Jim A.

JEOPARDY! mention of Ayn Rand's work

8 posts in this topic

Last night I was watching Jeopardy!

In the final Jeopardy! category--which, as I recall, was "Fictional Characters"--the answer (the answer is always given; the contestant has to come up with the right question) was something like: "He is the character mentioned in the opening line of the novel Atlas Shrugged." The question, of course, is just like the opening line: "Who is John Galt?" :P I liked that.

One of the three contestants knew the proper response/question.

And I give credit to Alex Trebeck for not only pronouncing Ayn Rand's first name correctly, but also for saying that Atlas Shrugged is one of Ayn Rand's "great novels". Thank you, sir!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

On the subject of Jeopardy, here is something a little better than having a question about one of Ayn Rand's works on the show: n Objectivist appearing as a contestant.

My friend Nathaniel J.S. Barnes is going to appear on Jeopardy on Monday. In Toronto, I will be watching it on CBC at 7:30pm. I have not asked him whether he is an Objectivist or whether he thinks he is an Objectivist. But this is what I know. He has studied Ayn Rand, I believe read all of her published works, and has done a considerable amount of work understanding her philosophy, even the esthetics. He is primarily a composer of classical music, and has completed a few great works, including a concerto (I believe it is) named "Rearden Metal", at least that is what he called it personally to himself. He graduated several years ago from film school in university and now works in the restaurant business. He has written a few competent screen plays at least, along with short stories.

A few years ago, we were out for karaoke--consequently he is also a great singer, which I was stunned to find out--and he told me of his plans to try out for Jeopardy. I didn't laugh. I was surprised because I believed it to be a difficult task, but knowing Nathaniel, I was confident that he had a good chance at succeeding. He is the most rational and conistent achiever I know personally. He possesses a powerful mind, it is vast and in regular control, it is purposeful and it is quick, it is witty and even sarastic. I knew that he did indeed possess a really good memory, a faculty and skill that I have indeed marvelled at. He finished University with good grades and he worked himself through it as a bus boy, amidst an environment that must have been torture for him, as us Ayn Rand fans must know of. I was there too and had not the strength or stomach to endure it at that age.

Another important aspect of Nathaniel is his physical strength and determination. I met him when he was eighteen or nineteen standing outside a campus Objectivist club meeting, waiting for it to start. He was tall, skinny, lanky, he seemed shy, perhaps a little afraid. As I told you already, he turned out to possess perhaps the most powerful mind I have personally encountered and experienced, next to John Ridpath. A year or two later he told me that he decided that he was going to sculpt his body, he was going to start working out and weight lift. Gradually, I started to see the development. But a few years after his announcement, I met him again one night when Andrew Bernstein was in Toronto. He had achieved truy an esthetically beatiful form, it was something that might inspire a Michealangelo. (At this point let me just say that I and Nat have purely a platonic relationship, and we hold each other in a similar regard). This achivement of his was important for me to witness because it proved to me that he was a whole man, a complete man, on his own, and that such a man is possible, and within reach of my own soul.

Anyways, I hardly see him, as he is easily busy, as am I.

Now as you can tell, he may not get the opportunity to mention Ayn Rand because he might have other personal things to reveal, but he just might. And besides, it would be a very pleasing thing to see "a guy like us" getting on national television, expressing his rationality, excelling, winning, all for himself, for his material reward long overdue.

This upcoming Monday. As a link all I got is this facebook group (when you are logged onto facebook). I share all this with you because it is an expression of a value of mine, related to Objectivism, related to Jeopardy.

Nathaniel Facebook

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My confidence was justified. He won $23,900. Final Jeopardy was very interesting. It was Shakespeare women. It was a subject that would have tempted him to double his over 20 grand. Before the break it was the case that he might have to bet several thousand because his win was not set. However, after the break Alex announced that they made a mistake on another player's answer, which was correct, and so Nat, who lost some money in answering that question next, got back his money. Nathaniel was the clear winner if he did not wager a hundred dollars or so. He answered the question correctly, Lady Macbeth, and it turned out he only wagered $100. Very nice.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just keeping you updated. He won again. He's now at 31,000+. It is very very cool. When I was a kid I used to watch jeopardy religiously, from what I could remember. I haven't watched it in years. This is a very amazing way to start watching it again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Eventually I will stope with these updates ... it just has to stop ... doesn't it.

Yes, he won again. This time it was really close, and this pretty admirable girl was kicking his butt for too much of it. Then in final jeopardy won 25,000+ from his 15,000. The girl in the lead bet too much and answered wrong. The answer was 'butterball'. :angry2:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So, some of you may be wondering what happened. Nathaniel had the audacity to lose, only earning $57, 000, in 3 days of working adding up to a few hours only, probably--that's not considering the couple of years of preparation, taken away from his life's central passion. How dare he! He lost last Thursday. But he did amazing. I am really glad that he has the opportunity to create freely and without worry for a time. I somewhat fear what is going to come out of him in the next little while, it will be hard to bear in a good way. It makes my world a better place knowing that this guy who was struggling unfairly, in my opinion, finally got a break, in such an amazing and unbelievable way. If you are dedicated and continue to work hard at it, it is within the laws and grace of this world to give you what you want.

Anyway, here's his departing words:

Nathaniel's Last Words

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites