P.K. Subban plays Not My Job on 'Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!' P.K. Subban is one of the best hockey players in world, so we invited him on the show to play a game we called, "That's icing! Delicious icing!" — three questions about bakeries.

'Wait Wait' for Oct. 30, 2021: P.K. Subban plays Not My Job

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UNIDENTIFIED PERSON: The following program was taped before an audience of no one.


BILL KURTIS: From NPR and WBEZ Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME, the NPR news quiz. Hey, there trick-or-treaters, hide your Dalmatians. I'm Cruella de Bill (ph), Bill Kurtis. And here is your host filling in for Peter Sagal while he gets his yearly oil change, it's Negin Farsad.



Thank you, Bill. And yes, audience, if you're wondering what this ethnic lady voice is doing in your ears, it is me, Negin Farsad. This is fun. I didn't realize Peter gets to do the show from Bill's panic room, but Peter will be back next week for a very special live show here in Chicago with very special guest Chance the Rapper. It's so exciting. So go to waitwait.npr.org for tickets. And I am just as excited about today's guests. It is the world-famous hockey player P.K. Subban. But first, it's your chance to call in at 1-888-WAIT-WAIT. That's 1-888-924-8924. Now let's welcome our first listener contestant.

Hi, you're on with WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME.

SUSIE ISAAC: Hi, how are you?

FARSAD: Hi, what's your name?

ISAAC: My name is Susie Isaac (ph), and I'm calling from Denver, Colo.

FARSAD: Oh, Denver. And what do you do, Susie?

ISAAC: I am a teacher at a public elementary school in Denver.

FARSAD: A teacher at a public elementary school. So I have a 2-year old and I really need to get her to, like, love school when the time comes. Do you have any tips?

ISAAC: Oh, well, you know, I was actually a school librarian for 13 years, so I would always go with lots of reading, lots of reading.

FARSAD: OK. I also was just hoping, like, I could just send her to you and then sort it out that way.


FARSAD: Does parenting - is that how parenting works? I just...



FARSAD: Thank you, Susie, for your very frank assessment. Well, let's get into the game by introducing you to the panel. First, he is an actor, writer and comedian who will be co-hosting the variety show "We Fixed It!" at Caveat in New York City on Saturday, November 6, folks, it's Peter Grosz.

Hey, Peter.



ISAAC: Hi there.

FARSAD: Next is the advice columnist with the newsletter "One Good Thing" on Substack, it's Amy Dickinson.

Hey, Amy.


AMY DICKINSON: Hey. Hi, Susie.


FARSAD: And finally, it's a writer and producer for "Desus & Mero" on Showtime and the host of the podcast "Make My Day," Josh Gondelman.

Hey, Josh.



FARSAD: All right, Susie, are you ready to play?

ISAAC: I hope so. I'm pretty excited to play.

FARSAD: OK, awesome. So you're going to play Who's Bill This Time? Bill Kurtis is going to read you three quotes from this week's news, and if you can correctly identify or explain two of them, you'll win our prize - any voice from our show you choose on your voicemail. Are you ready?

ISAAC: I sure am.

FARSAD: For your first quote, listen to President Biden's joyful celebration of a new bill announced this week.

KURTIS: "No one got everything they wanted, including me."

ISAAC: (Laughter).

FARSAD: The president was talking about the framework of what bill released on Thursday?

ISAAC: The infrastructure bill.



FARSAD: The infrastructure bill, the budget bill, the climate deal, the Build Back Better bill. We'll take any of those. It's all so confusing. On Thursday, Joe Biden announced his brand new 49th revision of his budget plan. No one is happy with it. It's much less than Biden wanted. Bernie Sanders is frustrated, but Joe Manchin reacted enthusiastically, saying, I can't wait to see what I can take away from kids this time.

KURTIS: (Laughter).

FARSAD: So the original cost of the bill was actually over $6 trillion, but they got it to under $2 trillion. And on Wednesday, it looked like Democrats had come up with a way to pay for it. They proposed a tax on billionaires, and at first I thought they said attacks on billionaires and I was like, oh, my God, where's my pitchfork? Like, I'm ready.


GONDELMAN: I don't think you get to brag about changing the cost of something from $6 billion to $2 billion when you get a lot less stuff. Like that's - you can always get less stuff for less money. It's like, hey, I got a great deal on this car by buying roller blades instead.


DICKINSON: And Josh, it's trillions, OK?

GONDELMAN: Oh, trillions. Right. Right.

DICKINSON: So yeah, what's a trillion? Yeah.

GONDELMAN: Honestly, I got so hooked into the B's of Build Back Better. I was like, it's got to be billions. If it's trillions, they should call it Truild Track Tretter (ph).


FARSAD: Oh, my God, Josh, though, ever since you said roller blades, all I can think of is, like, the septuagenarians of the Senate, like, riding around in roller blades and wearing hot shorts. You know what I mean?

GONDELMAN: Legitimately...

FARSAD: That's all I could think of.

GONDELMAN: ...There is a non-zero chance that Kyrsten Sinema will cast a vote on the Senate floor on roller blades.

GROSZ: Yeah.

FARSAD: (Laughter) All right, Susie, moving on. Here is your next quote.

KURTIS: "That's so meta."

FARSAD: That was everyone on Twitter Thursday reacting to whose attempt to change their name to Meta.

ISAAC: That would be Facebook.

FARSAD: (Laughter) That's right.


FARSAD: After a whistleblower exposed all the sketchy things going on behind the scenes at Facebook, on Thursday, the company addressed the issue head on. They changed their name to Meta. This is because they're building the metaverse. And it's also the place where you recently met a white supremacist.


DICKINSON: You know what scared me is...


DICKINSON: ...When Zuckerberg was describing what the metaverse was going to be like. According to him, we'll be able to sort of enter it and interact with people in a 3D kind of way, which is, like, why I climbed off of Facebook in the first place. I mean, that is terrifying.

FARSAD: Oh, but, Amy, does this change your mind at all? They also unveiled a new logo, which looks like a droopy infinity symbol that maybe you should turn to the left and cough.


FARSAD: Men, that one was for you.

GONDELMAN: Amy, you're saying a new 3D way to interact with people. That's also a description of not being on Facebook.

DICKINSON: I know. Exactly. Exactly.

GONDELMAN: It's like if you like the metaverse, you should try the universe.

GROSZ: Right.

GONDELMAN: It's terrific.

FARSAD: (Laughter).

GONDELMAN: I also think, like, the idea of being completely subsumed into a digital existence is, like, the worst fear people have about Facebook. So it's weird that they're naming themselves after the worst thing they could possibly do. It's like if ExxonMobil changed their names to, like, rising sea level industries.

GROSZ: (Laughter) Or Zuckerberg is going to change his name to, like, Benito Mussolini or something.


FARSAD: And on the note of Benito Mussolini, let's move on to your next quote.

KURTIS: "Bony Tony, Sherlock Bones, My Tall Son."

FARSAD: Those are three names that people reportedly call the hit decoration of this Halloween Home Depot's 12-foot tall what?

ISAAC: Oh, my gosh. Like a big skeleton dog or something?

FARSAD: Yeah. Well, just one of those words - skeleton. That's right.


FARSAD: We will give it to you. It is the hottest decoration in 2021. This 12-foot-tall skeleton from Home Depot, there is such demand for these things that there are even skeleton scalpers. They're retailed for 300 bucks. But one guy in Florida has sold eight of them for $900 each, which is really impressive because do you know what a good scalper you have to be to hide eight 12-foot skeletons under your trench coat?

DICKINSON: But where - like the skeleton, it goes outside your house? Is that the idea?

GROSZ: Yeah. It better not go inside, my God.

FARSAD: Yeah, it's like for decoration outside your house.

DICKINSON: Where I live, that thing will be out there all year long, and people will just put, like, Christmas lights on it.


DICKINSON: And they'll hang, like, Easter things.

GROSZ: That's great.

DICKINSON: Yeah, it'll just be there forever.

GONDELMAN: I've seen pictures, but I don't have a - I live in Brooklyn. I don't have a yard, so I would just have to, like, have it looking in the second floor window of my apartment building, which is even creepier, honestly, because that guy's a skeleton and he's a pervert.

GROSZ: Yeah, exactly (laughter).

FARSAD: Also this Halloween - and this is true - haunted houses are facing severe staffing shortages because nothing makes me more excited for this season than the thought of a 15-year-old being given a chainsaw.

GROSZ: (Laughter).

DICKINSON: Wait. So the only haunted house I've ever been in was at a carnival, and it was like this super dark place full of, like, carny men. That was terrifying, I have to say.

GROSZ: The carny men haunted house should just be like, this is my home life.


GROSZ: Come spend an hour with me. Watch as I drink Boone's Farm out of a Dixie cup in front of a picture of my ex-wife and my children I don't see.



GROSZ: Get me out of here. Oh, get me out of here.

FARSAD: Bill, how did Susie do?

KURTIS: Susie becomes the belle of the front range in Denver. She got a perfect score. Congratulations.

ISAAC: Thank you. This was really fun. I appreciate it.

FARSAD: Susie, what an excellent job. Thanks so much for calling.

ISAAC: Thank you.

FARSAD: Bye, Susie. Bye.


FARSAD: Right now, panel, it's time for you to answer some questions about this week's news.

Amy, SpaceX is supposed to launch four astronauts to the International Space Station on Sunday, but they can't until they fix one malfunctioning part of the rocket. What is it?

DICKINSON: Oh, my gosh. It's got to be, like, the toilets.

FARSAD: That's right.


FARSAD: It's the toilet.


FARSAD: SpaceX isn't giving details, but we do know the problem originated on their last flight, where they launched four civilians into space. You guys might actually remember it. It was a tech CEO, a physician's assistant, an online contest winner and an old beef burrito.


GROSZ: How long are they up there, like, from take off to landing?

FARSAD: I mean, this trip, I think, is like three or four days. Don't quote me.

GROSZ: Oh, OK. 'Cause I thought it was like - like when they go to, like, just technically into space, it's not the long.

FARSAD: Right. That's Blue Origin. That's Blue Origin.

GONDELMAN: Right. Hold it.

GROSZ: I'm sorry.

GONDELMAN: In that case, just hold it.

GROSZ: Yeah, hold it. You don't need a bathroom. Although, I guess, like, if you're a guy, to be in space would be like, I totally took a whiz in space. Like, tell all your friends.


GONDELMAN: Like, that's, like, the coolest thing you can think of doing. Like, did you take a picture? No, but I peed up there.


FARSAD: And the crazy thing is, like, they won't be able to fix it until they can develop a spacesuit for plumbers with a special window in the back to show the crack...


FARSAD: You know?

GROSZ: I hope that's in the Build Back Better bill. I know they cut a lot of stuff, but I hope there's...


GROSZ: ...Funding for the plumber's crack window in the spacesuit.


JELANA LAFLEUR: (Singing) Everybody get up. It's time to slam now. We got the real jam going down. Welcome to the Space Jam. Here's your chance. Do your dance at the Space Jam, all right.

FARSAD: Coming up, it's sayonara student loans in our Bluff the Listener game. Call 1-888-WAIT-WAIT to play. We'll be back in a minute with more of WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME! from NPR.

KURTIS: From NPR and WBEZ Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME, the NPR news quiz. We're playing this week with Peter Grosz, Josh Gondelman and Amy Dickinson. And here again is your host, either it's Peter Sagal and he's really committed to his Negin Farsad Halloween costume or it's Negin Farsad.


FARSAD: Thanks, Bill. Right now, it's time for the WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME Bluff The Listener game. Call 1-888-WAIT-WAIT to play our game on air.

Hi, you're on WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME.

NATALIE: Hi, this is Natalie (ph) from Akron, Ohio.

FARSAD: Natalie, what do you do in Akron?

NATALIE: So I'm a patient coordinator. I work at an OB-GYN that is owned and run by women. So ladies helping ladies.

DICKINSON: Yay. Natalie, do - is the practice called Lady Parts?

NATALIE: I wish we could afford to be that cheeky, but no.


NATALIE: There's Georgia O'Keeffe paintings on all the walls, if that helps.


FARSAD: That does help. Thank you. All right, Natalie, it's so great to have you with us. You're going to play our game in which you must try to tell the truth from fiction.

Bill, what's the topic?

KURTIS: It's payback time.

FARSAD: Student loans, you know, the consequence of not fully understanding the concept of money when you're young? Well, it is possible to pay them off. And this week, we read about someone who did it in an unusual way. Our panelists are going to tell you about it. Pick the one who's telling the truth and you win the WAIT WAITer of your choice on your voicemail. Are you ready to play?

NATALIE: Can I exchange that prize for, you know, forgiving my student loans?


NATALIE: But yes, I'm ready. I'm ready. Let's go.

GONDELMAN: You kind of have to take that up with Joe Biden.

NATALIE: Yeah (laughter).

FARSAD: Well, first up, it's Peter Grosz.

GROSZ: Tammy Benjamin (ph) of Savannah, Ga., graduated from film school $50,000 in debt and was struggling to pay it back. Then one day she had a brainstorm. I was at a party with a bunch of my stupid friends who have stupid, full-time jobs, Tammy told the Savannah Morning News. And my stupid employed friend Wendy Wroblewski (ph) was talking about how she felt left out of fun conversations because she was too busy to even watch TV and didn't get people's references. Tammy realized the perfect way to start a business, making money off her successful friends that she hated so much. Quote, "I'll watch TV all day so you don't have to." Tammy consumes every episode of every popular show, then sends out synopsis with witty observations and talking points, like "Squid Game" is a searing, modern commentary on capitalism, class and mollusks.

Business was going well, too well, in fact. And she was spending 18 hours a day binge watching, and she got tired and sloppy. She sent an email to Wendy Wroblewski mistakenly stating that Roy Kent, a character from Apple TV's hit show "Ted Lasso," was the son of Logan Roy, the patriarch of the Roy family from the HBO drama "Succession." Wendy used the tidbit in conversation and was summarily laughed out of a cool party. Wendy is now suing Tammy for causing emotional distress, shame and conversational embarrassment.


FARSAD: OK, so a business where a woman watched TV all day to make money from Peter Grosz. Your next story of digging out of debt comes from Amy Dickinson.


DICKINSON: Sophie Sherwood (ph) had just graduated from college when she found herself trapped in her parents' house in Hartford. To make some money while avoiding getting a pesky job, she started selling things on Etsy. It started small. I decided to sell some of my childhood stuff, she told the Hartford Courant. After that, she took a look around her parents' house. She says it was a 1980s hellscape and that is so in right now. She called her Etsy shop tacky '80s cottage core and posted some photos. The offers started rolling in. I felt kind of bad selling their bed, but some people really love this crap, she said. Eight months later, she had sold every single piece of furniture they had. Her parents arrived home in June to an empty home and their daughter sleeping on an air mattress in the kitchen. She had raised $85,000. The good news is that it paid off all my student loans, she said. The bad news is now the house looks exactly like my dorm room.


FARSAD: OK. A woman sets up an Etsy shop to sell her parents' stuff from Amy Dickinson. And your last story of a happy loan ending comes from Josh Gondelman.

GONDELMAN: One dedicated California resident has eaten an estimated 2,000 meals at Six Flags over the past six years. No, he's not an 11-year-old Make-A-Wish participant who made a miraculous recovery and just kept going. He's a 33-year-old engineer named Dylan with a savvy sense for personal finance and a stomach like a bomb shelter. Dylan realized that a $150 annual pass to Six Flags included not just admission to the theme park but also two meals a day while you're there. Because his office was near the theme park, Dylan routinely stopped by on his lunch break and then again for dinner on the way home. In addition to all the money he saved on groceries, this routine will also help Dylan retire young, considering how many years those eating habits have shaved off his life, for sure. It was crazy. I was saving money, paying off student loans, Dylan told MEL Magazine, inadvertently making the strongest possible case for federal student loan forgiveness.


FARSAD: OK, Natalie, you've got Peter's story where a woman watched TV all day to make money, Amy's story where a woman sold all of her parents' stuff on an Etsy cottage core site or Josh's story, where a man ate every meal at Six Flags Magic Mountain in order to save money. Which one is real?

NATALIE: I wish I could pick Peter's story because he's kind of my NPR crush, but I'm going to have to go with B.

FARSAD: OK. And to find out the correct answer, we spoke to someone involved in the true story.

DYLAN: I was looking at ways to save money, and I saw this amusement park and, you know, I figured, well, they offered this whole dining pass deal.

NATALIE: Wow (laughter).

FARSAD: That was Dylan, the man who ate all his meals at Six Flags for the last seven years.

NATALIE: Fascinating (laughter).

FARSAD: Look, Natalie, I'm sorry you didn't win, but you did earn a point for Amy. And thank you so much for playing with us.

NATALIE: Oh, thanks to all of you.


NATALIE: Bye, Peter.

FARSAD: OK, all right.

DICKINSON: (Laughter).


OHIO PLAYERS: (Singing) Rollercoaster of love. Say what? Rollercoaster oohh, oohh, oohh.

FARSAD: And now the game where people at the top of their fields join us down here at the bottom. New Jersey Devils star P. K. Subban has won the Norris Trophy as the NHL's top defender. He's been the league's top-scoring defenseman, and he won an Olympic gold medal for Canada in Sochi. But most importantly, he is one of the top three Subban brothers in professional hockey.

P. K. Subban, thank you so much for joining us on WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME.


P K SUBBAN: Thank you, and thanks for having me. I'm so excited to do this.

FARSAD: So I - let's start with this. I love this detail that you also have brothers who have played in the NHL. And you even faced your brother, Malcolm, for the first time in a 2017 game. And, like, I hate to be the one to say it, but your brother won that game.

GROSZ: (Laughter).

FARSAD: So, like, my question - my first question to you is, how was Canadian Thanksgiving that year?

SUBBAN: Well, first of all, thank you for the introduction. You didn't have to throw all of that in there, but I appreciate it. Secondly, on the point of my brother beating me, it's probably deservedly so. I mean, the amount of times that I plugged out gaming consoles...


SUBBAN: ...Or I teased him - I've teased him about beating them in NHL or PlayStation. I mean, that's happened hundreds and hundreds of times. So...

FARSAD: (Laughter) This was payback.

SUBBAN: ...You know what? I think maybe you can say I got what I deserve, you know, on that night.

FARSAD: (Laughter).

SUBBAN: But Thanksgiving - you know what? One thing I'll say is that my parents run a pretty tight ship. And we have a lot of fun in our house. Like, you know, there's five kids, right? I have two older sisters. But when we come together, my parents always want us to, you know, act our age and act the way that they've taught us that, so no indoor water fights or anything like that.


SUBBAN: We're not allowed to have any of that going on.

FARSAD: Wait, what - that actually does beg the question. So when you are playing against one of your brothers on the ice, are you more aggressive, less aggressive? Like...

SUBBAN: Well, I haven't had a chance yet to play against my youngest brother, Jordan. But playing against Malcolm - it's a little different 'cause he's a goaltender. Like, I can't really hit him.

GONDELMAN: (Laughter).

SUBBAN: The only way that I could really hit him is if I get a chance to drive the net. And most likely, like, I'm probably not going to end up below the other team's goal line at 32...

GROSZ: Yeah.

SUBBAN: ...Years old. Like, I play my position now.

FARSAD: And are you competitive with your sisters?

SUBBAN: Yeah. But I also - like, my household's, like, kind of run by the women. So, like, my dad thinks that he runs, like, the house. He doesn't.

FARSAD: (Laughter).

SUBBAN: I definitely don't. So with the sisters, I'm kind of careful. I've learned the hard way there, like, that not to ruffle any feathers with the women in the household. So I kind of let them do their thing.

FARSAD: OK. So I just...

GONDELMAN: Play your position. Stay behind the blue line (laughter).

FARSAD: (Laughter).

GROSZ: Yeah.

SUBBAN: Exactly. Play your position. Play your position, exactly.

FARSAD: So, like, I have some really basic questions about hockey and just, like, the kind of - the fighting that happens. So my first question is, how many teeth have you lost playing hockey?

SUBBAN: OK. So I've been very lucky - knock on wood.

FARSAD: Oh, God.

SUBBAN: These are mine.



FARSAD: Gorgeous. I mean...

SUBBAN: Hopefully, I can keep them. So God willing, I'll keep them.

FARSAD: (Laughter) OK. Well, that - I mean, is that an anomaly? Like...

GROSZ: (Laughter).

FARSAD: ...Do most people actually lose teeth?

SUBBAN: You know what? Listen, it's not just the hockey thing. I mean, you can lose teeth in basketball, too. You know what I mean? It's just in any sport where...

GROSZ: It happens a lot on NPR, you know?

FARSAD: Yeah, yeah.

GROSZ: I think you'll find a lot of NPR hosts...


GROSZ: ...And contributors. You can see it.

GONDELMAN: You get too close up on the mic, yeah.

GROSZ: Yeah.

FARSAD: Yeah. The All Things Considered guys, like, just have grills. Like, they don't have any more real teeth left.

SUBBAN: There's definitely more hockey players who have less teeth, I'm sure. Like...

GONDELMAN: (Laughter).

SUBBAN: ...Our sport probably has...

GROSZ: Yeah.

FARSAD: (Laughter).

SUBBAN: ...The highest number of guys with missing teeth, for sure.

FARSAD: So OK, I'm going to ask you a really, really critical question. You are on the cover of the NHL - or you were on the cover of the NHL video game.


FARSAD: Have you ever played the video game as yourself?

SUBBAN: No. You know, I actually stopped - no, I'm being honest.

GROSZ: Too meta.

FARSAD: (Laughter).

SUBBAN: I stopped playing video games, like, a long time ago, you know? I think when I really put the video games to rest was when I was actually on the cover in 2019. I was like - I was just like, honestly, I'm - that was so exciting. Like, the Norris Trophy was really, really cool. Being on the cover of NHL 19 for me was like - I was like, wow. It was...

FARSAD: But how did it turn you off to playing video games forever?

GONDELMAN: Well, it was like...

SUBBAN: Well, I - hold on...

GONDELMAN: ...Beat that, Malcolm. I got - you beat your brother forever.

SUBBAN: Let's go through it.

FARSAD: (Laughter) There it is.

SUBBAN: Let's go through it. You know, being a pro hockey player, having your own foundation, I have so many different things that eat up my time. I really don't have time to sit down and play video games. Like, I wish I did. But, like, when I have my free time, I just want to kick it, chill, like, relax, do nothing, like, turn my brain off, you know?

FARSAD: Oh, my God. Is it the height of narcissism that if I was in the NHL video game, I would be playing it all the time and as myself? Like, all the time.

SUBBAN: It's one of those things, right? Like, you know, before you have it, you're like, oh, I do this. And then once you're there, you're just like, I'm good. You know what I mean? So...

FARSAD: (Laughter).

SUBBAN: ...I'm good.

FARSAD: Well...

DICKINSON: P. K., we will never know. We will never know about that.


FARSAD: Well, P. K. Subban, we have asked you here to play a game that we're calling...

KURTIS: That's Icing, Delicious Icing.

SUBBAN: (Laughter).

FARSAD: So icing is bad when you're a hockey player, but icing is fantastic when you're a baker. So we're going to ask you three questions about bakeries. Get two out of three right, and you'll win a prize for one of our listeners. Bill, who is P. K. Subban playing for?

KURTIS: Sarah Page (ph) of Las Vegas, Nev.

FARSAD: OK. Are you ready?


DICKINSON: P. K., really, really turn your brain off for this.


FARSAD: OK. The reality show "Cake Boss" is famous for the intricate icing and decoration on their cakes. They made a cake version of Wrigley Field for the park's 100th birthday that was 25 square feet and weighed 400 pounds. But according to the Chicago Tribune, how did it taste - A, it was, quote, "the perfect pairing for a cup of warm Old Style"; B, it was, quote, "dry and chewier than a catcher's mitt"; or C, we don't know, the cake was tossed in a dumpster without anyone eating a single bite?

SUBBAN: I'm going to go with A.

FARSAD: I don't know. Did you have another instinct that maybe wasn't A?



FARSAD: C. Oh, my gosh, that's right. It's totally C.

GONDELMAN: (Laughter).


SUBBAN: Wait, but hold on. Hold on a second. Hold on a second. How does no one - not one person tried the cake?

FARSAD: Yeah, nobody ever ate it.

SUBBAN: I'm disappointed. I would've definitely grabbed a handful of that just to see what was up.

GROSZ: (Laughter).

FARSAD: OK, let's move on to the next question. So a bakery in Germany was told by the courts to stop making the cookies they'd been selling online for 20 years. But why? Was it A, the icing on them was so colorful and cheerful that the cookies were, quote, "un-German"; was it B, there was no decoration on them at all, so they couldn't legally be called cookies; or was it C, they were mostly made of sawdust?

SUBBAN: I'm going to go with A.

FARSAD: (Laughter) So you think that the German are going to be on the record that they don't like colorful and cheerful stuff and say...

GONDELMAN: They've gone on the record with worse.


SUBBAN: I'm going to - I'm just joking. I'm going to say B. That's my final answer. Right or wrong, I'm going with B.

FARSAD: And by final, did you mean...

GONDELMAN: (Laughter).

FARSAD: ...You were going to give it, like, one more shot, though?

GROSZ: (Laughter).

SUBBAN: Final - what I meant was, yeah, C. I'm probably going to go with C when it's all said and done.


FARSAD: Oh, my gosh, Subban, you're so good at this game 'cause it is C.


FARSAD: Yes, it's totally C. The court didn't buy the argument that sawdust is a vegetable product.

OK, let's move on to your final question. Nikola Tesla has an important place in bakery history, though not many people know about it. What is it? Was it A, he was a guest at the first-ever birthday party to have a stripper pop out of a cake; or B, he invented the apple fritter; or C, a baker's dozen is 13 because of a feud he had with Thomas Edison over how many things were in a dozen?


SUBBAN: I'm going to go with B.

FARSAD: What if you minused B by one? Where would you land?


SUBBAN: Oh, A. It's A, right? Was it A?

FARSAD: That's right. The answer is A.


FARSAD: Oh, my God. He was a guest.

GROSZ: So smart.

SUBBAN: I promise I'm not cheating.

FARSAD: (Laughter).

SUBBAN: I promise I'm not cheating. I just - I couldn't...

GONDELMAN: This guy knows his baking stuff (laughter).

FARSAD: But the answer - it is A. He was a guest at the first-ever birthday party to have a stripper pop out of a cake. So...

GROSZ: Oh, my God.

DICKINSON: Like, nobody had ever thought of that before?

GROSZ: She wasn't supposed to be in there. She accidentally got baked in the cake...


GROSZ: ...Popped out. And then someone was like, we should keep doing this every time we have a bachelor party.

GONDELMAN: That - I'll tell you what. That rules.

GROSZ: Yeah.

GONDELMAN: Tesla, Tesla.

GROSZ: I know it was a mistake.

GONDELMAN: They're all chanting his name.

FARSAD: I love that Tesla was actually the first tech bro.

GROSZ: Yeah.


FARSAD: OK. So, Bill, how did P. K. Subban do on our quiz?

KURTIS: Well, using the principle of try and try again, we're going to say that P. K. is a winner.


KURTIS: Thank you, P. K. Good job.

FARSAD: P. K. Subban, that was amazing. Folks, P. K. Subban is an Olympic gold medal-winning hockey player who currently plays defense for the New Jersey Devils. P. K. Subban, thank you so much for joining us on WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME.

SUBBAN: Thank you, guys. You guys are awesome. Let's do this again.

FARSAD: You're super-fun. Thank you. That was awesome.


STEPHEN DUFFY: (Singing) You are the icing on the cake.

FARSAD: In just a minute, Bill has a burrito baby in our Listener Limerick Challenge. Call 1-888-WAIT-WAIT to join us on air. We'll be back in a minute with more of WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME from NPR.

KURTIS: From NPR and WBEZ Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME, the NPR news quiz. I'm Bill Kurtis. We are playing this week with Amy Dickinson, Peter Grosz and Josh Gondelman. And here again is your host, who, as payment for hosting, will get to take anything she wants from Peter Sagal's house. It's Negin Farsad.


FARSAD: (Laughter) Thanks, Bill. Coming up, Bill performs the lesser-known Cyndi Lauper hit, "Rhyme After Rhyme" (ph), in our 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 for you from this week's news.

Peter, exciting news from the world of romance publishing. The latest hot subgenre of romance are steamy books about young women swept away by what legendary figure of desire?

GROSZ: Jesus Christ.


FARSAD: He was super-hot.

GROSZ: Legendary figure - somebody from history or, like, a fictional character?

FARSAD: OK. Well, let me give you a hint. Is that a dogecoin in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?

GROSZ: The guy who invented bitcoin?

FARSAD: (Laughter) I mean - OK, close. They're bitcoin billionaires.


GROSZ: Oh, a bitcoin billionaire.

FARSAD: So bitcoin billionaires are the new stars of romance novels. They also might be the new writers of romance novels.


FARSAD: Who has ever heard a guy talk about blockchain and thought, I want to be around this guy more?

GROSZ: So the - is it, like, a little bit like with, like, Christian Grey in "50 Shades Of Grey" who was just like a rich guy? So now in these, like, romance novels, it's like, Jeff (ph) was a bitcoin billionaire, emerged from his mother's basement with his long hair flowing and his...

FARSAD: (Laughter) All I could picture is a guy, like, riding - instead of riding a horse, he's riding, like, a Segway, you know, up the sidewalk.


GONDELMAN: Right. Well, it feels like so much of what you can purchase with bitcoin is, like, illicit goods on the dark web. So, like, are these guys seducing their lovers with, like, bags of heroin and a human foot they purchased?


FARSAD: I mean, that would work for me, you know I mean?

GONDELMAN: (Laughter).

FARSAD: I will at least go out to dinner with you if I'm going to get a severed foot out of it.

GONDELMAN: He mailed me a bouquet of toes, and it swept me off of my feet.


FARSAD: All right, let's move on. Josh, there's a huge problem with the world of competitive bridge playing. Everyone...

GONDELMAN: Don't I know it.

FARSAD: (Laughter) Everyone is doing what?

GONDELMAN: Everyone in the world - I mean, there are so many problematic behaviors. My expose will be out next year.

GROSZ: I would assume it's dying.


GROSZ: That's a major problem with the bridge community.

GONDELMAN: Big problem - slowing down a lot of games.

GROSZ: Something's killing all these bridge players.

GONDELMAN: Yeah, it's time.

FARSAD: (Laughter).

GONDELMAN: Gosh, can I have a hint?

FARSAD: Yeah. In this way, it's a lot like all the other professional sports.

GONDELMAN: They're cheating. Too many people are cheating.

FARSAD: That's right. They're cheating.


FARSAD: Turns out, bridge is much more than that card game the white women were playing in "The Help."


GONDELMAN: That is how I think of bridge.

FARSAD: The competitive bridge community has been rocked with scandal this year as more and more players are busted for cheating. And honestly, it's dangerous for bridge players to be rocked by anything. They have such brittle bones.


GONDELMAN: Normally, bridge players are only rocked by the chairs they sit in.


GROSZ: Nurses - also, sometimes nurses. What is the cheating?

DICKINSON: This has to do with them going online, right?

FARSAD: Exactly. You know, it's a team sport. But since the pandemic, they've been pushed to playing games online, and it makes it easier for teammates to illegally communicate with each other.

GROSZ: Right, because bridge is like - you bid suits, right? So you can text somebody like, I have a lot of hearts or I have a lot of...

GONDELMAN: Hey, good for them for knowing how to text.


FARSAD: No. But you guys, like, actually cheating at bridge seems very complicated. And if I want to cheat at a team sport, I'm doing it in the old-fashioned way by taking tons of steroids and getting jacked because I don't think Mildred (ph) from next door is going to say anything when I slam my cards down with the force of 10 Mildreds.


HANK WILLIAMS: (Singing) Your cheating heart...

FARSAD: Coming up, it's Lightning Fill In The Blank. But first, it's the game where you have to listen for the rhyme. If you'd like to play on air, call or leave a message at 1-888-WAIT-WAIT. That's 1-888-924-8924. Or click on the contact us link on our website, waitwait.npr.org. There you can get tickets for our first live show in Chicago in 20 months. It's at the Harris Theater on November 4, with live, in-person guest Chance the Rapper. Tickets are on sale now, once again, at waitwait.npr.org.

Hi, you're on WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME!

NATE WILDS: Hi, Negin. This is Nate Wilds (ph), calling from Taunton, Mass.

FARSAD: Hi, Nate. What do you do in Taunton, Mass?

WILDS: Well, I did go to college for theater. And then COVID hit and got rid of all those theater opportunities. So now I use my theater degree to make sandwiches for Jersey Mike's.


GONDELMAN: Nate, I'm from Massachusetts. And my wife is from New Jersey. And the first time we drove by a Jersey Mike's location in Massachusetts, she got very serious and went, that's messed up.


FARSAD: Well, welcome to the show, Nate. Bill Kurtis is going to read you three news-related limericks with the last word or phrase missing from each. If you can fill in that last word or phrase correctly on two limericks, you're a winner. Here's your first limerick.

KURTIS: I read products' full names 'cause I shop smart. It says strawberry here on the top part. Those sweet toaster pastries are ever so tasty, but no strawberries found in my...

WILDS: Pop-Tarts.

FARSAD: That's right.


FARSAD: A class-action lawsuit has been filed against Kellogg's, claiming that strawberry Pop-Tarts don't contain enough strawberries. The suit could spell trouble for Kellogg's. But it might also spark a new ad campaign - Pop-Tarts, they actually have some strawberries in them.


GROSZ: People don't buy it for the fruit. You don't go into - you're like, I got to get my fruit today.

GONDELMAN: Right. When I eat a cherry lifesaver or whatever, I'm not like, ah, thank goodness - antioxidants.


FARSAD: Well, the complaint alleges that the strawberry Pop-Tart filling contains way more pears and apples than strawberries, which, again, is still fruit. Like, I always assume Pop-Tarts were full of the same goo that's in the middle of Gushers.


GONDELMAN: This study sounds...


GONDELMAN: ...Like it was funded by Pop-Tarts.

FARSAD: I know, it's, like, a real fruit brag...

GONDELMAN: (Laughter).


FARSAD: ...On Pop-Tarts' part. OK, here is your next limerick.

KURTIS: I have money but bore you and dress blah, so my rental car is a no-stress spa. When the battery's charged, I don't need to live large. I am smug 'cause I'm renting a...

WILDS: Tesla.

KURTIS: Tesla - good for you...

FARSAD: That's right.

KURTIS: ...Very good.


FARSAD: Hertz has ordered a hundred thousand Teslas to add to their rental fleet. Cool, rental car companies can have a midlife crisis now, too, I guess.

GROSZ: (Laughter) Every time I've rented a car, I'm always like, oh, so this is what, like, a Chevy Caprice from 2004 is like.


GROSZ: I never get a nice car.

DICKINSON: Yeah. The last time I rented a car, my Pomeranian threw up in the back seat. And then he did that also in the three other times that I rented a car. So, like, my main aim with cars is make them the most awful, like...

GROSZ: Defile them.

DICKINSON: ...Dog-vomit-worthy car that you can have.

GROSZ: Well, you know, you could spend a lot of money and have your dog throw up at a Tesla. That might be nice.

GONDELMAN: That - what a flex. My dog throws up in cars that are worth more than you. That's like a line from "Succession."


FARSAD: All right. Here's your next limerick.

KURTIS: Our restaurant is a good neighbor. Our salsa's the thing you should savor. If you want that baby, come eat here and maybe our food will induce a smooth...

WILDS: Labor.


FARSAD: That's right.


FARSAD: A Mexican restaurant in Concord, N.H., where Mexican restaurants go to be lonely...


FARSAD: ...Has the secret for a speedy childbirth - their spicy salsa. One serving of it and your kids will be like, come on, mom, get me out of here!


FARSAD: The restaurant claims its jalapeno-based salsa has caused a dozen people to go into labor over the last 26 years, which actually is not a super strong statistic. But hey, I'm so happy for them.

GROSZ: Most of them were not pregnant. That's the other thing...


GROSZ: ...Pretty much. Like, 10 of those women were not pregnant.

GONDELMAN: That's - I mean, that's like one baby every two years. Like, I know individual people that cause people to go into labor at that rate.


GONDELMAN: Like, that restaurant doesn't induce labor at the rate of Nick Cannon, specifically.



FARSAD: Bill, how did Nate do?

KURTIS: He did great. Good luck to you, Nate...


KURTIS: ...All three, right.

WILDS: Oh, yes. Thanks.

FARSAD: Nate, great job. Thank you so much for calling in.

WILDS: Oh, thank you so much for having me. This was great.

FARSAD: Now on 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 they can. Each correct answer is worth two points. Bill, can you give us the scores?

KURTIS: I can. Josh has two. Peter has three. Amy has three.

FARSAD: OK. So, Josh, you are in third place, so you're up first. The clock will start when I begin your first question. Fill in the blank. On Tuesday, the FDA recommended giving Pfizer blank to kids aged 5 to 11.


FARSAD: Right.


FARSAD: On Sunday, the Justice Department added additional prosecutors to the investigation of Florida Representative blank.

GONDELMAN: Matt Gaetz.

FARSAD: Correct.


FARSAD: This week, a negotiator in Iran said the country would return to talks about a blank treaty.


FARSAD: Right.


FARSAD: This week, prosecutors in Georgia accused a man of using a pandemic relief loan to buy blank.


FARSAD: A $57,000 Pokemon card.



FARSAD: On Thursday, an American Airlines flight had to be grounded after a passenger refused to blank.

GONDELMAN: Wear a mask.

FARSAD: Correct.


FARSAD: On Tuesday, NASA announced that they may have found the first planet located outside of the blank.

GONDELMAN: Milky Way galaxy?

FARSAD: That's right.


FARSAD: This week, the CDC...


FARSAD: ...Discovered the source of a mysterious outbreak of a deadly tropical disease was blank.

GONDELMAN: Mosquitoes.

FARSAD: No. An aromatherapy spray from Walmart.


GONDELMAN: That was my next guess.

FARSAD: (Laughter). The CDC were initially baffled as to why a rare tropical disease was showing up in the U.S. but discovered it was being released by a Better Homes and Gardens lavender and chamomile essential oil aromatherapy spray with gemstones and dengue fever.


FARSAD: So, Bill, how did Josh do?

KURTIS: He did well. Josh had five right for 10 more points. He now has 12 and the lead.


FARSAD: OK. So I flipped a coin in my mind...

GONDELMAN: (Laughter).

FARSAD: ...Which means the next person up is Amy. Amy, fill in the blank. On Monday, the largest police union in New York filed a lawsuit challenging blank mandates.


FARSAD: Correct.


FARSAD: On Tuesday, employees at fast-food chain blank went on strike in 12 cities.

DICKINSON: McDonald's.

FARSAD: Right.


FARSAD: This week, a giant storm left over half a million people in the Northeast without blank.


FARSAD: Correct.


FARSAD: According to a new report, half of American companies are facing a shortage of blanks.


FARSAD: Right.


FARSAD: This week, a professor teaching a remote class in Korea accidentally turned his camera on, revealing he was giving his lecture from blank.

DICKINSON: His bathtub?

FARSAD: That's right.


FARSAD: After marrying a commoner, the princess of blank lost her imperial status on Tuesday.


FARSAD: That's right.


FARSAD: On Tuesday, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said she expected blank to ease up in 2022.

DICKINSON: Inflation.

FARSAD: That's right.


FARSAD: This week, police in Michigan...


FARSAD: ...Chasing a suspect into the woods were able to find him after he blanked.

DICKINSON: Was he singing Stephen Sondheim?


FARSAD: Great guess. No. They found him after he got lost and called 911 for help. The man was accused of breaking into a home, and when police arrived on the scene, he fled into the nearby woods. They were just about to give up when they got a call from a man saying he was lost and really needed their help and that he sure wasn't the guy they were searching for, who, by the way, sounded super cool and really innocent. The police ended up helping him and arresting him.


FARSAD: Bill, how did Amy do?

KURTIS: Amy had seven right for 14 more points. She now has 17 and the lead.


FARSAD: OK. And, Bill, how many does Peter need to win?

KURTIS: Seven to tie, eight to win.

GROSZ: Not going to happen - but go ahead.

FARSAD: OK, Peter, this is for the game. Fill in the blank. On Monday, GOP lawmakers were implicated for their involvement in the January 6 attack on blank.

GROSZ: The Capitol.

FARSAD: That's right.


FARSAD: On Wednesday, the Department of Health and Human Services announced a new plan to prevent blanks.

GROSZ: Coronavirus infections.

FARSAD: No - to prevent overdoses. Despite a dip during lockdown, blank gas has hit a record level last year.

GROSZ: Methane?

FARSAD: No, greenhouse gases.

GROSZ: OK. I'm going to - if I shoot the moon and get them all wrong, do I get 13 points?


FARSAD: On Thursday, a New York school district announced it was banning Halloween costumes based on the Netflix show blank.

GROSZ: "Bridgerton."


FARSAD: Incorrect. It's "Squid Game." New Zealand's bird of the year election...


FARSAD: ...Was once again ravaged by scandal this week as the front-runner for bird of the year is blank.

GROSZ: Steve Bannon.


FARSAD: No. The front-runner for bird of the year is a bat.


FARSAD: Once again, bird of the year officials are facing controversy because a bat is not a bird. It doesn't lay eggs or sing songs. It just hangs upside down and poops in the dark. Bill, let me sarcastically ask...


FARSAD: ...Did Peter get enough right to win?

KURTIS: Well, let's take it apart here.


KURTIS: And as we analyze, Peter had one right. But you got a total of five. And that means with 17, Amy is this week's champion.

GROSZ: Well done.


FARSAD: Good job, Amy.

Now, panel, what company will change their name next? Peter Grosz.

GROSZ: Chinese electronics giant Huawei will change their name to Wawa and start selling hoagies and overpriced milk.


FARSAD: Amy Dickinson.

DICKINSON: After deciding to concentrate completely on fecal health, Gwyneth Paltrow is changing her brand from Goop to Poop.


FARSAD: Josh Gondelman.

GONDELMAN: In an effort to increase brand visibility, MySpace will change its name to the recently available Facebook.


KURTIS: If any of that happens, we'll ask you about it on WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME.

FARSAD: Thank you, Bill Kurtis. Thanks also to Josh Gondelman, Peter Grosz and Amy Dickinson. And thanks to all of you for listening. I'm Negin Farsad. Peter will be back next week, and we'll see you live at the Harris Theater.


FARSAD: This is NPR.

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