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Who's Bill This Time?

UNIDENTIFIED PERSON: The following program was taped before an audience of no one.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

BILL KURTIS: From NPR and WBEZ Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME, the NPR news quiz. Why not celebrate fall with me - a cup of hot ap-Bill (ph) cider? I'm Bill Kurtis. And here is your host, a man who just had to reread the instruction manual for his pants, Peter Sagal.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

PETER SAGAL, HOST:

Thank you, Bill. And speaking of Bill, we want to take a moment to honor our very own Bill Kurtis celebrating a big birthday this week. He turned 80 years old. So in honor of this, Bill, we got you a present. We did. We got you the most esteemed and respected person we could find to serenade you.

(SOUNDBITE OF IL DOLCEACQUINO'S "PIANO PIANO")

KURTIS: Thanks, Peter. (Singing) Happy birthday to me. Happy birthday to moi (ph). Happy birthday, Bill Kurtis. Happy birthday, legendary anchorman Bill Kurtis.

(SOUNDBITE OF SOUND EFFECTS)

SAGAL: Here's to a great and healthy 80 more years, Bill. Later on, we're going to be talking to Jonna Mendez, the former master of disguise for the CIA. But first, you can pretend to be whoever you want just by changing your voice when you call us. That's 1-888-WAIT-WAIT or 1-888-924-8924 to play our games. It's time to welcome our first listener contestant.

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

SHAKARA BARNES: Hi. This is Shakara Barnes. I'm calling from Atlanta, Ga.

SAGAL: Atlanta - how are things there? Kind of busy, I'm told.

BARNES: Yeah. You know, a little too busy for my taste.

SAGAL: Really - even these days? What do you do there?

BARNES: I'm actually a judge with Georgia's administrative court, so yeah.

SAGAL: Wow.

BARNES: Court has definitely taken a different look these days.

SAGAL: Is all court being done over Zoom these days remotely? Or you're actually meeting in person in the chambers?

BARNES: Occasionally, I will go into court. But for the most part, out of an abundance of caution, I've been Zooming along.

SAGAL: Is it hard to put the fear of God into various defendants and lawyers over Zoom? Do you have to, you know, just scowl even harder?

BARNES: Yeah. You know, it's actually not that hard for me (laughter).

JOEL KIM BOOSTER: Well, Peter, I think I've heard enough. I think she's ready for the Supreme Court. I...

SAGAL: I think so.

BOOSTER: She's got the job.

DULCE SLOAN: Next.

BOOSTER: She's got the job.

SLOAN: Next.

BOOSTER: She has the gravitas, the charm.

BARNES: (Laughter) I appreciate...

BOOSTER: She's ready.

SAGAL: Why not (laughter)? Well, welcome to our show, Shakara. Let me introduce you to our panel this week. First up, it's a correspondent on "The Daily Show" and the host of the podcast That Blackass Show. She's got a new movie, "Chick Fight," coming out in November. It's Dulce Sloan.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SLOAN: Hey, girl.

BARNES: Hi.

SLOAN: Just so you know, I grew up in Atlanta, so I am very supportive of what's happening right now.

BARNES: OK. I am, too. I'm feeling this.

SAGAL: Next, a comedian whose half-hour special you can see on Comedy Central and is a writer for "Big Mouth." It's Joel Kim Booster.

(LAUGHTER)

BOOSTER: I got to tell you, the way you said abundance of caution really, like, did it for me. I'm rooting for you now.

BARNES: (Laughter).

SAGAL: Finally, a comedian who can be heard on the podcast Who's Paying Attention? on the All Things Comedy network. It's Alonzo Bodden.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

ALONZO BODDEN: Hello, Your Honor.

SAGAL: Shakara, welcome to the show. You're going to play Who's Bill This Time. Bill Kurtis is going to read you three quotations from this week's news. If you can correctly identify or explain just two of them, you'll win our prize - any voice from our show you might choose on your voicemail. You ready to play?

BARNES: I am ready to hear from the birthday boy.

SAGAL: All right.

KURTIS: (Laughter).

SAGAL: Bill, please give her her first quote. It's from President Trump.

KURTIS: I actually like women much more than men.

SAGAL: Now, the president was not filling out his Tinder profile. He'll do that next year. He was setting the stage for a big announcement this weekend - his choice for what position?

BARNES: The vacant Supreme Court...

SAGAL: Yes...

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: ...Indeed - the open seat...

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: ...At the Supreme Court. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg made history one last time as she became the first woman to be given the honor of lying in state at the Capitol and also the first woman ever to roll over in state at the U.S. Capitol.

BODDEN: (Laughter).

SAGAL: Trump has promised, we know, to nominate a woman to take her place - at least a 7, he said.

BOOSTER: Honestly, Peter, I'm just excited that if someone's going to take away my rights, they're an absolute girl boss. Slay, yes.

(LAUGHTER)

BOOSTER: Representation matters.

SAGAL: Yes, girl power to end girl autonomy - yes...

SLOAN: (Laughter).

SAGAL: That would be great.

BODDEN: I can't wait to hear who Putin pi... - I mean...

SAGAL: (Laughter).

BODDEN: ...Who the choice - no, this is - he's getting a dose of reality. When she's laying in state, he went there, and they actually started chanting, vote him out. And I think that's only because lock him up was taken.

SAGAL: Right.

KURTIS: (Laughter).

SAGAL: Now, the Democrats, of course, are very upset about all this happening, but there's not a lot they can do to stop it. If they win everything in November, they are threatening to pack the court, adding judges to balance out Trump's conservative picks. At this point, it's going to take a lot to even things out, given what's happened, so we look forward to the confirmation hearings for Justice Bernie Sanders, Justice Colin Kaepernick and Justice Toyota Prius come to life.

BODDEN: Well, we'll see. The fortunate thing is that the Republicans are not hypocritical at all - that they actually explain their actions. And they're being fair to everybody, giving America exactly what it - it was amazing. They're, like, we'll just flip completely - they don't even flop anymore. They used to flip-flop. And I respect a flip-flop.

SAGAL: Now they just keep flipping in the same direction.

BODDEN: But when you just flip with no flop...

SAGAL: Yeah.

BODDEN: ...I can't respect that.

SAGAL: Now, I'll say this. Say what you will about Lindsey Graham. Go ahead, guys. Say what you will about Lindsey Graham.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: Shakara, we have another quote for you. Here's Bill.

BARNES: All right. I'm ready.

KURTIS: Anarchists don't have jurisdictions. That's the whole point.

SAGAL: That was a New York Times writer tweeting about the fact that what city was declared a, quote, "anarchist jurisdiction" by the federal government?

BARNES: Was is New York City?

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: It was New York City.

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: This week, the Justice Department declared that New York and a few other cities are, quote, "anarchist jurisdictions." That means they won't get any federal funds. Yes, anarchy - we've all seen it. That's what happens when an a cappella group from Ohio visiting the TGI Fridays in Times Square hears they've released 20 Hamilton tickets at the TKTS booth. Now, you're there in New York, Dulce. How goes the anarchist jurisdiction?

SLOAN: They're not working hard enough. Apparently...

SAGAL: The anarchists, you mean?

SLOAN: ...People are just sitting outside and eating near (ph) restaurants, enjoying their lives. There's no looting. No one's burning anything down. I mean, the craziest thing that happened was them starting to clean the subways. Like, that was the wildest part.

BOOSTER: Well, they recently just said that you're no longer allowed to defecate in the subways. If that's...

BODDEN: That qualifies as anarchy in New York. They clean subways. I grew up in New York, and I was there...

BOOSTER: Yeah.

BODDEN: ...In the good old days in the '70s where you risked your life in the subways, back when we cared. Now you can just ride down there like people. You're spoiled, they'll say. You have no idea how it used to be.

SLOAN: You think I ride the subway?

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: I should point out that some - the people who were very unhappy about this anarchist jurisdiction are actual anarchists. One of them said, quote, "Anarchists don't do jurisdictions. We do what's called pre-figurative politics, building new, more equitable worlds now" - which is a great anarchist statement because no single word in that sentence is cooperating with any other.

SLOAN: (Laughter).

SAGAL: All right. Your last quote is from British comedian Noel Fielding.

KURTIS: Is it scoan (ph) or scawn (ph)?

SAGAL: That was the host of a popular reality show asking the most important baking question during the first episode of the new season of what?

BARNES: Oh, gosh. Is it "The Great British Baking"...

SAGAL: Yes. It's the...

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

KURTIS: Yay.

SLOAN: Yay.

SAGAL: ..."Great British Bake Off."

(SOUNDBITE OF APPLAUSE SOUND EFFECT)

SAGAL: Congratulations, America. After a terrible, boring six months, there's finally something new to watch, and it's completely pleasant. Nobody gets fed to a tiger, and nobody's doing it in the hot tub - unless hot tub refers to a pot on the stove, and doing it refers to making a delicate custard. If you haven't seen it, "The Great British Bake Off" is a reality baking contest in which 12 contestants from all over Great Britain get together to be super nice and love each other even though they're competing - just one more way it's completely un-American.

SLOAN: Well, when they tried to do the American version, they lost - like, I had never seen Americans on a reality show be so nice to each other. It's like they were...

SAGAL: That's what's weird about it.

SLOAN: They put them in the tent, and they were like, you know what? I am OK. I just want to make these biscuits. I'm fine. As opposed to every other American show - I didn't come here to make friends. You're, like, this a cooking show. You're on "Chopped."

SAGAL: (Laughter).

SLOAN: Why are you being so rude? But I love that show. My friend Lily (ph) texted me today and was, like, hey, the new season is out. I've got to link this thing to you. And I was, like, oh - because you learn so much stuff. There's so much technique.

SAGAL: Like, what have you learned from watching this?

SLOAN: Well, I learned, one, the metric system. I know why they didn't teach it to us.

BOOSTER: Dulce, you learned the metric system from watching "The Great British Bake Off"?

SLOAN: No, I learned that the metric system is hard. That's...

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: It's gotten that far.

SLOAN: Yeah. But a tablespoon is still a tablespoon, so they didn't get too far off, right?

SAGAL: That's true. That's true. Bill, how did Shakara do on our quiz?

KURTIS: The verdict is in, and she is an expert. She got every one right.

SLOAN: Yay.

SAGAL: Congratulations, Shakara.

BODDEN: Congratulations.

BARNES: Thanks, everyone. Take care.

SLOAN: You too.

(SOUNDBITE OF TOM HOWE'S "THE GREAT BRITISH BAKE OFF THEME") Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.