800, my best move was to risk nothing.  I spent a lot of time playing around with J! Archive's wagering calculator before I went on the show, and I remembered its advice that "you'll have better chances of advancing to second place if you have a larger sum left over on a Triple Stumper".  But betting zero is so boring. I figured out the results would be the same if I bet my favorite number 16, so that's what I did.

For a while I felt like I was tricking Eric out of $1,000 by what I did, but as nice as he was, when's the last time I gave a grand to someone I just met?

The category was PHILANTHROPY, and the clue was "The Pink Pony Fund, for breast cancer care & prevention, is a philanthropic initiative of this fashion company."  So what's the fashion line with the horses on their shirts?  Hm, I just saw a perfume ad with horses, Polo by Ralph Lauren!  Julie got it right too, so I don't have to kick myself about my DD wager too much.  She was a fantastic competitor, and she invented a delicious Jeopardy pie.


Photobucket


Then it was over.  Alex Trebek consoled me that I had qualified for the Tournament of Champions, but I waved that away as unlikely.  They only drop down to the three-time champions if there's not enough four and five-plus champions.  "I'll just have to root against everyone on my TV set from winning a fourth game now,"  I said.  Alex chuckled.  I made Alex Trebek laugh!

You know, this could have just as easily have been my first and only game, and I would probably still be kicking myself over my mistakes.  It just goes to show you how much luck is a factor in Jeopardy

I signed my last two pink slips for my money (it won't come until 120 days after my shows aired), and went back to the Green Room to get my stuff.  I had lost on Jeopardy, but I wasn't sad.  I was a three-time champion!  There will still three more shows to tape that day, so I asked if I could stay and watch in the audience.  Its my favorite show, after all, and when will I have the chance to see it live again?  It was much more relaxing watching the games after I played than before.

All in all, it was the thrill of a lifetime playing on America's favorite quiz show.

J! Archive transcript
girafferty: (jeopardy)
For some reason this game wasn't as fun for me to write about.

The paperwork they sent us said to bring two changes of clothes.  Now, they tape five shows a day, so conceivably you might need 5, but by the fourth show the viewers at home will have forgotten what you wore on the first.  I wasn't going to tempt fate by bringing more clothes than they asked and losing my first game, then having to haul my sad unworn clothes back through the airport.

But I didn't want to rewear any of my clothes, so Rose literally gave me the shirt of her back the night before so I would be prepared.  I got more compliments on that shirt than anything else I wore.  I should have just raided her closet when I got to L.A.

I was going against Eric, the opera-loving pig farmer, and Julie, a managing editor of BlogHer.    That morning when we were rehearsing I was sitting next to contestant coordinator Robert and Julie.  Robert asked me about my time on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire.  I was telling him that I liked the format of the clues on Jeopardy! more than on WWTBAM.  On Millionaire, they might ask "The American Visionary Art Museum, which only shows untrained artists, is located in which city?"  and give you  four choices.  If you didn't already know it was in Baltimore, there would be no way to figure it out.  While on Jeopardy, they would say "The American Visionary Art Museum is located in this largest city in Maryland."  Much easier to figure out.

"Blah blah blah largest city in Maryland," Julie said.  The way she phrased it immediately reminded me of Prisoner of Trebekistan, which is a fantastic book to prepare for being on the show.  I highly recommend, nay DEMAND you read it if you ever want to be on Jeopardy!

"You've read Bob Harris's book, haven't you?"  I said, and she said yes.  We had a nice chat about it, but I was mentally making a note that she would be tough.  As she proved to be.

Watching the game now, it wasn't as bad as I remembered it.  I was actually very close to Julie through most of the game, until she went on a tear through INDONESIA.  I am in awe of her Indonesian knowledge.  Then I made a guess on the 2k clue which turned out to be wrong.  The big difference in this game from my others were my number of negs.  I rang in and guessed wrong four times this game, equal to my number wrong in my first three games total. Julie's skill had me running scared, and I was flailing around up there.

Including the last clue of the game, the Daily Double.  I looked up at the scores and saw I was ahead of Eric but behind Julie by quite a lot.  I was having trouble doing the math. so I just bet 6,000 because I knew that would put me in the lead.  I was so overwhelmed by by huge wager in a science category that I had trouble focusing on what Sarah was saying in the video.  "Bleep bloop bloop particles in the sky," and she put her thumb up.

Photobucket

All I could focus on was "particles", so I guessed "dust".

"Ooh, sorry," Alex said, and I dropped down to $2800.

When they brought out the scrap paper for figuring our wagers, I realized I was screwed.  Julie only had to wager $1801 to cover Eric, and I knew from talking to her before that she wouldn't be so foolish to give me a chance to gain on her.  The only way I could even advance to 2nd place was for Eric to get it wrong, and since if he bet to get higher than Julie's pre-FJ score he would drop below my $2800, my best move was to risk nothing.  I spent a lot of time playing around with J! Archive's wagering calculator before I went on the show, and I remembered its advice that "you'll have better chances of advancing to second place if you have a larger sum left over on a Triple Stumper".  But betting zero is so boring. I figured out the results would be the same if I bet my favorite number 16, so that's what I did.

For a while I felt like I was tricking Eric out of $1,000 by what I did, but as nice as he was, when's the last time I gave a grand to someone I just met?

The category was PHILANTHROPY, and the clue was "The Pink Pony Fund, for breast cancer care & prevention, is a philanthropic initiative of this fashion company."  So what's the fashion line with the horses on their shirts?  Hm, I just saw a perfume ad with horses, Polo by Ralph Lauren!  Julie got it right too, so I don't have to kick myself about my DD wager too much.  She was a fantastic competitor, and she invented a delicious Jeopardy pie.


Photobucket


Then it was over.  Alex Trebek consoled me that I had qualified for the Tournament of Champions, but I waved that away as unlikely.  They only drop down to the three-time champions if there's not enough four and five-plus champions.  "I'll just have to root against everyone on my TV set from winning a fourth game now,"  I said.  Alex chuckled.  I made Alex Trebek laugh!

You know, this could have just as easily have been my first and only game, and I would probably still be kicking myself over my mistakes.  It just goes to show you how much luck is a factor in Jeopardy

I signed my last two pink slips for my money (it won't come until 120 days after my shows aired), and went back to the Green Room to get my stuff.  I had lost on Jeopardy, but I wasn't sad.  I was a three-time champion!  There will still three more shows to tape that day, so I asked if I could stay and watch in the audience.  Its my favorite show, after all, and when will I have the chance to see it live again?  It was much more relaxing watching the games after I played than before.

All in all, it was the thrill of a lifetime playing on America's favorite quiz show.

J! Archive transcript
girafferty: (Default)
I really want to post about my games, now that they've started airing and I can talk-I wrote 50 pages in my paper diary on the plane ride home because I didn't want to forget anything.  I've just been overwhelmed by all the love and support I've gotten, and want to respond to all my friends and family who are calling and messaging me..  My extended Rafferty family is so proud, and I keep getting messages from strangers who want to thank me for showing Baltimore in a positive light, or my high school and college, or stay at home Moms.  All those things are great, so I'm glad I could represent where I'm from and what I do

Also, I apologize for my extreme dorkiness.  I forgot that I wasn't in my living room and they were going to show this on TV.
girafferty: (Default)
I really want to post about my games, now that they've started airing and I can talk-I wrote 50 pages in my paper diary on the plane ride home because I didn't want to forget anything.  I've just been overwhelmed by all the love and support I've gotten, and want to respond to all my friends and family who are calling and messaging me..  My extended Rafferty family is so proud, and I keep getting messages from strangers who want to thank me for showing Baltimore in a positive light, or my high school and college, or stay at home Moms.  All those things are great, so I'm glad I could represent where I'm from and what I do

Also, I apologize for my extreme dorkiness.  I forgot that I wasn't in my living room and they were going to show this on TV.
girafferty: (Default)
I'm back!  And just in time, too.  I was ready to chuck my breastpump out the window.  It did its job well, I was just so sick of pumping.  I pumped in airports, the hotel, and the Jeopardy Green Room-how many people can say that last one?

Not much I can reveal until the airdate (March 22nd!  Save the date!).  [livejournal.com profile] duckierose  came to the hotel for a sleepover.  She took me out to dinner at a Himalayan restaurant (at ground level) the night before, and we caught up what we've been doing the past seven years(!) since Kenyon.  Then I crashed at 9.

Still on EST, I woke up at 4 a.m. and snuck out of the room so as not to wake Rose.  I left an obscure facebook status update-"Megan is off to see the wizard.", and decided to call my brother Trevor, since he just got out of the army and I figured he'd still be waking up at 0700 hours.  He was awake, and we had a good talk about all kinds of things.  He had asked me the week before if his wife's sister, who lives in L.A., could come to the taping, but she wasn't able to get off work.  I found out that this wasn't an innocent query.  Trevor knew I wasn't going to tell anyone the outcome, so he was going to use Joanna as a spy.  Trevor's job in the army?  Logistics.  Well, it didn't work.  And now I'm going to be sure not to let the slightest hint escape me when I see him at Christmastime.

Its hard to say anything about how my day went because I can't reveal how I did until March 22nd.  So I'll just say that everyone there, including Alex, were so nice, and really worked hard to relax us and get us to have a good time.  Oh, and I did get my wish of not being picked first.  I actually went on the fourth game, so I got to go to lunch on Sony's dime.  And who should be standing next to me in the salad bar line but Seth Rogan?  I tried to talk to him but he was very focused on staying in character or so he ignored my conversational gambit of talking about the pumpkin seeds there.  So I got my Hollywood celebrity sighting.

Rose had a blast in the audience, I think I can safely say.  Alex Trebek comes out at the commercial breaks and takes questions from the audience.  And he'll answer absolutely anything.  He was in a goofy mood that day.  

I'm glad I'm back to my bubba.  He was good for Matthew during the days, but at night he would keep waking up screaming.  Matthew finally gave up trying to get him back to sleep and they got up at 2:30 am to watch Sesame Street.  Thank God for PBS Sprout.
girafferty: (Default)
I'm back!  And just in time, too.  I was ready to chuck my breastpump out the window.  It did its job well, I was just so sick of pumping.  I pumped in airports, the hotel, and the Jeopardy Green Room-how many people can say that last one?

Not much I can reveal until the airdate (March 22nd!  Save the date!).  [livejournal.com profile] duckierose  came to the hotel for a sleepover.  She took me out to dinner at a Himalayan restaurant (at ground level) the night before, and we caught up what we've been doing the past seven years(!) since Kenyon.  Then I crashed at 9.

Still on EST, I woke up at 4 a.m. and snuck out of the room so as not to wake Rose.  I left an obscure facebook status update-"Megan is off to see the wizard.", and decided to call my brother Trevor, since he just got out of the army and I figured he'd still be waking up at 0700 hours.  He was awake, and we had a good talk about all kinds of things.  He had asked me the week before if his wife's sister, who lives in L.A., could come to the taping, but she wasn't able to get off work.  I found out that this wasn't an innocent query.  Trevor knew I wasn't going to tell anyone the outcome, so he was going to use Joanna as a spy.  Trevor's job in the army?  Logistics.  Well, it didn't work.  And now I'm going to be sure not to let the slightest hint escape me when I see him at Christmastime.

Its hard to say anything about how my day went because I can't reveal how I did until March 22nd.  So I'll just say that everyone there, including Alex, were so nice, and really worked hard to relax us and get us to have a good time.  Oh, and I did get my wish of not being picked first.  I actually went on the fourth game, so I got to go to lunch on Sony's dime.  And who should be standing next to me in the salad bar line but Seth Rogan?  I tried to talk to him but he was very focused on staying in character or so he ignored my conversational gambit of talking about the pumpkin seeds there.  So I got my Hollywood celebrity sighting.

Rose had a blast in the audience, I think I can safely say.  Alex Trebek comes out at the commercial breaks and takes questions from the audience.  And he'll answer absolutely anything.  He was in a goofy mood that day.  

I'm glad I'm back to my bubba.  He was good for Matthew during the days, but at night he would keep waking up screaming.  Matthew finally gave up trying to get him back to sleep and they got up at 2:30 am to watch Sesame Street.  Thank God for PBS Sprout.

Jep Prep

Nov. 10th, 2010 12:00 am
girafferty: (Default)
One week until my Jeoparday!  I am beginning to study in earnest.  www.j-archive.com/ has been a huge help to me.  Its an archive of all the games from recent years.  Its overwhelming to think that I could be asked anything in the world, but really there are only so many facts that are interesting.  To take a random example, here are all the clues they've had about  Klimt.  If you knew that he was from Vienna, Austria, and his most famous painting is The Kiss, you would be able to answer most of those.

But most importantly, I've been watching the show every day and practicing my buzzing.  If I don't ring in first, I'll never get a chance to answer at all.  This isn't shown on TV, but there are white lights around the board that light up once Alex is finished reading the clue.  You can't ring in before they light up, and if you ring in early you're locked out for a fraction of a second, enough time for those crass opportunists going against you to scoop it up.  My friend Colette advised me to say a short syllable under my breath (I've chosen "Duh") before ringing in after Alex finishes the clue.  It seems to be syncing up with the people on the show ringing in, but I'll have to wait until I get there to see if it works.  I hope I'm not called up for the first game so I can practice a little.

Our week of dinner guests is over.  It was fun and really not that much extra work (we just didn't have leftovers like we usually do, and baked a few batches of brownies).  The JVs really want me to join them for trivia night, but in so many words they said they needed me because I'm so old!  I've lived through so much more history then those fresh out of college kids.  In nine months I'll be 30, so I guess I am old to them.

Jep Prep

Nov. 10th, 2010 12:00 am
girafferty: (Default)
One week until my Jeoparday!  I am beginning to study in earnest.  www.j-archive.com/ has been a huge help to me.  Its an archive of all the games from recent years.  Its overwhelming to think that I could be asked anything in the world, but really there are only so many facts that are interesting.  To take a random example, here are all the clues they've had about  Klimt.  If you knew that he was from Vienna, Austria, and his most famous painting is The Kiss, you would be able to answer most of those.

But most importantly, I've been watching the show every day and practicing my buzzing.  If I don't ring in first, I'll never get a chance to answer at all.  This isn't shown on TV, but there are white lights around the board that light up once Alex is finished reading the clue.  You can't ring in before they light up, and if you ring in early you're locked out for a fraction of a second, enough time for those crass opportunists going against you to scoop it up.  My friend Colette advised me to say a short syllable under my breath (I've chosen "Duh") before ringing in after Alex finishes the clue.  It seems to be syncing up with the people on the show ringing in, but I'll have to wait until I get there to see if it works.  I hope I'm not called up for the first game so I can practice a little.

Our week of dinner guests is over.  It was fun and really not that much extra work (we just didn't have leftovers like we usually do, and baked a few batches of brownies).  The JVs really want me to join them for trivia night, but in so many words they said they needed me because I'm so old!  I've lived through so much more history then those fresh out of college kids.  In nine months I'll be 30, so I guess I am old to them.

Recovery II

Oct. 7th, 2010 09:46 pm
girafferty: (Default)
I am feeling better, although trying to take up my normal routine quickly makes me tired again.  I went back to babysitting this Wednesday.  Biggie was so happy to see Sophie that he would run at her, fling his arms around her neck, and take them both to the ground.  He needs to work on his technique.

We got him a costume from Target last weekend.  Its a giraffe!  It will be perfect for when we take him to ZooBoo on Halloween.  I'll have to take some pictures of him in front of the giraffe enclosure.

Today on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire there was a former Jeopardy champion on, Vik Vaz.. He went home with $25,000. I wish I had his stack, I would have got everything right through the $100,000 question.  They're finally airing the show in Baltimore so I can watch it now.  They changed the rules all up this season.  Now the questions are mixed up and the money is mixed up, so you could answer the easiest question and have it be worth $25,000.  I think the questions overall are easier now, too.

I get my staples out on Monday.  I can't wait!  They are 10 times more annoying than the actual scars.  And today I got some baked potato chips, so I satisfied my snack cravings.  Sugar is nice, but Jolly Ranchers are not filling.

Recovery II

Oct. 7th, 2010 09:46 pm
girafferty: (Default)
I am feeling better, although trying to take up my normal routine quickly makes me tired again.  I went back to babysitting this Wednesday.  Biggie was so happy to see Sophie that he would run at her, fling his arms around her neck, and take them both to the ground.  He needs to work on his technique.

We got him a costume from Target last weekend.  Its a giraffe!  It will be perfect for when we take him to ZooBoo on Halloween.  I'll have to take some pictures of him in front of the giraffe enclosure.

Today on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire there was a former Jeopardy champion on, Vik Vaz.. He went home with $25,000. I wish I had his stack, I would have got everything right through the $100,000 question.  They're finally airing the show in Baltimore so I can watch it now.  They changed the rules all up this season.  Now the questions are mixed up and the money is mixed up, so you could answer the easiest question and have it be worth $25,000.  I think the questions overall are easier now, too.

I get my staples out on Monday.  I can't wait!  They are 10 times more annoying than the actual scars.  And today I got some baked potato chips, so I satisfied my snack cravings.  Sugar is nice, but Jolly Ranchers are not filling.
girafferty: (Default)
*Unlocked after taping*

I'm going to be on Jeopardy!

I got a call last night from Corrina "Just checking your contact info". then she told me they want me to come out and be on the show!  in three weeks!

I am freaking out.  I haven't really been "in training", studying up or even watching Jeopardy recently because its in summer reruns.  I'll just have to go in as I am.

And I'm worried about leaving my baby.  It wouldn't make much sense for Matthew to come out with me only to stay in the hotel watching Biggie while I'm in the studio, so he's going to take a few days off work and stay home with him.  I've never been away overnight from him, let alone three nights.  And he still is breastfeeding six times a day.  Should I pump and leave some milk?  Or maybe this is a good time to convince him to drink cow's milk.  He'll be 14 months when I leave, old enough to be without breastmilk for a few days.

They're taping the 28th and 29th.  If I tape on Tuesday I hope to change my ticket and fly home a day earlier.

Eeeeee!

Please don't post this on facebook or lj-I'm not supposed to put this online.  So its just between us.
girafferty: (Default)
*Unlocked after taping*

I'm going to be on Jeopardy!

I got a call last night from Corrina "Just checking your contact info". then she told me they want me to come out and be on the show!  in three weeks!

I am freaking out.  I haven't really been "in training", studying up or even watching Jeopardy recently because its in summer reruns.  I'll just have to go in as I am.

And I'm worried about leaving my baby.  It wouldn't make much sense for Matthew to come out with me only to stay in the hotel watching Biggie while I'm in the studio, so he's going to take a few days off work and stay home with him.  I've never been away overnight from him, let alone three nights.  And he still is breastfeeding six times a day.  Should I pump and leave some milk?  Or maybe this is a good time to convince him to drink cow's milk.  He'll be 14 months when I leave, old enough to be without breastmilk for a few days.

They're taping the 28th and 29th.  If I tape on Tuesday I hope to change my ticket and fly home a day earlier.

Eeeeee!

Please don't post this on facebook or lj-I'm not supposed to put this online.  So its just between us.
girafferty: (Default)
The Jeopardy audition was in a really fancy hotel, the St. Regis.  It doesn't even really have a sign.  We looked into staying there the night before, and it was $500 a night.  But, it was very easy to get via train and metro, so that was a plus.

There was another conference going on, so Jeopardy was in a meeting room in the basement.  There were 20 people in my session.  Maggie, the contestant coordinator, said they had three audition sessions yesterday, three today, and two tomorrow.  And that's just this city.  She says they audition thousands of people each year and only 400 get on the show.  So I figure my chances at 10-20%.  The first time I auditioned three years ago, I was sure I'd be called right away.  But now I think its just the luck of the draw.

Before we started, Maggie had a few prizes to give out.  The first one was to the first person to answer who won the Tournament of Champions.  Thanks to Vijay Balse, I now have a nifty Jeopardy hat of my very own.  This is actually the second most dorky ballcap I own.  The first has to be my yellow flourescent "Neighborhood Walkers on Patrol" hat.  We all also got a Jeopardy! pen to keep.  Maggie said to practice clicking with it when we watch the show.

I was also the only one to admit to watching Wheel of Fortune.  Of course, I'm only a housewife, most of the people there were Washington types-lawyers, lobbyists, professors and grad students.  They don't ever watch TV, oh no no no.  But they will deign to be on TV to show off their brains.

We then took a 50-question test.  I suspect it was to weed out the people who had "help" on the online test.  I feel like I did much better on the in-person test.

I was the first person called to play the mock-game/personality interview.  I messed up by not reading the category on the first clue, but then I got a bunch right.  I feel like I did okay in the interview.  Didn't really stand out, but I managed to keep up the conversation, and I got to talk about Biggie. 

They had set out the pens and questionnaires outside the room for the next group, and when we left, someone had stolen them all!  Since all the auditioners were in the room, I suspect the other convention-goers.

Then on the way back to the train station, I stopped at a Burger King.  They have funnel cakes now!  Not as good as at the carnival, but I would rather have them then fries.

I was away from Biggie for seven hours.  And he was okay!  He even took a nap for Matthew!   I was so happy and surprised to be a little sad.  He used to fuss the whole time I would be gone, which made it hard to leave him.  But its good that he can be happy with just his Daddy.

I am in the contestant pool for 18 months now.  And so I wait again.

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