Reporters notebook: The Jeopardy edition

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In ‘Jeopardy!’

Clue: This Lewiston OB/GYN will appear on “Jeopardy!” next week.

Answer: Who is Thom Page?

Page, 56, has tried out online for “Jeopardy!” every year since his older sister got on the quiz show in 2012. In February 2016, he tried out again, running through a rapid-fire series of 50 questions online. Then he heard … nothing.

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“I thought, OK, I guess I didn’t hit the right level,” Page said.

That fall, the show suddenly emailed. Would he like to go to New York to test some more and audition with other potential contestants? Yes, he said. Yes he would.

The audition was fun, but the result uncertain. Show officials told everyone they may or may not call.

Page got a call.

In April, he and his wife flew to California for his “Jeopardy!” appearance.

“The only nerve-wracking part about it, to tell you the truth, is in the middle of the game when Alex (Trebek, the host) starts coming over to talk to you. Because when you’re playing the game it’s like, OK, I’ve done this a thousand times at home, I’m good at answering silly questions like this, that’s what I’m doing here just like everybody else. It’s fun. It’s competitive,” Page said. “When he comes over and he’s standing there, you know the camera’s on you. It’s really on you — You don’t want to flub it up.”

Page could reveal what he and Trebek chatted about — Page’s long distance swim involving Alcatraz — but he couldn’t say how well he did on the show. Viewers will have to watch it Thursday, Sept. 21, to find out.

Page, who works for Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston, said co-workers, friends and family are so excited about his “Jeopardy!” appearance that he’s rented out Pedro O’Hara’s so they can watch it together.

“It’s exciting. It was a really fun experience. It’s intense,” he said. “There’s no real prep. You get up there and, bang, you start playing.”

— Lindsay Tice

In more ‘Jeopardy!’

There’s the excitement and esteem that comes with being a “Jeopardy!” contestant.

Then, as a Maine museum found out this week, there’s the whole different honor of being a “Jeopardy!” question.

On Wednesday, the second half of “Jeopardy!” featured the category “Lesser-Known Museums.” The $2,000 clue, designed to be most difficult, was this:

“The international museum of this -ology in Maine has exhibits for the Montauk Monster and Jersey Devil.”

The answer: Cryptozoology. (The study of hidden and unknown creatures.)

The museum: Portland’s International Cryptozoology Museum.

Director Loren Coleman said he got an email from “Jeopardy!” produces last month letting him know his museum would be part of a clue for the show airing Sept. 13.

During the episode, contestant Laura Kelsay, of Nebraska, buzzed in for the right answer. She got $2,000 added to her total.

The Maine museum got some notoriety.

“We have heard, far and wide, from people around the world — through emails, messenger contact, tweets, Instagram and Facebook — about the ‘Jeopardy!’ mention,” Coleman said. “The range has been from simple ‘Congratulations’ to ‘You know you’ve arrived if ‘Jeopardy!’ makes you a question.'”

— Lindsay Tice

Lewiston OB/GYN Thom Page poses with “Jeopardy!” host Alex Trebek during filming. Page will appear on the quiz show Thursday.

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