"And then we started playing Trivial Pursuit."
So begins our new favorite story about St. Louis native and John Burroughs School alum Jon Hamm. Vanity Fair releases a cover story about the Mad Men star online today that includes a hilariously nerdy story from Hamm's high school days.
Apparently, Hamm and not-yet-famous actor Paul Rudd had the hots for the same lady, Sarah Clarke, who would go on to play Nina Myers on 24 and Bella Swan's mother in Twilight.
See also: Video: Jon Hamm Asks "Where'd You Go to High School?" on Saturday Night Live
Clarke met Rudd at the University of Kansas, where Rudd was bunking with Clarke's brother, Preston. Sparks flew, so Rudd traveled to St. Louis to get closer to his roommate's sister.
But once Rudd got to the Clarke household, he realized he had a challenger for Clarke's affections in Hamm, who was friends with Clarke's brother in high school.
"I thought [Rudd] was coming to visit me, but obviously he was coming to visit my sister," Preston Clarke tells Vanity Fair. "Hamm was there because he was always at my house. And Paul knew that Jon had taken Sarah to prom. He was slightly intimidated. And then we started playing Trivial Pursuit."
Hamm was so dominant in the trivia board game that Rudd tells Vanity Fair he felt emasculated and started reading atlases.
See also: Mad Men: Top Twelve Nicknames for Jon Hamm's Dong
Here's the story, from Vanity Fair:
Preston Clarke, a friend of Hamm's from high school, recalls a Paul Rudd-Jon Hamm showdown. Hamm had taken Clarke's sister, actress Sarah Clarke, to the prom in high school, but when Sarah met Rudd, who was Preston's roommate at the University of Kansas, there were sparks. Rudd came to St. Louis to visit the Clarkes, of which Preston tells Windolf, "I thought he was coming to visit me, but obviously he was coming to visit my sister. Hamm was there because he was always at my house. And Paul knew that Jon had taken Sarah to prom. He was slightly intimidated. And then we started playing Trivial Pursuit." Rudd recalls that night, telling Windolf of Hamm, "He seemed like he was a good-looking, athletic guy who possessed qualities I did not possess. We were playing Trivial Pursuit in teams. Sarah and I were on one team and Jon and Preston were on the other team. Jon would want to go right to Yellow, which was History, and I was like, 'Oh, great, this guy is smart too.' They would ask a question like 'What is the largest lake in Africa?,' and Jon immediately went, 'Lake Victoria.' I felt so emasculated in the game that, as a result, I started reading atlases." Hamm and Rudd later became friends, after Hamm moved to L.A. from St. Louis.
Follow Lindsay Toler on Twitter at @StLouisLindsay. E-mail the author at [email protected].