Basic Initialisms

Jun 14, 2012
Originally published on September 4, 2014 2:34 pm
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OK. This is what we've all been waiting for, this is our Ask Me One More final round. We are bringing back the winners from all of our previous games. We have Erica Johnson from TV Poetry.


EISENBERG: From Expand your Mind, Elliott Court.


EISENBERG: From Replacement Math, Brian Gonyor and from Product Placement, Paula Henning.


EISENBERG: We call this game Basic Initializms. John, can you explain that?

JOHN CHANESKI: An initializm is an abbreviation formed from the first letters of a phrase or name. For example, MYOB stands for Mind Your Own Business. Now some initializms are acronyms like NASA, initials that are pronounced like a word. Now contestants, we're going to give you some initializms or acronyms and you tell us the words that each letter represents.

You'll only have a few seconds to give us an answer. One wrong answer and you're out, sort of spelling bee style. The next player gets a chance to correctly identify the words and then the last person standing is this week's grand winner. Are you ready? At my kids' school, I'm a member of the PTA, what does PTA stand for?

ELLIOTT KORT: Parent Teacher Alliance.

CHANESKI: No, let's go to - Who's behind you? Step aside.

ERICA JOHNSON: Parents Teacher Association.

CHANESKI: Parent Teachers Association, we'll take it. Good enough. Go to the back of the line Erica.


CHANESKI: The company known as IBM doesn't seem to sell many computers anymore. What does IBM stand for?

PAULA HENNING: International Business Machines.

CHANESKI: That's correct Paula, good job.


CHANESKI: Step aside. And let's see Brian. A ten year old might call someone their BFF. What does BFF stand for?

BRIAN GONYOR: Best Friends Forever?

CHANESKI: That's right.


CHANESKI: Erica. Many dot-com websites feature a FAQ or FAQ, what does FAQ stand for?

JOHNSON: Frequently asked Questions.

CHANESKI: That is correct. Join the bout.


CHANESKI: Paula. In business, an important corporate title is CFO. What does CFO stand for?

HENNING: Chief financial officer.

CHANESKI: That's right.


CHANESKI: Brian. At the Skywalker Ranch, George Lucas founded ILM, what does ILM stand for?

GONYOR: Industrial Light and Magic.

CHANESKI: That's right Brian.


CHANESKI: Back of the line. Erica. The military alliance known as NATO was started in 1949. What does NATO stand for? Five seconds.

JOHNSON: North Atlantic Treaty Org - No I'm sorry.

CHANESKI: What? Keep going.

JOHNSON: Organization.

CHANESKI: Yes. Fine, yeah, way to go.


COULTON: She's a coiled spring that one.

CHANESKI: Yeah. Paula. A doctor could tell you what an MMR vaccine is. What does MMR stand for?

HENNING: Measles, Mumps, Rubella.

CHANESKI: That's correct.


CHANESKI: Brian. In the world of academia, there is the UCSB. What does UCSB stand for?

GONYOR: I have no idea.

CHANESKI: OK. Let's see if Erica knows. Erica, UCSB.

JOHNSON: University of California, Santa Barbara.

CHANESKI: That is correct. Very good.


CHANESKI: Down to the two ladies. Paula.

JOHNSON: So exciting.

CHANESKI: Paula. Can you tell us what JPL stands for?

HENNING: Jet Propulsion Laboratory.


CHANESKI: It does, you're right, Paula pulls it out.

EISENBERG: Yes it does.

Congratulations Paula, you are our big winner of our show today... She is jumping up and down, she's got fans in the audience that are standing on their feet. Paula, wait till you hear what your grand prize is. You get breakfast and a tour of the NPR headquarters, led by the one and only David Greene. So congratulations.


EISENBERG: Well done. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.