McWhirter also answered unrehearsed questions about world records from the audience, which was made up entirely of schoolchildren. He slipped up only when he said the world's largest airplane, Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose, was in a hangar in Long Bay, Calif. instead of Long Beach. Otherwise he was flawlessly in command, assuring the youngsters that the world's largest aircraft carrier was the Dwight D. Eisenhower and that the biggest secondary school was DeWitt Clinton High in New York City, which in the 1930s enrolled 12,000 students. To this last he added, "I should think the headmaster wouldn't know the names of the teachers, let alone the students."
He got a nice laugh on that one. Michael John Poultney, the chap who can recite π to 5,050 places, would have found it a hard act to follow.