So That’s Where I Got My Competitive Spirit

When I was little, my mom worked full-time and so she had to find a babysitter for me. She found a sweet older lady who only charged $25 a week (!) and was available pretty much anytime mom needed her.

This woman’s only hobbies, from what I could tell, were doing word searches from giant word search books, buying useless stuff from catalogs and watching TV. Since my mom worked all different shifts, I got most of my early 80’s TV knowledge from my time spent at my babysitter’s house.

While she loved Lawrence Welk and Fantasy Island, what my babysitter loved most of all were game shows. I remember her yelling at the screen whenever someone would place a bid $1 higher than another bid on The Price is Right – because we all know that’s just rude.

It didn’t matter how strange the game show was – she was into it. And I learned a lot of game show strategy from all of my time there. I learned the value of nearly every household product from The Price is Right. I learned prioritizing and quick math from Wheel of Fortune when winners had the chance to pick the prizes they wanted from the revolving showroom. I knew more songs than my friends thanks to Name That Tune. I could even figure out clever license plates from some game show that was all about reading license plates. (I can’t remember the name of it.)

My favorite, though, had to be Press Your Luck. There was something about the Whammy that sent me into giggles. I think I knew every little skit the Whammy performed as he took away contestants’ money.

My babysitter always talked about how she could do so much better than the contestants if she ever had the chance to go on one of the many game shows she watched. I somehow doubt she would have done well, unless it was a show about the products in the Lillion Vernon catalog.

And that trait seems to have rubbed off on me – if I ever had the chance to go on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, I think I’d leave a very wealthy woman.

What was your favorite game show as a kid?

This post is part of a weekend blog blast sponsored by Parent Bloggers and Join in before midnight for a chance to win a shopping spree (a la the old Toys ‘R Us timed shopping sprees) at!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...


  1. I loved Hollywood Squares and Match Game (even though a lot of the humor was over my head). Family Feud was in there somewhere, too.


    That was and remains my favorite. I loved to watch it with my grandparents, although Grandma would always tease Grandpa that he only watched it for Vanna in her “woo-woo dresses.”

    I ROCK at the puzzles – I would so walk away rich. 🙂

  3. Oh definitely Price is Right. It reminds me of summer mornings waiting for my mom to come home from her part time job so we could go to the beach. Price is Right was on during lunch time right before she got home. I’m really dating myself, but I remember when people bid on cars for like $6500!

  4. Bumper Stumpers!

  5. Condo Blues says:

    Big Bucks! No Whammys! Big Bucks! No Whammys! I saw a rerun of Press Your Luck on the Game Show Network and laughed until I cried.

  6. Dang, I’m going to have to google that. Never heard of it. Of course, I’m pretty darn old.

  7. No Whammy No Whammy No Whammy…STOP

    I loved this one too. Sometimes you can still catch an old one.

  8. the WHAMMY!! i LOVED the whammy. also supermarket sweep. i could knock those bad boys right out of the express lane with my supermarket skills!

  9. Big whammies and STOP! Press your luck was fun! I too was a game show ADICT! I was a BIG Wheel Of Fortune fan back when they took their prize money and had to buy gifts from a showroom! We tried to watch the new version the other day and I HATED it. The puzzles were too easy and there is too much glam and glitter on everything.

    Then there was that gameshow with all the wrapped boxes and they had to pick ONE box… similar to the new Howie Mandel gameshow?

  10. Hey! Congrats on your win at Parent Bloggers! How exciting for you!

  11. Christina,

    I love this post. I’m glad you won the blogblast!