A Sure Betsy

     Were you expecting “Heavens to Betsy”?
     Now that I’m going to be on Jeopardy!, I have a new focus for my energy – the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament.  I went in 2010 and placed 30th among rookies.  A certain Joon Pahk placed first among rookies that year!  I’ve sent him a message asking for advice.  As I told him, I’m ready to put my head down and get after it.  I feel like I’m good at this and can excel if I apply myself.  I’ll take your advice, too, if you are a “cruciverbalist”!
     I got to play two recent weekend episodes today.  Here are those Coryats:
originally 6-29-11: 35600 (The first time I played this episode, my score was 31600!)
originally 6-30-11: 30400
     (The first time I played this episode, my score was 23600.  I can hardly believe that.)
     As for today’s new episode:

(Doesn’t he look like he’s gonna puke?  He looked like that the whole episode.)

     Today was a little rough for me – I’m at my mom and dad’s, and when I walked in to watch the show the categories were being revealed.  I decided to wait until the first commercial break to start watching.  (They don’t have DVR, which makes it all more complicated!)  I didn’t want to wait until the show was all the way done because I didn’t want to waste the computer time – My dad and I have been visiting someone in the hospital all day, and I thought we’d both want the computer this evening.
     Because I started at the contestant interviews, this clue was spoiled for me in Dr. Masseuse Rhymes: “A knot I’ve found, oh, heck!/In this muscle of the upper part of my neck/but not in my ol’ a-sneezius!/No! ‘Tis in my…”  (I know, weird.)  Anyway Brandon Libby left out a syllable, so he was negged during his contestant interview.  I assumed I’d have gotten it right, but I can’t be 100% sure.  I managed to get this first one after the break right despite the clue which seemed so bizarre to me, not having seen the others: “Internal or external/the pain there’s infernal/feel my abdomen go weak/it means indirect, it’s my…”
     As Mr. Trebek pointed out, the Daily Double was one of the two clues not revealed in the Jeopardy round.  He gave the one-minute warning with 8 clues left!  Ouch!  And speaking of ouch, Betsy Schroeder was asserting her authority early – She had 7600 at the end of the round while Brandon had 1800 and Mike Hatch had 1200.
     It was not to get any easier for the boys, although my second time watching it I thought it did not seem as bad as the first time.  I counted negs: I think Mike had 4 while Brandon had 2.  Mike had a good run for a while, including getting this Daily Double 4 clues in, in _____ the _____: “To sternly demand hard work, it’s also something Indiana Jones often does.”  I didn’t know this one.  I’ve never seen “Indiana Jones,” but it was probably gettable anyway!  Mike said when wagering, “Let’s make it…1500” (of 2000).  Why didn’t he make it a true Daily Double?  Brandon had 200 and Betsy had 6800.  Mike then got the next clue, then the next one.  But the streak did not last.  For one thing, he rung in and said “Mondale” in response to this triple-stumper in Women in Government (notice it was not a quadruple-stumper): “His widow Muriel became Minnesota’s first female senator when she filled his vacant seat in 1978.”
     Before finding the other Daily Double, Betsy burned the guys by picking up this one in Inventive Minds, which the boys both negged on.  And oh yeah, it was worth 2000: “In 1988 <span style=”color: #660000; cursor: default;” title=”Eastman”>his</span> lightweight, box-shaped invention eliminated the need for glass photographic plates.”
     When Betsy got the Daily Double, there was once again a minute left and 8 clues.  She had 13200 while Brandon had 1000 and Mike had 2700.  By the way, because of Preston Nicholson I know that this episode was the first one taped on Wednesday that week (and the show is taped on Tuesday and Wednesday).  When I consider what happened to Brandon, I wonder if the new day had something to do with it?  Maybe he didn’t sleep well?
     Anyway, Betsy wagered 2000 on this clue in Green Pages: “Victor Schaffer’s ‘The Year of’ this mammal is a 1969 classic study on the conservation of an ocean species.”  I guessed it right, but Betsy guessed it wrong.  Like it mattered, with the lead she had!
     I got this triple-stumper (the 200 clue!) in Green Pages: “Al Gore made his environmental sentiments clear in the 1992 book this ‘in the Balance.'”
     Four clues were left covered.  At the end of the round, Betsy had 9200, Brandon had 1000 and Mike had 1100.  The Final Jeopardy category was English Monarchs.  (Yuck!)  This was the clue: “Since 1066, the longest consecutive period when the monarch had the same name was 116 years with this given name.”  I got it wrong, as did Brandon, who wagered everything.  Mike and Betsy got it right.  Mike added 550 and Betsy added 3000.  Can she do it again tomorrow?
     My own Coryat today was 21600.  Hey, my dad’s on his way home and I got done blogging in time!  Whoo hoo!

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