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Bennett CerfBennett Cerf
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One day a man named Mark Goodson, a name that I had never heard before in my life, called up at Random House. He said, “I'm Mark Goodson of Goodson-Toddman.” I said, “Hurray for you. What can I do for you?" He said, “We have a television show every Sunday night, which we started, and I hear you're a good game player. One of the men that's on the show won't be here next Sunday. Would you like to take his place this one Sunday night?" I said, “You bet I would. What is it?" I didn't have the faintest idea. He said, “It's called 'What's My Line?‘It's been in existence for about five months. The sponsor is a man named Dr. Montinet who has a product called Stopette, which is one of those 966 underarm sprays.”

We've discovered from television that we all have bad odors you know. Television has proved, I've always said, that American people have bad breaths, bad dentures, horrible underarm odors, smells all over the place, bad stomachs, flat feet, dirty sinks. The only happy people in T.V. commercials seem to be the people who are getting cancer by smoking cigarettes.

But anyway, this was the sponsor. I had never heard of Dr. Montinet. I had never heard of Stopette. I had never heard of Mark Goodson or Bill Toddman. I had never heard of “What's My Line?”

He said, “Come down Sunday night an hour before the show. It's a very simple game. We'll explain it to you.”

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