Shermann 'Dilla' Thomas plays Not My Job on 'Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!' Historian Shermann Thomas is Chicago's most popular TikTok star, and he got there by telling cool facts about the city he loves. But what does he know about goats? We ask him 3 questions to find out.

'Wait Wait' for Feb. 5, 2022: With Not My Job guest Shermann 'Dilla' Thomas

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1078348606/1078486729" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

UNIDENTIFIED PERSON: The following program was taped in front of an audience of real, live people.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

BILL KURTIS: From NPR and WBEZ Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME, the NPR news quiz. Can you hear me, Chicago?

(CHEERING)

KURTIS: Or do you need another deci-Bill (ph)?

(LAUGHTER)

KURTIS: I'm Bill Kurtis. And here is your host, onstage at the Harris Theater in Chicago, Ill., where he is currently also starring in "Annie" as Annie. It's Peter Sagal.

PETER SAGAL, HOST:

Thank you, Bill.

(CHEERING)

SAGAL: And thanks as well to our actual live audience here at the Harris Theater.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: The Harris Theater here in Millennium Park in Chicago - it feels like our new home. It really does because, as Robert Frost said, home is the place where, when you have to go there, they have to take you in because you paid the rental fee.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Later on, we're going to be talking to Shermann "Dilla" Thomas, the guy who became a TikTok sensation with his lessons on Chicago history. But first, we want to know all about where you're from, so give us a call. The number is 1-888-WAIT-WAIT. That's 1-888-924-8924. Let's welcome our first listener contestant.

Hi. You're on WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME.

GARY STEIN: Hi there. This is Gary Stein from Wesley Chapel, Fla.

SAGAL: Hey, Gary. Welcome to the show. What do you do there in Wesley Chapel, Fla.?

STEIN: I am a legislative cannabis activist.

SAGAL: You're a legislative cannabis activist.

(CHEERING)

SAGAL: If I'm not mistaken, Florida has not yet legalized cannabis. Is that true?

STEIN: It's legal medically, but not yet for adult use.

SAGAL: Yes. And would you like to list your ailments for us at this time?

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Well, that's great 'cause you have better weather, but we have weed.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Gary, welcome to the show. Let me introduce you to our panel this week. First up, the host of the "Breaking Bread With Tom Papa" podcast, touring almost every city in America on the Family Reunion Tour. It's Tom Papa.

TOM PAPA: Hello.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Next, a comedian who will be headlining The Laughing Tap in Milwaukee March 18 through the 20. It's Adam Burke.

ADAM BURKE: Hello.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: And finally, a comedian currently on tour. Dates can be found at paulapoundstone.com. Her podcast is "Nobody Listens To Paula Poundstone." Can you guess? It's Paula Poundstone.

PAULA POUNDSTONE: Hey.

(CHEERING)

SAGAL: So, Gary, welcome to the show. You're going to play Who's Bill This Time. Bill Kurtis is going to read you three quotations from this week's news, as I'm sure you know. If you can correctly identify or explain just two of them, you'll win our prize - the voice of your choice on your voicemail. Are you ready?

STEIN: Absolutely.

SAGAL: I can tell. Here we go. Your first quote is about a big international event that's starting up this very weekend.

KURTIS: The first event is avoiding COVID.

SAGAL: That was Yahoo News talking about what event?

STEIN: The Olympics.

SAGAL: Exactly, the Olympics.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Yay.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: The 2022 Winter Games have begun, with athletes from all around the world bringing their skills and their variants to Beijing.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: The COVID protocols are extraordinarily strict at these Olympics. It's not just the usual - social distancing, masks. It's that every Olympic athlete, coach and official is in a, quote, "closed loop," shut off from every Chinese civilian with their own housing, transport and restaurants. The Olympic Village is just an enormous Habitrail.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Are you guys excited for these Olympics? 'Cause I'm like, oh, it's the Olympics. Oh.

PAPA: Yeah, kind of snuck up on us. I didn't - you didn't really know it was a thing. But I also didn't know that 2022 happened.

SAGAL: Yeah.

(LAUGHTER)

PAPA: So I guess it kind of makes sense.

SAGAL: It really does.

PAPA: Like, oh, the Winter Olympics - can't wait for the long jump, right?

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: You think the Winter Olympics is just like the regular Olympics but in snow?

(LAUGHTER)

PAPA: Yeah, it just takes place in the winter, isn't it?

SAGAL: Well, there's another thing, which is - let's face it - Winter Olympics events are really just, for the most part, various forms of slipping and falling on ice or in snow. Like, ski jump - falling through the air. Skiing - falling down a mountain. And this, like, big air freestyle skiing - that's just falling but making a whole production out of it.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: Well, 'cause these ones are quite controversial, aren't they? - these Winter Olympics. And I just picture someone watching the Beijing Olympics and seeing someone getting crammed into a luge and then thinking, these are the human rights abuses...

SAGAL: Yes.

BURKE: ...That everyone's worried about.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: I can't believe they're making those Canadian women sweep that ice.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Terrible.

BURKE: No, it's actually voluntary.

SAGAL: Can't they get them a vacuum cleaner? My God.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: Wow.

PAPA: I was excited. I - my - we really thought my mom was going to get to go to the Olympics 'cause - and I don't think they ended up putting it in, but watching seniors get to their car in the...

BURKE: Yeah, yeah.

PAPA: ...In the winter.

(LAUGHTER)

PAPA: My mom's been pretty good at it - not totally successful.

SAGAL: Right.

PAPA: A couple crashes, but she would've represented us well.

SAGAL: I hope so.

All right, your next quote is from one of the world's highest-paid podcasters.

KURTIS: I have been accused of spreading dangerous misinformation.

SAGAL: That was Joe Rogan, who wasn't just accused of that. He was addressing a controversy that led to many musicians and other artists taking their music off what?

STEIN: Spotify.

SAGAL: Spotify, yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Joe Rogan...

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: ...Has gotten in trouble for spreading lies about the COVID vaccines, so last week Neil Young told Spotify, you can either have Joe Rogan or me.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Principled stand. And Spotify responded, OK, bye. Last time he pulled a stunt like this, we ended up with Crosby, Stills, Nash and Rogan.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Joni Mitchell also announced she was pulling her music as well.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Again, principled stand. Little weird, though, 'cause we thought she was all about both sides now.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: And those two were joined by Graham Nash, Nils Lofgren of the E Street Band and a number of other musicians whose CDs you can buy on PBS.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: I called up Spotify.

SAGAL: You did.

POUNDSTONE: And I said I'm pulling my stuff.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: And they said, who is this?

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: And that's when I realized I might not have much leverage.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: Is their number still 1-800-SPOTIFY?

POUNDSTONE: Yeah, (singing) 1-800-SPOTIFY.

PAPA: You don't want to call people and say you're pulling your stuff.

POUNDSTONE: Oh.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: I see what you mean. It's like, hi. I'm Paula Poundstone, and I'm pulling my stuff. Like, who are you and...

PAPA: It's like, hey, lady, whatever you do in your free time is good with you.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: A bunch of podcasters - this is all true - are also pulling their shows from the Spotify service. So I guess you'll just have to listen to the Elizabeth Warren episode of "The Roxane Gay Agenda" on vinyl.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: Is anyone else freaked out that it's 2022 and the most influential medium in the world is essentially radio?

SAGAL: That's terrifying.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: Aren't we supposed to have flying cars?

PAPA: Yeah, or that comedians' podcasts are now the most powerful place for news. Isn't there - where's Walter Cronkite? Is there one adult left? I guess when Anderson Cooper's doing shots with Andy Cohen on New Year's Eve...

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: Yeah.

PAPA: ...We're kind of at - we're kind of adrift.

BURKE: That's the next thing Putin is going to do is get himself a podcast.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Gary, we have one more quote for you. Gary, here is your last quote.

KURTIS: How are you going to go on "The Masked Singer" as an anti-masker?

SAGAL: That was somebody quoted on IndieWire commenting on the controversial choice to let whom compete on "The Masked Singer"?

STEIN: America's mayor, Rudy Giuliani.

SAGAL: Yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Rudy Giuliani.

(APPLAUSE)

BURKE: He left a word out there. He left out America's nightmare.

SAGAL: Right. "The Masked Singer," of course, is the singing competition show where celebrities who are too pathetic for even "Dancing With The Stars" appear wearing elaborate masks. And when one of those competitors was revealed during taping just this week to be Rudy Giuliani, America asked, will Giuliani be the first to complete the reality show grand slam - first "Masked Singer," then "Hoarders" and finally, "To Catch A Predator"?

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: I've never even seen that show. Do they sing?

SAGAL: Yes.

PAPA: Yeah.

SAGAL: The way it works is they come out and...

BURKE: What part of "Masked Singer" did you not...

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: They're wearing very elaborate masks - like, really high-end, like a sports mascot type thing.

PAPA: And two of the panelists - didn't they stand up and walk out?

SAGAL: Yes, two of the judges, when they saw it was Rudy Giuliani - that he had - and nobody knows. It's like, they're very serious about, like, keeping their identity secret. They were like, oh, my God, Rudy Giuliani has been in this show. We didn't even know it. They walked off.

PAPA: Right. Right.

BURKE: Well, they say that two of the panelists walked off, but Rudy disputes those numbers.

SAGAL: Exactly.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: He says it was 37,000.

SAGAL: He says it was manipulated by an Italian army.

PAPA: I heard that the judges that remained at the table when - after he took off the mask were yelling, take it off.

(LAUGHTER)

PAPA: Please, take it off.

BURKE: Apparently, Trump was really upset about this 'cause he heard that Rudy was singing his heart out in front of a panel of judges and he just thought the worst.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: Like a bird.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Bill, how did Gary do on our quiz?

KURTIS: Gary did great, 3-0. Good for Florida.

POUNDSTONE: Wow.

SAGAL: Congratulations, Gary.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Gary, thank you so much for playing, and good luck with your quest down there.

STEIN: OK. Thank you very much.

POUNDSTONE: Bye, Gary.

BURKE: Bye, Gary.

STEIN: Bye.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

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

Tom, in an effort to keep sidewalks clean in Sweden, authorities have recruited whom to pick up cigarette butts?

PAPA: Ballerinas.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: That wasn't the word I was thinking of.

PAPA: Oh.

(LAUGHTER)

PAPA: Can I have a clue, please?

SAGAL: Yes. It's a murder of sanitation workers.

PAPA: Oh, I did hear about this - the crows.

SAGAL: Yes. They're training crows...

PAPA: Training crows.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: ...To pick up cigarette butts.

(APPLAUSE)

PAPA: Yeah, which is very strange because in my neighborhood, a lot of times you see them smoking.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: Right.

SAGAL: Crows, as you know, are very smart. And they are trying to train these crows to go pick up cigarette butts and bring them back and exchange them for peanuts, which crows really like, at this specialized machine. It's only - like I say, crows are really smart. It's only a matter of time before they realize they can do better and start selling loosies.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: I'm just imagining poor old Tippi Hedren going to Sweden and just...

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Yeah. I mean, it does seem crazy. It's like, oh, we've got this terrible problem with cigarette butts. Let's replace that problem with swarms of crows.

(LAUGHTER)

PAPA: Yeah. I'm sure...

POUNDSTONE: Yeah.

PAPA: ...The crows have agreed not to crap all over the cars.

SAGAL: Exactly.

(LAUGHTER)

PAPA: Where is this?

SAGAL: This is in Sweden.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: This is in Sweden, which is apparently a pretty clean country because it turns out that 60% of all their litter are cigarette butts. The other 40% are lost IKEA Allen wrenches.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: Yeah.

PAPA: Crows are very aggressive. Who's going to assume they're going to wait until you're done?

SAGAL: Exactly right.

POUNDSTONE: Yeah. Right.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: Yeah. And then there's going to be a thing where they ask Swedish people to shoot crows.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: Like, the crows have been attacking people. Yeah.

PAPA: So this is an Olympic event?

SAGAL: It is now. Yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF THE BLACK CROWES SONG, "HARD TO HANDLE")

SAGAL: Coming up, Florida gets even better 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. I'm Bill Kurtis. We are playing this week with Tom Papa, Paula Poundstone and Adam Burke. And here again is your host at the Harris Theater in Chicago, it's Rudy Giuliani in the Peter Sagal mask.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: Thank you, 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 the air. Hi, you're on WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME.

JENNIFER: Hi, this is Jennifer (ph). I'm calling from Minneapolis, Minn.

SAGAL: Oh, Minneapolis. I know it well. What do you do there?

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

JENNIFER: I write software for a company that helps research institutions comply with ethical guidelines.

SAGAL: Really?

JENNIFER: ...In human research.

SAGAL: Are you Minnesotan by birth?

JENNIFER: No, I grew up in Vermont.

SAGAL: Oh, wow. OK. And what do you think of beautiful Minneapolis?

JENNIFER: I love Minneapolis. It's a good fit. It's a friendly town, you know, if you look at it right.

SAGAL: Yeah.

JENNIFER: And...

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: From inside a warm building, for example.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: That's a great way to look at.

JENNIFER: (Laughter) Yeah, no doubt.

SAGAL: Jennifer, it's great to have you with us. You're going to play the game in which you must try to tell truth from fiction. Bill, what is Jennifer's topic?

KURTIS: Let's fix Florida.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: Florida has its problems - alligators, hurricanes, Ron DeSantis. But something actually got better in Florida this week. Our panelists are going to tell you stories of someone who had a solution for the Sunshine State. Pick the one who's telling the truth, you'll win the WAIT WAIT-er of your choice in your voicemail. You ready to play?

JENNIFER: Sure.

SAGAL: Let's do it. First, let's talk to Adam Burke.

BURKE: While many people turn to video meeting services to stay in touch with retired loved ones during the pandemic, for the Teetering Pines Independent Living Community in Pompano Beach, Fla., such high-tech fixes were no substitute for the yearly in-person visit from their kids. Enter Sham Fam (ph), a new company based in Broward County, where customers can hire trained, local actors to impersonate offspring who are nervous about physically visiting the Sunshine State.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: It was really uncanny, says Teetering Pines resident and Sham Fam customer Bethany Crisp (ph). Although the replacement didn't really look like my son Hal (ph), he really did get all of his mannerisms and quirks down to a T, including putting his damn feet on the coffee table right after I wiped it down. As Sham Fam founder Ellery Franks (ph) put it, we're not looking to create an idealized version of your offspring. We don't want anyone to be replaced. We just wanted to recreate the tactile experience of stroking your daughter's hair while passively-aggressively asking them if you can expect grandchildren anytime soon.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Sham Fam, a company that supplies substitute family members for those senior citizens who wish their kids would visit more often. Your next story of a Florida problem solved comes from Paula Poundstone.

POUNDSTONE: After 10 years working at Disney World in Orlando, Fla., Mike and Jen Schmorrow (ph) noticed something about the employees, or cast members as Disney calls them, that play the characters. The ones who wear the giant, heavy costumes have less drama in their lives.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: This is Florida, says Mike. Almost everybody I know has accidentally lit their house on fire with a blowtorch or tried to rob a bank at a drive-up window. I certainly have. Jen has. Jen nods sincerely as Mike continues. But Jen's a host at the "Indiana Jones" ride, and I work over at the fudge shop. The guy who does Piglet, he's never even been in jail.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: He doesn't own a machete. It's not just being a character because Snow White got popped for shoplifting. It's got to be the suit. They sweat their balls off in those suits.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: So Jen and Mike started wearing large, heavy, hot costumes for a few hours a day just to see. It's unbelievable, says Jen. At Christmas, I'd been wearing a big, pink, bunny suit for about a week, and I drove past a nativity scene in someone's yard. I didn't even think about knocking it over.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: The discovery that those enormous costumes they wear at the theme parks have a calming effect on your Florida man or Florida woman. Your last story of a Floridian fix comes from Tom Papa.

PAPA: When Robin Hughes, a teacher in Riverview, Fla., realized her students were having a comprehension problem, she decided that more than books or lectures, they needed the help of a magical snowman. According to The Washington Post, while in the middle of reading a book about snow to her students, Hughes realized that many of them were lost. Children in Florida will often see alligators riding in golf carts and old people twerking in the food court at the mall.

(LAUGHTER)

PAPA: But few have ever come across a single snowflake. So Hughes called her sister in Danville, Ky., and asked if she would send her a snowman. On a cold January day, she built a little snowman with blueberry eyes, a carrot nose, two sticks for arms, and sadly, as snowman have been dealing with for centuries, no feet.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

PAPA: As incomplete as he was, she packed him in a cooler and sent him on his way. Ms. Hughes said she was nervous upon opening the package. If he had melted, they would call him Puddles.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

PAPA: But if he survived, as he did, they called him Lucky. The students were overjoyed. And now, thanks to Lucky, children in Florida now think that snow comes from Kentucky in the form of a small, round man without any shoes.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: So here are your stories of somebody solving at least one of the many problems afflicting Florida. Was it from Adam, Sham Fam, a company that provides substitute family members, especially children, for senior citizens missing their own kids, from Paula, the discovery that wearing theme park costumes is good for the soul, or from Tom, a teacher imported a snowman from Kentucky so her children can learn about the wonders of Frosty?

JENNIFER: You know, the snowman sounds like a thing that would end up in the papers, so I'm going to go with that.

SAGAL: You're going to go with Tom's story of the imported snowman. We spoke to the person who solved the problem.

ROBIN HUGHES: I said, OK, do you want to build a snowman? Because I just wanted my kids in our school to be able to see and touch snow for the first time.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: That was Robin Hughes, the teacher who imported a snowman to show her kids in Florida what that wonder of the world is like. Congratulations, you got it right. You earned a point for Tom.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: You earned a prize for yourself, the voice of anyone you might like singing "Frosty The Snowman" on your voicemail. Congratulations, and thanks for playing with us today.

JENNIFER: Thank you for having me.

SAGAL: Thank you. Take care, Jennifer.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "FROSTY THE SNOWMAN")

PERRY COMO: (Singing) Frosty the Snowman was a jolly, happy soul with a corncob pipe and a button nose...

SAGAL: And now the game where we find people who know a lot and ask them about something else. Shermann Thomas, known as Dilla, is Chicago's biggest TikTok star, and not for dancing, but for historical facts. In his videos, he does deep but brief dives into the history of the city of Chicago. He's become an expert on Chicago known around the world. He's developing a show about Chicago history for Netflix.

Dilla Thomas, welcome to WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME!

(CHEERING)

SHERMANN THOMAS: Thank you. Thank you.

SAGAL: We need to establish your credentials. First of all, you are a Chicago guy.

THOMAS: Oh, yeah.

SAGAL: You are, like, from here. Family is like, this where you're from, right?

THOMAS: Yeah, absolutely - born and raised in Chicago - been in the Auburn Gresham neighborhood my whole life.

(CHEERING)

THOMAS: Thank you. Thank you - grew up in a bungalow, live in a bungalow right now.

SAGAL: You are absolutely legit.

(CHEERING)

SAGAL: And where did you come by your deep Chicago historical knowledge?

THOMAS: Well, it's the having a cop as a father, right? So I'll give you an example.

SAGAL: Please.

THOMAS: I would ask him to use his car. I'd say, hey, Dad, I want to go visit somebody on 87th in Cottage Grove. He'd say, how are you going to get there? If you said, I'm going to make a left on 87th, immediately, you can't use his car. You don't know where you're going.

SAGAL: Right.

(LAUGHTER)

THOMAS: Right. So you got to say, hey, I'm going to travel east on 87th Street, and I'm going to get to Cottage Grove. And Cottage Grove is 800 east on the Chicago grid, so I'm going to be 8 blocks from State (ph) and 8,700 blocks from Madison.

SAGAL: Right.

THOMAS: And so - but then as I grew, he started to get, like, questions. Well, why do they call this thing Cottage Grove? Well, when Stephen Douglas and them got here, it was along a ridge, right? We kind of did a lot of land-fill over there.

SAGAL: Yeah.

THOMAS: And so that area looked like a cottage to him. So that's why we call it Cottage Grove, right? And from 25 years answering for myself, living in library repositories, I'm a Chicago historian.

SAGAL: You are.

(CHEERING)

SAGAL: And I love - at least what I've read - is the origin of your TikTok career, which is you have seven kids, right?

THOMAS: Yes, sir.

SAGAL: All right.

(CHEERING)

SAGAL: And you still have time to do anything else, which is amazing.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: And I understand the story is, like, one of your kids - your daughter wanted to go on TikTok, right?

THOMAS: Yeah, absolutely. At the time, she was 8, and that's a little young for TikTok. So I joined to kind of monitor her account...

SAGAL: Right.

THOMAS: ...You know? And she - so on there, all the father and daughters are going viral getting a million views for dancing. And so she wanted to do that, too. And I'm like, man, we are not going to get a million views 'cause if you - I'll dance with you, I'll tell you.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Oh, yeah, 'cause there are a lot of, like, kids - usually daughters - dancing with their dads.

THOMAS: Yeah.

SAGAL: It's very adorable, right?

THOMAS: Exactly. But she's such a cute little girl. I was like, you know, if you explain to the people what - where Halsted Street gets its name from or why 312's our area code, like, that - we'll go viral, you know?

(CHEERING)

THOMAS: So she said, don't nobody want to see no Chicago history. Get out my face.

(LAUGHTER)

THOMAS: And to maintain dominance in my house, I did one anyway to prove her wrong. And here we are.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: Wow. What a great story.

SAGAL: And now that you are a legitimate, like, TikTok star, I mean, is she proud of you? Or...

THOMAS: So, like, when the Bulls send a message and ask if I want to go to a Bulls game, she's super proud, right?

SAGAL: Yeah.

(LAUGHTER)

THOMAS: To maintain doing the videos, I do a lot of research. And so then when she wants to do things or - sometimes it gets a little annoying. If we're in a restaurant, somebody wants a selfie, she's like, well, they should ask for my selfie because I'm the one that made you famous, you know?

SAGAL: Oh, OK.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Absolutely. I understand. And...

THOMAS: (Laughter).

SAGAL: ...It's always a weird question to ask somebody who's become popular, but why do you think that you've become so popular even outside of Chicago?

THOMAS: I think a lot about that, right? I try to remove myself out and say, hey, why is this working? I think, for starters - right? - you don't typically think of a historian as a 6-foot-5 Black dude with tattoos and dreadlocks and Jordans.

(CHEERING)

THOMAS: Right? So that makes you stop and say, oh, wait, he's a historian? But then when you listen to me, you can absolutely tell that not only do I care about the city, but I care about all sides of the city - right? - North Side, South Side, West Side and over East. And I spend a lot of time doing the research. And so the information is correct and is coming from a not-so-standard historian. And I think you combine those two things together, plus I'm from the greatest city on Earth. It has no...

(CHEERING)

SAGAL: Right.

THOMAS: ...Let's continue the work.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Nine million people in New York are hanging their heads in shame right now 'cause they got nothing.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Here's the thing.

POUNDSTONE: I was planning on going home tomorrow, but forget it.

SAGAL: Yeah.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: So here's the thing. So is it ever a burden knowing all this stuff? Do your friends use you like a GPS? It's like...

THOMAS: Oh, my goodness.

SAGAL: ...Dilla, how do I get here?

THOMAS: That's been going on before we had GPS...

SAGAL: Right.

THOMAS: ...Right? - because my parents - my dad made me learn the grid when I was 13. We had these things called house phones, for people who are, you know, under 35, right?

(LAUGHTER)

THOMAS: And so when I was 13, my 16- 17-, 18-year-old cousins will pull over to pay phones to call the house and say, hey, Shermann, I got a date, but the restaurant is on Huron. I don't know what the hell I'm doing.

(LAUGHTER)

THOMAS: And they'd give me the address, and I could kind of walk them to where they needed to go. So people do it then. And then, like, now, of course, if I come across somebody's timeline, my friends are always, you know, make sure they - hey, I know Dilla, you know, so...

SAGAL: Oh, yeah. They're friend - you're like a - are you, like - do you consider yourself now an influencer?

THOMAS: I hope not.

(LAUGHTER)

THOMAS: I want to be considered a Chicago historian, an ambassador for my city, you know. But influencer - no, I'm OK.

SAGAL: Yeah. And...

POUNDSTONE: How could there be all this talk and not one mention of Walgreens?

(LAUGHTER)

PAPA: Or kissing Bill Kurtis on the lips?

SAGAL: Yeah.

(LAUGHTER)

THOMAS: That's - I was so happy to meet him backstage. It's like, on the one hand, I've grown up to just admire his work. On the other hand, when his show came on, you knew it was time to go to bed. So...

SAGAL: I didn't know that.

THOMAS: Yeah.

KURTIS: Even while watching.

SAGAL: I wondered why all of a sudden you got sleepy when he started talking. That's hilarious.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Well, Dilla Thomas, I should be clear, I could talk to you about Chicago all day, but we have asked you here to play a game we're calling...

KURTIS: You're the goat, literally.

SAGAL: With the retirement of Tom Brady from football, there's been much discussion of whether he's the GOAT in football - that is, the greatest of all time. We, however, were wondering about actual goats. You know, the ruminant mammal.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: We're going to ask you three questions about goats. Answer two of them correctly, you'll win our prize for one of our listeners. Bill, who is Dilla playing for?

KURTIS: Audrey Young of Chicago.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: All right. Ready to do this?

THOMAS: I am.

SAGAL: OK. Here's your first question. Goats are beloved now more than ever, but in medieval times they were something to be feared. Why? A, there was a form of torture where a goat licked your feet until the tickling became unbearable.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: B, women were accused of performing witchcraft by doing poses with goats. That is, the first form of goat yoga.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Or C, their farts were known as the devil's hurricane.

THOMAS: Oh. Wow. That's tough, right? Because, you know, I went to Eastern Illinois University, it had like goats. Oh, that's what's up Charleston, right? And goat fart - that's...

SAGAL: It is.

THOMAS: ...It's rough. It's really, really rough.

SAGAL: Illinois is an agricultural state.

THOMAS: You know, dang, I don't want the Chicago lady to lose, but we'll probably go with fart as the option.

SAGAL: You're going to go on that? It's not a bad guess on our show. And in fact, by giving you that option, it was really kind of unfair. But the answer was actually goat licking your feet.

THOMAS: Oh.

POUNDSTONE: No.

SAGAL: This was a reported form of torture. We have it in documents that this was used. It's OK, you still have two more chances. Here is your next question. Many places nowadays use goats instead of lawnmowers, but in 19th century Europe it was common to use goats instead of what? A, wet nurses. B, boat propellers. Or C, taxi drivers?

THOMAS: I'm - well, I can't say taxi driver to call myself a historian and you said 1800s. That would get me kicked out of my house. I'll go with wet nurses.

SAGAL: You're right, wet nurses.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: I mean, if you think about it, people drink goat milk, so why not just skip the middleman and just - anyway. We don't want to go on about it. So that's...

POUNDSTONE: Wait a minute.

PAPA: Why not?

POUNDSTONE: People have their babies suckle from a goat?

SAGAL: Yes.

POUNDSTONE: And the goat was OK with that?

SAGAL: I do not know if the goat's opinion was recorded by history

BURKE: Was the goat pulling double duty and also licking someone's feet?

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Oh, it's tough. It's a goat's life, man. You've heard that.

POUNDSTONE: Wow.

THOMAS: That goat needed a union really bad.

SAGAL: Absolutely.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: All right. This is great. If you get one more correct, you win it all...

POUNDSTONE: (Imitating goat).

SAGAL: ...To the extent that there is anything to win.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: There is a surprisingly long history of goats serving officially in the military. For example, a goat named William Windsor became the first goat to be named a lance corporal in the British Army. Unfortunately, shortly after that promotion, what happened? A, he ate his rifle.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: B, he was seen engaging in - quote - fraternizing with the enemy - in this case, a Russian goat named him Natasha.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Or C, he was demoted due to - quote - inappropriate behavior during the Queen's birthday celebration.

(LAUGHTER)

THOMAS: That's a good one. I hope it's the last one just flat out. I really, really hope...

SAGAL: You're right. I'm so glad I can make you happy.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: That's what happened.

POUNDSTONE: There you go.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: The news accounts we could find did not describe what the inappropriate behavior was, but nonetheless.

PAPA: Probably something about licking feet.

SAGAL: Yeah, probably.

POUNDSTONE: Yeah.

SAGAL: The queen didn't like it.

POUNDSTONE: Yeah.

SAGAL: Bill, how did Dilla Thomas do on our show?

KURTIS: Dilla, you got two out of three and that means you're a winner.

THOMAS: Hey.

SAGAL: Congratulations.

KURTIS: Big winner.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Shermann "Dilla" Thomas is a Chicago urban historian and our city's biggest TikTok star. Thank you so much for joining us on WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME.

THOMAS: Thank you for having me on.

SAGAL: Give it up for Dilla Thomas.

THOMAS: Thank you.

SAGAL: Bravo.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "CHI DON'T DANCE")

UNIDENTIFIED CROWD: (Chanting) Gon' (ph) percolate. Gon' percolate. Chi don't dance no more. All we do is juke. All we do is juke. All we do is juke. All we do is juke.

SAGAL: In just a minute, we trade our keg stands for keg sits in the Listener Limerick challenge. Call 1-88-WAIT-WAIT to join us on the air. We'll be back in a minute with more 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 Paula Poundstone, Adam Burke and Tom Papa. And here again is your host. At the Harris Theater in Chicago, Ill., he's the cream in my coffee and the swab in my nose.

(LAUGHTER)

KURTIS: It's Peter Sagal.

SAGAL: Thank you, Bill.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: In just a minute, Bill is at your door with a singing tell-a-rhyme in our Listener Limerick Challenge game. If you'd like to play, give us a call at 1-888-WAIT-WAIT. That's 1-888-924-8924. Right now, panel, some more questions for you from the week's news.

Adam, we recently reported on this show on the groundbreaking pig-to-human heart transplant. Now we're learning even more about this procedure, and we know the key to the success of the operation was the care for medicinal use of what.

BURKE: Like a pig therapist?

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: Like someone who just, like, talks to the pig...

SAGAL: Well, considering the pig gave up the heart, that would have been, like, a job for a therapist.

BURKE: Oh, yeah. All right. OK. Oh, no. Maybe it was, like, a pig priest who gave him, like, last rites.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: The careful use...

SAGAL: Certainly not a pig rabbi.

BURKE: The careful use of - what? - of this...

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: OK. The careful use of, like, those scissors they give you in kindergarten. Those...

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: Those blunt ones.

SAGAL: Which is why the incision has, like, a zigzag.

BURKE: (Laughter) Yeah, yeah.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: Yeah, and then they sew you up with paste.

SAGAL: No, it's the first time anybody ever had to bring in a razor and a mirror into an operating room.

BURKE: Oh, cocaine (laughter).

SAGAL: Yes, cocaine.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: The operation was a major moment in medical history, the first time an animal heart had been successfully transplanted into a human who had once stabbed a guy. The cocaine was part of a cocktail of drugs that kept the genetically engineered heart alive during transport. The heart arrived over a very long distance intact and asking for more cocaine.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: See, I thought pigs were already on cocaine. That's why their tails do that thing.

SAGAL: (Laughter) Oh, really?

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: And they are constantly sniffing. You know, like...

BURKE: And they'll never - they never shut up.

SAGAL: Yeah.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: But how - we don't know how this exactly worked. It had something to do with the chemical compound of cocaine. And why they used it, we don't know. Did they, like, sprinkle on it like it's, like, finishing salt? Right?

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: And this also explains why the transplanted heart beats exactly to the rhythm of Donna Summer's songs.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: They actually got Salt Bae to come in and...

SAGAL: Exactly.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: Good, old cocaine (laughter)...

SAGAL: Cocaine Bae, they call it. Tom, a woman in the U.K. left a date before it was over when she discovered that this guy she had met - seemed very nice. But it turns out, in his home, he had a giant collection of what.

PAPA: Human heads.

SAGAL: That's always a bad sign. Total red flag...

PAPA: Yeah.

SAGAL: ...Is the human heads. But no, not in this case. I'll give you a hint.

PAPA: OK.

SAGAL: Well, you know, it's better than just sort of sticking it under the desk.

PAPA: Oh, chewed gum?

SAGAL: Yes, he had a tower of all the pieces of gum he had ever chewed.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: He saved it.

PAPA: Well, and - wait. And they're saying most people don't have that?

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Yeah, that's unusual, Tom. Did you not know that?

PAPA: Yeah, I knew it.

SAGAL: Yeah, OK.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: A woman in the U.K. went on a date, was having a lovely time, entered the gentleman's bedroom, and noticed this tower of chewed gum on his nightstand.

PAPA: Wow.

SAGAL: ...Which she said, quote, "looked like a garden gnome," and she promptly left the date after seeing it. The story went viral, of course, on TikTok, and it caused an uproar of reaction, all of them negative. I mean, I get it's gross. It could be worse. At least his breath was fresh? You know?

(LAUGHTER)

PAPA: I wonder if he, when he's out of gum, he just takes a piece off.

(LAUGHTER)

PAPA: He's thrifty.

BURKE: He's frugal. I mean, he's...

PAPA: Yeah.

SAGAL: Also, why be judge-y? He's got a nightstand. That puts him above 99% percent of the people on Tinder.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "THANK U, NEXT")

ARIANA GRANDE: (Singing) And for that, I say, thank you. Next.

UNIDENTIFIED SINGERS: (Singing) Next.

GRANDE: (Singing) Thank you. Next.

UNIDENTIFIED SINGERS: (Singing) Next.

GRANDE: (Singing) Thank you. Next. I'm so grateful for my ex. Thank you. Next.

UNIDENTIFIED SINGERS: (Singing) Next.

SAGAL: 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 the Contact Us link on our website, waitwait.npr.org. There you can also find tickets for our upcoming shows at the Fox Theatre in Atlanta, Ga., March 3 and back here at the Harris Theater in Chicago on April 7.

Hi. You're on WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME.

RANDY KOTTWITZ: Hi. It's Randy Kottwitz from Blue Hill, Neb.

SAGAL: Randy Kottwitz from Blue Hill, Neb. What do you do in Nebraska?

KOTTWITZ: I am semi-retired, but I spend a good deal of my time running the local Pride celebration in Hastings, Neb.

SAGAL: Well, good for you. That's excellent. And I'm going to ask...

POUNDSTONE: Wow.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: ...What's the reaction to the annual Pride celebration in Hastings, Neb.? Are people excited about it?

KOTTWITZ: It is very positive. As a matter of fact, we just won a grant from Nebraska Tourism to promote it. And we - last year, we had 300 attendees, and everybody had a great time. We had not a negative incident. We were very well accepted, got very good press. It really is a good thing for Nebraska.

SAGAL: Well, that is. I think it's a good thing for everywhere. But that's great for Nebraska.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Well, welcome to the show, Randy. Bill Kurtis is going to perform for 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 of the limericks, you'll be a winner. You ready to play?

KOTTWITZ: Sure.

SAGAL: Here is your first limerick.

KURTIS: My apartment has nothing to spoil it. Go to Starbucks if you want to soil it. While I'm busy brushing, there is nobody flushing. My bathroom does not have a...

KOTTWITZ: Toilet.

SAGAL: A toilet, yes. Toilets...

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: ...They have their uses, but aren't they just a luxury for today's coddled youth? The author of an essay in The New York Times this week posed that question after the only two-bedroom apartment he could find for under $2,000 a month was lacking that particular amenity. Instead, there was a bathroom in the hallway that the whole floor shared. This is why New York is the city that never sleeps. You're waiting until 1 a.m. for the toilet line to go down.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: Wow.

SAGAL: Yeah.

POUNDSTONE: Yeah, that's...

PAPA: Where are you supposed to put your gum?

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: You're still focusing on the gum, Tom.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Well, many people, Tom - this is what my grandmother used to do - is you wrap it in the original wrapper that the stick of gum came in for neatness and you throw it away.

PAPA: That's disgusting.

POUNDSTONE: (Laughter).

SAGAL: All right, here is your next limerick.

KURTIS: Some more cheese on my chips, please, I beg. I don't care if it drips down my leg. For hot snacks, I'm a sap, so just open that tap. Chili cheese that is pumped from a...

KOTTWITZ: Keg.

SAGAL: A keg, yes.

KURTIS: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: If you want to celebrate the big game by having big cramps, the new Hormel Chili Cheese Keg is just for you. It's a hot keg...

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: ...Filled...

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: Let him finish.

SAGAL: ...Filled - I'm going to finish this - filled - well, I'm going to finish talking about it. No one could ever finish the item. It's filled with 1,000 servings of chili cheese dip, perfect for pouring on nachos, hot dogs or straight down your gullet, if that's the kind of mood you're in.

POUNDSTONE: (Laughter).

BURKE: It sounds like a great prank to pull at a frat party, doesn't it?

SAGAL: Yeah.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: Chug, chug, chug.

SAGAL: Here. Do a keg stand, Phil. You'll love it. This keg, by the way, is not for everybody. You can't just buy it. You have to enter a lottery to win it. So we wish you luck. But don't worry. If you lose, you can always just take a whole bunch of Velveeta, put it in a coffee urn, turn it on and wait 10 minutes.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: I always love when something comes in a 1,000-serving serving size 'cause you know that someone is going to call up furious. That was only 998.

SAGAL: Exactly. I've been pumping out - yeah.

POUNDSTONE: Yeah. And how do you define serving?

BURKE: (Laughter) And that - yeah, that's going to be one for someone.

SAGAL: All right, Randy, here is your last limerick.

KURTIS: Etched in the stone is a scored frame, right by the remains of a bored dame. After 4,000 years, the rules still aren't clear. We've dug up the world's oldest...

KOTTWITZ: Board game.

SAGAL: Board game, yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Archaeologists in Oman have discovered what they believe to be a 4,000-year-old board game. They found it this week. It's made of stone and features grid-like markings and holes for cups. Now, I should clarify this is a 4,000-year-old game, not to be confused with the 4,000-year-long game, Monopoly.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Experts believe the game might be a precursor to a game called the Royal Game of Ur, which itself was a precursor to backgammon. They speculate the game was created by an ancient civilization that died out while waiting for Jeff to finish explaining the rules.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Bill, how did Randy do?

KURTIS: Randy was 3 for 3, and that makes him a winner.

(APPLAUSE)

POUNDSTONE: Nice job, Randy.

SAGAL: Take some pride in that. Well done. Congratulations.

KOTTWITZ: Bye-bye.

(SOUNDBITE OF POP MUSIC WORKSHOP SONG, "WICKED GAME (AS PERFORMED BY CHRIS ISAAK)")

SAGAL: Now it's time for 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 now worth two points. Bill, can you give us the scores?

KURTIS: Paula has two. Adam has two. Tom has three.

SAGAL: Oh. All right, I will arbitrarily choose Adam to go first. Adam, the clock will start when I begin your first question.

Fill in the blank. On Wednesday, President Biden approved sending 3,000 troops to Europe as tension at blank's border continued to rise.

BURKE: The Russia-Ukraine border.

SAGAL: Yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Following a ban at a Tennessee school, Art Spiegelman's graphic novel blank shot up the bestseller list.

BURKE: "Maus."

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: On Thursday, online retail giant blank announced they were raising their yearly subscription price by 17%.

BURKE: Amazon.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: According to reports, New York Mayor blank is considering a run for Congress.

BURKE: Eric Adams.

SAGAL: No. No, he's the new mayor. The old mayor is Bill de Blasio. This week, a famous bridge in the Netherlands had to be taken apart not because of any structural failures, but because blank.

BURKE: So that they could sail Jeff Bezos's ego through it.

SAGAL: Exactly, his giant yacht.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: And you heard me about raising the price of Amazon 17%. For the first time in its 18-year history, social media giant blank announced a drop in daily users.

BURKE: Facebook.

SAGAL: Yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: On Wednesday, a massive winter storm caused the cancellation of over 4,000 blanks.

BURKE: Flights.

SAGAL: Yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: After reporting that a Belarussian man named Fnu Lnu...

(SOUNDBITE OF GONG)

SAGAL: ...Had been accused of piracy, The Wall Street Journal had to issue a correction because Fnu Lnu is blank.

BURKE: A popular children's character.

SAGAL: No. Fnu Lnu is not a real name. It stands for first name unknown, last name unknown.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: The Wall Street Journal editor just assumed that Fnu Lnu was a common Belarusian name like Alexander Lukashenko.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: But no, in a statement, The Wall Street Journal said, I cannot believe we thought Fnu Lnu was a name. OMG. WTF.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: I also like to think that they caught, like, one of the most prolific criminals. This guy's been around for 120 years.

(LAUGHTER)

PAPA: Fnu is in his apartment. Oh, no.

SAGAL: Bill, how did Adam do on our quiz?

KURTIS: Very, very well. Adam had six for 12 more points. He now has 14 and moves into the lead.

PAPA: Woah.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: All right. Here we go then, Paula. You are up next. Fill in the blank. During a rally in Texas, Donald Trump suggested he would pardon blank if elected president in 2024.

POUNDSTONE: The January 6 insurrectionists.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: In a report released on Monday, a British civil servant said that blank's lockdown parties were, quote, "a failure of leadership."

POUNDSTONE: Boris Johnson.

SAGAL: Yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: This week, the White House announced a plan to boost screening, prevention and hopefully treatment of blank.

POUNDSTONE: Cancer.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: On Thursday, the White House reported that an ISIS leader in blank had been killed in a U.S.-led raid.

POUNDSTONE: Syria.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: This week, a man caught driving the wrong way in a Nevada interstate told police he only did it because blank.

POUNDSTONE: He's from Florida.

SAGAL: No, because Dale Earnhardt's ghost told him to.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: Oh. Oh, OK.

SAGAL: On Monday, The New York Times purchased popular word game blank for an undisclosed amount.

POUNDSTONE: Wordle.

SAGAL: Yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: After saying that the Holocaust wasn't about race, Whoopi Goldberg was suspended from the blank for two weeks.

POUNDSTONE: "The View."

SAGAL: "The View."

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: This week, a man in Florida was charged with...

(SOUNDBITE OF GONG)

SAGAL: ...Grand theft after he stole a woman's blank.

POUNDSTONE: Uterus.

SAGAL: No, he stole her driveway.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: Stole her driveway.

SAGAL: He stole her driveway - brick by brick.

POUNDSTONE: Yeah. Yeah.

SAGAL: The homeowner said she knew something was wrong. She pulled up to her house and felt this huge bump. She then stepped out of the car and noticed that someone had stolen half of her driveway. Police eventually caught the suspect and have charged him with grand theft thing that auto parks on.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: Yeah. Well, before that he stole her uterus. You'd...

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: I should get half a point for that.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Bill, without in any way giving Paula half a point for that...

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: ...How did she do on our quiz?

KURTIS: Well, if she got a half a point, she'd be winning. But right now, Paula has six right for 13 more points and has 14. That means she's tied with Adam for the lead.

(APPLAUSE)

POUNDSTONE: Oh, baby.

SAGAL: So that means that Tom will have to do pretty well to win. How many right will Tom need to win this game?

KURTIS: Only six to win.

SAGAL: There you go, Tom - easily done. Here we go. Fill in the blank. On Tuesday, Pfizer requested approval to provide their blank for children under 5.

PAPA: Vaccine.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: According to the Treasury Department, the U.S. blank surpassed $30 trillion for the first time ever.

PAPA: Debt.

SAGAL: Debt, yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: This week, the Army announced it would start discharging soldiers who refuse to blank.

PAPA: Vaccinate.

SAGAL: Yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: On Sunday, North Korea launched their most powerful blank since 2017.

PAPA: Missile.

SAGAL: Yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: This week, merchandise printed to celebrate Queen Elizabeth's Platinum Jubilee instead say that they are celebrating her blank.

PAPA: Uterus.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: No, her platinum jublee (ph). Citing a consensual affair, Jeff Zucker, the president of blank, resigned on Wednesday.

PAPA: CNN.

SAGAL: Right.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Mail service in a British neighborhood was interrupted this week after postal workers ate an unclaimed package of brownies that they did not know were blank.

PAPA: Filled with weed.

SAGAL: Of course.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Any package left unclaimed for over a month is up for grabs, so the postal workers were counting the days until they could eat that delicious-looking tray of brownies that were made with - what is that exactly? Is that oregano?

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: A few hours later, they were all so stoned - this is true - that the post office had to send a sober employee out to pick them up one by one.

(LAUGHTER)

BURKE: And you thought the mail was late before.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: I know. It's all right. They all got their focus and there's vim back after someone made bread out of that Ziploc bag full of a kilo of flour.

PAPA: Who eats a month-old brownie?

SAGAL: Well, you know how it is. It's like, oh, free dessert. Let's do it. I'd do it.

PAPA: It sounds like they were high before they left the station.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: It could be. Bill, did Tom do well enough to win?

KURTIS: Well, he did get six right for 12 more points, which means, with a total of 15, he is the champion.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Now, panel, what will be the next big surprise on "The Masked Singer"? Tom Papa.

PAPA: Boris Johnson's Liver.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Paula Poundstone.

POUNDSTONE: They found documents that showed Rudy Giuliani was never invited to be on the show.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: And Adam Burke.

BURKE: The singer will remove their mask to reveal the actual second coming of Christ, to which the pope will respond, man, did we misinterpret the Bible.

(LAUGHTER)

KURTIS: Well, if any of that happens, we're going to ask you about it on WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME.

SAGAL: Thank you, Bill Kurtis. Also thanks to Tom Papa, Paula Poundstone, Adam Burke.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Thank you to Beyond Catering for feeding us today. Thanks to the cast and crew at the Harris Theater and our fabulous live audience here at the Harris. It's great to see you. Thanks to everyone at BEZ, of course, in Chicago. And thanks to you at home for listening. I'm Peter Segal. We'll see you next week.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

SAGAL: This is NPR.

Copyright © 2022 NPR. All rights reserved. Visit our website terms of use and permissions pages at www.npr.org for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by an NPR contractor. 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.