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Small talk: Baseball beers and surfing the Internet at work

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Kai Ryssdal: This final note of a Friday, a moment to step away from the news of the week and hear a bit of what didn’t make the headlines. Courtesy of Rico Gagliano, Brendan Francis Newnam and the rest of the Marketplace staff.

Rico Gagliano: Jennifer Collins, reporter. What story are you going to be talking about this weekend?

Jennifer Collins: So you’ve heard of these viral videos that show baseball fans demonstrating that a small and large cup of beer at their favorite stadiums hold basically the same amount of beer?

Gagliano: I have, actually. It’s kind of amazing.

Collins: So these intrepid reporters in Phoenix went down to their stadium to figure out that if you’re ordering small beers — two small beers — you get four ounces more liquid, $1 less.

Gagliano: Than a large beer.

Collins: Yes.

Gagliano: Let me ask you: Has baseball become less exciting, or something? I mean, it just seems like fans are having more fun during cost-ratio analyses than watching the game.

Brendan Newnam: Avishay Artsy, assistant producer of Marketplace. What’s your story?

Avishay Artsy: Microsoft has their newest version of Windows, Windows 8. And it’s got a feature that a lot of people are talking about. It’s an update to the blue screen of death.

Newnam: Which is when your computer freezes and it just goes all blue.

Artsy: Right. Except now they’ve updated it so you’ve got this frowny face emoticon, and then you have the words, “Your PC ran into a problem that it can’t handle, and now it needs to restart.”

Newnam: That does sound a little nicer. But you know, if the buzz around your new product is that its failure screen is updated, I think your company might need to restart.

Gagliano: Jonathan Karp, senior editor. What story are you going to be talking about this weekend?

Jonathan Karp: It’s legal in Canada to surf the Internet at work on the company’s loonie.

Gagliano: Another reason to move to Canada.

Karp: Absolutely. Franklin Andrews, a government bureaucrat, was apparently spending more than half of his day surfing the Internet. He was downloading lots of pornography.

Gagliano: Really?

Karp: But he got fired — and keep in mind, this is Canada — for time theft.

Gagliano: But it didn’t stick?

Karp: No, the court ruled that he had met all of his obligations. The government didn’t give him enough work, so he wasn’t stealing any time at all.

Gagliano: May I ask where did you find this story? On the Internet, perhaps? Are we not keeping you busy enough?

Karp: Talk to my boss about that.

Ryssdal: There’s more where that came from. It’s a podcast Brendan and Rico do called Dinner Party Download.

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