An Astronaut, a Catalan, and Two Linguists Walk Into a Bar…: TMSIDK Episode 36

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Astronaut Mike Massimino’s spacewalks helped repair the Hubble Space Telescope. (Photo: NASA)

In Spain, nobody ever sings the national anthem. Do you know why?

It has no lyrics! The anthem started as a royal march, and the royal family has kept it wordless to distance the song from political influences. But that hasn’t kept cheeky kids from coming up with their own words. One example mocks the Spanish dictator Francisco Franco:

Jordi GETMAN-ERASO: Franco, Franco, who has a white butt, he goes to Paris, it turns grey.

John McWhorter is co-host; Bari Weiss is live fact-checker. Why New York has skinny skyscrapers, how to weaponize water, and what astronauts talk about in space.