Sajak explained to ESPN2 in 2012 that he and Vanna White taped multiple episodes of the show a day. At lunch, they would sneak across the street to one of their favorite Mexican restaurants to tie on a few before heading back to the letter mines.
“At NBC in Burbank we had a place called Los Arcos across the street, which is Spanish as you know for the Archos,” he joked with the show, “and we go and they serve great margaritas. So we would go, Vanna and I, would go across and have two or three or six and then come and do the last shows and have trouble recognizing the alphabet.”
Though Sajak admitted this practiced had stopped years earlier. He and White were getting too old to try and pull off a day drunk at work.
He also didn’t specify any particular shows when he knew he may have had a few two many. There’s a man who can hold his letters — I mean, liquor.
Pat Sajak Once Cut Off a Broadcast From President
Long before he hosted Wheel of Fortune, Pat Sajak served as a radio announcer in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War. And — while completely sober, we have to assume — once accidentally cut off President Nixon’s Christmas message to the troops.
He tells the story in a piece he wrote for the USO.
This happened in 1969. Nixon had given most of his speech but took a long pause. Sajak mistook the pause for the end of the prepared marks and switched back to some music. But as soon as he did, he realized that Nixon was still talking.
He said he felt the angel and devil on his shoulders. One told him to turn back to the Commander in Chief and the other told him to rock on. He sided with the devil on this one.
“True, he was sending holiday greetings to the troops and promising to bring them home soon, but they were already listening to the 1910 Fruitgum Company singing ‘1, 2, 3 Red Light,'” Sajak said. “Heck, now I’d be cutting off that fine song in the middle, and two wrongs don’t make a right, do they? And by the time I explained what had happened, he might be finished anyway. In short, the devil made me not do it.”