Let's do this.
Hello J! aficionados and trivia lovers, let me go ahead and formally introduce myself. My name is Todd Gross, I was born not far from where J! is now taped (Santa Monica) in March of 1964, the same month J! with Art Fleming and Don Pardo debuted on NBC. I do remember occasionally seeing the original show when school was on vacation or I was sick. I liked game shows well enough, but certainly didn't think in terms of appearing on one.
I was attending UC Berkeley when the current version of J! debuted in 1984 (no College Tournament back then). I remember testing for the show in the early years in the studio...and not passing the test. Since then, I've had 4 auditions, all different: one in Austin (my postcard was chosen), one in the J! studio (no, I didn't get to play a mock game behind an actual stand thing, the set was covered in plastic tarp), one at the infamous Culver City Radisson (from the online test), and the most recent at TCONA...really thought I wouldn't be able to audition when I missed the online test by mistake. The TCONA interview was my first with Maggie, so really glad for that.
As for the rest of my life...well, thanks to our own Rex Kramer, I took up the humble art of crossword construction about 3 years ago. And I've been lucky enough to get two published
in the New York Times
. The last was published the week WATSON was on the cover of the New York Times Magazine
, which made for a great show and tell at the TCONA interview!
By the way, I just got a puzzle accepted at the Los Angeles Times
, it's my first acceptance this year!
Anyone still reading this? Now for the less flattering stuff.
I am unemployed...actually, I'm on disability because I can't handle the stress of an ordinary job. I actually spend much of my day in bed avoiding the rest of the world. I had a while there where I was hallucinating pretty bad. I had no idea why it was happening, and wasn't sure if it meant I was losing my mind. At one point, I thought my purpose in life was to deliver a lecture on spirituality I'd "received" from some "higher source." I even thought I was supposed to deliver it naked, to show that I had nothing to hide.
Needless to say, none of this went on the J! application I filled out.
Good thing this isn't a Sony owned board.
There's more I could say...but really, don't you think I've said enough?