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Limericks

PETER SAGAL, HOST:

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. You can click the contact us link on our website, waitwait.npr.org. You can also check out the Wait Wait Quiz for your smart speaker. It's like having Bill and I right there in your house refusing to leave.

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

ELISE MONTEMAYOR: Hi, this is Elise Montemayor (ph) from Newport News, Va.

SAGAL: Newport News - What's the news in Newport News?

MONTEMAYOR: Nothing much.

SAGAL: Yeah. And what do you do there?

MONTEMAYOR: By day, I am social media coordinator for a local church. But by night - well, night and afternoon, mostly - I am a TikTok creator.

SAGAL: Wait a minute.

PETER GROSZ: Oh, wow.

SAGAL: I was - and I was going to say, I was hoping you were saying, by night, you were a crime fighter.

MONTEMAYOR: No (laughter).

SAGAL: But you are - but I'll take this. TikTok - you are my first, I think, TikTok creator. I've never spoken to one. So tell me, what do you do on TikTok, and how do you make things that everybody wants to watch?

MONTEMAYOR: So on TikTok, I help young athletes - mainly female athletes that mainly play volleyball. If they really want to play in college, I kind of, like, teach them how to go about being a college athlete. I played college volleyball myself, so...

SAGAL: Wow.

MAEVE HIGGINS: That's so cool, Elise. I love that.

GROSZ: That is the first recorded constructive use of TikTok.

SAGAL: Yes. Congratulations. It's finally been done.

GROSZ: Yeah.

MONTEMAYOR: (Laughter) Thank you. Thanks.

SAGAL: Well, Elise, welcome to the show. 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 of the limericks, you'll be a winner. Here is your first limerick.

BILL KURTIS: In the '60s, this drink was just fab. If you loved it, buy all you can grab. This saccharin soda has now reached its coda because Coke will no longer make...

MONTEMAYOR: Tab.

SAGAL: Yes...

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

KURTIS: Tab it is.

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: Exactly right. Coca Cola has announced they're just continuing their Tab soft drink. They are eliminating a number of unprofitable brands, like Zico Coconut Water, which was absolutely gross but thrived for a while with its slogan, still better than Tab.

GROSZ: I didn't know they were making Tab anymore.

SAGAL: Well, they were for people who had nostalgia because Tab was Coke's first diet cola. It was...

GROSZ: Right.

SAGAL: ...Launched in the early '60s, and it had what was available at the time, the artificial sweetener saccharin, instead of sugar.

GROSZ: Right.

SAGAL: I don't know if you've tried some Tab lately, but you can really taste the laboratory.

EUGENE CORDERO: (Laughter).

SAGAL: But not to worry, Tab fans - while your favorite soda may be going away, you'll have the aftertaste for years to come.

(LAUGHTER)

HIGGINS: OK, fair.

CORDERO: What a horrible name though - Tab.

SAGAL: This is true. It turns out that they got the name Tab by using a computer, which at that time is a large thing that took up a room, to generate just a whole bunch of three-letter words. And of these three-letter words, they decided Tab was the one they would use.

CORDERO: Oh.

GROSZ: And the computer was, like, (imitating computerized voice) that was my least favorite one.

(LAUGHTER)

GROSZ: (Imitating computerized voice) I put that in as a joke. Why did you pick that one?

SAGAL: All right. Here is your next limerick.

KURTIS: Our Swiss tale is not anecdotal. As a spreader event, it was total. The high mountain calls gave the virus to all. COVID was spread by our...

MONTEMAYOR: Oh, my goodness. Yodel.

SAGAL: Yes...

GROSZ: Yes.

SAGAL: Yodel...

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: ...Very good.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

CORDERO: Wow.

SAGAL: One might say you spiked that, Elise.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Yes, yodel - a yodeling concert in Switzerland has proved to be a superspreader (ph) event after 600 people attended, and masks were not required. Even if they did wear masks, it might not have helped since Swiss masks, of course, have holes in them. Yodeling...

(LAUGHTER)

GROSZ: Nice.

SAGAL: ...If you're not familiar, is the traditional Swiss art form of music where you open the most diseased part of your body and push out as much virus as possible. The idea is to be able to infect somebody on another hilltop a mile away. It turns out several members of this yodeling choir had the virus, and now the number of cases in the region has doubled, which is just terrible because not only did they get the coronavirus - they had to listen to yodeling.

HIGGINS: Oh.

CORDERO: Was it a concert, you said?

SAGAL: Yeah, it was a...

GROSZ: Right.

SAGAL: ...Yodeling concert because it's...

KURTIS: Yo-da-lay-dee-doo (ph).

SAGAL: Yeah, there you go.

CORDERO: There you go.

GROSZ: There you go.

CORDERO: There it is.

GROSZ: You're acting like you're not really good at yodeling, Bill.

CORDERO: Yeah. I hope nobody's around you because you would have just spread the virus.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Here is your last limerick.

KURTIS: It shrunk to the size of my pinky. It was moldy but really not stinky. My yellow snack cakes were a silly mistake. I opened an eight-year-old...

MONTEMAYOR: (Laughter) Twinkie.

SAGAL: Twinkie - yes...

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Very good.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: You are rocking this.

KURTIS: ...Good.

SAGAL: A man who was named Colin Purrington but is somehow not a cat...

HIGGINS: (Laughter).

SAGAL: ...Bought a case of Twinkies in 2012 because he thought there might no longer be available. This week, he was hungry for something sweet, didn't have anything else, said to himself, hey, Twinkies never go bad. So he actually opened up the case, opened up a Twinkie and found out, quote, "it tasted like an old sock." All right.

Now, he posted some pics of the rotten Twinkies on Instagram because, of course he did. And two mycologists asked to analyze them to figure out exactly what had made them go bad. And we're not going to define mycologists because we know our audience.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: These mycologists had already proven in a prior study that fungus won't grow on a Marshmallow Peeps, showing that even the most primitive forms of life don't like Marshmallow Peeps.

(LAUGHTER)

HIGGINS: I've got a craving for a Twinkie and a can of Tab right about now.

(LAUGHTER)

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

KURTIS: Elise did yo-da-lay-ee-oh (ph) - a winner.

(LAUGHTER)

MONTEMAYOR: Thank you guys so much.

SAGAL: Thank you so much, Elise. And we'll look for you on this TikTok thing I've heard so much about.

MONTEMAYOR: Sounds good. I'll see y'all over there.

SAGAL: Take care.

HIGGINS: Bye, Elise.

MONTEMAYOR: Bye.

(SOUNDBITE OF UNIDENTIFIED SONG)

UNIDENTIFIED MUSICAL ARTIST: (Yodeling). Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.