Tom Pajak

Tom Pajak (Not Pat Sajak), is an international banker who got into the hot seat with this question:

QQ16. Put the following non-fiction books in the order in which they were published, starting with the earliest.
A. Angela's Ashes B. Roots
C. In Cold Blood D. Private Parts
Correct Order (drag the mouse over the letters): C-B-D-A
Tom's winning time: 4.82
Competitors: 4/8

Tom's also taken a trip to Italy, and speaks Italian. once again, Reege asks for "Is that your final answer?" in Italian. Once again Tom obliges, and once again Reege answers, "Nyet."

Let's watch Tom go for it all!

For $100:
1. According to the classic tongue twister, who 'picked a peck of pickled peppers'?

A. Peter PiperB. Porky Pigs
C. Patti PageD. Pablo Picasso

Tom guesses A...

Yes, that's his final answer.

And Peter Piper means Pajak pockets $100!

For $200:
2. In what time zone would you find New York City?

A. PacificB. Mountain
C. CentralD. Eastern

Tom had to change his clocks to this time when he flew to New York. He says it's D...

And that's his final answer.

Right again! $200.


For $300:
3. The title of what Judy Blume book is also the term for what fat?

A. BackB. Blubber
C. SuperfudgeD. Cushion
Tom chooses B...

For his final answer.

Got it! $300.

For $500:
4. Which ice cream company promises '31 Flavors,' but actually serves more varieties?

A. Baskin-RobbinsB. Haagen-Dazs
C. BreyersD. Ben & Jerry's
Tom: "When I was in college, my first job was scooping ice cream with A. Baskin Robbins."
Reege: "So? And today you're an international banker!"
Tom: "Well, you start small!"

A is his final answer.

He's got this one licked! $500.

For a guaranteed $1000:
5. In what position does the winged mammal known as a bat normally rest?

A. On its sideB. On its back
C. On its stomachD. Upside-down

Tom recalls that they sleep hanging from the ceiling, hence it's D...

Which is his final answer.

And it's right! He's guaranteed $1000!

For $2000:
6. By profession, what does a cobbler make?

A. HatsB. Watches
C. ShoesD. Jewelry

Tom chooses C...

Yes, that's his final answer.

He's right again! $2000!

For $4000:
7. Gorgonzola is a type of what?

A. Meat B. Cheese
C. Fruit D. Car

Tom's travels in Italy are paying off. He says it's B...

And that's his final answer.

Nailed it! $4000!

For $8000:
8. What does the 'B' stand for in the acronym 'SCUBA'?

A. BlowingB. Basic
C. BreathingD. Binary

Tom's cousin like to skin dive, so he knows it's C...

Which will be his final answer.

Tom can breathe easy; he's just won $8000!

For $16,000:
9. What ballet traditionally features the Sugar Plum Fairy?

A. The NutcrackerB. Coppelia
C. GiselleD. Sleeping Beauty

After talking it out, Tom arrives at A...

For his final answer.

And Tom's just danced his way to $16,000!

For a guaranteed $32,000:
10. What boxing champ's youngest daughter just won her first professional boxing match in 31 seconds?

A. George ForemanB. Muhammad Ali
C. Mike TysonD. Sugar Ray Leonard

Tom is not much of a boxing fan. Hence, he'll toss it to the well-groomed audience.

A. George Foreman - 7%B. Muhammad Ali - 78%

C. Mike Tyson - 4%D. Sugar Ray Leonard - 11%

That's a large enough spread to win Tom's trust. He'll choose B...

Yes, that's his final answer.

I remember a picture from ESPN Magazine...

Of a woman boxer beating her opponent senseless.

And she was the daughter of...

Muhammad Ali!
Tom wins a guaranteed $32,000!!

For $64,000:
11. In 1978, which actor recorded a single with his co-star that reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 pop chart?

A. Patrick SwayzeB. Bruce Willis
C. Don JohnsonD. John Travolta

Tom doesn't seem to follow pop music now, or 20 years from now for that matter. But he thinks he knows someone who does: his friend, Sue. So he'll give her a call. After the obligatory stuff is out of the way, we get this interchange:

    Sue: "John Travolta?"
    Tom: "Are you su- you know that one, Sue? I'm trusting you."
    Sue: "I'm pretty sure."
    John: "I think you're fantastic. Thank you."
    Sue: "Good luck, Tom." (Burp burp)

Reege: "You know, you don't have to get engaged on our show!"

Tom had Sue penned as his source for pop music information, and her certainty cements it for him. He selects D...

Which is his final answer.

Of course, we all know the movie that was popular at the time, right?

A little musical called...

"Grease" - with John Travolta!

LOOGAROO LAMENTS: The year was key here. Swayze and Willis made it big in the early 80's, so they're out right away. And I don't think Don Johnson was in any movies in 1978. And of course, let's not forget that movie I just mentioned. Although I do commend Tom on his strategy regarding Phone-a-Friends; pick people you know are good in certain subjects. That way, if a particular question stumps you, you have a correspondent who can give you the answer. (Hopefully.)

(Special thanks to David Honea for pointing out that Travolta sang "You're the One that I Want" for Grease in '78, and nothing for SNF.)

For $125,000, or ONE EIGHTH of a MILLION DOLLARS:
12. What president was in office when the voting age was reduced from 21 to 18?

A. John F. KennedyB. Richard Nixon
C. Gerald FordD. Lyndon Johnson

Tom eliminates A and D right away, as he figures they were too early.

But after that, it's a blur. So, he decides to squan- I'm sorry, use - his 50:50.

OUTB. Richard Nixon

OUTD. Lyndon Johnson

Well, lookee here... perhaps I spoke too soon!

Since he already knocked off his other choice, he'll take a shot and go with B...

And that's his final answer.

When the voting age was reduced to 18...

It was during the Vietnam War.

And who else was in the Oval Office but...


LOOGAROO LAMENTS: I think someone fell asleep at the wheel here. Once I heard him decide to take the 50:50, I thought for sure that the two he had logically eliminated would've disappeared. But lo and behold, the 50:50 stumbled and left a choice Tom already knew was wrong. So I was mistaken. Enjoy it while you can, folks; it doesn't happen often. : )

With another correct answer, Tom will become the second quarter-millionaire of November. Here comes the next question:

For $250,000, or ONE QUARTER of a MILLION DOLLARS:
13. Which of the following is a novel by author Toni Morrison?

A. Tar BabyB. The Color Purple
C. The Heart of a WomanD. Waiting to Exhale

Tom eliminates B immediately; The Color Purple was written by Alice Walker.

Reege reminds Tom that $93,000 is forfeited if he misses this.

Tom narrows it down to A or D. He can't remember which one was written by Morrison, though.

With 93 grand at stake, he is going to take a shot. And that shot is with D.

And D will be his final answer.

Tom is indeed waiting to exhale.

Either a sigh of relief, or a sigh of disappointment.

And with Regis' news, Tom will exhale a sigh of...

Disappointment. A. Tar Baby was the right answer.
So Tom Pajak loses nearly three-quarters of his winnings, and is knocked out with $32,000.

LOOGAROO LAMENTS: A tough loss. On one hand, I can certainly understand why he did it - Remember, Rick Grimes had preceded him, and he was one unit of certainty short of winning $125K. I bet he figured nothing ventured, nothing gained. However, when 75% of your money is at stake, you probably should be at least 75% sure of the answer, if not more. If you have to guess, even though the gamble favors you ($93K lost if wrong, but $125K more won if right, and at even odds), you're best off stopping.


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