Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!

Opening Panel Round

Our panelists answer questions about the week's news: Your Baby Can't Read.

Copyright © 2012 NPR. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required.

PETER SAGAL, HOST:

We want to remind everybody they can join us here most weeks at the Chase Bank Auditorium in beautiful downtown Chicago, Illinois. For tickets and more information, you go to wbez.org, and you can find a link over at our website, which is waitwait.npr.org.

Right now, panel, of course, it is your turn to answer some questions about the weeks' news. Jessi, the company responsible for the Your Baby Can Read products announced it was going bust this week, after people finally realized what?

JESSI KLEIN: Their baby cannot read.

SAGAL: Exactly right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

(LAUGHTER)

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Since the late 1990s, millions of parents bought this company's videos, flashcards and other products, literally buying into their theory that infancy is the best time to learn to read.

But when the babies in question continued to chew on the Ernest Hemingway novels, rather than enjoy them as literature, many of those parents sued, and this week, the company threw in the baby blanket. One good effect: this will keep them from acting on their plans to expand into new lines such as Your Baby Can Drive.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Your Baby Can Fly This Airplane.

(LAUGHTER)

BRIAN BABYLON: Who believes...

PAULA POUNDSTONE: My kids are slackers.

BABYLON: Who believes anything that you buy at 2 a.m.? Like, you know, how does insomnia and, you know, your baby's literacy go together hand in hand?

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: It's the only time when that would work.

SAGAL: Yeah, then it makes sense.

POUNDSTONE: You got to be up really late and then you go "I think my baby could read."

(LAUGHTER)

BABYLON: Yep, and then you buy it. They know what they're doing. Man, it's genius.

POUNDSTONE: Sometimes I roll over in bed when I'm watching at 2 in the morning and I go "Oh my god, my back hurts." And then I go, you know what, my baby could do surgery.

BABYLON: Yep.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: They should have kept it simple. They could have kept their promises more reasonable. They should have sold things like: Your Baby can Vomit and Poop, Your Baby Can Grow Up To Disappoint You.

(LAUGHTER)

KLEIN: Or maybe teach it to do the stuff that you clearly, like, can't do. Like Your Baby Can Spot A Scam.

SAGAL: Yeah.

KLEIN: I mean, like that.

(LAUGHTER)

(APPLAUSE)

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

Copyright © 2012 NPR. All rights reserved. No quotes from the materials contained herein may be used in any media without attribution to NPR. This transcript is provided for personal, noncommercial use only, pursuant to our Terms of Use. Any other use requires NPR's prior permission. Visit our permissions page for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by a contractor for NPR, and accuracy and availability may vary. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Please be aware that the authoritative record of NPR's programming is the audio.

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
Support comes from: