No. 170: "Aust/Test"

No. 170: "Aust/Test"

No. 170: "Aust/Test"

Testing your knowledge of what happened this week
Jan. 9 1999 3:30 AM

No. 170: "Aust/Test"

I give the headline, you give the lead.

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From the front page of South Australia's Advertiser: "1664 IDIOTS."

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by 5 p.m. ET Sunday to e-mail your answer to newsquiz@slate.com.

Wednesday's question (No. 169)--"Eats/Wets":

You chew household objects and drool copiously, and perhaps you defecate or urinate on the floor.

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Who are you, and what should you do next?

"You're Strom Thurmond, and you do whatever it takes to keep Sid Blumenthal from getting the photos to Larry Flynt or David Talbot."--Daniel Radosh

"You're Philip Roth, and you should probably chill before your next lover moves in."--Andrew "Go Danes" Silow-Carroll

"You're a toddler, and it's time to grow up."--Molly Shearer Gabel (Norman Oder had a similar answer; as did Matthew Cole, only more personal; and James Poniewozik, only feverishly baroque.)

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"If my dog is reading this, he'd better run now."--Gloria D. Howard

"You're pre-approved for a 18.8 percent APR Visa card. Just fill out the enclosed forms, mail them in, and spend away, spend away, spend away!"--Tim Carvell

Click for more responses.

Randy's Wrap-Up

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It is tempting, when presented with any list of unattractive qualities--and let's assume copious drooling is unattractive--to apply it willy-nilly to our ideological foes. Naturally we resist. Not for us the cheap swipes at Sen. Blowhard and Rep. Windbag. Not for us the easy recourse to the our-leaders-are-all-corrupt-and-stupid gag--and let's assume they're not. We know that knee-jerk cynicism is as uninteresting as persistent naiveté--although the former is the superior betting strategy if you're playing blackjack in Vegas with Death. That aside, the rapier is better than the bludgeon--unless, of course, you are a Los Angeles policeman hamstrung by goody-goody regulations made by a bunch of stupid, corrupt, persistently naive politicians who won't let a guy serve and protect. And while we're at it, let's also admit that today's question drifted into "Smelly, Lethargic, Incoherent" territory. But aren't you glad it did?

Animal Companion Answer

You are a dog suffering from separation anxiety. You should take Clomicalm, an anti-depressant just approved for pets by the Food and Drug Administration. Also OK'd, Pfizer's Anipryl, for "senior dogs" suffering from mental deterioration. Both drugs, under different names, are already used by people.

Nicholas Dodman, a Tufts University veterinarian and the author of The Dog Who Loved Too Much, noted that Prozac is also an excellent canine treatment, particularly for dogs with fear of crowds or thunderstorms. "You can buy that dog some time," he said about Anipryl, "Buy it an extra year where you would have been at your wits' end in a sort of latrine situation."

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Virtually Metaphoric Extra

Which of the following is meant literally, and which is meant figuratively?

1. "We don't want to be the cheapest meat on the block."

2. "Pizza with Christie Todd Whitman."

3. "My ... home is here on the floor."

4. " 'Snip and dunk' conversions."

5. "These dwarfs may look insubstantial, but they are like cannonballs to a giant galaxy."

Answers

1. Literally. John Hargerla of the National Pork Producers Council hopes people buy the other white meat because it's good, not just because hog prices have plunged.

2. Literally. This was a stop on the five month victory tour for the Toms River, N.J., Little League World Series champs who've just been invited to the White House.

3. Figuratively. After being sworn in as speaker, regular guy Dennis Hastert made his first remarks not from the speaker's chair but from the well of the House of Representatives.

4. Literally. In Israel, strict Orthodox Jews disdain Reform and Conservative conversions as little more than circumcision for the men and immersion in a ritual bath for the women.

5. Figuratively and literally. Astronomer John Kormendy explains new research showing that some small galaxies have dark matter densities about 100 times greater than that of large galaxies. Dark matter constitutes most of the universe.

Race Results

Top target: Strom Thurmond.

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