Here are some responses to Mike's last column.
Pam L. writes: I couldn't agree more with Ken Jennings. And he has a right to his opinion. Just because he won $2.5 million doesn't mean he can't speak out. Except when he was on, I haven't watched "Jeopardy!" in years. I can't stand Alex Trebek. His elitist attitude and his pronunciation (just like what Ken said) is so annoying. Fine, if he can pronounce it, go for it. But don't add that "I know it and you don't" attitude. Give me Regis Philbin and "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?" any day. Ken won the money on his knowledge and set "Jeopardy!" on its heels. Way to go, Ken.
Jim T. writes: Hey Mike, lighten up on Ken Jennings. I read his Web tirade about "Jeopardy!" and it seemed pretty obvious that he was joking, tongue firmly in cheek. The guy, geek that he is, obviously has a sense of humor. His comments about the robot Alex Trebek were pretty funny. I think he was mocking our celebrity worshiping, short attention span pop culture, not "Jeopardy!" in the whole piece.
Rhonda S. writes: Ken Jennings is right on with his comments about "Jeopardy!" and Alex Trebek. Hey, we watch "Jeopardy!" every night and are nowhere near 91, but the show is stuffy and Trebek is an effete snob who thinks and acts as if he were smarter than all of the contestants. I can't tell you how many times I have yelled at the screen for him to just shut up. The categories have become weird -- not sure if that means they are effete left coast crap -- but half the time we don't know what the hell they are talking about and we're not dummies. Take a game show host like Pat Sajak, put him next to Trebek and there is no contest, not even close. Sajak is warm and funny and seems to genuinely care about the contestants. The shame is that the contestants on the "Wheel" can make a heck of lot more than the contestants on "Jeopardy!"
Iain L. writes: I read Ken's Web page a few days ago and it was awful. For everything that has been done for him, he is stuck-up and arrogant. He forgets that no matter how good you think you are, there is always someone better.
Pawel F. writes: I liked the Ken Jennings piece. You had something to say about him and about his comments. It wasn't a gratuitous celebrity column like those billions of other ones. There's a difference. You walked a fine line though, mentioning that "American Idol" kid, but all in all it was a good read. That's where that fine line is -- the fine line between an annoying, dime-a-dozen celebrity rant and a thoughtful column. I liked it. I kind of feel bad for the guy, though. It really sounds like everything "bad" he's said amounts to nothing more than some innocent little jokes, some "Seinfeld"-like observations about the show, nothing spiteful or arrogant. Meanwhile, everyone's on his back over it. Such is life.
Chad T. writes: Jennings wasn't being serious. His outrageous recommendations and critiques should've clued you in that he was just joking. Please tell me that you were just copying his lame excuse for a joke by doing a little exaggerating of your own. I don't want to find out that his "trivial" mind was able to put one over on you.
Jennifer P.writes: I love how Ken Jennings made scathing remarks on his Web site. Of course he did because he was typing on a computer and not speaking directly to someone in front of him. Blogs and Web sites have become outlets for folks that may not necessarily speak up. I have dealt with folks like this for years. In person they are nice, quiet and shy, but online they are these really outspoken individuals that have this sudden power because they can be brutally honest thanks to the protection of the Internet and don't really feel like they need to justify anything beyond their own beliefs. They don't have to deal with the person directly and can ignore their comments or delete them. For being such a connected society, thanks to the Internet, we really aren't that connected. Side note: I have my own Web site and I understand this power and am probably guilty of offending many people in my life, but who I am on that site is exactly who I am in person. To at least gain some credibility, Ken Jennings should have been a bit more honest in person from the get-go because these comments really blindsided some folks I'm sure.
Andrew S. writes: Who is Ken Jennings? Oh yeah, something about winning a few "Jeopardy!" games. I totally forgot about him after his last show. Great article though. I like your perspective on the fact that he has not only bitten that hand that fed him but more or less severed it at the joint. Oh well, when I send this e-mail, I'll go back to my world without Ken Jennings.
Tricia V. writes: Ken Jennings is an ingrate and when you spoke of "American Idol," did you forget when Kelly Clarkson refused to let them sing her music? It was a slap in the face and Simon was very upset.
Brian M. writes: You think it's a matter of him thinking he's important? I find everything he says is right on the mark. He's the only reason I started watching "Jeopardy!" again and when he was done, I stopped watching about two weeks later because the show is nothing but a snoozer. Biting the hand that feeds you, that's classic. I doubt Jennings is needy in any way. If Taylor Hicks was smart, which he isn't, he would rail on "American Idol." Talk about another stupid show. "Jeopardy!" was lucky to have Jennings on, not vice versa.
George L.: I was baffled by Jennings' comments about the hand that fed him the biggest meal he will ever experience in his life. As the biggest winner in "Jeopardy!" history, he didn't have enough sense to realize that this show contained the potential to be a cash cow for him. Of course they would have eventually brought him back, and he would have had another great payday. Just goes to show you, you can memorize a plethora of facts and trivia, but that still doesn't make you smart. As for his Web page "with his brain exposed and dissected into different Web site sections, under the header 'Confessions of a Trivial Mind,'" the smallest section must be labeled "Common Sense." Grrr!
Bonnie S. writes: The two individuals who trashed Tiger Woods for "having a filthy mouth" must be real puritan holy rollers. I'm sorry, but unless their kids are smarter than most and can read lips, I fail to see what difference it makes what Tiger "mouths" while he is playing the course. Give me a break. What successful "icon" can they name who doesn't let loose with a curse every now and then? If that is the worst thing Tiger is guilty of, I would nominate him for sainthood. I venture to say that there are saints who have worse failings.
Gary L.: The old saying is don't burn your bridges. I don't watch "Jeopardy!" but I agree Jennings is an ingrate. Someday he will come to regret it. That's usually how it ends.
Jay F. writes: Ken Jennings' recent comments illustrate what makes America great. In our country you are allowed to make a total jerk of yourself without worrying about being sent to a gulag, tortured or killed. I agree with your comments about people who come into a lot of money becoming arrogant, but the sense of security they have is not false. In America, that sense of security is real. In far too many countries, a Ken Jennings-type person would not have any sense of security, false or otherwise. I enjoy your columns and perspective, whatever the subject matter. Keep up the good work.
Mike M. writes: Here we go again, another arrogant athlete caught blatantly cheating during the Tour de France. He probably shot up 500ccs plus of testosterone suspension, a water-based steroid that is in and out of the bloodstream quickly unlike oil-based testosterones that take a week and it helped give him the edge to win his last bicycle race. My only surprise is that he didn't claim he got it from some rubbing cream or a food store supplement. Testosterone doesn't come from GNC supplements or Bisquick and people aren't stupid enough to believe his stories. All professional athletes use steroids. Some use too much and some get caught but they all do it.
Lyle A. writes: I don't know whether to hope you didn't read Jennings' actual blog or hope you did. I was irritated at him when I read the New York Post article, but took the time to go to the blog and read the whole posting. It was clear that Ken was poking fun at himself more than anyone else. It came through loud and clear that he understands there is something a little bizarre about placing so much importance on knowing a bunch of trivia. If I were Alex Trebek, and read the actual posting, I would be laughing out loud or possible even rolling on the floor laughing out loud. If you did read the posting, but still don't get it, I think that makes it even funnier.
Amy B., A Real Working Woman writes: I just saw your Grrr for the first time and I think you are right on all topics. I wish there was some way more people would read your messages about celebrities (joke is the word) and the likes of that nincompoop, Ken Jennings, please. He's the ultimate joke. He needs to stay behind that computer and leave the real world for real folks. Hollywood is synonymous with toilet and all that are a part of it are pretty much in it. They "play" parts that as real people they can't be. They aren't any better than the next person. If they wanted to be "real" people, then they need to become Marines, cowboys, corporate presidents, pilots, cops, loving wives/husbands, lawyers, doctors, engineers, secretaries and real women instead of "playing" moms, working women, etc. Get my drift?
Anybody can "act." You need your own show, get rid of Letterman. Keep up the good work. Tell it like it is. Forget "politically correct," that went out in the '90s.