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Bluff The Listener


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 Laci Mosley, Faith Salie and Peter Grosz. And here again is your host, representing 50% of the Peters on this week's show, Peter Sagal.



Thank you, Bill. Right now, it is 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 are on WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME.

JOHN SCHMIDT: Hey, this is John Schmidt, originally from Wichita, Kan., but calling in from beautiful snowy Chicago, Ill.

SAGAL: Welcome to Chicago. When did you move here?

SCHMIDT: So I am a graduate student in public policy at the University of Chicago. So I've been here about a year and a half now.

SAGAL: So are you going to be - do you plan, like, being a politician or a high-paid political consultant - something like that?

SCHMIDT: I would say no to politician, but high-paid political consultant doesn't sound half bad when you say it.

SAGAL: Well, good luck with that. And welcome to the show, John. You're going to play our game in which you must try to tell truth from fiction. Bill, what is John's topic?

KURTIS: Stay safe out there.

SAGAL: PPE - personal protective equipment - still very much a part of our lives. We wear it everywhere, except over our noses, for some reason. Our panelists are going to tell you about a different surprising use of personal protective equipment in the news. Pick the one who's telling the truth - you'll win the WAIT WAITer of your choice on your voicemail. You ready to play?

SCHMIDT: Let's do it.

SAGAL: First, let's hear from Faith Salie.

FAITH SALIE: Earlier this week, Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh received a massive donation of PPE from a masked man dressed in Elizabethan garb calling himself Shakespeare in a Shield. That man is also known as John Morahan (ph), head of the theater department at nearby Point Park University.

But why did this professor even possess 750 sets of hospital-grade protection gear, which he calls rehearsal garments? Turns out Morahan teaches a class called Articulation and Projection 101, in which every student must perform a Shakespearean soliloquy with the goal of enunciating as vigorously as possible. The rest of the class as audience dons face shields and medical isolation gowns to protect them from the flying spittle that comes out of the actor's mouths as they act very, very hard and loud.

It's like being in the splash zone at SeaWorld, only with saliva. I call it diction juice, Morahan chuckles. I always say, the wetter your audience, the better your performance.

LACI MOSLEY: (Laughter).

SAGAL: College theater department uses PPE to protect themselves from each other's spit while performing. Your next story of PPE in the N-E-W-S comes from Laci Mosley.

MOSLEY: The Foo Fighters are set to release their first new album in four years, and getting here has been a journey. During the recording of the album, several members of the band sustained injuries which can only be described as metal neck, rock 'n' roll elbow and mosh pit secretions. Fifty-two-year-old frontman David Grohl suffered the worst of it. A quote - "I head-banged forward, bumped into the mic and knocked a tooth clean out. I was shredding my face off. And, literally, part of my face came off."

After multiple short stints in the ER and the Denny's early bird all you can eat buffet, the band has become aware that their fans might not be able to physically handle their music anymore, either. So in anticipation of their fans' desire to thrash, rock out and fight Foo when they hear their music, anyone who buys or streams their new album will be offered official Foo Fighters helmets, neck braces, mouth guards and adult diapers. Foo is not available for comment at this time.

SAGAL: The Foo Fighters giving out protective equipment to protect their fans, their aging fans, from the dangers of head banging. Your last story of protective gear comes from Peter Grosz.

PETER GROSZ: The pandemic has left many of us depressed, anxious and looking for ways to self-soothe. Some of us drown our sorrows in alcohol, while others stress-eat sugary, fattening desserts. Thanks to Oakshire microbrewery in Eugene, Ore., we can now do both at once. Their latest specialty beer is mango raspberry cheesecake smoothie sour ale. It's a Shangri-La of alcohol and dessert, like drinking bananas foster without letting the brandy burn off or pouring a margarita on your key lime pie.

You're probably thinking, problem solved. I don't need the vaccine. Hook me up to a cheesecake beer IV and call me in September. But unfortunately, the company had to issue a voluntary recall of mango raspberry cheesecake smoothie sour ale this week when they discovered that some cans showed, quote, "visible signs of re-fermentation that could cause them to explode." It's too delicious to be contained by mere aluminum. I'm sorry. I meant to say, it's too dangerous to be contained by mere aluminum.

Oakshire gave very specific disposal instructions on their website. This is directly from the website. "If you have mango cheesecake in your possession, please do not open it. Do not attempt to return it. Before disposing of any cans of mango cheesecake, please put on protective gloves and a face shield or goggles and a mask. Place all remaining cans in a closed box and place immediately in a secured garbage container or dumpster outside," unquote.

We here at WAIT WAIT want you to know that if you're listening to this and you already drank a can of mango cheesecake, you are not - we repeat - not in danger of exploding yourself. But anyone who comes near you in the next few days should wear protective gloves and a face shield just to be safe.

SAGAL: All right. Here are your choices. We heard about some PPEs, protective gear, in the news this week. Was it, from Faith Salie, the equipment used by a theater department to protect themselves from each other's spit as they expectorated; from Laci, the Foo Fighters giving out protective equipment with their new album so their aging fans can protect themselves from, you know, injuries endemic to music listening; or from Peter Grosz, gear to protect yourself from a particular beer? Which of these is the real story of PPE in the news?

SCHMIDT: I think it's got to be the poisonous beer. You know, science has gone too far, I think.

SAGAL: OK. Well, to bring you all the correct answer, we spoke to a journalist who reported on the real story.

SARAH CROW: A beer produced in Eugene, Ore., was recalled because they discovered that it can explode.

SAGAL: That was Sarah Crow, a senior editor at Galvanized Media, talking about the beer so bad you need PPE just to throw it away. Congratulations, John. You got it right. You earned a point for Peter Grosz. You've won our prize, the voice of your choice on your voicemail.

SCHMIDT: Thank you so much.

SAGAL: Thank you. Well done. And we'll look for you, you know, cynically selling your soul someday to get some nobody elected to high office.

SCHMIDT: (Laughter) Thank you. Please do.

SALIE: (Laughter).

SAGAL: Take care.

SCHMIDT: All right. Bye-bye.

(SOUNDBITE OF THE ANIMALS SONG, "I'M CRYING") Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.