MONTREAL – Joshua Parr has dreamed of participating on Jeopardy! for years and in January, he finally got his shot.
“It came as a surprise,” Parr said. “I didn’t think my audition went well.”
Despite his surprise, Parr made his way to Los Angeles for the taping of the show, which aired Monday, Feb. 22.
Parr explained that the screening process is vigorous, starting with an online quiz, which took him several tries to get past the first step.
“My score was eventually good enough to enter the lottery. Once I was picked, I flew to Boston and passed more tests to make sure I was smart enough,” Parr added.
“They also quizzed me to make sure I always answered in questions.”
In the end, he lost by just $1 to a contestant who was already on a three-day winning streak.
“You have to keep in mind it’s an American dollar. So, it’s not that close of a loss,” he joked.
Parr is currently a mathematics teacher at Loyola High School in NDG, following in his father’s footsteps.
“When you have parents who are teachers, then [knowledge] is something that’s valued heavily in your household.”
Parr’s passion for knowledge is something he passes on to his students.
Jackson Harvey, 13, said Parr’s approach to teaching math is by encouraging his students to think about it broadly.
“Every morning he puts a question on the board that we really need to think about, it’s like a riddle, he makes us use our brains in different ways,” Jackson said.
Parr is one of many Canadians to have participated on Jeopardy!, but he may be one of the last.
A Canadian law restricting the use of spam mail is preventing the show’s producers from recruiting in Canada.
Jeopardy! producers released a statement last week:
“As international laws governing how information is shared over the internet are ever changing and complex, we are currently investigating how we can accept registrations from potential Canadian contestants.”
Parr remains optimistic that problem will be resolved.
“I think [Jeopardy!] likes having a bigger contestant pool to choose from and I think the reasons why they are temporarily not having Canadians on relates more to a technicality that I expect will get sorted maybe in the year or so,” he said.
© 2016 Shaw Media