News Quiz

No. 40: “Hello?”

No. 40: “Hello?’

By Randy Cohen

Fill in the blank.

Speaking to Christian evangelicals at the White House Monday, President Clinton said, “She knows I work late, so some nights at a quarter to 1 or something, the phone rings. It’s ___________.”

by noon ET Wednesday to e-mail your answer (

Responses to Monday’s question (No. 39)–“Under Wraps”:

The Budweiser and Coca-Cola signs were shrouded at Madison Square Garden this past weekend. Why?

“The ‘Jesus Loves Absolut Vodka Day’ rally.”–Patty Marx

“Because of a Madison Square Garden scheduling screw-up, when all the following may happen the exact same day:

1) Knicks-Utah Jazz Dr Pepper Playoffs
2) The Mormon Tabernacle Choir’s Mountain Dew Spring Spectacular
3) Amstel Light’s ‘See the Light’ Shroud of Turin Exhibit
4) Diet Jolt’s 63 Mile Indoor Sprint.”

Bill Franzen

“In honor of the two Hasidic Clydesdales who died of gastritis.”–Larry Amaros

“Apparently, Lou Gehrig is rather sick and … What? Dead? Are you sure?”–David Rakoff

“It’s the modern equivalent of covering your mirrors, which Jews do when they are sitting shiva–as so many are now, mourning the death of the Knicks offense.”–Jon Hotchkiss

“Rudy Giuliani said they had to stop advertising because Thursday nobody picked up his used cup and put it in the proper receptacle.”–Alfa-Betty Olsen and Marshall Efron

“To conceal the work done by George Steinbrenner’s crew. If all goes as planned, a beam will fall harmlessly into the seats after Thursday’s Knicks-Heat playoff game, and a new city-financed, billion dollar arena will be announced soon after.”–John Solomon

Click for more responses.

Randy’s Wrap-Up

We are, as has often been noted, a religious nation. Every few decades, a Christian revival tsunami washes across the land, drowning our liberal humanist stirrings. So it’s not entirely surprising that so many of you saw religious significance in Budweiser and Coke.

Not being observant myself, am I right to infer that, for believers, if something disturbing is covered with a cloth, it no longer exists? Hence the chador, Paul Simon’s toupee, and shrouded billboards.

Given their sensitivity to fan feelings, what will MSG officials throw a tarp over during “Disney on Ice–Featuring Hercules”?

And why haven’t they tossed a cloth over John Starks?

How Would He Answer

The signs were covered in deference to the 24,000 Mormons gathered for a “fireside.” Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints eschew alcohol and caffeine. MSG president Dave Checketts, a member of the church, got the idea for the gathering during a memorial for Yitzhak Rabin. “I was sitting in the Garden filled with devout Jews, and I thought I would love to see a meeting like this someday to hear the current prophet and President of the church.”


“It has this delicious backside.”–Kenn Viselman, Teletubbies marketer

“I hate to ask this question, but what’s it to you?”–Antonin Scalia, Supreme Court Justice

“Call if there’s a problem. Dial-a-Cop. Dial-a-Soldier.”–John Warner, U.S. Senator

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