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Everything posted by Rivka

  1. i spoke at a homeschooling conference this weekend and had a vendor table. THREE different people recognized me from Jeopardy, and one of them asked to have her picture taken with me! It was ridiculously fun.
  2. So, the contestant coordinators help you generate a long list of things Alex can ask you about. Before your episode they work with you to pick three options and they write them on a card. They star the one you hope Alex will ask about, but he can ask about any of them. Which means that he CHOSE to ask me about teaching sex ed! It's not my fault! :lol:
  3. There is a studio audience. Both mornings that I taped, the audience was mostly middle school kids on a field trip. The afternoon taping had a bunch of older women on a bus tour. And contestants are allowed to bring family members and friends, so there's a section for them. I assume the audience signs something, but I think mostly Jeopardy relies on them not caring that much.
  4. Nope. You never know how you did on the online test or on the written test at the audition. Presumably they don't want to argue with people about their scores.
  5. Every moment of interaction I had with Alex was what you see on camera. Because he's the only person who has advance access to the questions, he doesn't even come within 10 feet of contestants when the cameras aren't rolling. During the commercial breaks, he takes questions from the audience and banters with them. He seems really personable based on that.
  6. Oh yeah. I crowdsourced my outfit options on Facebook. Once I got to the studio, though, they were very serious about making us turn our phones off. Not just silenced, off.
  7. You're allowed - and even encouraged - to tell everyone you know that you're going to be on the show. The Jeopardy people even sent me my publicity photo with Alex a few weeks in advance so I could post it on social media. You're allowed to talk about the audition, the tape day experience, etc. You are NOT allowed to say anything about questions, categories, interview segments, or game outcomes.
  8. http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x5ff1ij I taped December 6-7, so I have been sitting on this news for THREE MONTHS. I told my husband but no one else. They mail out the check 90 days after the show airs, so I'll be waiting for a while. But we bought a hot tub anyway.
  9. Maybe he doesn't want to know: I took the online test once and auditioned once, and then I got the call.
  10. Thank you! Holly was incredibly smart - a very tough competitor. Fortunately, Grant was playing his fourth game of the day, and he was tired. I had to bet that much for Final Jeopardy. If Holly bet everything and got the question right, she would have had $30,000. I bet enough so that if we were both right, I would still win even if her score doubled.
  11. Contestants pay for all their own travel expenses - but even third place comes with $1000, so most people don't wind up actually out-of-pocket in the end. They have two hotels they recommend - they send a shuttle to those hotels to pick people up in the morning - but I guess you could stay anywhere if you're willing to arrange your own transportation. The taping days are Tuesday and Wednesday. They told us we should plan our trip so we'd be available on both days - I flew our on Monday and took the redeye flight home on Wednesday. If you're still winning at the end of the second day, you have to come out again for the next taping days. (If so, the production company pays for your flight.) If I had lost on my first taping day, I would have had a day to sightsee in LA.
  12. The actual game went so fast that I didn't have any time whatsoever to analyze the other players' strategies, but you're right - Holly used that technique really effectively in our game. She was soooo smart, and such a fierce competitor!
  13. If you sign up at jeopardy.com, they will notify you when they next schedule an online test. The online test displays questions every 15 seconds - you type in your response. It doesn't have to be in the form of a question. About 70,000 people take the online test every year. There is a cutoff score for the online test. They won't say exactly what it is, but there's widespread speculation that it's 35/50. If your score is above that, you may be randomly selected to audition in person. They travel to various cities to run auditions - mine was in Washington DC. About 3,000 people are invited to audition. At the audition, you take another, in-person test - presumably, in case you had someone else take the online test for you. You also play a short mock game against your fellow auditioners, using a real buzzer, and you have a short "personality interview." There's a written application too, which has things like "five interesting facts that Alex could ask you about on the show." Then you go home. You may or may not be added to the contestant pool - no one will tell you whether you've made it into the pool. You just wait by the phone for the next 18 months, and then if you weren't selected you can start over again with the online test. About 400 people per year get "the call" and are invited to be on the show. Almost exactly 7 months passed between my audition and the call, but I talked to some people who were called almost immediately and others who waited more than a year. The whole process was actually really fun. Just auditioning was a great experience.
  14. Yes, we were told to bring three changes of clothes to the studio, so everyone had a suitcase or a garment bag on the shuttle in the morning. There was a dressing room in the corner of the contestants' green room for the champion to change in. I guess if you play more than three games they figure people will forget what you wore.
  15. I'm allergic to cats. Instead I have an extremely greedy but sweet beagle. Yes, they would have still used the Baltimore category, which is why it was so frustrating to miss it! Here's how it works: for every taping day, the clue writers prepare six complete games. Only five will be used. Very early in the morning on the taping day, a lawyer from an outside compliance company comes in and chooses which five games will be used, in which order. There are twelve contestants ready to play each day, but only ten of them will - two get held over until the next day. Right before each match, the contestant coordinators draw two names from a hat and those become the next two challengers. So no one knows the matchup of which contestants will play which game until immediately before the show. The clue writers and the compliance company lawyer don't know anything at all about the contestants, and the contestant coordinators don't ever get anywhere near the game clues. It's all very complicated, but it's designed to prevent either the possibility or the appearance of cheating.
  16. Well, I take Prozac for anxiety and have for years, but it doesn't help with situations that are legitimately anxiety-provoking. I was nervous earlier in the day, but by the time my turn came up I was strangely calm. They tape a week's worth of shows in a single day, so I was at the studio from early morning - first getting oriented, practicing, getting makeup, etc., and then in the audience watching the games with the other contestants. You don't know it's going to be your turn until about 10 minutes before your episode starts - you have just enough time to have your makeup touched up. By the time I went on I had been keyed up and ready to play for about seven hours, so I was TIRED. That probably helped me be calmer.
  17. Actually, when the Double Jeopardy categories came up I almost wet my pants, because it looked like they were all going to be about movies and I know almost nothing about movies. Fortunately most of the categories turned out to really have another theme! But yes, categories are totally the luck of the draw. The episode before mine had a category about Baltimore, which is the city where I live. I was sitting in the audience quietly swearing because I missed it by ONE episode! About buzzing in - see my reply to okbud. All of the contestants are reading the clue silently faster than Alex can read it aloud, and coming up with their answer. But you can't buzz in until he finishes reading the question. You have to time it very precisely.
  18. Ha, thank you, people elsewhere online are tearing me to shreds for the interview, so that's nice to hear. The tricky part is getting the clicker timing EXACTLY right. Most people who get on Jeopardy know the answers to most of the questions, so who wins depends on who buzzes in first. There are lights alongside the clue board that the TV audience can't see. The lights come on when you're allowed to buzz in - it's pretty much just as the last syllable of the clue leaves Alex Trebek's mouth. If you buzz in too early you get locked out for 1/4 second, which is an eternity in Jeopardy time. Because timing can be slightly off or something else can go wrong, they teach you to buzz in by repeatedly clicking the button. If your kids ever drive you crazy by clicking a pen top? It's just like that. They even gave us Jeopardy pens to practice with. :lol:
  19. Oh wow, y'all, this is SO NICE to read! Thanks for the cheers and good wishes! It was quite an intense and emotional experience, as you might imagine. Happy to answer any questions you (or your kids) might have about the process. The only thing I can't discuss is what happens in games to come.
  20. Put that together with the "tomato staking" concept and it gets even creepier. "Usually my younger children are all within eyesight and earshot of me in the same room, even if they are behaving well. Right now, my five youngest, preschoolers to preteens, are just around the corner from me. I know exactly what they are doing, and I can clearly hear them talking and interacting." "In this kind of staking, you do NOT send children to the bedroom to play where you can't see or hear them, relying on occasional checks to monitor behavior. When they are outside, you are with them, or able to see and hear them. You do not pack them off to the neighbors or elsewhere for an hour or two to play without your personal supervision. You do not sign them up for group activities that do not include your parental participation." So the child is not allowed to be sad in front of mom without explaining AND the child is not allowed to go off and be sad in her own room or outside. Children should be constantly under the eye of the parent and also constantly held accountable for having only approved thoughts and feelings.
  21. Did you know that you can paddle a child out of having ADHD? See, I'm a child psychologist, and *I* didn't know that, but apparently my professional education has been deficient.
  22. Sadly, yes. Here's the link: http://www.raisinggodlytomatoes.com/ch12.php
  23. For some reason, this bit is particularly giving me chills:
  24. 2nd grade plans: Finish SOTW 1 and start SOTW2 Tag along with world geography (big sister's doing BYL 7) RSO Chemistry WWE 2 Shelf of 16 Mom-chosen chapter books he's expected to read sometime during 2nd grade AAS 1 and 2 Finish MEP2 Start Beast Academy 3
  25. We start June 1st! I can't believe I have a middle schooler. This is the shortest list I've ever posted, because for the first time ever I'm going with a boxed curriculum. It feels SO WEIRD. But (a) it looks so amazing! and (b) I am very conscious of how much I've fallen down on the job this year with homeschooling. We've consistently done reading, writing, and math, but beyond that I have really let things slide. Time for a more laid-out-for-us schedule. Alex will be doing: Build Your Library 7 (social studies, language arts, literature, art, reading, Elemental Science Chemistry for the Logic Stage) Possibly supplement ES Chemistry with The Joy of Chemistry Finish up Jacobs, Mathematics: A Human Endeavor Finish up ACT algebra (Life and Times of Chuckles the Rocket Dog) Begin AOPS Algebra That's it. BYL and math. It feels so weiiiird.
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