Sections

Fresh Mdws. man bows out with $8K on ‘Millionaire’

Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Get our stories in your inbox, free.

Like TimesLedger on Facebook.

Well, that and $8,000."I will never again sit at home and yell at the screen, 'You should've known that,'" said the Fresh Meadows contestant, whose spot on ABC's syndicated version of "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?" aired Monday.He resorted to two lifelines for the $4,000 question: "How many megabytes are in a gigabyte," despite having taken four years of Latin in high school.Getting nowhere with a call to his co-worker and narrowing the choices to 50-50, a sweating Connolly finally threw out "1 million" to host Meredith Vieira. (That's the correct answer for those still wondering.)He was now out of lifelines, having appealed to the audience earlier to answer, "What is a frock?""I thought I knew it but didn't want to look stupid," said the 64-year-old, who debated between women's underwear and a dress. Apparently, second-guessing becomes second-nature on the hot seat.Connolly, a clerk at Manhattan's New York Supreme Court, delayed trying out for the show until his wife and two children pressured him to sign in on the show's Web site in August. From there, he was called to the studio in Midtown for a 30-question multiple choice test. The trivia buff beat out about 70 others to land a spot in the contestant pool. A week later, ABC called him at work with a taping date of Nov. 5."I almost fell out of my chair," he said. "You don't think you'll get picked for this kind of stuff."After that Connolly, joined by rooting fellow clerks and Justice Charles Solomon, started watching the show even more religiously in the judge's chambers.He added the almanac to the usual three to five books he said he read each week -- a habit he inherited from his late mother.But no amount of studying could prepare him for the $16,000 question: "Which first lady's ghost was seen in the laundry room of the White House by Eleanor Roosevelt?"With Margaret Tyler, Dolly Madison and Abigail Adams bouncing around in his head, Connolly stalled with a joke: "I didn't know they did their own laundry."Funny but the audience was waiting. Choosing not to??? risk the demotion to $1,000 with a wrong guess (the right one being Adams), he bowed out graciously with the $8,000 he had earned.On Monday, his family and friends could finally see how well Connolly did, information he had to keep tight-lipped about for the past four months until the show aired.Although any million-dollar plans, including a wine cellar and a second honeymoon in Las Vegas, were probably out of the question, Connolly's wife could expect some new furniture and perhaps a small getaway, he said. Anyway, the secret to their 38-year marriage did not lie with gifts, but with advice Connolly said his aunt once gave him: "Never go to bed mad and always say 'I love you.'"Surely a Vegas vacation wouldn't have hurt, though. Undeterred, he said his next stop will be Jeopardy. Referring to that show's latest master who took away $2.5 million after 74 consecutive wins, Connolly said, "I wouldn't be Ken Jennings, but what the heck."Reach reporter Zach Patberg by e-mail at news@timesledger.com or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 155. By Zach PatbergIf there was one thing Roger Connolly took home from his experience on the trivia show "Millionaire," it was to appreciate how much harder it was answering questions in front of lights, cameras and a live audience (not to mention 3 million viewers) than from his living room couch. Well, that and $8,000."I will never again sit at home and yell at the screen, 'You should've known that,'" said the Fresh Meadows contestant, whose spot on ABC's syndicated version of "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?" aired Monday.He resorted to two lifelines for the $4,000 question: "How many megabytes are in a gigabyte," despite having taken four years of Latin in high school.Getting nowhere with a call to his co-worker and narrowing the choices to 50-50, a sweating Connolly finally threw out "1 million" to host Meredith Vieira. (That's the correct answer for those still wondering.)He was now out of lifelines, having appealed to the audience earlier to answer, "What is a frock?""I thought I knew it but didn't want to look stupid," said the 64-year-old, who debated between women's underwear and a dress. Apparently, second-guessing becomes second-nature on the hot seat.Connolly, a clerk at Manhattan's State Supreme Court, delayed trying out for the show until his wife and two children pressured him to sign in on the show's Web site in August. From there, he was called to the studio in Midtown for a 30-question multiple choice test. The trivia buff beat out about 70 others to land a spot in the contestant pool. A week later, ABC called him at work with a taping date of Nov. 5."I almost fell out of my chair," he said. "You don't think you'll get picked for this kind of stuff."After that Connolly, who regularly watched "Millionaire" with fellow clerks and Justice Charles Solomon in the judge's chambers, started taking notes on the show.He added the almanac to the usual three to five books he said he read each week -- a habit he inherited from his late mother.But no amount of studying could prepare him for the $16,000 question: "Which first lady's ghost was seen in the laundry room of the White House by Eleanor Roosevelt?"With Margaret Tyler, Dolly Madison and Abigail Adams bouncing around in his head, Connolly stalled with a joke: "I didn't know they did their own laundry."Funny but the audience was waiting. Choosing not to risk the demotion to $1,000 with a wrong guess (the right one being Adams), he bowed out graciously with the $8,000 he had earned.On Monday, his family and friends could finally see how well Connolly did, information he had to keep tight-lipped about for the past four months until the show aired.Although any million-dollar plans, including a wine cellar and a second honeymoon in Las Vegas, are probably out of the question, Connolly's wife can expect some new furniture and perhaps a small getaway, he said. Anyway, the secret to their 38-year marriage does not lie with gifts, but with advice Connolly said his aunt once gave him: "Never go to bed mad and always say 'I love you.'"Surely a Vegas vacation wouldn't have hurt, though. Undeterred, he said his next goal is to be on "Jeopardy! "Referring to that show's latest master who took away $2.5 million after 74 consecutive wins, Connolly said, "I wouldn't be Ken Jennings, but what the heck."Reach reporter Zach Patberg by e-mail at news@timesledger.com or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 155.

Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Get our stories in your inbox, free.

Like TimesLedger on Facebook.

Reader Feedback

Enter your comment below

By submitting this comment, you agree to the following terms:

You agree that you, and not TimesLedger.com or its affiliates, are fully responsible for the content that you post. You agree not to post any abusive, obscene, vulgar, slanderous, hateful, threatening or sexually-oriented material or any material that may violate applicable law; doing so may lead to the removal of your post and to your being permanently banned from posting to the site. You grant to TimesLedger.com the royalty-free, irrevocable, perpetual and fully sublicensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform and display such content in whole or in part world-wide and to incorporate it in other works in any form, media or technology now known or later developed.

This week’s featured advertisers

CNG: Community Newspaper Group