Jeopardy! goes to Honah Lee

     I had my camera poised ready to take pictures of the contestants today, but I got a surprise.  No, not some electronic failure this time!  Mr. Trebek announced that, this February, Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter are coming back to Jeopardy!, this time to play against a computer (“Watson”).  Thanks to Twitter, I’ve known about this “Watson” for quite some time.  Apparently some people are way more excited about it than I am.  I wondered whether I’d even mention it here, but Mr. Trebek’s announcement really decides that for me.  Here is some more information.  I am going to be happy to see Rutter and Jennings again.  I have to say I’m proud of Ken for facing Brad again, even though Brad beat him in 2005’s Ultimate Tournament of Champions.
     Here are today’s contestants:

Jonathan Corbblah

Tom Nissley

Judy Arnold (Yes, she has green hair.)
     I was eager to see Jonathan today.  He impressed yesterday, and he is a Jeopardy! message boardie!  And you know I love an enthusiastic contestant.  Jonathan appeared so relaxed, all the time.  Tom was a threat from the beginning, though.  He had a small lead (200 over both Jonathan and Judy) when he found the Daily Double in the Jeopardy round.  At that point, it sounded like he had a more passionate cheering section than Jonathan did yesterday!  The category was The Flu Fighters.  He wagered everything on this clue: “This U.N. agency issues annual recommendations for the composition of new anti-flu drugs.”*  He got it right!  At the end of the Jeopardy round, Tom had 6200, Jonathan had 3200, Judy had 3000, and I had 8000.

     The Double Jeopardy round featured a “Puff, the Magic Dragon” theme.  Like yesterday, both Daily Doubles were found rather early in the round.  Jonathan found the first one in Lived by the Sea.  He wisely wagered all of his 3600.  Judy had 2200, Tom still had 6200, and I had 8800.  This was the clue: “The fur seals of the Pribilof Islands not only live by this sea, they also live in it.”*  I didn’t know it, but Jonathan did, and just like that he led by 1000.
     Judy found the next Daily Double in Sealing Wax.  Judy had 3400, Jonathan had 7600, Tom had 9000, and I had 9600.  Judy wagered 3000 on this clue: “These rings sound like young swans, but they’re actually used to seal letters with wax.”*  She got it right, and so did I.
     After this, I noticed that Jonathan seemed to have trouble ringing in first, which is too bad.  By the end of the round, he had 10800, Judy had 12400, and Tom had 18600.  I had 26000.  The Final Jeopardy category was Olympic History.  This was the clue: “In 1988, this country boycotted the Summer Olympics after its demand to co-host the games was refused.”*  All three contestants got it right, and I did too.  Jonathan wagered only 2200.  My guess is that he expected Tom to wager just enough to beat Judy if she doubled, then hoped he answered incorrectly.  (This way, a third-place person doesn’t have to risk it all when it doesn’t really matter because he’s in third place and not second.)  I’ve asked Jonathan to explain his wager on the message boards, and I will let you know if he responds to that.  Judy wagered 10000, which I thought was kind of an odd choice.  Tom wagered 6201, which was enough to beat Judy even if she had doubled.  So he wins, and we’ll see him tomorrow!
*the World Health Organization, the Bering Sea, signets, North Korea