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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. Or click the contact-us link on our website. That's waitwait.npr.org. And if you want more WAIT WAIT... in your week, check out the WAIT WAIT quiz for your smart speaker. It's out every Wednesday with me and Bill asking you questions all in the comfort of your home or wherever you have your smart speaker. But if you have it someplace other in your home, you're not going to be dealing with it, are you?

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Hi. You're on WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME.

ANDREW SACKMAN: Hi. This is Andrew Sackman (ph) from Lexington, Va.

SAGAL: Oh. How are things in Lexington?

SACKMAN: You're pretty good or good as they can be, at least.

SAGAL: I know. And are you sheltering in place as well? Or do you have one of those essential jobs that gets you out of the house?

SACKMAN: No. I'm not really essential. I actually am an evolutionary virologist. I do experimental evolution with bacteriophage viruses to study the way that viruses adapt to new hosts and new environments.

SAGAL: Wait a minute. You're an evolutionary virologist?

SACKMAN: Yeah.

SAGAL: Aren't you the guy who's supposed to show up, like, right before the end of the movie with the solution to it and you convince the president to do it and he does it and you're the hero?

SACKMAN: That's a little bit above my pay grade.

SAGAL: (Laughter) Well, welcome to the show, Andrew. 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 in two of the limericks, you'll be a winner. You ready to play?

SACKMAN: Yeah.

SAGAL: Here, sir, is your first limerick.

BILL KURTIS: From our waist down, we don't get a glance. So with clothes, we can take a big chance. And now most online shops show increased sales of tops. But the customers aren't buying...

SACKMAN: Pants.

SAGAL: Yes.

KURTIS: You bet.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Pants.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: Sales results from Wal-Mart have seen shirt sales shooting way up while pants sales went way down. Pants, if you have forgotten, are the things we used to wear on our legs, which, if you've forgotten, are the things we used to use to go outside.

ROXANNE ROBERTS: (Laughter).

MO ROCCA: You know, leg warmers feel just so strange if you're not wearing pants.

ROBERTS: (Laughter).

SAGAL: That's true. You should avoid that if all possible. All right - very good. Here is your next limerick.

KURTIS: Woolly mammoths - best spicy or sweet - and a saber-toothed loin is a treat. We used mushroom and soy as a moldable toy. We're inventing new kinds of fake...

SACKMAN: Meat.

KURTIS: Yes.

SAGAL: Yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Very good - meat.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: Vegetarians love the beefy flavor of Impossible Burgers. So now the company is foraying into new kinds of meat beyond the classic pork, chicken and whatever's in Taco Bell. The company is being intentionally vague about what exactly - what kinds of new flavors they'll venture into. It could be something exotic like alligator or maybe wild game or maybe the most dangerous game.

KURTIS: Ooh.

ROCCA: Wait. Who is doing - sorry. Who is doing this?

SAGAL: So this is the Impossible Foods Company. They make the now very famous Impossible Burger, which is made of plant but looks and tastes very much like beef. So they're now saying, well, you know, if we can - we're faking it, they can make any kind of meat that they can think of, not just pork or beef or chicken. So why not, you know, zebra meat? The company is able to alter the texture and flavor of their products. So there's no reason to limit it. You can make Tiger King a tiger meat.

ROBERTS: Oh. That's wrong.

KURTIS: (Laughter).

SAGAL: You know that guy would leap at the chance to endorse that.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: All right. Here is your last limerick.

KURTIS: Though it sounds like a big we-don't-care-athon, we are counting on you to play fair-athon. Just go run on your own and keep track on your phone. And then send in your time for the...

SACKMAN: Marathon.

SAGAL: Yes.

KURTIS: All three.

SAGAL: Marathon.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

KURTIS: That's good.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: The Cleveland marathon, like a lot of races this spring - they were unable to reschedule their event. So they've decided to go virtual. Runners can log their miles anytime in the next month. So look forward to a whole bunch of runners smashing their personal records at this year's Cleveland marathon. Yeah. I couldn't believe it either finished in 35 minutes. And no, that's not Cheeto dust on my shirt. It's Gatorade powder.

ROCCA: I want I want video of the first annual Oak Park marathon, just Peter running up and down his steps for 26 miles.

SAGAL: You missed it, man. I have done it. After runners have submitted their times, they will be mailed a T-shirt and a medal just as if they ran the real thing along with one of those 26.2 stickers for their car. But this time, the number will have air quotes around it.

ALONZO BODDEN: Can I say that I am actually running a marathon right now?

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: You can.

BODDEN: Even as we speak, I am setting a record time.

SAGAL: Who is going to deny you?

(LAUGHTER)

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

KURTIS: Andrew knocked them all down - came in with a perfect score.

SAGAL: Congratulations.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: Well done.

SACKMAN: Thank you.

SAGAL: Now go figure out how to kill the virus and save the world.

SACKMAN: I'll work on it.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "TELL ME LIES")

FLEETWOOD MAC: (Singing) Tell me lies. Tell me sweet, little lies. Tell me lies. Tell me, tell me lies. Oh, no, no. You can't. You can't disguise. No, you can't disguise. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.