Ask Me Another
10:22 am
Thu February 13, 2014

Mime Time

Brother, can you spare a mime? No, it's not pledge drive season yet. In this game, house musician Jonathan Coulton asks our contestants to put on their pun hats (berets, naturally) and answer clues with clever puns that include the word "mime". Cue the groans!

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Transcript

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

Let's say hello to our next two contestants, Shawn Dugas and Christine Dall.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: All right, Shawn, Christine. If you could predict any big trend for this year, what do you think is going to be hot?

CHRISTINE DALL: I would say, based on the Golden Globes and the gowns, taking it to its logical conclusion after the sheer, I'm going to say invisible clothing.

EISENBERG: Invisible clothing. OK. I like that. Futuristic and simple, which I like.

DALL: Yes.

EISENBERG: Shawn?

SHAWN DUGAS: I feel like I'm never on the cutting edge of what fashion is and I just hope that that's going to be whatever I already own.

(LAUGHTER)

DUGAS: Because I don't have a lot of money to spend on fashion but I'd like to look nice, you know.

EISENBERG: So what you're saying is what's in, Shawn.

DUGAS: Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah, if my name could be in the fashion trend that'd be great. That'd be great for publicity.

EISENBERG: It's perfect. I think that sounds attainable.

JONATHAN COULTON: I think Shawn is the new Dave this season. Isn't that what's happening?

EISENBERG: I hope so. Well, this game is called Mime Time. Yep, Mime Time. Jonathan Coulton, please explain.

COULTON: Well, as you know, I am on the cutting edge of what is hot and this year it is the year of the mime. That's right. Mimes are hot. Everyone's going to want to cash in on this moneymaking trend. So we're going to quiz you on people, titles, and products that have been mime-ified.

EISENBERG: Mm-hmm.

COULTON: Greg Pliska, let's have an example of that, please.

GREG PLISKA: A mime invents a device that travels through history in this reboot of an H.G. Wells classic. That's right. The title is "The Mime Machine," not "The Tiime Machine."

(SOUNDBITE OF GROANS)

COULTON: That's right. Groaning is appropriate.

PLISKA: Sure.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: Every answer will include a terrible pun using the word mime. It's important to get this kind of comedy out of the way at the very beginning of the show, setting ourselves up for victory later on.

EISENBERG: Basically, we took a poll. We're like what are two things people hate?

COULTON: That's right.

EISENBERG: Let's put them together.

COULTON: Mimes and puns. Got it. OK, you ready?

DALL: Yes.

COULTON: Here we go. In this twist on an old school computer game the player clicks on gray squares to reveal numbers that show the locations of nearby mimes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Shawn.

DUGAS: Mime Sweeper.

COULTON: That's right.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Although I couldn't help thinking the idea of, like, being able to find the location of nearby mimes. It'd be like, you know, Grinder, Tinder, Mimer. Like you could just - you've passed...

COULTON: Mimes near you.

EISENBERG: Yeah, mimes near you. So you could avoid those places.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: Cyndi Lauper cashes in on the mime trend, removing all the vocals from one of her hit songs and renaming it this.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Christine.

DALL: "Mime After Mime"?

COULTON: Indeed.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: A recurring nightmare in France.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: This Great Depression tune has been completely updated: 10 cent coins are out and mimes are in.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Shawn.

DUGAS: "Brother, Can You Spare a Mime"?

COULTON: Yes.

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: The answer is probably yes. If you just had one mime you could get through another day.

EISENBERG: A mime used to go a lot further back then.

COULTON: That's right. Mimes from East and West Germany tear down an imaginary wall in a proposed stage show. The show's title is a play off the year this event happened. What is it called?

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Christine.

DALL: "198-Mime"?

COULTON: Mm-hmm.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: That's right. A smattering of applause. That's about right. 7-Up, Sprite, and Sierra Mist have all gotten in on the mime action. Ha! The mime action.

EISENBERG: I know, the mime action.

COULTON: The mime action. By changing their flavor to this.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Shawn.

DUGAS: Lemon-mime.

COULTON: Lemon-mime.

EISENBERG: Yeah.

COULTON: Delicious.

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: This famous designer's underwear will now be known as CM and it will be worn exclusively by buff mimes.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Shawn.

DUGAS: Calvin Mime?

COULTON: Yeah. Yeah, that's the answer. Yeah.

EISENBERG: Yep.

COULTON: Yeah.

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: This Dostoevsky novel involves mimes being thrown into invisible cells that they can't escape. Well, they could but they are really committed to the act.

(LAUGHTER)

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Shawn?

DUGAS: "Mime and Punishment."

COULTON: Yes.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: A redundant title.

COULTON: Yeah.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: Please, one or the other, not both. Greg, how'd they do in that game?

PLISKA: They did brilliantly and Shawn is our winner.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Congratulations, Shawn. We'll see you at the end of the show. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.