Paula Poundstone
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Lisa Denton and Barry Courter

LISA DENTON: Barry, I don't know if you've noticed, but country star Chris Janson is coming back to Chattanooga this week. You remember he was here last May for a show at Boyd's Speedway, which he predicted would be "fun as all get-out."

I love when people talk Southern.

BARRY COURTER: I bet fans were happy as pigs in mud to be watching those guys swappin' some gears. And stuff.

LISA: Yee-haw. He'll be here Thursday for the Bethel Country Connection at the Chattanooga Convention Center, along with fellow singers and songwriters Neil Thrasher, Chase Bryant and host Kelley Lovelace, "the new Pat Boone," as you call him.

BARRY: Guess who else is coming back to town this week. Here's a hint: She said, "Inside the Pop-Tarts box there are three pouches of two. This is what happens to me: I open the first pouch, and I eat one tart, and I enjoy it very much, as naturally I would. And then I feel, 'Well, I have to eat the second one or it will go stale.' Well, now I've eaten two, and it's no longer just a snack, it's a meal. I figure I may as well eat two more. And then finally I'm just like, 'Well, hell, I don't just want two Pop-Tarts hangin' out in a box.' I eat the last two just to tidy up, really."

LISA: Oh, that's gotta be Paula Poundstone talking. I try to catch her on "Wait, Wait Don't Tell Me," the NPR quiz show that runs locally on WUTC-FM 88.1 (Saturdays at 11 a.m., Sundays at 6 p.m.). Did you know she was the first woman to win a Cable Ace Award for Best Standup Comedy Special and the first woman to perform standup at the White House Correspondents Dinner?

BARRY: Did you ever consider writing for Wikipedia? You know a lot of stuff. Poundstone is really funny and will appear at Track 29 on Friday. We had a nice chat last week, and she talked about how much she uses social media and checks the numbers of people paying attention, but is pretty convinced it's all a hoax.

LISA: Years ago when she did a show here, she was interacting with the audience and asked our co-worker Cindy Deifenderfer what she did for a living. Cindy answered that she designs pages for the newspaper. Poundstone did a whole ad-lib riff on that, the gist of it being: Aren't they always the same size? Why would you have to redesign them?

Much of her shtick centers on her confusion about things, so I can imagine the time she had with that.

BARRY: She and Cindy could do a whole routine together. Paula mentioned in our conversation how much she loves the interaction with the audience. She also loves staying after the show and signing autographs and just meeting people. That's pretty cool.

LISA: If her confusion is real and not just part of the act, maybe someone can help her find her way to her car later.

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Contact Lisa Denton at or 423-757-6281. Contact Barry Courter at or 423-757-6354.