Sunday, May 23, 2021

The Pool Is Open

Kicked off a blinding sunny morning with Lemon-Strawberry Pancakes and my Peter Pan record and book version of Alice In Wonderland. First of all, it's got some rather cute songs. There's a pretty and dreamy title song, "Curiouser and Curiouser" as she grows and shrinks, and "The  Queen Has Commanded," a chorus number at the Queen's croquet game with the queen ordering everyone executed while Alice throws in spoken commentary on the strangeness of the whole affair. The other unique aspect of this recording is the book, which more closely resembles a Marvel comic book of the 1970's in its design than anything Tenniel.

The Wonderful World of Make Believe is one of my favorite Johnny Mathis albums. Side 2 kicks off with a lovely version of another Alice In Wonderland title song, this one from the Disney animated film. I also like "Sky Full of Rainbows," "I'm Always Chasing Rainbows," and the title number from Camelot

Headed off to work before the record ended. We were a lot busier than yesterday, with long lines...but everything went much faster, too. Other than a few annoying customers, there were no major problems. It thankfully slowed down enough by 4:30 for me to dash out without a relief or a need for one.

The pool area was full of kids and parents when I arrived. I hurried inside, changed, and hurried back out. Apparently, not only did Jodie invite over TJ and his husband Eric and Rose and her tribe, but friends of hers and their kids, too. She, Craig, Rose, and TJ also made tons of food. There were Jodie's succulent, fall-off-the-bone ribs, chicken and beef on skewers, Rose's grilled vegetables, hot dogs for the kids, baked asparagus, green salad, and TJ's tomato and blue cheese salad. The tomato and cheese salad was incredible, sharp and tart, the chicken and ribs were wonderfully moist, and the asparagus was tasty. Rose and Jodie had fruit bowls outside; one bowl was a watermelon carved in the shape of a shark!

After I ate, I changed into my bathing suit and jumped in the water with the kids. It was cold when you got in, but warm for May when you were used to it. Jodie's friends had two girls and two boys. I chatted with them while listening to them chase each other and hit each other with foam noodles and splash each other. I did have to warn them a few times that pushing each other into the pool isn't funny, and neither is intentionally getting water in each other's eyes. Mostly, though, I had a great time laughing at their antics.

Worked on writing for a while after I got out. Brett's more than shocked that the tyrannical Red King is her boss, producer Mark Goodson, and the feared Red Knight is her almost-ex-husband Jack Klugman. Or, it looks like them. She tries to get a better look by climbing on the horse's legs, but almost gets trampled. Jimmie (Walker) the Dodo yanks her out of the way and drags her into the marshes before she's captured, too.

Finished the night online with more trivia shows. Jeopardy was the first hit quiz show to debut after the scandals subsided. Merv Griffith wanted to put the accent back on what people knew, and not what they could win. Three people answer questions on a topic in graduating numbers, from 20 to 100 in the original 1964 incarnation. When they choose a certain monitor that says "Daily Double," they can wager part or all of the money on their answer. The dollar amounts are doubled in the second round. The third round, Final Jeopardy, has everyone answering one question and wagering none, part, or all of their winnings. The one with the most winnings is the champion.

Alas, there's very little left of the NBC 60's daytime version of the show, but it doesn't seem to have changed much over the years other than adding color. As far as I can tell, the 1974 episode here is pretty emblematic of the original run in general. Art Fleming was the genial host.

Fleming stuck around for a 1978 syndicated revival. This one changed things up by eliminating the low-scoring contestant after the first round and completely redoing Final Jeopardy. Here, if the last contestant standing answers a series of questions in one topic. If they get all five questions correct, they win $5,000. 

The changes to the 1978 version were fairly controversial, especially with people who enjoyed the NBC show. The syndicated revival in 1984 returned to the original format, with Alex Trebek taking over as host. This is the one that's still running in syndication to this day, with rotating hosts subbing after Trebek's death in November

My family used to gather around the TV in the late 80's and early 90 as ABC World News Tonight wound down on Channel 6 after dinner. We'd try to guess The Pennsylvania Lottery numbers, then would anxiously wait for Johnny Gilbert to announce THIS...IS...JEOPARDY! and bring in today's contestants. We loved to see who could get the most answers or which categories we were best at. Wheel of Fortune came on after that; we'd see who could get the right letters or guess the puzzle first.

Jeopardy wasn't Trebek's first crack at a quiz show. Far from it, in fact. In the mid-70's, he did two shows that involved contestants answering questions in isolation booths. Unlike the 50's entries, Double Dare and The $128,000 Question were scrupulously watched to make sure they were both on the level. No chicanery here, just people answering tough quiz questions and, in the case of Double Dare, trying to stump a panel of experts with their knowledge. 

My personal favorite quiz show along with Jeopardy has always been Tic Tac Dough. I loved watching it on USA Network in the mid-80's, guessing trivia along with the contestants and hoping they'd avoid that screeching dragon! Like $128,000 Question, this one worked hard to make quizzes safe for big prize winnings again. One gentleman, Thomas McKee, walked off with over $200,000 in prizes (including 8 cars). It was a record in winnings that stood until the era of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? Wink Martindale lends his southern charm to the proceedings. 

Trivia Trap is one of the more unique entries in the genre. In this rare Goodson-Todman crack at quizzes, a team of young adults is pit against a team of older folks to see who comes out on top with the knowledge. In this case, the kids won it on a question involving rock music. Bob Eubanks is the mediator in this generational trivia war.

Wish Buzzr would put the 1987 Monty Hall Split Second back on the schedule. As much as I enjoy Body Language, Split Second pairs better with Blockbusters...but I suspect this lightning-fast multiple-choice quizzer may have been a little too dry for morning viewers. Went with an episode from later in the series that didn't look like I caught it during its Buzzr run. 

At any rate, here's some later-day quizzes for your scandal necessary. 

No comments: