Fact Bag

Jul 13, 2018
Originally published on August 24, 2018 10:11 am

Buckle up for FACT BAG! Ophira and Jonathan draw trivia questions from a bag and must debate the correct answers before they're revealed. They're facts in a bag, people. A bag of facts.

Heard on Darlene Love: From Background To Limelight

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

While Liz and Ed get ready for our final round, it's time for us to play a game. This is called Fact Bag. I have a bag full of trivia questions. Jonathan and I - have we ever seen this bag before?

JONATHAN COULTON: I've seen the bag before, yeah.

EISENBERG: But you've never seen the trivia questions in it.

COULTON: No.

EISENBERG: So we have questions that are written on an envelope. I'm going to read a question. Jonathan and I will discuss them. We don't know what the answer is. And then we're going to open up the envelope and find out the real answer. OK, so here's the first one. According to the Smithsonian National Zoo, Ruppell's griffon vulture...

COULTON: RuPaul's griffon vulture?

EISENBERG: Yep. It's R-U-P-P-E-L-L with an umlaut over the U.

COULTON: Oh, sure.

EISENBERG: Ruppell's...

COULTON: RuPaul.

EISENBERG: (Laughter) It's - Ruppell's griffon vulture holds what superlative for birds?

COULTON: Most beautiful vulture.

EISENBERG: Most beautiful...

COULTON: It's superlative in the area of birds or in the area of vultures.

EISENBERG: In the area for birds - oh.

COULTON: For birds.

EISENBERG: For all birds.

COULTON: For all birds.

EISENBERG: Yeah.

COULTON: Of all the birds, Ruppell's vulture...

EISENBERG: Is the most something.

COULTON: ...Is it the best dressed.

EISENBERG: Yeah, could be.

COULTON: I mean, that makes sense.

EISENBERG: I mean, other that - it's either that or lip-syncer.

COULTON: Yeah, it could be lip-syncer.

EISENBERG: OK.

COULTON: All right, let's see.

EISENBERG: Let's see. OK, oh, Ruppell's griffon vulture is the world's highest-flying bird. These African vultures have been known to fly 36,000 feet. That's almost 7 miles...

COULTON: That's too high.

EISENBERG: ...Too high...

COULTON: That's dangerous.

EISENBERG: ...Above sea level.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: A scientist knows because one of them was sucked into an engine of a plane flying at 36,100 feet above sea level.

COULTON: Something else I've got to worry about.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: Come on. Come on, birds. Stay low so you don't get sucked into engines.

EISENBERG: They stay high up in the air for six or seven hours at a time looking for food.

COULTON: Well, they're not going to find it up there.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: And one - and no one told them they don't have food on the airplanes anymore. They - there's no food there.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: That's right. You've got to get upgraded, or you get nothing.

EISENBERG: Let's get another fact from the fact bag. All right, how about this one? In 2017...

COULTON: That was very recent.

EISENBERG: ...A long time ago - the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation...

COULTON: CBC.

EISENBERG: ...The CBC - thank you...

COULTON: Yep.

EISENBERG: ...Officially retired the system it used to deliver paper mail throughout its office. What was the system? (Laughter) They finally retired some antiquated system a year ago. It was a...

COULTON: Capuchin monkeys.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: I was going to call out interns.

COULTON: This is a story about something that happened in Canada. You're from Canada.

EISENBERG: Yeah.

COULTON: How is mail delivered in Canada?

EISENBERG: Usually, you know, there's a couple of different ways. It could come via beaver. It could come...

COULTON: Beavers, yeah.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: There's a maple syrup stream that carries letters.

COULTON: A mail robot.

EISENBERG: What are you saying?

COULTON: I'm saying they've had robots delivering mail for a long time. When I was a kid, I used to go to my dad's office...

EISENBERG: Yeah.

COULTON: ...At the Aetna, which is an insurance company in Connecticut.

EISENBERG: (Laughter) Your story is totally checking out.

COULTON: This is '70s, and they had a robot that...

EISENBERG: Yeah.

COULTON: ...Would deliver the mail.

EISENBERG: OK, so wait a second. What if...

COULTON: I mean, it didn't walk and talk. It was a thing on a - it was a cart.

EISENBERG: No, it wasn't like - you would like your mail. How about this? It retired the robot, and now it's going back to people. What do you think of that? Opening up the envelope - and the answer is, the CBC delivered mail using robots called mail mobiles, and they stopped doing that. They were meant to save money on labor but would frequently bump into people or block their paths.

COULTON: We should have done capuchin monkeys all along.

EISENBERG: Beavers are now delivering the mail.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: All right, all right, last, last fact bag - at the U.S. Open tennis tournament, different balls are used in men's and women's matches.

COULTON: Sure.

EISENBERG: What's the main difference between the men's balls and the women's balls?

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: I'll let you go first.

COULTON: I'm not sure.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: Not sure I should say anything about the situation. Well, listen; they're both going to be fuzzy.

EISENBERG: Fuzzy balls.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: I would say probably the - it's a different size situation.

EISENBERG: You're right. I think just like in life, the women's balls are bigger.

(CHEERING)

EISENBERG: (Laughter) All right, let's see...

COULTON: Same fuzziness, though.

EISENBERG: Same amount of fuzz. Nope, we are wrong.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: Oh, we're wrong.

EISENBERG: Men's balls are fuzzier.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: What? Why?

EISENBERG: At the U.S. Open, the felt on the men's balls is more rugged. And it is called...

COULTON: Well, yeah.

EISENBERG: ...It's called extra duty.

COULTON: Extra duty.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: The extra felt slows the ball down. The felt on the women's and mixed doubles balls is regular duty, which results in faster play.

COULTON: I'm going to say right now. Men and women should have the same fuzzy balls.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: This has gone on long enough.

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: It's a weird situation all around.

EISENBERG: You know what? I feel like Fact Bag gives and Fact Bag takes.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: That's pretty good. All right. Our Fact Bag is empty. Give it up for Fact Bag.

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: Thanks, Fact Bag. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.