Thursday, July 05, 2012

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Jul 1, 2012): Retail Therapy

UPC BarcodeNPR Sunday Puzzle (Jul 1, 2012): Retail Therapy:
Q: Think of a well-known retail store chain in two words. Remove one letter from its name. The remaining letters, in order, will spell three consecutive words that are synonyms of each other. What are they? Hint: The three words are all slang.
I didn't immediately get the answer because they've been getting rid of most of these stores in our area. And the answer I have is technically one word, not two.

Edit: The hint was "getting rid of" which could be another slang synonym.
A: OfficeMax (remove the M) = Off, Ice, Ax as synonyms for "kill"

66 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. You can openly discuss your hints and the answer after the Thursday deadline. Thank you.

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  2. Welcome back Blaine. I'm having a difficult time concentrating on the puzzle this morning. Air conditioner went out and the repair guy won't be here till Wednesday. 100 degree plus days for almost a week and this heat is killing me! I 'm thinking of taking my vacation in a cooler place, say..the artic?

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    Replies
    1. You dirty rat. You stole my clue.

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    2. You've got a repair guy coming on the fourth? Sounds a little bogus to me.

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    3. Brother-in-law. I'll pay him in cold beer and steak.

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  3. Those who were Boy Scouts may have an edge in solving this one!

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  4. Movie clue: "Dial M for Murder".

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  5. Anyone want to join me on the beach to sip a screwdriver?

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  6. I'll have to wait till later this week to think about this one. Right now, I'm having to put in extra hours at my workplace and have almost exceeded the limits for overtime.

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  7. I can't stand it when I can't get these puzzles. I get so angry. I just want to . . . AHHHHHHHH!

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  8. Last night I posted:

    skydiveboy Sat Jun 30, 09:14:00 PM PDT

    New puzzle just came up and I believe I have the answer already. I think I could make a connection to last week's puzzle as a hint if I were so inclined.


    And now it is July 1 and Seattle still has not seen Spring weather and it is raining here today. I am concerned that we will have a rather chilly Independence Day come Wednesday.

    I am pleased I did not get the call for last week's puzzle as I go out of my way to avoid sports chatter and I doubt I would have correctly answered more than 2 or three of Will's on air questions if even that many. I have never even heard some of those names.

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    Replies
    1. Did you stay tuned until the end of the hour and catch the name of Rachel's new son?

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    2. Yes. I believe it was Earp. Just joking! It is Wyatt as in Wyatt Berry Stapp Earp. I have been noticing lately that this name is again becoming popular.

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  9. Hmm, according to Poker News, the last word is also a term in poker - and they spell it without the "e" as well.

    Other have noted connections to previous puzzles before, I wonder if Will has a hidden continuity theme week to week...

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  10. This puzzle got me wondering, for some reason, what Mr. Shortz watches on TV to unwind; is it something on the History channel, or maybe even Dirty Jobs?

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    Replies
    1. Maybe he is a fan of Dancing With the Stars

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  11. I'm in the mood for a cold drink. Frappacino anyone?

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  12. Now that's odd. Deborah and Blaine have each given us coffee-related hints. I wonder what the significance of this coincidence might be.

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  13. Where do they drink a lot of coffee? And what do people have with their coffee? Hmmmmm.

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  14. Shut your pie hole! Just kidding ;-)

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  15. Those who are into kidding tend to get my goat. :)

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  16. I know tomorrow is a holiday but I'm gonna have to ask the unthinkable.

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  17. Yay! I can't believe I finally got one before the deadline!

    Still trying to figure out Blaine's visual clue, though.

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    Replies
    1. The picture wasn't intended to be a clue.

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    2. Really? I thought it was a somewhat dyslexic clue for the retailer.

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    3. I think if you want to understand the hidden clue in Blaine's picture you will need to read between the lines.

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    4. @Jan,

      Okay, let's go with that. The funny thing was I tried to deliberately pick a UPC code that wouldn't tie directly to the answer but your clever brain went ahead and found a connection anyway. Now that I know that people are scrutinizing the pictures more, I'll have to consider using it more often as a clue and not just as a representation of the puzzle theme.

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  18. There have been many clever clues regarding the name of the retailer, but what about the three consecutive words that are synonyms of each other?

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    Replies
    1. My new engagement ring sparkles beautifully in the sun.

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  19. Finally got it! Now I can get back to reading up on all the Bruins' preparation for next season (Tuukka Rask's new contract, Tim Thomas waiving his no-trade clause, etc.). I like to keep up with all the goings-on that take place, um, behind the scenes.

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  20. Well, I for one, have had no refridgeration over the weekend since the storm made us lose power

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  21. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  22. It seems to me the comments this week are taking a tone revealing sophomoric reasoning.

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  23. Happy Fourth to all. A picnic puzzle awaits.

    Come and get it

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    Replies
    1. Maybe a photo of a Monte Cristo Sandwich would be more appropriate.

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    2. That's how you get from 1-10

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    3. How would Dracula go under water?

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  24. Blaine is correct. As spelt, there is no space between the 2 "words". In any event, I prefer to use the retailer's competitor.

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  25. Really have to have slang as a first language to deal with this!

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  26. The three words remind me of Edward Gorey's Alphabet.

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  27. Have two different answers been thought of, but with everyone just having thought of one of them?

    Have phredp, Tommy Boy, Jan, John K (with the 1st clue to actually refer to the two-word retail chain), CLowe, Leo, DaveJ and myself all come up with the answer having its 3rd slang word also meaning a poker term, while Blaine and hugh have the answer in which the two-word retail chain is actually technically one word?

    In our answer, everywhere I've seen the name of the retail chain it's unambiguously two words; the 1st of which contains a silent vowel, while the latter contains a silent consonant, which IS SOUNDED in the slang word not well known as a synonym of the first two, but much more well known as a poker term.

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  28. WWA Fan-

    I can think of one card term that contains the third word
    of my answer (with a silent vowel added). But it is a
    nickname for a particular card, and is not specific to poker.
    And I think my answer belongs in the first answer group you
    refer to, not "your answer".

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  29. I must have a different answer from you, EAWAF. I agree with Blaine and Hugh.

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    Replies
    1. Ah, but it was not YOU, but DaveJ who I believe has my answer.

      It was DaveJ who posted on Sun Jul 01, at 04:25:00 PM PDT:
      Hmm, according to Poker News, the last word is also a term in poker - and they spell it without the "e" as well.

      -- And in fact, we did remove an "e", only this time at the beginning of the poker term!

      BTW, I looked for any earlier post from you on this thread. I obviously found DaveJ's, but I didn't see any from you. Was this your first post on this thread?

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  30. OFF ICE MAX from OFFICE MAX

    My clues:

    "New puzzle just came up and I believe I have the answer already. I think I could make a connection to last week's puzzle as a hint if I were so inclined."

    The connection is that ax is a poker term


    "And now it is July 1 and Seattle still has not seen Spring weather and it is raining here today. I am concerned that we will have a rather chilly Independence Day come Wednesday."

    Chilly being a hint at ice. However, the weather gods took pity on Seattle and we are now having sunny weather as of yesterday.


    "I think if you want to understand the hidden clue in Blaine's picture you will need to read between the lines."

    This was intended as a joke comment, however, if you consider the tiny zero at the far left in Blaine's picture as an O, and then add the remaining large size numbers you get 13, which corresponds to the letter M, thereby you have OM, the initial letters of Office Max.


    "It seems to me the comments this week are taking a (tone r)evealing sophomoric reasoning."

    I hid the word TONER in there, indicating an item likely purchased at Office Max. The rest of the sentence may be disregarded.

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  31. > Movie clue: "Dial M for Murder".
    > This puzzle is whack!

    Dele M from OFFICE MAX for OFF, ICE, AX, i.e., murder. Whack is another synonym.

    Blaine's barcode was for cOFFee MAte, which is reminiscent of OFFice MAx, to me at least.

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  32. Am I the only person had to restrain myself from giving numerous "Office Space" clues? So. Blaine. Whaaaaaat's happening. Uh, we have sort of a problem here, M-kay?

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  33. My Boy Scouts would strive to have an edge on their ax.

    Agree that the website for OfficeMax uses the one-word form.

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  34. I had OFFICE DEPOT forming OFF, ICED, and POT. I looked it up and POT does have an obscure meaning as a verb:

    From Merriam Webster's Learners Dictionary: http://www.learnersdictionary.com/search/pot[3]

    3 pot verb
    pots; pot·ted; pot·ting

    [+ obj] 1: to plant (something) in a pot
    ▪ She spent the afternoon potting tulip bulbs.

    2 Brit: to shoot (a ball) into a pocket in games like snooker and pool
    ▪ He potted [=pocketed, sank] the winning shot.

    3 Brit: to shoot and kill (an animal)
    ▪ She potted a bird.

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  35. My clue was "playing dead." So I didn't post.

    -- Other Ben

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  36. My clues had to do with dancing with the stars dancer "Max". (I enjoy watching him anyway) and having no refridgeration (which was true) as being off ice

    SDB, I am curious, what was your comment which was removed?

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  37. This is without a doubt one of the worst puzzles in memory!

    Chuck

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  38. When I told SDB: "Shut your pie hole!" I was going to say "Shut your orifice!" But I thought that was too obvious.

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  39. My comment about the History Channel referred to the shows Ice Road Truckers and Ax Men. I have no idea how those shows pertain to history, or why they belong on a cable channel named as such. The Dirty Jobs comment referred to the the notion that offing, icing, or axing a person might be a dirty, or at least distasteful, job.

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  40. phredp:
    I delayed getting around to commenting on your beginning post here so as not to divert the discussion, but I cannot help myself from pointing out that there is no such word as ARTIC. The word is ARCTIC and I love this word and hate hearing it mispronounced as it is all the time by people who should know far better.
    Of course I fully realize you simply misspelled it and did not use spell check, but I am posting this for all the others who are not as knowledgeable as you are.
    I feel much better already. :)

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    Replies
    1. How do you feel about the Antartic?

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    2. A day later and I'm still wondering why you would want to feel your way around the Antarctic anyway.

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  41. "As spelt" = Staples = "competitor"

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  42. synonyms???

    Try Starbucks -- two words star, bucks

    sta/buc/ks----all slang

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