Fact Bag re-emerges from the digital cloud to once again relay a fresh set of facts. Why? Because facts never sleep and neither does Fact Bag. Featuring comedians Thomas Middleditch and Ben Schwartz.
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JONATHAN COULTON, BYLINE: This is NPR's ASK ME ANOTHER. I'm Jonathan Coulton. Here's your host, Ophira Eisenberg.
OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:
Thanks, Jonathan. We're playing games with the stars of the new Netflix improvised comedy special "Middleditch & Schwartz," Thomas Middleditch and Ben Schwartz. OK, are you ready for a game where all four of us get to work together?
BEN SCHWARTZ: Wait; all four of us get to play? That's amazing. All of us get to play.
COULTON: It's an all-play.
SCHWARTZ: Oh, I love a game.
EISENBERG: It's an all-play.
SCHWARTZ: This is an all-play. And this is an AP?
THOMAS MIDDLEDITCH: #allplay.
COULTON: It's an AP, yeah.
SCHWARTZ: #allplay - this is a #AP, OK.
EISENBERG: This game is usually called Fact Bag, but nobody's allowed to touch the bag anymore, so it's called Fact Google Doc. I have some random trivia questions. None of us know the answers, but we're all going to talk it out and try to figure them out together.
EISENBERG: OK, so here's the first one. In 1967, the first ever Super Bowl halftime show prominently featured a demonstration of what futuristic device?
SCHWARTZ: In 1967...
COULTON: Not a robot, probably.
MIDDLEDITCH: But couldn't it be a computer? I'm a computer.
EISENBERG: A computer (laughter)? Well, yeah - right? - or, like, a laser. Or how about a Casio?
COULTON: A Casio (laughter).
SCHWARTZ: Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah, yeah.
MIDDLEDITCH: A big halftime show, and this tiny, little keyboard gets carried out.
SCHWARTZ: A Casio VL-Tone.
MIDDLEDITCH: One of those, like, demo beats like Salsa 1. And, like, (vocalizing).
SCHWARTZ: Oh, a Casio piano (laughter). Yeah, that's amazing. Marvin Gaye comes out there and sings a beautiful song off of (vocalizing).
EISENBERG: I mean, what goes into a halftime show - music. So I'm thinking, like, something...
MIDDLEDITCH: Smoke machine, music, wireless microphones.
EISENBERG: Oh, yeah.
MIDDLEDITCH: No, probably not.
SCHWARTZ: I still like lasers.
SCHWARTZ: Let's just say lasers and move on.
EISENBERG: OK, lasers. Let's see.
SCHWARTZ: What a stupid answer.
EISENBERG: Can I get lasers? What? A jetpack.
MIDDLEDITCH: A jetpack?
EISENBERG: Yeah, they were technically called Rocket Belts. Two representatives from Bell Aerosystems held a live jetpack demo...
EISENBERG: ...For the first Super Bowl's 50 million home viewers. It could only carry enough fuel to lift someone for less than half a minute, so you really couldn't go anywhere. There's very little surviving video of the first Super Bowl halftime show. They had jetpacks, but not great recording equipment, it turns out.
MIDDLEDITCH: No, the footage.
EISENBERG: Yeah, but the jetpacks made a reappearance at the 1984 Summer Olympics and at Super Bowl XIX in '85.
EISENBERG: OK. How about this? Computer scientists created their own unit of measurement to measure the speed and detection of a computer mouse. What is that measurement called?
SCHWARTZ: Oh, I know this one. It's 15 crambles, C-R-A-M-B-L-E-S. No, no. I'm kidding, I'm kidding, I'm kidding (laughter).
EISENBERG: I know, droppings. How about droppings?
MIDDLEDITCH: Yeah. If it's mice, it's breadcrumbs or...
SCHWARTZ: Breadcrumbs, yeah. Droppings (laughter).
SCHWARTZ: Mice poops.
MIDDLEDITCH: Jerrys - or, no. Which one's the cat - "Tom and Jerry" - who's the cat in "Tom and Jerry"?
COULTON: Tom is the cat and Jerry's the mouse.
EISENBERG: Aw, Jerrys. I like that one.
COULTON: Oh, I just had an idea. I think it's a good one - whiskers.
EISENBERG: Oh, that's good. That's good.
COULTON: Right? Because a mouse has whiskers.
EISENBERG: OK. I'm going to - droppings is what I think they wanted to call it, but I'm going to go with crambles. Our official answer is crambles.
COULTON: I'm sticking with whiskers.
EISENBERG: OK, whiskers.
SCHWARTZ: Hey, thank you, everybody, for believing in me and my crambles, a word that I absolutely made up.
COULTON: By the way, the first one should've been lasers, too, but...
EISENBERG: (Laughter) That's right.
SCHWARTZ: Flicks - 20 flicks.
EISENBERG: All right, producer Travis Larchuk, what is the answer? Oh. You know what? I think you said it, Ben - a Mickey.
COULTON: A Mickey.
SCHWARTZ: Mickey. Is that true?
MIDDLEDITCH: Yeah, someone did say Mickey.
COULTON: I said Mickey, but I didn't think it was a good idea so I didn't say it again.
EISENBERG: Right. A Mickey Mouse goes back to a 1980s Microsoft mouse driver manual. Remember when you got a manual?
MIDDLEDITCH: (Unintelligible) is a mouse.
EISENBERG: And a Mickey is one two-hundredth of an inch.
COULTON: So that's about five whiskers. One Mickey is about five whiskers.
EISENBERG: Five whiskers, right. Yeah, exactly.
SCHWARTZ: That makes sense. That adds up.
EISENBERG: All right. You guys did great. That was Fact Google Doc. We learned a lot.
MIDDLEDITCH: We did terrible.
SCHWARTZ: We didn't do very well at all.
COULTON: We had some good ideas, but...
EISENBERG: Well, in quarantine, all you have is good ideas. Thank you guys so much for joining us.
MIDDLEDITCH: Thank you so much for having us.
EISENBERG: (Laughter) Perfect, yeah. You can catch Thomas and Ben in their new Netflix special "Middleditch & Schwartz."
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