(WYTV) – You know how the game show “Jeopardy!” works.
The winner takes home the amount of money he or she won and comes back for the next show.
The runners-up go home with consolation prizes.
In his book, called “The Jeopardy Book,” host Alex Trebeck explained that it wasn’t always that way.
Before 1984, runners-up took home whatever they won during the show. They tended to play conservatively, playing it safe, protecting the cash they won.
That changed because one contestant needed an engagement ring.
In 1967, one man said he was on the show to win money for a ring. He won enough halfway through the game, then stopped playing. He kept his mouth shut, and it made for boring TV.
The producers later changed that. By the 1980s, runners-up could keep no money they won during the game. They had to keep playing until the end.
Today, the first runner-up goes home with $2,000, the second runner-up gets $1,000, and they usually need it.
“Jeopardy!” doesn’t pay your airfare to the game nor your hotel bill. There’s nothing left over for an engagement ring.