Can I Kick It? No, You Can't

Jul 31, 2014
Originally published on November 25, 2015 8:49 pm

Listen, we're not your parents. We're not about to tell you what you can and can't do. Besides, the songs in this game, all of which contain the word "can't" in the title, take care of that for us.

Heard in Episode 323: Smitten With The Mitten State

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Let's welcome our next two contestants - Craig VanKempen and Angela Tomaszycki.


EISENBERG: Now, Craig and Angela are a couple. You haven't been going out for that long. How long have you been going out, Craig?

CRAIG VANKEMPEN: Just a few months.

EISENBERG: Just a few months?

VANKEMPEN: So we thought it was a nice, you know, midway, early in the relationship date to...

ANGELA TOMASZYCKI: No pressure or anything.

VANKEMPEN: No pressure, no.

EISENBERG: You haven't been in a lot of relationships, have you?


EISENBERG: Now have you worked out ahead of time what the winner has to do or what the loser has to do?

VANKEMPEN: Yes. Well, we met doing "Spamalot" in community theater, so we're both really into music. And we thought the winner would have to - or the loser would have to write the winner a song and change the lyrics to be about the winner.

TOMASZYCKI: So we decided to use "My Favorite Things..."

VANKEMPEN: ...From "Sound Of Music."

EISENBERG: You guys are amazing. I totally have faith in you. OK, audience I have one question for you. Can I kick it?

AUDIENCE: Yes you can.

EISENBERG: No, I can't. In fact, that is the title of this next game - Can you kick it? No you can't.


A TRIBE CALLED QUEST: (Rapping) Can I kick it? Yes you can.

EISENBERG: They were amazing.

JONATHAN COULTON, BYLINE: They were amazing. They knew the answer.

EISENBERG: They knew the answer.

COULTON: But they were wrong because you can't kick it because...

EISENBERG: You can't kick it in this one.

COULTON: ...This is public radio and there is no kicking allowed.


COULTON: OK? We express our feelings using words.


JOHN CHANESKI: This is a music game. It is all about song titles that contain the word can't. We have changed the words in the songs so that they are about other things that you can't do.

EISENBERG: That's such a positive game.

COULTON: It's very, very positive. Your job is to give us the title of the original song. Are you ready?

VANKEMPEN: Oh, man, I'm going to be writing a song.

COULTON: Here we go. (Singing) I saw her today at the computer, a stack of papers in her hand. I knew she was going to be a straight shooter. Should I use Times or Comic Sans? You can't always use 12 point font. You can't always use 12 point font.


COULTON: Angela?

TOMASZYCKI: "You Can't Always Get What You Want?" Rolling Stones.

COULTON: That's right.


VANKEMPEN: We don't need to name the artist - she was just showing off there, right?

COULTON: She was just showing off, and you should be very afraid, Craig.


EISENBERG: I like that you went to the teachers. Hey, we don't have to do that, right?


COULTON: Is this going to be on the test?

VANKEMPEN: You found me out.

COULTON: (Singing) Yeah I - I'll do anything that you want me to do. Yeah I - I'll do almost anything that you want me to do yeah. But I can't bathe your cat no, no. No can do, I can't bathe your cat.


COULTON: Angela?

TOMASZYCKI: "I Can't Go For That?"

COULTON: That's correct.


EISENBERG: What if the cats are named Hall and Oates - would you bathe them?

TOMASZYCKI: Absolutely.

COULTON: Oh, that's adorable to have two cats and name them Hall and Oates.

EISENBERG: I know, right?

COULTON: That makes me want to go out and buy two kittens right away.

EISENBERG: I'm doing it after the show.

COULTON: One of them has a little mustache.


COULTON: (Singing) No one loves food more than you, can't steal those fries off of you. You're like a pillow to touch, I want to squeeze you so much. Just give me something to eat, it doesn't have to be sweet. No one loves food more than you, can't steal those fries off of you.



VANKEMPEN: "Can't Take My Eyes Off Of You."

COULTON: You got it.


COULTON: I assume you knew the answer to that one because of the romantic feelings you have for Angela, right, Craig?

VANKEMPEN: Yes, that's correct. Yes.

COULTON: Say yes.

VANKEMPEN: You saw how I couldn't take my eyes off of her during that whole song.

COULTON: Yeah, I know. I noticed, I noticed.

EISENBERG: He was just thinking about food.


EISENBERG: I thought you've been going out like two months - you're already there?


COULTON: (Singing) La, la, la, la, la, la, la, la. La, la, la, la, la, I just can't eat gluten-free bread. Boy, your pastas all I think about. I just can't get a bagel instead, boy it's more than a dare to think about.



VANKEMPEN: "Can't Get You Out Of My Head."

COULTON: That's right.


COULTON: (Singing) Gee, I hate to see you feel unwell. Baby with no coat you must be freezing, I can tell. Baby, I know you're cold but you know darn well baby. I can't knit you anything but gloves.

EISENBERG: It's OK, it's OK.



VANKEMPEN: "I Can't Give You Anything But Love."



COULTON: Nice pull, nice pull.

EISENBERG: Or did you know it and you were stalling?

VANKEMPEN: No, I had no idea.

EISENBERG: You had no idea? You just pulled that out of an...

VANKEMPEN: Jonathan's lyrics, you know.

COULTON: Yeah, right (laughing).

EISENBERG: Well done...

VANKEMPEN: Thank you, thank you.

EISENBERG: ...Because you did stare at Angela lovingly throughout that whole thing. And I was like he's psyching her out, he's psyching her out.


TOMASZYCKI: It worked. It totally worked.

COULTON: All right, this is your last clue. (Singing) Wise men say only fools rush in. But I can't help getting a new tattoo.



VANKEMPEN: "I Can't Help Falling In Love With You."

COULTON: Oh, that's very sweet and also correct.


COULTON: John Chaneski, what's happening with this rivalry - what - who is the victor?

CHANESKI: Yes he can kick it - way to go, Craig. You are the winner.



VANKEMPEN: So what's your favorite thing about me?


TOMASZYCKI: I - you shouldn't ask that right now.


COULTON: Uh oh. I guess it's the way you're a gracious winner, I guess?


TOMASZYCKI: Right, yeah. That must be it.

EISENBERG: Congratulations, Craig, you will not only be getting a song from Angela, but you will be moving on to our Ask Me One More final round at the end of the show. Thank you so much, Angela.


COULTON: (Singing) We took the freeway out of town, we found a place to settle down. Got a driveway and a swingset and a dog. You've got your very own bathroom. I got my very own workshop in the basement. We sit around staring at the wall to wall, take field trips to our favorite mall, waiting for the day when all the kids grow up and leave us here. If you need me, I'll be downstairs with the Shop Vac. You can call but I probably won't hear you because it's loud with the Shop Vac on. But you'll be OK because you'll be upstairs with the TV you can cry and I probably won't hear you because it's loud with the Shop Vac on. We hung a flag above the door, checked out the gourmet grocery store. I got a mower I can ride around the yard. But we haven't got real friends and now even the fake ones have stopped calling. Maybe if you forget to hide the keys, I'll take a ride to Applebee's, come home drunk on daiquiris and throw up on the neighbors lawn. If you need me, I'll be downstairs with the Shop Vac. You can call but I probably won't hear you because it's loud with the Shop Vac on.


EISENBERG: Jonathan Coulton.

COULTON: Thank you.

EISENBERG: Coming up, we'll talk to Detroit hat designer Luke Song about making one of the best career choices of all time because hey, everyone has a head. Stay tuned, this is NPR's ASK ME ANOTHER. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.