PETER SAGAL, HOST:
Right now, panel, it is time for you to answer some questions about this week's news. Faith, this week, The New York Times profiled a popular Dutch tradition known as the dropping. Tell me, Faith...
FAITH SALIE: Yes.
SAGAL: ...What is the dropping?
SALIE: It's a Dutch tradition.
SAGAL: Dutch tradition.
SALIE: It is when you drop the wheel of Gouda into your clog, Peter.
PETEY DEABREU: Wheel of Gouda into a clog...
SAGAL: A whole wheel of Gouda would not fit into a wooden clog.
SALIE: And if it makes a sound, you know the Gouda is ripe.
SAGAL: It's a fascinating thing. It turns out that people - this is so common in Holland that people there were kind of amazed that it's weird and it would be weird if we did it in America.
DEABREAU: You detach the windmill from - and let it roll down a hill for all the kids to run from.
SALIE: That's the dropping.
SAGAL: It's a parenting thing, and all Dutch parents do it. It was done to them when they were children.
SALIE: Does this have to do with poop?
SALIE: OK. I need more of a hint.
SAGAL: Apparently. But it's fun to watch you flail.
SAGAL: It's sort of like a game of hide and no seek.
SALIE: Oh, my gosh. You just leave your child?
SAGAL: But where?
SALIE: In the red-light district of Amsterdam?
SAGAL: Adam, do you know?
SALIE: Do you know this, Petey?
DEABREAU: I would imagine you leave them in the woods and let them find their way home.
SALIE: What is happening?
SAGAL: That's exactly it.
(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)
SAGAL: You leave them in the woods.
SAGAL: And you let them find their way home. That's what it is. It's a tradition meant to teach pre-teen children independence. It starts when drivers release the sometimes blindfolded passengers...
SAGAL: ...Nine, 10, 11 years old on the side of a wooded road with nothing more than a rudimentary GPS. This is really helicopter parenting in that you have to call the park service to send a helicopter...
SAGAL: ...When your kid doesn't come out.
SALIE: So this is a rite of passage.
SAGAL: This is a rite of passage that Dutch people think is totally normal. Sometimes, parents even follow along to make noises and scare them.
SAGAL: I mean, really. And you thought you were a bad parent. I mean, you are, but in a totally different way.
(SOUNDBITE OF UNIDENTIFIED PERFORMANCE OF PROKOFIEV'S "PETER AND THE WOLF")
SAGAL: When we come back, brand-new material from a show we did a short while ago with special guest Renee Fleming. That's in a minute with more WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME from NPR.
NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by Verb8tm, Inc., an NPR contractor, and produced using a proprietary transcription process developed with NPR. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.