Very Important Puzzlers MVP celebrity guests and Ask Me Another fans Kristen Anderson Lopez and Robert Lopez identify clips of other Ask Me Another VIPs (Very Important Puzzlers).

Very Important Puzzlers

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OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

ASK ME ANOTHER has been through a lot of changes over the years. But one thing has remained constant. Best friends of the show, composers Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Bobby Lopez, have come back time and time again, including today. Kristen, Bobby, hello.

BOBBY LOPEZ: Hey. Hello.

KRISTEN ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Hello. How are you guys?

LOPEZ: Thanks for having us back for the last one.

JONATHAN COULTON, BYLINE: Good.

EISENBERG: Thank you so much. I have to ask you a question. We've had you on - well, this, I think, is the seventh time.

COULTON: Yeah.

EISENBERG: I mean this sincerely. How was it that we were able to get you back so many times?

COULTON: (Laughter).

EISENBERG: Why?

COULTON: Yeah. What are you thinking?

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Well...

EISENBERG: (Laughter).

COULTON: Don't you have bigger fish to fry?

LOPEZ: I think you've made a miscalculation about the value of having us on the show.

(LAUGHTER)

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: I think it's a bit of a supply-and-demand kind of formula that...

(LAUGHTER)

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: ...You've got some skewed data on.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: All right. Well, I like that. It's in your favor. We're like, you are so amazing. You're like, we accept all calls. I don't know what you're talking about.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: I'm just going to ask that the truck that is about to unload a mound of Rubik's Cubes onto your driveway drive away.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: We have a lot left over as it turns out. So...

LOPEZ: Aw.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Aw.

EISENBERG: How are your bats? Aren't there bats in your driveway? How are your bats?

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: We have bats in our breezeway.

EISENBERG: Breezeway? What is a breezeway?

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: A breezeway is a...

LOPEZ: It's a covered pathway.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: It's a New England thing because snow. And so it connects a house to a garage, in our case.

EISENBERG: OK.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: And the bats for a while - we actually built bat houses. We have no mosquitoes up here because there's so many bats.

EISENBERG: Nice.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: They eat all the mosquitoes. That's a beautiful thing. But also, at the end of the night, they come. They hang out in our breezeway, and they digest all - like, hundreds of pounds of mosquitoes...

COULTON: Ew.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: ...Directly onto the walkway, which Bobby - Bobby just got a bat poop blower, (laughter) which he's very excited about.

LOPEZ: Yeah. It's kind of like a leaf blower, but it's for bat poop.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Bat poop.

EISENBERG: Nice.

COULTON: Is it an appliance specifically for guano? Is that true? Or...

LOPEZ: Yeah, it's the Guano Air Guano 3,000.

EISENBERG: Yeah.

(LAUGHTER)

LOPEZ: Well, why are bats the only animals that poop guano?

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Is that true? So wait. What do penguins poop?

EISENBERG: Well, you know - but I'm just - I'm realizing now, this is the quiz we should have been playing.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: We're going to give you...

COULTON: Whose poop is it?

EISENBERG: Whose poop is it? I mean, when you're talking about a finale...

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Right.

LOPEZ: Poop Me Another.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: So this internet is telling me that guano is specifically for bats and seabirds.

LOPEZ: Hey.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Thank you.

EISENBERG: Oh.

COULTON: You were right.

EISENBERG: Wow.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Ask me another.

COULTON: Yeah.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: So we have a very fun audio quiz for you called VIP Voices.

LOPEZ: Ooh.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Ooh.

EISENBERG: We are going to play you a past clip of an ASK ME ANOTHER VIP, which means a very important puzzler. And you are just going to listen to the audio clip, and you're going to tell us who you think it is.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: This is where it's really bad that I remember faces and not names.

(LAUGHTER)

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: The visual learner is going to have some problems right now.

EISENBERG: I think you'll be surprised.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: OK.

EISENBERG: So let's play a clip. And we're going to go back-and-forth. Kristen, this one is for you. This guest joined us in 2015. He came back from outer space to recite the lyrics to Taylor Swift song "Blank Space."

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED NPR BROADCAST)

EISENBERG: Screaming, crying, perfect storms. I can make all the tables turn, rose garden filled with thorns. Keep you second-guessing, like, oh, my God. Who is she?

(LAUGHTER)

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: That's Patrick Stewart (laughter).

COULTON: That is correct.

EISENBERG: Yes. Absolutely.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: That is amazing.

EISENBERG: Right?

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Yes.

EISENBERG: I mean, he could basically turn anything to - make it sound like Shakespeare.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: It's so good.

EISENBERG: Right? It's...

COULTON: He could read the phone book, and I would pay $100 to see it.

EISENBERG: I mean, I remember many things about when he came on the show. But he, at the time, lived in Brooklyn. And so he walked to the venue...

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Oh, wow.

EISENBERG: ...Which is just a funny thing to think of.

COULTON: All right, Bobby. This guest starred in the Netflix series "Russian Doll," and she joined us in 2016 to tell us what she keeps in her bag.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED NPR BROADCAST)

NATASHA LYONNE: I always carry a spare pair of panties...

EISENBERG: Smart.

LYONNE: ...Sunglasses and prescription glasses...

EISENBERG: Right.

LYONNE: ...And Nicorette and cigarettes...

(LAUGHTER)

LYONNE: ...A lighter - backup lighter - metro card, $20, AmEx, Visa, ID.

(LAUGHTER)

LOPEZ: That's Natasha Lyonne.

COULTON: That's correct, yeah.

EISENBERG: Yes.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Yes.

EISENBERG: That is right.

COULTON: She brought her dog, Root Beer. And her dog was backstage the whole time making a lot of noise, if I recall correctly.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Audio engineers freaking out.

COULTON: Yeah.

LOPEZ: I'm having, like, sense memory back to, like, whether I listened to these podcasts in our car or in our kitchen.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Yes.

EISENBERG: All right, Kristen.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: OK.

EISENBERG: You know this guest from Broadway. In 2019, she joined us in Houston, Texas, to share her love of 7-Eleven Slurpees.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED NPR BROADCAST)

KRISTIN CHENOWETH: It's the combination of the crushed ice with the Coca-Cola feel. So it's the burn of a Coke.

(SOUNDBITE OF , "")

CHENOWETH: Do you guys know what I mean?

EISENBERG: Yeah.

CHENOWETH: Some of you know. And then with the ice, and it never gets melty. I love Slurpee, OK?

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Yeah.

CHENOWETH: And I love 7-Eleven. I'm not kidding.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Yeah.

CHENOWETH: And I'm not being paid.

EISENBERG: No.

(LAUGHTER)

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: That would be the amazing Kristin Chenoweth.

EISENBERG: Absolutely. You remember that show, too, Jonathan, where Kristin all of a sudden - like, she just decided to sing...

COULTON: Yeah.

EISENBERG: ...In the answer to a clue, and she just, like, without - and, like, at an operatically high range. And I don't remember hearing her do a warmup or anything.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Oh, no. She can just go - that's her trick.

COULTON: Yeah.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: She goes like, (vocalizing). Except like...

COULTON: Yeah. Just, like, out of nowhere.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: ...An octave above that.

COULTON: Yeah. It's insane.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: All right, Bobby. This is the last one. It is for you.

LOPEZ: Wow.

COULTON: This reality TV mentor joined us in 2016. And he told us he wasn't always so confident in his sartorial choices.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: I know who it is. I know who it is.

COULTON: You already know.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED NPR BROADCAST)

TIM GUNN: I've been a fan of pocket squares forever. But I could never do it. I would experiment. I'd put my jacket out on my bed. I'd flatten it out. I'd stick the pocket square in. I'd think, eh, it looks all right. Then I'd put the jacket on, look in the mirror and say, you look like an ass.

(LAUGHTER)

LOPEZ: I know his name is Tim. It's Tim...

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: It's not a sword. It's not a...

LOPEZ: Spear?

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Spear (laughter).

COULTON: Spear. Tim Spear.

EISENBERG: It's not a spear. It's not a candlestick.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: You can...

EISENBERG: It's not a rope.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: There can be water ones.

LOPEZ: Oh, Tim Gunn.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Yes.

LOPEZ: Yeah.

EISENBERG: Yes.

COULTON: Tim Gunn is correct, yes. He is the nicest, kindest man. When Tim came on the show, I went up to say hi to him, and he said, well, you must be Jonathan Coulton. What a pleasure it is to meet you. I enjoy your work. And I was like, wow. That guy really - he did his research. He went out of his way to say hello, and I was very touched.

LOPEZ: Aw.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Is that what we should have done?

LOPEZ: Wait, wait, wait.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Should we have done that?

COULTON: I know. And you really blew it.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: You guys kind of blew it.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: You must be Jonathan Coulton. I hear you have a cruise.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: And then years later, I was at - I will just say I was at a red-carpet event, and I was wearing a tuxedo. And he was also at this red-carpet event, also wearing a tuxedo. I went up to say hello to him, and I was prepared to do the thing where I like, I don't know if you remember me, but you were on the show ASK ME ANOTHER. And as I started to launch into that, he cut me off. And he said, well, it's Jonathan Coulton. It's a pleasure to see you again, and you clean up very nice.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: I was just, like, wow. He's a superhero of kindness, truly.

EISENBERG: Yeah.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Wow.

LOPEZ: Oh, wow.

EISENBERG: Thank you so much, Kristen, Bobby. Thank you for being such great friends of the show always, always showing up and having so much fun with us...

LOPEZ: Well, we've always loved the show.

EISENBERG: ...And joining us.

LOPEZ: Thank you so much for making it. Thanks for...

COULTON: Thank you.

LOPEZ: ...Making it for nine years, my God.

EISENBERG: Yep.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Thank you for not doing your research and thinking that we were bigger celebrities than we are.

(LAUGHTER)

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: I really appreciate that. And truly, we've - some of the best times we've ever had in the car with our family have been listening to your wonderful puzzles and songs and learning so much. And I just hope it comes back in another form or next month as a...

COULTON: That's very sweet. Thank you.

EISENBERG: Yeah.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Guess what? It's ASK ME ANOTHER.

(LAUGHTER)

LOPEZ: Holocast.

EISENBERG: ASK ME ANOTHER ANOTHER (ph).

COULTON: It was all a joke.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: It was all a joke. Thank you so much. See you soon.

LOPEZ: Thanks.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: In the Broadway world, we say happy trails.

EISENBERG: Oh, yes.

COULTON: Indeed.

EISENBERG: That's a good one.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: So happy trails to you.

LOPEZ: Happy trails.

COULTON: And happy trails to you.

EISENBERG: Until next time.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Until next time.

EISENBERG: Until next time.

ANDERSON-LOPEZ: Until we meet again.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

EISENBERG: After the break, we'll play our final music parody. One might call it our endgame. I'm Ophira Eisenberg, and this is ASK ME ANOTHER from NPR.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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