No. 171: "It Grates Outdoors"

No. 171: "It Grates Outdoors"

No. 171: "It Grates Outdoors"

Testing your knowledge of what happened this week
Jan. 13 1999 3:30 AM

No. 171: "It Grates Outdoors"

Fill in the blank.


It first happened outside in 1960, and now, frets Reba White Williams, former head of the New York City Art Commission, "it seems as though wherever there is a vacant spot, anybody can _______________ without any consideration of how it looks."


by noon ET Tuesday to e-mail your answer to

Thursday's question (No. 170)--"Aust/Test":

I give the headline, you give the lead.


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

"A testy Alex Trebek lashes out at contestants for not knowing the year New Amsterdam became New York."--Joydip Kundu (Tim Carvell had a similar answer.)

"HYANNIS PORT, MASS.--At a recent clan gathering, all family members with political aspirations ..."--David McShane

"Natural selection takes hold among millionaire yachters."--Ananda Gupta (similarly, Charles Atkinson)


"A recent discovery in Britain's Royal Archives has revealed that six men were executed by King Charles II in 1664 for inappropriate dress at a royal levee. The six men appeared at court wearing tunics with 'Bring Back Oliver Cromwell' embroidered on the front. No Australians were harmed in the incident."--Evan Cornog

"Last week's poll results are in. Slightly more than 1,600 of you answered 'yes' to the question 'I still giggle when I hear the phrase "down under." ' "--Jon Hotchkiss

Click for more responses.

Randy's Wrap-Up


The silly accents, the comical food, the inadequate TV shows--it must be foreigners. Americans are denigrated for a lack of ability to find other countries on a map and a lack of interest in trying. But here's what News Quiz respondents know about one other country, based on a count of all submitted answers:

Australia Reference Tote Board



Pandas (misinformed players only)--0

Dingoes, eating of baby by--5

Bee Gees, eating of baby by--0

Paul Hogan--4

Attacks by sharks--0

Attacks by Robert Hughes--0


Convict forebears--2

Marginality re larger world--0

OK, as it turns out, we don't know all that much. But in a hypothetical reverse version of the News Quiz run in an imaginary Australia, most responses refer to a big, beer-swilling Elvis cruising in a big, gas-guzzling car; insensitively fondling a big, busty blonde on the seat beside him; and firing a pistol out the window, i.e., America in 1957, or what I like to call "Australia."

Aussie Answer


"Police have branded as 'impatient idiots' 1,664 drivers caught on speed cameras at well above the limit. Many of them believed they could drive safely at high speeds because they were 'an expert' behind the wheel. The 1,664 drivers paid around $500,000 in fines, a minimum of $305 each.

Know the Showbiz Extra

Below, four recent headlines from Daily Variety, each followed by two possible leads. Which is genuine?


A. "A chance to gape at a naked old man on a motorcycle lured millions of Americans to movie theaters this weekend for Waking Ned Devine."

B. "Look for Larry Elder, the self-described 'sage from South Central,' to break into the national talk radio landscape this year."


A. "A nude granddad on a Honda was arrested on a Thai golf course Sunday, in an act police say was inspired by 'an adorable Irish movie about puckish, beer-swilling stereotypes.' "

B. "A Thai group this week threatened to sue 20th Century Fox, claiming The Beach, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, was responsible for the destruction of a beach in a protected national park area."


A. "A foxy grampa was released from custody Monday, after repeated pledges to a Bangkok judge to stay off motorcycles. He left Government Square pants-less on a Honda, chattering away in a grotesque caricature of an endearing brogue."

B. "EchoStar Communications, one of the leading direct broadcast satellite providers, has signed a deal with Internet programmer Pseudo Programs to add Pseudo's programming to EchoStar's interactive channel lineup."


A. "A bare-assed codger was killed near Bangkok this morning when his motorcycle collided with a low-flying game bird that police say was 'hurled in his path by a vengeful god.' "

B. "Providence has intervened on behalf of slumping NBC, premiering Friday with a divine 13.1 rating, 21 share, best for the Peacock in that 8-9 p.m. slot with non-Olympics programming since March 6, 1992 (Matlock)."


1-B, 2-B, 3-B, 4-B.

Race Results

Prime target: U.S. Congress.

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