Materials Sciences Employee Wins Big on The Price is Right
Knowing that Sally Nasman wanted to see veteran game show host Bob Barker before his retirement this summer, her brother, who lives in Southern California, arranged for tickets to the show and invited her to attend a taping of The Price is Right last November.
"They interview all 350 ticket holders while they're waiting to enter the studio," explains Nasman. "I think I was chosen to represent the middle-aged woman demographic, as opposed to the young frat boy or old geezer with a silly t-shirt."
Nasman didn't actually hear her name when the infamous "come on down!" call was made, letting her know that she had been selected as a contestant. Luckily, she saw her name on a cue card.
But come-on-down she did. As the first two items came up for bid (the show is based largely on guessing the prices of various items), she first took advice from a member of the audience, and then her brother, neither of which worked. "When the third item came up, I decided to go out on my own," she says. "The third time was a charm. I won and got to go up on stage."
Nasman's luck would continue. As part of the next game, she had to guess whether the price listed for a particular item was too high or low. With each correct guess, she won a chance to punch a hole in a large, paper-covered board. Each hole contains piece of paper with a cash amount on it. She guessed correctly three times, so got three punches. As Barker reached inside the first hole Nasman punched, he pulled out the top prize: $10,000.
"It felt so surreal," says Nasman, who during the entire taping wears an ear-to-ear grin. "It was like an out-of-body experience."
Things were about to get even more surreal. Nasman won another $1,000 by twice spinning a numbered wheel and not going over $1. Her total winnings thus far qualified her for the "final showcase," in which the two top-earning contestants battle in their guesses for the cost of two prize packages.
"I got to pass on the first package, since I was the top winner, so I bid on the second package: trips to Australia, Tokyo and New York City," says Nasman. "The price I guessed was the closest to the actual cost, so I won all that too."
After the excitement of her huge windfall subsided, reality hit in the form of taxes. "I forfeited all the trips because the tax on the prize was so high, plus I would have had to take all three trips within one year," she explains. "But I kept the $11,000 cash prize. I gave each of my kids $2,000, plus it helped out a bit with our Christmas celebration."
And her thoughts on Bob Barker, whom she hadn't seen since her father took her to a Truth or Consequences show some 43 years earlier: "I wasn't disappointed. Even at age 83, he is a vibrant man and clearly runs the show. He's the consummate professional. I'm definitely a big fan."Go here to watch a video of Nasman on The Price is Right.
|Published by the Berkeley Lab Communications Dept., Creative Services Office