Bluff The Listener
Our panelists tell three stories about a new product to help you deal with family.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)
CARL KASELL: From NPR and WBEZ-Chicago, this is WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME!, the NPR News quiz. I'm Carl Kasell. We're playing this week with Roy Blount, Jr., Amy Dickinson, and Maz Jobrani. And here again is your host, at the Chase Bank Auditorium in downtown Chicago, Peter Sagal.
PETER SAGAL, HOST:
Thank you, Carl. Right now, it's time for the WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME! Bluff the Listener game. Call 1-888-Wait-Wait to play our game on the air. Hi, you're on WAIT WAIT...DON'T TELL ME!
RYAN CHIN: Hi, this is Ryan Chin from Sacramento, California.
SAGAL: Hey, Ryan Chin. How are you?
CHIN: I'm good. Thank you.
SAGAL: What do you do in Sacramento?
CHIN: Well, I actually work for Stanford University.
SAGAL: And did they tell you, oh, yeah, our offices are in Sacramento. That's where we are. Go there.
CHIN: So I make the commute to the other campus when I need to, and otherwise, I only work from home.
SAGAL: Oh, that's pretty awesome.
CHIN: It's really great.
SAGAL: Lets you get to spend time with your family.
SAGAL: You're at home, you lock the door, you don't let them in.
CHIN: No, I get to work. That's what I get to do.
SAGAL: Oh, I see.
SAGAL: Well, welcome to the show, Ryan. You're going to play the game in which you must try to tell truth from fiction. Of course, Carl, what is Ryan's topic.
KASELL: I Hate You! I Hate You! You're not my real parents!
SAGAL: Family creates all sorts of problems, which is why someone has developed a product to help you deal with your nearest and dearest. Guess the real product, you'll win Carl's voice on your home answering machine or voicemail, whatever you've got there. Ready to go?
CHIN: Yes, I am. Let's go.
SAGAL: All right. First, let's hear from Roy Blount, Jr.
ROY BLOUNT JR.: Says Innar Magnuson of Reykjavik, everyone in Iceland has heard the story. You're at a family reunion, and that girl looks familiar. Is she - indeed, she is - someone you hooked up some time ago?
BLOUNT: Maybe in Hollywood, it's a cute premise, but in real Icelandic life, it's not a good feeling when you realize that girl is your cousin.
BLOUNT: The problem is most Icelanders are at least distantly related because they share descent from a party of ninth-century Vikings. The solution? The smartphone anti-incest alarm.
BLOUNT: A widely available database traces Icelandic family lines back several centuries. It's called the Icelandingbach or, as we might put it back home, Mama and Them.
BLOUNT: Now, that database has given rise to an app whose slogan is Bump the App Before You Bump in Bed.
BLOUNT: Potential Icelandic couples, if they both have the app, can bump their phones together, and the alarm either goes, uh-uh, in effect, or it doesn't. Doubt it's reliable? Test it on your sister.
SAGAL: An app in Iceland that helps you find out if you're related to somebody before you go out with them. OK, your next story about a new way to deal with annoying relatives comes from Amy Dickinson.
AMY DICKINSON: Is your dad's chili con carne recipe being investigated by the FBI as a weapon of mass digestion? Could your Aunt Shelly's cheesy pleasy meatloaf pass as a breeding plantation for a new class of antibiotics? Have you ever gone to a family dinner and left by way of the emergency room?
DICKINSON: Clara Gallagher had this problem. After her grandmother made her eat a dish called veal pucklettes, the Utica, New York native invented the Body Buddy, a series of specially shaped containers which sensitive-stomached diners can use to spirit out unwanted and uneaten entrees from family meals. Her specially designed Tupperware-style container fits snugly into a bedazzled evening bag, allowing her to smuggle food in and out.
A 12-ounce flask strapped to the inside of the leg comes in handy during eggnog season.
DICKINSON: The inventor says, my cousin, Bobby, caught me shoveling away at our Aunt Carol's three-cheese Rice Krispies treats, and he asked me for one. So now it comes in camouflage for the guys. This isn't about nutrition, it's about preserving family relationships and stomach linings.
SAGAL: Tupperware design to allow you to smuggle food off of your plate at bad family gatherings and to the garbage. Your last solution to managing a family crisis comes from Maz Jobrani.
MAZ JOBRANI: Most parents will tell you that kids are one of the best things in life. They will also tell you that kids are the worst thing for your love life. That's what inspired former special ops commander, Mike Delea, to start a service called Make Love, Not War.
JOBRANI: Under this service, former military special ops soldiers come to your house and do whatever it takes to give you and your spouse time to make love.
JOBRANI: Whether it's putting the kids down for a nap, challenging your teenager to a game of one-on-one basketball or using tranquilizer darts, these soldiers will keep the kids busy while you're in the trenches.
JOBRANI: Delea uses standard decoy techniques learned in the military to keep the kids at bay while the parents play. Dealing with a baby is the easiest. They're so dumb, you can trick them with a baby rattle.
JOBRANI: One time, I just shook the rattle for 10 minutes until the parents were done, and the mission was accomplished.
JOBRANI: Jenny Tripoli, mother of five, who used Make Love, Not War, says it saved her marriage. My husband and I were so stressed for time with the kids, that our marriage was on the brink. I thought these guys were heroes before, but now I can't live without them. We live by Mike's motto - making love is like being in the Special Forces. You got to be ready to go any time, any place.
SAGAL: All right.
SAGAL: All right, I don't know what kind of - Ryan, I don't know what kind of family problems you might have, but one of these things is a real technique to help you with them. From Roy Blount, Jr., an app that people in Iceland are using to find out if they're related to the person they want to date. From Amy Dickinson, specially designed concealable Tupperware to smuggle food out of bad meals or presumably better food in, if you want to. Or from Maz Jobrani, a team of Navy Seals, who make sure that you and your loved one get some private time, no matter what the kids might want to do. Which of these is the real story?
CHIN: Honestly, knowing where I work and what we've seen, there is an app for everything at this point, so I'm going to go with Roy.
SAGAL: You're going to go with Roy's story about the app in Iceland that helps people find out quickly if they're related to somebody. All right. Well, to bring you the real answer, we spoke to somebody who was involved with that answer.
DR. KARI STEFANSSON: If you're an Icelander, you can trace your family centuries back in time. This app was made to prevent you from sleeping with your cousin.
SAGAL: Pretty direct. That was Dr. Kari Stefansson, CEO of deCODE Genetics, one of the creators of the Iceland Accidental Incest App. Congratulations, Ryan. You got it right. Yay.
CHIN: All right. Thank you.
SAGAL: You earned a point from Roy. You've won our prize, Carl's voice on your home answering machine or voicemail. Well done, sir.
CHIN: Oh, thank you so much.
SAGAL: Thank you for playing with us today.
CHIN: All right. Thank you.
CHIN: Bye now.
(APPLAUSE) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.