Mystery Ghost

Dec 22, 2017

The bell tolls thrice! Will a visit from a Mystery Guest— or should we say, a Mystery Ghost of Quiz-mas Yet To Come— melt the heart of Puzzle Guru Ebenezer Scrooge? Jonathan Coulton and Scrooge ask yes or no questions to guess our Mystery Ghost's secret.

Heard On Anthony Ramos: A Quiz-mas Carol

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While Emma and Dylan get ready for our final round, it's time for us to play a game. This is Mystery Guest. Or should I say Mystery Ghost?


EISENBERG: That's right. It's time for the spirit of Quiz-mas yet to come. A stranger is about to join us onstage. Jonathan and Scrooge have no idea who this person is or what she does. Today, I only know the answer. Mystery ghost, please introduce yourself.

SONIA ORTIZ: My name is Sonia Ortiz, and I have an interesting job.

EISENBERG: All right, so Jonathan and Scrooge, you have to ask Sonia yes-or-no questions to try to figure out what her interesting job is.

WILL HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) OK, I will begin. Does your job have to do with hating Christmas?


HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) OK, I'm going to be at a disadvantage for this one.


JONATHAN COULTON: It's a good question. It narrows it down.

HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) I made it easy for you.

COULTON: Yep, thank you. Do you have a job where you interface with customers, with the public?



HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) Is your job charitable in nature? Is it involved, like, with a charity or giving - you know, good-guy stuff?


HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) Good.


COULTON: Sonia, do you make something?

EISENBERG: Hmm. I'm going to say you would answer yes to that.

ORTIZ: Yeah, yes.

HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) Is it a tangible product?


HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge, laughing) Do you, like - do you make ideas? Do you give - do you suggest ideas to people?



HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) What?


COULTON: You could do that? You can have that kind of a job?

EISENBERG: Just a reminder that she is the ghost of the future, if that is all - at all helpful.

HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) Oh, this is some online nonsense or digital silliness.

COULTON: You're way, way out of your element now, Scrooge.

HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) OK, all right. Are you a tweet?


HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) Are you, yourself, a tweet?

COULTON: That's not how it works. That's not how it works, Scrooge.

HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) It's a yes-or-no question.

COULTON: Yeah, but...

HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) Are you a tweet?



COULTON: Are you involved with futurism, with predicting things that are going to happen?


HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) Oh, stars - you into, like, star maps?


HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) But primarily - I mean, is that what we're...

ORTIZ: Yes, yes.

HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) Astrologist? Are you an astrologist?

COULTON: Are - you're an astrologist.

ORTIZ: Yes, yes.

EISENBERG: Yes, that is correct.

ORTIZ: That's is correct.


EISENBERG: Sonia is a diviner whose horoscope columns appear in the women's magazines Bust and Got a Girl Crush.

HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) Cool.

EISENBERG: All right. So Sonia, how did you get into divination?

ORTIZ: My mother is obsessed with horoscopes and has some experience it - with it herself. However, her very good friend taught me everything about tarot, astrology. I've been doing this now for, like, 25 years, but I studied with her for about five years.

EISENBERG: OK. So do you believe in it?



EISENBERG: OK. So do you think people should read their horoscope, and believe in them and take them at face value?


EISENBERG: What should they do with their horoscopes?

ORTIZ: It's a tool like with anything else. How can I put this without offending anyone in the astrological community?


ORTIZ: It's just a suggestion.


ORTIZ: It's a suggestion. You know, don't take it literal. It's - they're mostly fun. They're for fun, and they give good advice, but advice, you know, like with anyone, like a close friend giving you advice, you don't have to take it to the whole level. Like, you don't...

EISENBERG: So you should still incorporate it into your own life however that's meaningful.

ORTIZ: Yeah.

EISENBERG: Is it ever scary?

ORTIZ: Sometimes, yes.

EISENBERG: And what do you do?

ORTIZ: I, you know, tell them because you should. You can't really hold anything back.


ORTIZ: But I also tell them that, you know, I think with the way I do astrology, too, I look into possible futures. And I'm like, well, the - everything your trajectory shows that this could very well happen, but you have the power to change it.

HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) Ah, optimistic.

EISENBERG: Deep, Scrooge, isn't it? You have the power to change it.

HINES: (As Ebenezer Scrooge) Ooh. I feel good.

ORTIZ: Yeah.

EISENBERG: Fantastic. Thank you so much for joining us. Everyone, give it up for our mystery guest, Sonia Ortiz.

(APPLAUSE) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.