Thursday, June 23, 2011

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Jun 19, 2011): Things You Might See in a Mine

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Jun 19, 2011): Things You Might See in a Mine:
Q: Think of a former world leader whose first and last names both sound like things you might see in a mine. Who is the leader, and what are the things?
Now that this blog has been mentioned on the NPR website, we can expect great things. Here come all the new visitors looking for the answers to last week's hat puzzle. For the rest of us, this week's puzzle shouldn't be too hard.

Edit: The hints this week: "Expect Great Things" is the slogan of Kohl's Department Store. "...come all the..." anagrams into "coal helmet". And the references to "hard" and "hat" should also get you to helmet.
A: HELMUT KOHL --> HELMET, COAL

83 comments:

  1. Here's my standard reminder... don't post the answer or any hints that could lead directly to the answer (e.g. via Google or Bing) before the deadline of Thursday at 3pm ET. If you know the answer, click the link and submit it to NPR, but don't give it away here.

    You may provide indirect hints to the answer to show you know it, but make sure they don't give the answer away. Thank you.

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  2. Congrats, Blaine! I'll solve the new puzzle at my reunion. Some are will be there from the East.

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  3. Congratulations, Blaine. I guess the master himself has been lurking on your puzzle blog.

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  4. This is a copy of the post I entered earlier on last week's blog @ 04:50:00 PM PDT:

    New puzzle posted @ exactly 4:40 PM PDT. This is the first time I actually had the answer as I was reading the question. I have already sent it in. So this week we go from great to really simple and not just by chance either.

    Hats off to Blaine on his new found fame!

    Ken: I like your comment.

    Musical clues: Chances Are and Come Together Right Now!

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  6. All come the new bloggers to this site ! and kudos to Mr Deal !

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  7. Hats off to you Blaine! This weeks puzzle wasn't too hard and the younger crowd should get it right away.

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  8. And here come the mutterings about making jewelry out of Xenon...

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  9. Blaine, did Will or someone else at NPR contact you before citing your blog on the air? Tell us what transpired.

    Off the top of my head, I can't think of a good 1-liner for this week's easy puzzle.

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  10. Being from the Akron region, my musical clue has to be "Are we not men?"

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  11. Congrats, Blaine! I’m proud to be among the family of this now internationally known site :)

    Fairly easy puzzle this week but less than 200 entries last week.

    Chuck

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  12. @jan, when I submitted my answer via the website, I noted that there were multiple answers and that I had diagrams on my website. I gave links for each of the possible layouts and said I would be revealing them to the public after the deadline.

    I have to assume that Will Shortz himself didn't realize there were multiple answers so rather than giving all 7 possible arrangements or even giving the numbers for one layout, just decided to reference my site. I'm not complaining!

    If anyone has Will's direct email, would they just send him a thank you on my behalf? So does this put me any closer to getting that ever elusive lapel pin? Do they even give those away anymore?

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  13. @robinhl, I was also surprised about Will's on-air comment about Xenon being used in jewelry. As I remember, it's a gas used mostly for lighting and anesthetics. Anyone else know of the uses of Xenon in jewelry making?

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  14. Does anyone remember when our new host will be taking over? I would like to mark my calender.

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  15. Blaine –

    I just sent Will a note, as you requested. And as far as I know, they still do give away the lapel pins.

    Chuck

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  16. I just heard back from Will. He said:

    - - - - - - - - - -

    Thanks!

    I was happy to mention Blaine. His blog helped me shorten my explanation of the answer to Sam Loyd's puzzle.

    BTW, Loyd himself found only the first of Blaine's three solutions. So Blaine helped me in another way, too -- by letting me know there were two alternatives.

    --Will

    - - - - - - - - - -

    Chuck

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  17. Blaine
    I researched xenon for jewelry making and found it is used in making fluorescent zentrumite jewelry stones. Zentrumite is processed with a super heated, mixture of Xenon, Hydrogen, Helium, Methane, Neon, Krypton, Carbon Dioxide, Argon, Oxygen, and Nitrogen.

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  18. Skydiveboy,

    According to NPR, Audie Cornish is taking over "in the fall". Here's an article:

    http://www.npr.org/blogs/thisisnpr/2011/05/12/136251260/npr-news-names-audie-cornish-host-of-weekend-edition-sunday

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  20. Another musical Hint for this week: Peaches and Herb.

    Kudos to Blaine.

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  21. Blaine, as of a year and a half ago, NPR was still giving away lapel pins. Mine actually arrived broken, with the NPR logo separated from the stick part. "What the hell," I muttered, or something to that effect. I called NPR and they sent me a new, unbroken pin.

    I wasn't sure if I had the correct answer, but a lot of the hints that have been dropped verify that I do. Thanks all.

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  22. In a related puzzle:

    The first and last names of a former world leader sound like items you might find on a boat.

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  23. Dave,
    This certainly sounds like there are a few solutions to the Puzzle based on your last comment. It wouldn't be the first time this has happened!

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  24. I meant to say there are multiple solutions if the question includes names not related to things you might see in a mine.

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  25. Another musical clue for you all who have yet to ascertain our celeb:
    Sixteen candles.

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  26. With no intention on my part to be politically incorrect, I would point out that this politician was considered to be a fruit.

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  27. SDB - a pair is not usually a winning hand.

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  28. This person, Alec Baldwin and I all share something in common, but if past history is any indication no one on here cares.

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  29. Lorenzo, my friend, sometimes there are exceptions, as in the smoking of a cigar for instance.

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  30. Hey Lorenzo,
    Where was that picture taken? Greece or Italy?

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  31. Lorenzo, You seem to keep on top of things; did you get the answer to last week's grid puzzle? Did you enjoy it?

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  32. SDB, the picture was taken last year in Positano, Italy, although I've also traveled extensively in Greece. As for last week's puzzle, I found it interesting but frustrating because although I came up with a variety of answers by trial and error, I could not articulate a strategy or methodology. Looking back over my attempts, I do see one 18-line solution, but it was not submitted.

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  33. Amalfi Coast, the best. Too bad you were too late to catch lunch with Gore Vidal.

    Anyway, while the puzzle this week is simple, at least it requires a minimal amount of knowledge of mining technology if nothing else.

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  34. No matter how you slice it, even with a paring knife, this puzzle is inclusive.

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  35. Dave,
    If I understand you correctly then the answer is affirmative and heading into the sun.

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  36. SDB,
    Being a skydiver, would you agree with my clue? Your last musical clue confirms my solution if it is a measure of time.

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  37. So how do you change siege into seize without also switching the i and e?

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  38. Tom W:
    You are correct in your assumptions, although I did not adhere to your implication in that regard, although I do in other endeavors. Look again at my photo. I could tell you much more, but perhaps this is not really the place.

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  39. SDB,
    Thanks. Perhaps another clue: "The Final Countdown".

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  40. I will not comment on that solution except to say that I made up a joke some time back that you might appreciate:

    What is the difference between national election in our country and most European countries?

    Answer: In this country the people are concerned with knowing if their vote counts. In most European countries the people could not care less how their count votes.

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  41. Blaine -- is there something wrong with the display of this site, or is it my browser?

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  42. Well, here is a science clue that may help:

    6.626068 × 10-34

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  43. Dave, perhaps a current US leader also?

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  44. Here's another numerical clue: 66439

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  45. Great musical hints, everyone! I got the answer from lyrics in a movie musical that was released in the previous decade.

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  46. Skimming all your clues I don't get any of them, except the one that was way too obvious.

    Thanks!

    DocTechnical - I am also from the Cleveland/Akron area. Are you as happy as me that LeBron James did not get finals MVP?

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  47. B_D, as a true blue Piston fan, I watched with great delight as "The Chosen One" turned into "The Frozen One".

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  49. Has anyone been listening long enough to recall the week Will slipped up and posed a puzzle that turned out to be impossible? I'm just thinking that, just in case that ever happens again, it might be Blaine's best chance to be on the air, in order to explain the "impossibility." Of course, that's not going to be this week!

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  51. Congratulations on being mentioned on Will's program!

    I was hoping to fly under the radar on this one, but yes, they are still giving away the lapel pins. I'm expecting that mine will arrive shortly. (I was the first contestant of the post-Liane era -- didn't ace it but did well enough.)

    Regards.

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  52. Of course, my last post should have been addressed to Blaine...

    (Maybe that's why I didn't ace it!)

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  54. OK
    understoodably, at least me and my crony SDB got equal un billing. I will mark my words more carefully in the future.

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  55. I'll have to think about that one, TB.

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  56. Dave, there's a conjunction involved and it satisfies both puzzles.

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  57. Blaine:

    Is a nursery rhyme hint really on all fours?

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  58. @Benmar, while an inventive clue, I thought it would be an easy task to go from your hint directly to part of the answer.

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  59. @King Erroneous... I totally missed that when Will was giving the on-air puzzle. He misspelled siege. You can even hear the on-air contestant sounding lost at that point -- no wonder.

    SHORTZ: Um-hum. Seige S-E-I-G-E.
    (pause)
    LYDEN: Carpe diem.
    Mr. MARTINEZ: Seize.
    SHORTZ: Seize, yes. Seize the moment - good clue, Jacki.

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  60. Beethoven might be able to provide a musical clue if he is able to hear the call.

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  61. For a musical clue, I dig Tennessee Ernie Ford.

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  62. Helmut Kohl was the Chancellor of Germany 1982 - 1998 and presided over the reunification of Germany.
    My hints included a few uses of the word "chance" and a few musical clues explain themselves, but the Beethoven one refers to his #9 Symphony used extensively at that time for the occasion of the coming down of the Berlin Wall.
    When I said I wanted to mark my calendar, it was so I could use the word "mark" which was the German currency at that time.
    My pointing out that Kohl was considered a "fruit" was a hint that he was called a 'Pear" due to his large body size and shape. As far as I know he was a straight pear.

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  63. I forgot to mention my 16 candles clue. He was Chancellor for 16 years.

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  64. Gotta share this joke I just made up 10 seconds ago. Was Rep. Anthony Weiner forced to resign for sending junk mail?

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  65. My clue referenced the band Devo, out of Akron Ohio (and Kent, if you're a local and stickler for details). Their first album was "Are We Not Men?", with a hit title tune. Another hit of theirs was a cover of "Working in the Coal Mine", which was used on the Heavy Metal movie soundtrack.

    Devo even had their own "helmets" - although they're properly referred to as "Energy Domes".

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  66. 1-liner-> I-liner -> eye-liner -> kohl
    (top of my head -> helmet)

    Tennessee Ernie Ford -> "16 tons" (watch on YouTube)

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  67. Dave, regarding your puzzle, I was thinking Orrin Hatch, US senator in Utah.

    Your puzzle: oar and hatch.

    NPR puzzle: ore and hatch

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  68. Nice, TB. I was thinking of (fishing) Pol (crab) Pot.

    SDB, one and a third equals 4/3, which is birthday shared by Alec Baldwin, Helmut Kohl and you.

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  69. For my clue, I mentioned the NBA finals MVP - Dirk Nowitzki, from Germany.

    I mentioned an obvious clue - maybe it was removed later.. something about the first item also seen in bicycling?

    Congrats(?) on your increased fame, Blaine.

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  70. Dave:
    Thanks, I forgot about tht clue.

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  71. Great fun here. Here are the sequences for my numerical clues:

    6.626068 × 10-34 m2 kg/s is Planck's Constant. Helmut Kohl attended the Max-Planck-Gymnasium for elementary education.

    66439 is the Zip Code for Horton, KS. Johnny Horton sung the song: Sing the Bismarck. Helmut Kohl's 16-year tenure was the longest of any German chancellor since Otto von Bismarck.

    CQ FD CQ FD QRZ? 73

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  72. Part of the reason it took so long to end WWII is that while the Germans were sinking British ships big time, the Brits were singing German ships with minimal results. Fortunately they discovered their problem before it was too late. :)

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  73. New puzzle just posted. Very difficult this time; it took me five minutes to get the answer. Banal and a bit goofy.

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  74. I won't be surprised if this puzzle trips up a lot of listeners.

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  75. SDB - Punctuation matters - agree?

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  76. It might matter a smatter to a madder batter. That's my patter.

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  77. Hey, no one is posting. Did everyone concede?

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