Happy Birthday, Blogger!

     In honor of its 11th birthday, Blogger is encouraging its bloggers to organize birthday parties on August 31st, three weeks from tonight.  I’ve gotten the ball rolling for bloggers in or near Lincoln, NE.  This is the kind of event I’ve been dreaming about. It will be so much fun and a great way to spread the word about our own blogs to fellow bloggers.  Let me know if you’re interested via comment here, e-mail, or Twitter.  You can also sign up on the Blogger Fiesta website.  To find a party near you, see the map below.
     I knew who won today’s episode, not because I remember but because I saw it on j-archive.com yesterday when I was looking at something else.  It didn’t affect my play, though.  That is, I would’ve played everything the same way.
     Poor Gabriel Johnson could not catch a break today: He started strong and had 5200 when he found the first Daily Double, while his nearest opponent, Will Dantzler, had 1600.  Gabriel wagered everything on the clue in “Text” Me, which really can’t be considered a bad move: If one were to consider advice I got on the Jeopardy! message boards from a former 4-time champ and Tournament of Champions runner-up, wagering it all when you have a commanding lead early in the game is smart.  Plus, Gabriel had done well in this category, and how many words or phrases with “text” can there possibly be?  Anyway, I didn’t get the answer to this one, either: “This is an ostensible reason put forward to conceal a true purpose or object.”*
     After missing that one, Gabriel soon found himself in the hole after missing this triple-stumper: “In 2009, she headed out of ‘The Hills’ and published her first novel, ‘L.A. Candy.'”*  At the end of the Jeopardy round, Gabriel had 1200, Will had 4400, and Solomon Howard was in the red, -400.  I had 10800.
     Gabriel found the first Daily Double in the Double Jeopardy round, too.  The category was Oh, What a Knight.  He lost 1400 on this clue: “In the ‘Song of Roland,’ this code asked knights ‘to keep faith’ and ‘to fight for the welfare of all.'”*  What makes this even sadder is that Gabriel seemed to be fishing for the Daily Doubles, in both rounds.  To make matters worse, Solomon then answered his Daily Double correctly, although he was trailing for much of the game.  He was 2200 behind Gabriel, his nearest opponent, and he wagered 2000 on this clue in Ships: “Tragically, in December 1941 this battleship sank in less than 9 minutes, with 1,177 of her crew.”*
     At the end of Double Jeopardy, Gabriel had made a nice recovery with 15000.  Will had 17600, Solomon had 2400, and I had 25200.  The Final category was Architecture.  This was the clue: “De Maupassant, Zola & Dumas fils were among those signing a petition decrying it as “a gigantic… factory chimney.”*  All three guys got it right, and so did I.  Gabriel doubled his score, but Will wagered enough to win and ended up with 30001.  So he moves on to the Final round, which begins Thursday.  (I ended today with 30002.)
     As always, a friendly reminder to sign up for the Summer Hiatus Challenge on the Jeopardy! message boards.  Once you have, let me know via a comment here and you will be eligible to win Chuck Forrest’s Secrets of the Jeopardy! Champions.  Anyway, participating is a prize in itself!  It’s fun!

*pretext, Lauren Conrad, code of chivalry, the Arizona