M. Robert Grunwald

Award-winning playwright and author

What Is I'm Heartbroken

I passed the final "Jeopardy" auditions over the summer, but with the recent news, I'm waiting for their call with a heavy heart.
My wife and I were on the TCM Classic Movie Cruise in 2016. Alex Trebek was a regular on those cruises and held two extremely popular trivia challenges on each voyage. I was determined to take part in one, but when we arrived at the massive main lounge where it was being held, we found it was at capacity. The organizers started routing people to the ship's smaller bars to play via CCTV, and even then, we were the last two people they admitted. We joined two other couples, one a few years older than us, and one a few decades older. Crammed into the back corner of the ship's Irish pub, we dubbed our team the "Corner Pockets" and hunkered down to take the quiz. In the end, Alex announced that we were one of two teams tied for first place, "but only [the other team] would get prizes, since the Corner Pockets didn't bother to stick around to find out who won." Looks of shock and puzzlement passed between the six of us before we realized that no one must have informed our esteemed host that there were people playing remotely all over the ship. We began to "hurry" halfway across the ship to the main lounge to set things right. (Keep in mind I need a cane to get around and there were two people with us about 80 years old.) We got there just in time to declare our (tied) victory and join the man himself on stage. We ended up getting a nice prize package from TCM, but the memory of that frenetic, weird encounter with Alex Trebek was all the prize this "Jeopardy" fan needed.
Mr. Trebek, you will be missed.

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