By Randy Cohen
Regulations proposed in New York would limit its size to 78 feet long, 40 feet wide, and 70 feet tall. Size of what?
by noon ET Tuesday to e-mail your answer (NewsQuiz@slate.com).
Responses to Thursday's question (No. 57)--"Benched":
A Supreme Court decision this week means good news for Fox TV. How so?
"It's complicated, but basically When Executions Go Wrong Parts 1, 2, and 3 just got the green light."--Bill Franzen
"It was ruled that the TV test pattern counts as educational programming for kids, because it teaches that life can be boring."--Patty Marx
"Elective lobotomies are now going to be covered by Medicaid."--David Rakoff
"The court ruled that the planet Meklar lacked standing to sue the producers of The X-Files for libel."--Andrew "Also-Ran" Solovay
"The court determined that Fox TV does not impede free and fair competition in the teen-angst soap-com genre, therefore Party of Five need not be broken into five 'Parties of One,' one being distributed to each of the other networks."--Expressml
"It involves a 13 episode pickup for Suddenly Scalia. (Cashing in on Godzilla--before it's too late--with the slogan 'Meet Antonin, the Other Reptile Who Has Sex With Himself.')"--Chris Kelly
"The court decided this week to try O.J. one more time, 'just for the hell of it.' "--Tim Carvell
Click for more responses.
Samuel Johnson declined to choose between the poets Derrick and Smart, saying, "Sir, there is no settling the point of precedency between a louse and a flea." So perhaps there is little profit in comparing Fox and the older networks. Some like their police violence refined into the fiction of NYPD Blue; some prefer to see nonfiction police slam nonfiction poor folks up against a car. And still others find police mayhem a curious form of entertainment, preferring their TV violence in the more traditional form of professional sports. For years, a clever entrepreneur on Long Island has produced his own version of National Hockey League games, editing out all the tedious game and leaving only the punch-ups. His bootleg Hockey Fights videos are available by mail. A young writer at the Letterman show once made his boss a Christmas present of one of these compilations; today that writer is ... well, I'd rather not say. But his merits have been recognized, and he's happy in his work. At least he's at a real network show, not at one of the crummy shows (you know, except for The Simpsons) on the Fox network, which, incidentally, is proud to broadcast the NHL playoffs.
Supremely Confident Answer
As many of you know, and Chris Thomas explains so eloquently on, the court ruled unanimously that police are not liable for injuries or deaths caused by high-speed car chases. A cop may be sued only when he deliberately causes harm. There are about 100,000 high-speed pursuits a year, resulting in several hundred deaths.
"If good luck was a hurricane, it would not even muss his hair."--Rick Bragg, Pulitzer Prize winner
"In a tiny Alabama town where people like to recall the legacies of long-dead hunting dogs, and where the courthouse janitor has to stop twice in a crosswalk to say hello to people who call him by name."--Rick Bragg, professional Southerner
"His father did 10 years and then drowned himself slowly, one pint bottle at a time."--Rick Bragg, over-writing regionalist
"She wrote him back and found his letters gentle, sensitive. They fell in love one envelope at a time."--Rick Bragg, lurid Timesman
"Telling the truth in a town of 2,500 can be harder than in a big city."--Rick Bragg, philosophically minded reporter
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