Any Questions? #78

Feb 22, 2013

There's no echo in the studio. Hosted by WAMC’s Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel, this week’s Any Questions? features guests Ian Chillag and Mike Danforth, producers of Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me and hosts of the podcast How To Do Everything.

Last week's challenge
Think of a four-word phrase famously used on a flag during wartime in the U.S. Use each letter in the phrase once, and rearrange them to spell a two-word phrase that might describe someone unprepared for war. What are the phrases?
Answer: The phrase is DON'T TREAD ON ME. Following the directions, you can spell NOT ARMED.

On-air questions: You won’t be hearing double this week. In addition to the usual Ian and Mike, we’ve got another Ian and Mike with us. Ian Chillag and Mike Danforth are producers of NPR's Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me and the hosts of the podcast How To Do Everything. This week, Ian and Mike will figure out what each list of steps describes how to do. For example, if the steps were "Step 1: Call 1-888-WAIT-WAIT. Step 2: Correctly complete two out of three limericks," the answer would be "How to get Carl Kasell's voice on your home answering machine."

1. Step 1: Defeat the Cincinnati Reds three games to two. Step 2: Defeat the St. Louis Cardinals four games to three. Step 3: Defeat the Detroit Tigers four games to none.
2. Step 1: Sit in the pumpkin patch all night. Step 2: Get ridiculed by Charlie Brown and the gang. Step 3: Miss out on trick-or-treating.
3. Start with "It was the best of times; it was the worst of times." Step 2: Write 45 chapters. Step 3: End with “It is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known.”
4. Step 1: Get government funds to research synthetic rubber compounds. Step 2: Accidentally discover how to create a non-toxic, bouncy material. Step 3: Package the pinkish-brown material in plastic eggs and sell it in toy stores.
5. Step 1: Make a patty from almost one ton of ground beef. Step 2: Cook for four hours, flipping once using a crane. Step 3: Top with 200 pounds of bacon, cheese, lettuce, and onions. Step 4: Serve on a 10-foot wide bun.

Extra credit
1. Step 1: Delay a vote in the U.S. Senate by speaking as long as you wish about anything you wish. Step 2: Repeat Step 1.
2. Step 1: Walk on stage. Step 2: Don't play an instrument for 273 seconds. Step 3: Walk off stage.

This week's challenge
Start with the phrase MIKE AND IAN. Change one letter to a G, then rearrange the result to spell two people you might find in a fairy tale. Who are they?

On-air questions

1. How to win the 2012 World Series
2. How to wait for the Great Pumpkin
3. How to write A Tale of Two Cities
4. How to invent Silly Putty
5. How to make the world's largest hamburger

Extra credit
1. How to filibuster
2. How to play 4'33" by John Cage