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Panel Questions


BILL KURTIS: From NPR and WBEZ Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME, the NPR news quiz. I'm Bill Kurtis. We're playing this week with Helen Hong, Alonzo Bodden and Peter Grosz. And here again is your host, a man who washes his hands after washing his hands just to be safe, Peter Sagal.



Thank you, Bill. In just a minute, Bill orders the chef's special at a rhyme-staurant (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, it is time to play the game that we like to call...

KURITS: The Viral Load.

SAGAL: Sometimes, the COVID news moves faster than Donald Trump running to a bunker. We're going to ask you about it rapid-fire true-false style. Get your question right - you get a point. You ready to play?


SAGAL: Here we go. Alonzo, true or false - in response to COVID-19 hardships, the University of Saskatchewan announced that it would be reducing tuition for its fall semester by 18 whole dollars.




SAGAL: To be fair, that's Canadian dollars. In U.S. dollars, that's about $13. Helen, true or false - a theme park in Denmark is enforcing social distancing by adopting a no-bumping policy on their bumper car ride.

HONG: False.

SAGAL: Right.


SAGAL: They're enforcing social distancing by allowing one person on the roller coaster at a time.

PETER GROSZ: (Laughter).

SAGAL: Peter, true or false - a man in Tantara, Peru, who was out drinking with friends in violation of lockdown rules laid down in a coffin and pretended to be a corpse to avoid arrest.

GROSZ: True.



SAGAL: That man was the mayor of Tantara, Peru.

GROSZ: (Laughter).

SAGAL: Alonzo, true or, of course, true - a man who attended the crowded Memorial Day pool party in Lake of the Ozarks has tested positive for coronavirus.

BODDEN: Hard to believe, but I'm going to go with true.

SAGAL: It's actually, of course, it's true, but we'll give it to you.


SAGAL: Helen, true or false - according to The Washington Post, Americans are reaching record levels of fitness because of all the exercise they're doing during lockdown.

HONG: Oh, false.

SAGAL: Right.


SAGAL: They're reaching record levels of exercise injuries. Alonzo, true or false - CNN reported this week that all the time we're spending at home is leading to an increase in the sales of sweatpants.


SAGAL: No, it's false. It's leading to an increase in the number of nudists. Helen, true or false...

GROSZ: (Laughter).

SAGAL: ...Disney World is planning to reopen with social distancing rules enforced by playing the song "Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah, Zip-A-Six-Feet-Away" (ph) on loudspeakers.

HONG: False.

SAGAL: Right.


SAGAL: The rules will be enforced by Imperial Stormtroopers...


SAGAL: ...From "Star Wars."

SAGAL: And that's it for our Viral Load. If they get coughed up, we'll bring them to you next time.


SAGAL: OK, panel. Now it's time for some more questions from the week's news. Peter, as the pandemic rages on, according to The New York Times, people in cities everywhere are deciding to make what lifestyle change?

GROSZ: People in cities everywhere?

SAGAL: Uh-huh.

GROSZ: They are throwing their trash out their window.


GROSZ: I don't know. I'll take a hint.

SAGAL: Don't wear your Manolo Blahniks out there in the field. They'll sink into the dirt.

GROSZ: People are not wearing heels? They're wearing...

SAGAL: Well, no.

GROSZ: ...Flats? Yes, someone steal this for the sake of...

SAGAL: Alonzo, go ahead.

BODDEN: They're moving to the country.

SAGAL: Exactly right.


SAGAL: Months of being stuck inside the same tiny apartments and the increased flexibility that people have for remote working has made many people choose to leave the city, go live off the land, raise chickens to lay eggs.

GROSZ: Yes, but...

SAGAL: The rural folk must be so happy about the urbanites coming to the country to learn their ways and give them coronavirus.


GROSZ: Yeah.

SAGAL: I mean, not - a lot of people are not cut out for country life. If you are milking your cow, and you ask the cow if it has almond milk, you should not be there.


HONG: I actually understand this, like, inclination because since the lockdown has started, I've gone full doomsday prepper. And I'm, like, growing a garden out on my patio for the first time. And I have so far killed many, many plants. So...

SAGAL: So you're not cut out for this.

HONG: No. Like, nobody give me a chicken.

BODDEN: With all due respect, a garden in a box on a balcony is not going full doomsday planning.

HONG: (Laughter).

BODDEN: Just think there's a little more involved in a doomsday plan than, oh, my gosh. My little plant died in my box on my balcony.

SAGAL: Oh, no, Alonzo.

BODDEN: How will I make it?

SAGAL: I'm ready for when the big one drops because I have a window box with bah-sil (ph).


GROSZ: You'll all be eating capreses that are just mozzarella and tomato, you fools. I...


SAGAL: I have pesto until civilization rebuilds.

HONG: I call mine bay-sil (ph), Peter. It's basil (laughter).

SAGAL: I know. I said that wrong.

(SOUNDBITE OF VIC MIZZY SONG, "GREEN ACRES THEME") Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.