“Please, Go Ahead, I’ll Let You Win Today” — everybody

Regular play is back, and the last two-three months before the next Tournament of Champions begins!

This week’s contestants:

Jake Ayres, San Diego, CA
Joshua Bartlett, Albany, NY
Mona Hatfield, Eufaula, OK
Morgan Kruse, Irvine, CA
Amanda Lanyon-LeSage, Madison, WI
Dan Sims, Little Rock, AR

And defending champ: Paul Nelson, Iowa City, IA

The challengers for Paul today: Dan Sims and Morgan Kruse! Once again, Paul’s a 3-time champ with total $45,400!

Will he make it 4 today?


The MOVIES category didn’t drag as much as I thought a video category might, but there were lots of wrong answers so far – I’ll be surprised if we get through 30! The scores at the first break (after 13 clues):

Paul $800
Morgan $0
Dan $0

I came back up to put this comment in about Dan’s interview, but I’m betting Alex deliberately chose to bring up Dan’s story about having his hair cut while asleep as a college prank!

Also, normally these contestant marriage proposal stories are blase, but I found Morgan’s to be quite sweet! Her now-husband commissioned a proposal crossword puzzle in the style of a New York Times crossword! Meanwhile, “Word Play” aired on Game TV last night in Canada.

With two full categories left, Paul started a quick hunting trip. I say “quick” because it took him one shot. The Daily Double was under POETRY TERMS $800, and the scores were:

Paul $3,000
Dan $1,000
Morgan $0

His bet: $1,500. His clue: A haiku traditionally deals with this; a senryu takes an ironic look at human this. His correct response put him to $4,500.

The end-of-round signal came before we got to play any of the ANAGRAMS clues — I guess we’ll get to see it again soon! At the end of the J! round, we had scores of:

Paul $5,300
Dan $400
Morgan $0


The BALTIMORE category is in honour of a new affiliate there. So, once again, where’s the HAMILTON, ONTARIO category, eh?

The ODD WORDS $800 clue (Something resembling this proud bird’s tail in color, design, or iridescence is said to be pavonine) annoyed me; I missed the bingo PAVONINE once in a Scrabble tournament!

As soon as he took got control, Paul decided to restart his Daily Double hunt. Morgan had absolutely none of it. I find the “stop the hunt” behaviour bothersome in terms of strategy; it’s almost as if you’re saying “I really don’t mind if you guys beat me”! And that’s when I stop cheering for you.

Shortly after a pair of expensive wrong answers took Paul out of the lead, Dan found the Daily Double under GENERAL PRACTICE $1200. The scores:

Dan $4,800
Paul $4,100
Morgan $4,000

Dan bet $1,500. His clue: Though unpopular with the President for his cautiousness, this Union general was once known as “Young Napoleon”. His correct response put him at $6,300.

Lots of negs and Triple Stumpers kept the pace slow here, and Paul found the Final Daily Double while being tenacious in his hunt! The minute-to-go signal had sounded, and the scores were:

Paul $6,500
Dan $5,500
Morgan $4,000

Personally? I like taking the shot here as opposed to an unknown final. Players tend to do better on a random Daily Double than a random Final Jeopardy. I’d probably bet $5,000 here, with the though that even if I’m wrong, I fall to $1,500 – which would make for an interesting betting situation in Final Jeopardy!

However, Paul bet $2,000 — a poor bet by all accounts. His clue: A tonsorialist is one who does this. The best guess he could come up with was incorrect, and he fell to $4,500.

Compounding the error: His next selection was PLANETARY MATTERS $400. Ugh. Morgan got the clue.

I never thought I’d be longing to blog a Teacher’s Tournament game. But tonight’s game made me do that.

Scores going into Final:
Dan $5,500
Paul $4,500
Morgan $4,400

FJ! category: OPERA

FJ! clue: In 1900 the first La Scala performance of this opera was conducted by the man whose last name began with the opera’s title

Morgan 4400 – 1101 = 3299
Paul 4500 – 1000 = 3500
Dan 5500 – 4500 = 1000

Somehow, after the ugliest game in recent memory, Paul emerges from the carnage to be a 4-day champion.

Tournament of Champions update:

1. Monica Thieu $100,000 (College Champion)
2. Patrick Quinn $100,000 (Feb. 2012 Teacher’s Champion)
3. Colby Burnett $100,000 (Nov. 2012 Teacher’s Champion)
4. Jason Keller $213,900 (9 wins)
5. Keith Whitener $147,597 (7 wins)
6. Stephanie Jass $147,570 (7 wins)
7. Joel Pool $116,800 (6 wins)
8. Dave Leach $98,054 (6 wins)
9. David Menchaca $115,503 (5 wins)
10. David Gard $84,700 (4 wins)
11. Dan McShane $62,001 (4 wins)
12. Paul Nelson $48,900 (4 wins)
13. Patrick Morrison $80,701 (3 wins)
14. Francis Lansangan $78,401 (3 wins)
15. Matt Samberg $61,402 (3 wins)

16. Andy Baggarly $60,402 (3 wins)
17. Stephanie Fontaine $54,500 (3 wins)
18. Joey Falco $53,999 (3 wins)
19. Erin Zweiner $53,399 (3 wins)
20. Beau Henson $51,203 (3 wins)
21. Margaret Swanson $48,000 (3 wins)
22. Claudia Gray $45,202 (3 wins)
23. Dan Adkison $37,400 (3 wins)
24. Jacob Silverman $35,998 (3 wins)
25. Jessamine Price $26,803 (3 wins)

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone south of the border, and because I don’t have a holiday, I’ll be back tomorrow to blog again! See you then!

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