No. 89: “Blue Lacuna”

No. 89: “Blue Lacuna”

No. 89: “Blue Lacuna”

Testing your knowledge of what happened this week
July 30 1998 3:30 AM

No. 89: “Blue Lacuna”

No. 89: "Blue Lacuna"

By Randy Cohen

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Fill in the blank. Robert Poirier, whose company will rack up $1 billion in sales next year, says, "The average American is in a grocery store two to three times a week. I'd like people to start thinking that if they haven't got __________, then there's something missing."

62000_62279_newsquiz_email

by noon ET Wednesday to e-mail your answer (newsquiz@slate.com).

Responses to Monday's question (No. 88)--"That's Entertainment?":

"In some cases, people exiting the theaters were crying. In other cases, they could not initially talk," said entertainment executive Jim Tharp. What had they just seen?

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"A dismaying premonition of an even more self-important-than-usual Oscar night."--Daniel Radosh

"The Piano, just re-released in Dolby 'Empath-o-vision.' "--Meg Wolitzer

"Due to a technical error, all Sony theaters substituted Buffalo 66 for Mulan."--Peter Lerangis

"The first screening at Angelika Theatres' new Lachrymose-American Film Festival for the Initially Mute."--Jack Hitt

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"The final performance at Big Bobo's XXX All-Girl Action!!! in Times Square. (Big Bobo's closed Sunday morning and will open in two weeks as 'Barnes & Reebok,' the world's largest books-music-athletic-footwear superstore.)"--Andrew "Lives in Frisco" Solovay

"One Night Only: David Copperfield Messes With Your Bodily Functions."--Manolis Priniotakis

"I'm not sure, but I'll bet that's the last time they hire the Hell's Angels to collect the March of Dimes donations."--Matt Strelecky

Bonus Replies--Mel Brooks Corner

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"Anne Frankenstein, my new musical based on the story of a mad scientist who builds an entire Jewish family in his attic."--Beth Sherman

"The HORRIBLE new Broadway play that chronicles the life of a young androgynous woman who was born during the Nazi occupation of Holland and grew up to become the housekeeper for the Bradys: The Diary of Anne B. Davis!"--Jon Hotchkiss

Click for more responses.

Randy's Wrap-Up

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Studies have shown, well, pretty much anything their funding organization has needed them to show. And it would, of course, be foolish to form general conclusions based on the responses of a few (admittedly bright and amusing) "News Quiz" participants, none of whom I've seen in a clinical setting. But for what it's worth, these are the cultural references used more than once as epitomes of awfulness in today's responses--director Steven Spielberg, magician David Copperfield, lecher Bill Clinton, concession stand prices, flatulence. I'd say the screenplay writes itself.

I'd Like to Thank the Members of the Academy for this Answer

Saving Private Ryan. Jim Tharp, distribution chief at DreamWorks, the company that, with Paramount, jointly produced Spielberg's film, is pleased that it grossed $30 million in its opening weekend. Tharp attributes the movie's success to its cast, director, and script--and to good word of mouth. Apparently, the audience eventually regained its power of speech.

Extra: Steven L. Smith's Cast Your Fate to the Wind

They were watching a dramatic re-enactment of the Ken Starr investigation:

Ken Starr............Ed Harris

Bill Clinton............Woody Harrelson

Hillary Clinton............Michelle Pfeiffer

Monica Lewinsky............Ricki Lake

Linda Tripp............Kathy Bates

Susan McDougal............Susan Sarandon

James McDougal............Albert Finney

Webster Hubbell............Randy Quaid

News Quiz readers are invited to complete the cast. I've got to get to work.--S.L.S.

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