News Quiz

No. 26: “Risky Business”

No. 26: “Risky Business”

By Randy Cohen

The current Youth Risk Behavior Survey of ninth- through 12th-graders reveals that three in 10 boys and one in 10 girls have done something in the past month. What?

by noon ET Tuesday to e-mail your answer (

Responses to Thursday’s question (No. 25)–“Listless”:

The list is: “lazy, tired, old, stiff, and stodgy.” List of what?

“I like to think of them as the Snap, Crackle, and Pop of Raisin Bran.”–Beth Sherman

” ‘This is the first time you’ve placed a personal ad, isn’t it, Mr. Dole?’ (Note to self: Find new old guy for jokes.)”–Chris Kelly

“Most popular recurring words in Frank Rich columns after Mame, Gypsy, matinee, How To Succeed, Harvard, Harvard theater, Mom, the friendly ushers at the Longacre, Camelot, and Marmaduke.”–Charlie “Charley” Rubin

“God, can’t you just leave Margaret Thatcher alone?”–Marshall Efron and Alfa-Betty Olsen

“Five stages of the tenured.”–Jon Garfunkel

“List given to Emma Lazarus by the National Park Service to incorporate into ‘The New Colossus.’ Although fond of ‘tired,’ she felt ‘wretched refuse’ flowed better than ‘lazy, old, stiff, and stodgy.’ “–Julia Oskarsdottir

“Jesse Helms’ better qualities.”–Matthew Pierce

“Things I just can’t stand about my 96-year-old grandma. (May I be permitted to add, also, ‘too wrinkled’ and ‘too low a sex drive’?)”–Bill Franzen

“Characters from The Full Monty II: The Seven Dwarfs Revenge.”–Fred Graver (Also in Snow White country–Larry Amaros, Andy Aaron, Larry Doyle, Jon Delfin, Eliottt, Gloria Howard, Jim Stoicheff Jr., Steve Hinkle, Charles Clack, Larry Schnur.)

“Nicknames of that sensational new group from the United Kingdom, the Spice Pensioners.”–Nancy Franklin (Also regretting that Old Spice is already a registered trademark: Mark Pilgrim, Morris Jackson, Kenneth M. Schwartz, Brad Evans.)

“It’s the old parable of the five blind men and Strom Thurmond’s ass.”–David Rakoff

Click for more responses.

Randy’s Wrap-Up

What if the Spice Girls were dwarfs–wow! They’d live in the glamorous part of the forest, in a cute li’l M51 Shelter System: “A completely self-contained, transportable, and air-inflatable system designed to protect against all known chemical biological (CB) agents. Manufactured for the United States Government at a cost of $60,000 per unit now being offered to the private industry. From $5,250.” That’s how it’s described in ads running in the New York Times. Among its recommended uses–“Sporting/Camping Activities, Safari/Tourism Expedition Housing, and Emergency Housing (e.g. forest fire).” Who says there’s no affordable housing in New York? This could be the basis of an amusing skit on a satirical TV show. Or perhaps not.

Geriatric Stereotype Answer

Things Howard Stern called Saturday Night Live at the press conference announcing his TV talk show, syndicated by CBS, which will run opposite NBC’s once-funny sketch program.


“It’s just a constant stroking process.”–Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., 1998

“You’re a liar! You idiot! You do understand English, don’t you?”–Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., 1989

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