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Delightful Spoonerisms, Despiteful Lunarisms

May 29, 2013
Originally published on May 31, 2013 10:19 am

A "spoonerism" is a play on words in which the initial sounds of two words are reversed. In this game, puzzle guru John Chaneski asks contestants to make spoonerisms out of movie and song titles. For example, a hit song by Blondie about the telephone, that can also be used to unlock a shopping center, would be a "Call Me mall key."

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Transcript

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

Well, standing behind our puzzle podiums right now are our next two contestants: Mark Smith and Solomon Stein.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Welcome to ASK ME ANOTHER, Mark, Solomon. Solomon, you are really into statistics and game theory.

SOLOMON STEIN: That is correct.

EISENBERG: I like that about you. I'm very interested, so I must ask you, what is the probability that you will win?

STEIN: Without knowing anything else, I'm going to go with 50 percent.

EISENBERG: Nope, not good enough.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Too easy. You're talking with your head. Speak with your heart, Solomon. Speak with your heart.

STEIN: Twenty percent.

(LAUGHTER)

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Mark, what do you think the odds are of Solomon winning?

MARK SMITH: That would be - wait.

(LAUGHTER)

SMITH: I can't even figure out a tip - percentages. That would be 80, right, 80 percent.

EISENBERG: Okay.

SMITH: Twenty percent of the time, I would say 80 percent, yes.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Our next game is called Delightful Spoonerisms, Despiteful Lunarisms. John Chaneski, why are spoonerisms delightful?

JOHN CHANESKI: They are delightful because a spoonerism is a play on words in which the initial sounds of two words are reversed. For example: you turn a crushing blow into a blushing crow. In this game, we're going to ask you to make spoonerisms of movie and song titles. Contestants, you give us both the original title and the transposed phrase please.

If we asked you to name a hit song by Blondie about the telephone, which might be used to unlock a shopping center, that would be a call me mall key. There's no first ladies, maiden names, nothing in this. It's going to be straightforward, okay?

(LAUGHTER)

CHANESKI: All of the answers will start with the movie or song title and then the spoonerized phrase will follow. As always, the winner will move on to our Ask Me One More final round at the end of the show. Here we go.

If Brad Pitt and Edward Norton appeared in a 1999 film about the problems they have controlling their flying toy's string, what would the error be called?

SMITH: What?

(LAUGHTER)

CHANESKI: Yeah, that's okay. Maybe there will be maiden names in this. Let's go again. If Brad Pitt and Edward Norton appeared in a 1999 film together about the problems they have controlling their flying toy's string, what would the error be called?

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

CHANESKI: Mark?

SMITH: Fight club kite flub.

CHANESKI: Yes, fight club kite flub.

(APPLAUSE)

CHANESKI: Very good.

EISENBERG: I did love your first answer, "what?" Just so angry.

SMITH: I think that's what we were all thinking, quite frankly.

CHANESKI: When a 1997 drama starring Mark Wahlberg and Burt Reynolds inspires a knuckle to the head combined with attacks of the teeth, what are these called?

EISENBERG: Porn stars fight dirty, people.

CHANESKI: Yes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

CHANESKI: Mark?

SMITH: Boogie nights noogie bites.

CHANESKI: Yes, boogie nights noogie bites.

(APPLAUSE)

CHANESKI: In a little old place, owned by the band the B-52s, this describes the absence of rude jostling.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

CHANESKI: Solomon?

STEIN: A love shack shove lack.

CHANESKI: Yes, a love shack shove lack.

(APPLAUSE)

CHANESKI: What would you call the attempts to find the lavatory during a screening of a 1994 spy comedy starring Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jamie Lee Curtis?

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

CHANESKI: Solomon?

STEIN: Lou tries in true lies.

CHANESKI: Yes, true lies Lou tries is just fine, very good.

(APPLAUSE)

CHANESKI: If a 1984 Cyndi Lauper dance song inspires a store that sells stinging insects, what would that store be called? It's a song about something I do, he does, they do, we do.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

CHANESKI: Mark?

SMITH: She bop bee shop.

CHANESKI: Yes, she bop bee shop.

(APPLAUSE)

CHANESKI: Way to go, Mark. How about this, a tiny piece of ruffled edging inspired by a 1993 film about a boy and his orca could be described this way.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

CHANESKI: Mark?

SMITH: Free Willy wee frilly.

CHANESKI: Yes, free Willy wee frilly.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Which sounds like a mild Scottish insult for the boy and his orca.

CHANESKI: A wee frilly it is, yes.

(LAUGHTER)

CHANESKI: If a cop was put on detail to find nice-looking models who resemble Kathleen Turner in a steamy 1981 thriller, you can say the policeman was on this. It's a steamy 1981 thriller.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

CHANESKI: Mark?

SMITH: Body heat hottie beats.

CHANESKI: Yes, body heat hottie beat.

(APPLAUSE)

CHANESKI: Very nice. Here's your last question. If the band Green Day used the sheet music to their 1994 song about anxiety to line the bottom of a coffin, what would it be called?

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

CHANESKI: Mark?

SMITH: I'm sorry. I really don't know.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: I like the idea of just ringing in with complaints.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

CHANESKI: Solomon, any idea?

STEIN: A basket case casket base.

CHANESKI: Yes, basket case casket base.

SMITH: Oh, nice.

(APPLAUSE)

CHANESKI: That was a nice comeback there, Solomon, but Mark is our winner. Congratulations Mark.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Much to your chagrin, Mark, you will be moving on to our Ask Me One More final round at the end of the show.

SMITH: Oh, that's going to be awesome.

EISENBERG: Thank you so much, Solomon. A round of applause.

(APPLAUSE) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.