What's The Word? Comics Samantha Ruddy and Luke Mones compete in this game about words that are spelled and pronounced the same, but have different meanings.

What's The Word?

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Our next two contestants are comedians Samantha Ruddy and Luke Mones. Welcome to ASK ME ANOTHER. Hello.



EISENBERG: Hi. Hello to both of you. Now, Samantha - am I right? - I think in April I just saw this on your Instagram, that in April you had moved in with your girlfriend's employers.


EISENBERG: Basically, she is a nanny. And in order to allow her to keep working, you all moved in together.

RUDDY: Yes, we did do that.

EISENBERG: That must have been a bit of a - I'm going to say a trip. That's the word I'm going to use.

RUDDY: It was a trip. I actually - I love those kids so much. I have one of their artwork behind me.

EISENBERG: Oh, no way.

RUDDY: Yeah, my little friend Toby drew a picture of him, his brother and my girlfriend.

EISENBERG: That's really nice. And it's in your background.

RUDDY: Yeah, his mom's a huge NPR fan, so...



EISENBERG: That's awesome.

MONES: I asked Samantha to hang some of my artwork, and she declined.


RUDDY: I said no.


EISENBERG: Luke, you know, your girlfriend, speaking of people that we are partnered up with - your girlfriend was a former contestant.

MONES: An alumnus.

EISENBERG: She's an alumnus, yes. Alyssa Limperis...

MONES: That's right.

EISENBERG: ...Was on, I think, like, back in May or something like that.

MONES: Yes. Some time in the haze of the past year...


MONES: ...Yeah, she was on.

EISENBERG: And did she give you some pointers? Any tips, tips of the trade?

MONES: She said stay alert. And - well, here's what she said.


COULTON: Stay alert.

MONES: She said stay alert, stay on your toes. She - I'm more of a trivia person than her. I sort of do the trivia in the relationship. And she is probably better at everything else.


MONES: So it's just - so she said, basically, just go be you.

EISENBERG: Yeah, yeah. I feel strong vibes that this is going to be perfect for you.

MONES: Yeah.

EISENBERG: Want to do some games, see what happens?

RUDDY: Absolutely. Let's do it.

MONES: Let's do it, yes.

EISENBERG: OK. So we have a word game for you. In this one, Jonathan and I are going to read sentences containing a bunch of different definitions for the same word. You just have to tell us the word.

COULTON: So if I said, I'm going to an elegant dance wearing a giant sphere-shaped dress, you would answer ball, since a ball is an elegant dance and a sphere.

EISENBERG: Right. You're going to be competing, playing against each other.

RUDDY: Oh, oh no.

COULTON: (Laughter).

MONES: You turned us against each other.

RUDDY: Luke is better at trivia, and I'm much better at everything else.


RUDDY: Going to be hard.

MONES: Yeah.

EISENBERG: It's all going to be great. OK, Samantha, this first one's for you.


EISENBERG: Super, super - like, just a - it's a nice, easy slide into the first one.

RUDDY: All right.

EISENBERG: Officer, I swear I don't know how the bottom of this tree and elephant trunk ended up in the butt of my car. I think I just totally said that wrong. Anyways, I'm going to say it again. Don't listen to what I just said.

RUDDY: OK, I'll forget it.

EISENBERG: Erase it. Here we go.

MONES: (Laughter).

EISENBERG: Samantha. Officer, I swear, I don't know how the bottom of this tree and elephant nose ended up in the butt of my car.

RUDDY: Trunk.

EISENBERG: You were like, how many other words could there be?


RUDDY: I was like, tusk?

MONES: I was so confused.

RUDDY: I was so confused.

EISENBERG: I love it when I say, this first one's going to be easy, and then I just hand you the answer to make it harder.


RUDDY: I was like, is the answer in the question?

COULTON: We'll say a word, and then you say that word. That's the game.

EISENBERG: You've got to figure out what word in the question is the one we're thinking of.

COULTON: That's right.

RUDDY: (Laughter).

COULTON: All right, Luke, here is one for you. Can't wait until the snow melts. I'm going to jump out of bed, push a slinky down the stairs and do a keg stand on a natural water source.

MONES: A spring.

COULTON: Spring. Yes, that is correct.

EISENBERG: And I was personally - because I purchased a Slinky for my son, but it's made out of plastic.

COULTON: Oh, yeah, the plastic ones.

MONES: Oh, no.

EISENBERG: Now, honestly, the next part was we have to get stairs. We don't have stairs.


RUDDY: That's so funny.

MONES: It's really a stairs toy.

RUDDY: For your third birthday, a Slinky; for your fourth birthday, a second floor.


EISENBERG: I felt so dumb about that. All right, Samantha - hard-hitting question for you.


EISENBERG: It's hard to sit still on this seat without a back on it because I really need to go No. 2.

RUDDY: Stool.

EISENBERG: That's right. That's right.

RUDDY: Yeah.


COULTON: I love the gravity with which you guys navigated that question and answer. Congratulations.

EISENBERG: (Laughter).

RUDDY: Thank you. Thank you. I try to take everything seriously...


RUDDY: ...Even if it is a poop reference.

COULTON: Even if it's about poop.


COULTON: (Laughter).

EISENBERG: That's it. There's nothing more that needs to be said after that. It is perfect as it is.

COULTON: That doesn't bring up any stories, anything anybody wants to talk about?

MONES: Yes. I'd like to talk about poop for a little while, NPR.


EISENBERG: That reminds me...

RUDDY: Yeah. I was told we're not allowed to swear, but I do have a 25-minute story.


COULTON: (Laughter).

EISENBERG: Welcome to Colon Corner.


COULTON: (Laughter) Colon Corner.

MONES: The segment we're starting as contestants - as one-time contestants on the show.

RUDDY: It's like Car Talk.

COULTON: Yeah. It's like Car Talk but about poop. That's actually...


COULTON: It's not a terrible idea.

EISENBERG: That's a great idea.

RUDDY: You can have that, NPR.

COULTON: That's more of an APM kind of thing. OK.


COULTON: All right. This is for you, Luke. My favorite Pokemon trainer let his Charizard's tail get too close to a tree indigenous to the northern hemisphere, and it burnt down to cinders.


COULTON: Ash. Yes, exactly.


COULTON: I was laughing because halfway through that sentence, I had that feeling again where I was like, what am I talking about?

EISENBERG: You never got into the Pokemon, Jonathan Coulton?

COULTON: No, I was never into the Pokemon, even Pokemon Go because I saw people wandering around, endangering their lives, walking into traffic while looking at their phones. And I know how I am with games. And I was like, if I start doing this, I'm going to be hit by a car in a matter of minutes.


COULTON: So I better not.

RUDDY: Yeah, I had a near-death experience playing Pokemon Go, so now I'm a Digimon person.

MONES: Yeah.

COULTON: Yeah. That's much safer. That's much safer.

EISENBERG: Thank you. I'm glad. Near-death experience - you just almost walked into traffic?

RUDDY: Oh, yeah - had to get that Charmander.


RUDDY: Yeah, he was in the car. It was crazy.



EISENBERG: How'd you get in here?

RUDDY: He was driving. He was driving the car.

MONES: Yeah.

COULTON: That's what they should do. They should put Pokemon into cars so you actually - the game is you actually have to flag somebody down and get them to stop.

MONES: You have to hail a taxi.


EISENBERG: There he is.

COULTON: (Laughter).

EISENBERG: Great game. You both did - you slayed that game. Wonderful.

RUDDY: Thank you.

EISENBERG: Wonderful.

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