KEN JENNINGS BOOK SIGNING
GLENDALE PUBLIC LIBRARY
OCT. 17, 2006
I found Ken
to be quite warm and funny. He was extremely personable, both while addressing the crowd as a group, as well as when he was
greeting his fans individually during the "signing" portion of the event.
He spoke of
his preparation for Jeopardy! Of particular concern was the "potent potables" category. As a Mormon,
Ken is a non-drinker. But, now, having studied Bartender guides, and having survived endless quizzes by his wife, Mindy, Ken
feels certain he is now qualified to be the World's best Mormon bartender. Of course, as
Ken admitted that is "probably not a very high bar to set..."
for myself, I couldn't help but think it would be an interesting career choice, if his Jeopardy money ever runs out...
doesn't want to go back to computer programming, and claims to be "no damn good at it..."
confessed that he only added the computer programming major to his course of study in English when someone joked: "What's
the difference between a English major and a pizza? Answer: A pizza can actually feed a family of four!"
with a Master's Degree in English; I could've taken offense, but it's so true...
is so at ease with himself, and seems so comfortable as a speaker that it is hard to believe that he once left the world of
"trivia" behind, as he bought into other people's notion that it was indeed, "trivial," and feared being branded a "know-it-all!"
(He even claims to have given up watching "JEOPARDY!" -- blasphemy-- at one point!)
up a "pageant" and "figure skating" fan, I too was branded many things, so I was particularly interested in this
portion of his speech. Although, I was dismayed to discover, while reading Brainiac, That Ken confused Kristi Yamaguchi and Michelle Kwan on his original Jeopardy! Quiz. In my world this is considered
blasphemous! Having known both these wonderful women for a while, I know they are both gracious enough to forgive him. So,
I suppose I can forgive as well! (Note to Ken: On my home page @ http://jhb14.tripod.com, you can find a link to this website's "figure skating" section should you ever need it. There is a "pageant" section too.
In case you haven't brushed up on "Miss America" or "Miss Universe" lately.... and yes, Mr. Jennings, they are as different
as the "quiz bowl" organizations you write about in your book!)
enjoyed meeting and listening to Ken Jennings.
hope that he continues speaking and writing. His basic messages of the importance of learning and taking pride in yourself,
no matter who you are or what interests you may have, are timeless; and sorely underrated in times like these. Ken Jennings
shows, in his decidedly understated manner, that brains, humility and character, need not be nerdy; they are perhaps the definition
said, a hero is one who shows "grace under pressure." Therefore, if the JEOPARDY answer is : "AN
AMERICAN FOLK HERO"; the question may well be 'Who is Ken Jennings?'