Panel Round Two More questions for the panel: Haley's Donut; The Artful Dodger Barber; The Root of Embarrassment.
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Panel Round Two

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Panel Round Two

Panel Round Two

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CARL KASELL, Host:

From NPR and WBEZ-Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME!, the NPR News quiz. I'm Carl Kasell. We're playing this week with Paula Poundstone, Faith Salie, and Roy Blount, Jr. And here again is your host, at the Chase Bank Auditorium in downtown Chicago, Peter Sagal.

PETER SAGAL, Host:

Thank you, Carl.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: In just a minute, after months of speculation and talk of conspiracy, Carl finally releases his rhyme certificate. It's the Listener Limerick Challenge. If you'd like to play, give us a call at 1-888-Wait-Wait, that's 1- 888-924-8924.

But right now, Panel, some more questions about the week's news. Faith, this week, Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour announced he would not be running for president, despite the fact he'd assembled a staff, decided not to do it. Turns out, there had been some clues he wasn't going to pull the trigger. For example, after a recent speech in South Carolina, Governor Barbour did what?

FAITH SALIE: You exhausted my entire Haley Barbour knowledge when you said that he announced he wasn't going to run.

SAGAL: Yeah.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SALIE: I'm going to need a hint please.

SAGAL: Well, he lied about the powdered sugar that was seen on his face. He said it was cocaine.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SALIE: That's a hint?

SAGAL: That's kind of a hint.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SALIE: That sounds like an answer.

SAGAL: No, he had powdered sugar on his face because he had?

SALIE: Eaten donuts.

SAGAL: Eaten a donut.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: That's how people knew he wasn't going to run. Let me explain.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SALIE: Please.

SAGAL: So last month, Haley Barbour, who is what political insiders call big- boned, told supporters he had already lost 20 pounds and that he hoped to lose 20 more by the end of this month. This, people assumed, was his effort to avoid having to use the presidential campaign slogan, "Fat as Taft, But Still Alive."

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: So when he was seen eating a donut, we knew his bid was over before it began.

ROY BLOUNT: He said he didn't have that fire in the belly.

SAGAL: No. It had been doused by the donuts.

PAULA POUNDSTONE: You know, I - although, if I were to run for president, I would want to lose weight, but eating a donut would not mean that I wasn't going to run for president. It would just mean that my fantasy that I'll be able to work that off has grown even bigger.

SAGAL: I see.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SALIE: It is the most American of things. You know, it's a very patriotic thing to do is to eat a donut.

BLOUNT: Yeah, it's not like...

SALIE: It's not like he's having a bagel.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Clearly, though, the presidency has lost some its allure. It's like, I could be the most powerful man in the world, but this donut does have jelly inside.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Hmm.

BLOUNT: Hmm.

SAGAL: Roy, in a groundbreaking study, scientists pinpointed the area of the brain responsible for embarrassment. To do the tests, they needed a foolproof way to induce embarrassment in human subjects. So how did they do it?

BLOUNT: Well, is it like some kind of naked thing?

SAGAL: No, no, no, no.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Some of the subjects, prior to the test, actually thought their rendition of "Don't Stop Believing" was pretty good.

BLOUNT: Oh, did karaoke.

SAGAL: Exactly, they had them sing karaoke.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Specifically, they made the test subjects listen to themselves singing karaoke of the classic Temptation's hit "My Girl."

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Just to maximize the humiliation, they played it back to the subjects without the backing music.

BLOUNT: Oh.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Yeah, you're all shuddering. Experts say the research proves two things: embarrassment is tied to a specific region of the brain, and researchers are just mean.

BLOUNT: Yeah.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: While the subjects watched their performances, scientists tested their embarrassment levels by physically probing them, finally answering the question what could possibly make karaoke worse than it already is.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Roy, Major League Baseball took over the Los Angeles Dodgers last week, as you may know, because the owner, Frank McCourt, was not showing what you would call fiscal responsibility.

BLOUNT: Right.

SAGAL: Among the details that came out in the flurry of lawsuits is that McCourt and his then wife paid someone $100,000 a year just so he'd be ready in the case the couple, at a moment's notice, needed him to do what?

BLOUNT: In case they wanted to - I don't know, put on a fashion show.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

BLOUNT: In case they wanted...

SAGAL: Well they put him on permanent retainer, or as it's known in the business, perm retainer.

BLOUNT: In case they wanted to have their hair redone.

SAGAL: Exactly right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: You never know.

POUNDSTONE: Wow.

SAGAL: When you're going to need an urgent haircut.

BLOUNT: Wow.

SAGAL: The McCourts paid hairdresser David Mackey $300 a day just to stand by with scissors, waiting for an end to split. Mackey, apparently unsatisfied with the most nappable job available, outside of air traffic controller, is now suing the McCourts because they allegedly failed to pay him for November and December of 2009. He says if he wasn't going to be paid, he could have sat around doing nothing, instead of diligently sitting around doing nothing.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: Wow.

BLOUNT: Frank McCourt's hair was not very dramatic, as I recall.

POUNDSTONE: That's right.

SALIE: That's because he had somebody always on call.

POUNDSTONE: Exactly.

BLOUNT: Every time it started to do something, this guy would...

POUNDSTONE: Precisely.

SAGAL: Exactly.

POUNDSTONE: That's how I do it.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: If I didn't have my man right there, I'd be frizzed up right now.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: I don't know what he did. I mean did he stand there at the side of their house, waiting with scissors?

POUNDSTONE: He just made intimidating snipping noise.

BLOUNT: He was going like this with his razor.

SAGAL: Stropping.

BLOUNT: Stropping his razor.

POUNDSTONE: Is that what that's called?

SAGAL: That is what that's called.

BLOUNT: Stropping.

SAGAL: Yeah.

SALIE: Then where does the phrase, oh she's so stroppy come from?

SAGAL: That's something you just made up.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: I've never heard it before in my life.

POUNDSTONE: I haven't either.

SALIE: It's British.

BLOUNT: Yeah.

SALIE: A stroppy cow. I mean it's been applied to me.

POUNDSTONE: A stroppy cow?

SALIE: Yes, if a woman's stroppy, she's...

POUNDSTONE: They insult her cow?

SALIE: Feisty.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: I had no idea what you were talking about.

SALIE: Really.

SAGAL: No.

SALIE: Yeah, it's like a feisty woman.

BLOUNT: I know that word. Yeah, it means she's...

SALIE: She's stroppy.

BLOUNT: She wants to hit you with a strop.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: Stroppy cow.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: I'll say it all the time now.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: I can't wait to call my kids.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: What do you mean you didn't do your homework, you stroppy cow.

SALIE: Stroppy cow.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

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