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Lightning Fill In The Blank

All the news we couldn't fit anywhere else.

Copyright © 2011 NPR. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required.

PETER SAGAL, Host:

We have now come to our final game, Lightning Fill in the Blank. Each of our players will have 60 seconds in which to answer as many fill in the blank questions as he or she can. Each correct answer now worth two points. Carl, can you give us the scores?

CARL KASELL, Host:

Faith Salie has the lead, Peter. She has five points. Kyrie O'Connor and Brian Babylon each has three.

SAGAL: All right. We have flipped a coin and Brian has elected to go second, so Kyrie, that means you're up first.

KYRIE O: Okay.

SAGAL: The clock will start when I begin your first question. Fill in the blank. Cities in the Northeast were struck with yet another blank this week.

CONNOR: Blizzard.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: As doctors said she's been progressing at lightening speed, this week blank was able to begin therapy.

CONNOR: Gabrielle Giffords.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: With twelve nominations, "The King's Speech" was the front runner in this year's blank race.

CONNOR: Academy Awards.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Proposing what he calls an Environmental Solutions Agency, Newt Gingrich said the US should abolish the blank.

CONNOR: EPA?

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Time Magazine profiled a dating site that is designed specifically for blank.

CONNOR: Dogs.

SAGAL: Women who want to date sea captains.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Viewer of the MSNBC show "Countdown" were surprised last Friday when blank announced it was going to be his last show.

CONNOR: Keith Olbermann.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: After being hospitalized for a head injury after falling off an Australian stage, Margaritaville singer blank was released on Thursday.

CONNOR: Jimmy Buffett.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: A teacher in England made news for his bold plan to teach elementary school students about World War Two by blanking.

(SOUNDBITE OF GONG)

CONNOR: Bombing them.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: That's exactly right.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

CONNOR: Wow.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE)

BRIAN BABYLON: In the zone.

SAGAL: Given the experience of the blitz, teacher Mike Richards told his students London was being bombed right now, and he led them down to the cellar. Then he set off fireworks to make it sound as if the explosions were nearby. The project was abandoned by lunchtime, probably because studies have shown kids have a hard time understanding new concepts when they're screaming.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Following his lead, officials plan to teach Mike Richards about unemployment by unemploying him.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Carl, how did Kyrie do on our quiz?

KASELL: Kyrie had a great round, Peter. Seven correct answers, 14 more points. She now has 17 points and the lead.

SAGAL: Well done.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Well done. All right, Brian, you're up next. Ready to go?

BABYLON: Yep.

SAGAL: You can go it. Protesters attempting to oust President Mubarak clashed with police in blank this week.

BABYLON: Egypt.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: The day after Mark Zuckerberg's profile was hacked, the social networking site blank announced new security measures.

BABYLON: Facebook.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Saying his rights were violated, former Minnesota governor Jesse Ventura filed a lawsuit against the TSA over their invasive blanks.

BABYLON: Searches.

SAGAL: Right. Patdowns.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: In a sponsored ad on Google, The Braille Superstore promises, quote "thousands of Braille products, many of which you've never blank."

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

BABYLON: Touched?

SAGAL: No.

BABYLON: Seen.

SAGAL: Exactly, seen.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Thousands of Braille products, many of which you've never seen before. Conrad Murray, the doctor charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of blank, pled not guilty this week.

BABYLON: Michael Jackson.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Although Thin Mints and Tagalongs won't be affected, Thank U Berry Munch and some other types of blanks are being eliminated this season.

BABYLON: Ben and Jerry ice cream.

SAGAL: No, Girl Scout Cookies. A man in Idaho is selling his house for 66 thousand dollars below market value because it has the tiny problem of being blank.

(SOUNDBITE OF GONG)

BABYLON: Gone.

SAGAL: No, infested with thousands of snakes.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: The five-bedroom home in Rexburg is perfect, if you don't mind lots and lots of snakes. The owner says the snakes fell in love with the location and original crown moldings, but no one else is biting. For example, upon learning of the house's problem, Samuel L. Jackson withdrew his offer.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Carl, how did Brian Babylon do on our quiz?

KASELL: Brian had five correct answers, for ten more points. He now has 13 points, but Kyrie still has the lead with 17.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: All right. So how many then, does Faith Salie need to win?

KASELL: Six to tie, seven to win outright.

SAGAL: All right, Faith, this is for the game. Fill in the blank. After dramatic championship games, the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Green Bay Packers will meet up for this year's blank.

FAITH SALIE: Super Bowl.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Memorial services were held Thursday for the victims of this week's airport bombing in blank.

SALIE: Moscow.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: With Baby Boomers on the verge of retirement, new congressional projections estimate that the blank system will run out of money in 2037.

SALIE: Social Security.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: After decades of inspiring Americans to get fit, legendary fitness guru blank died at age 96.

SALIE: Jack LaLanne.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: The CW TV network is dealing with controversy over billboards promoting the second season of "The Vampire Diaries" and these billboards urged viewers to blank.

SALIE: Suck.

SAGAL: No.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: To catch VD.

SALIE: Oh.

SAGAL: You know, "Vampire Diaries."

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Oprah Winfrey scored her best ratings in six years on Monday when she revealed that she had a long lost blank.

SALIE: Sister named Pat.

SAGAL: Yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: The Illinois Supreme Court determined that blank is eligible to run for mayor of Chicago.

SALIE: Rahm Emmanuel.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: A Shaolin monk appearing on the Chinese version of "America's Got Talent" says an ancient from of Kungfu has given him the power to blank.

(SOUNDBITE OF GONG)

SALIE: Live forever.

SAGAL: No, to withstand repeated kicks to the crotch.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

BABYLON: No, he has the Cal Ripken...

SAGAL: I was about to say.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: The monk smiled and bowed after each blow to his crotch, and explained that he was a practitioner of the martial art known as "Steel Crotch Kung Fu," which is designed to strengthen the crotch and is useful for people dealing with ninjas who fight dirty, or who are really trying to get on "America's Funniest Home Videos."

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Carl, did Faith Salie do well enough to win?

KASELL: She needed at least six correct answers to tie and she had six correct answers. So with 17 points, Faith Salie and Kyrie O'Connor are this weeks' co- champions.

SAGAL: Well done.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Well done, Faith. Well done, Kyrie. In just a minute, we're going to ask our panelists now that they're tried mixed seating, what will be the big innovation at next year's State of the Union address.

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