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NPR's Wait, Wait game bluffs a listener with St. Pete Times story on honey buns in prison



honey-bun.jpgFor an NPR geek like me, it was like seeing your workplace featured in People magazine.

While listening to the service's brainy news trivia game Wait Wait Don't Tell Me Saturday, a story in the show's Bluff the Listener game sounded gloriously familiar. As part of the game, in which the show's three panelists read quirky news stories and ask a fan to guess which story is actually true, Mo Rocca read a piece about honey buns in prison that I knew was the real deal, however improbable is sounded.

That's because it was likely based on a story by the St. Pete Times' Drew Harwell, noting that honey buns had become a valued currency in Florida's prison system. It was just the latest example of how far this excellent piece has traveled, posted everywhere from the gossip site Gawker to many of the major TV and newspaper outlets in Florida.

The lead sentence was a marvel of storytelling and pacing: "The honey buns enter lockup the same way anyone else does: bound, escorted through halls and sally ports, and secluded in small boxes solely opened from the outside. From there the honey buns languish for days, maybe longer, until they're gone."

As perhaps the icing on the cake -- yeah, that probably went too far, I know -- the listener guessed the right story, picking Rocca's tale of honeybuns turned to "money buns" because the other choices were "gross" and "disturbing." (she's right: the other stories were centered on lip gloss made from Cheetos and caulk made from the filling in old Twinkies.)

Check out just how Times stories can travel by dialing up the story below:


[Last modified: Tuesday, January 18, 2011 8:35am]


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