Friday, August 02, 2013

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Jul 28, 2013): What Does NPR Stand For?

NPR logoNPR Sunday Puzzle (Jul 28, 2013): What Does NPR Stand For?:
Q: In three words, name a product sold mainly to women that has the initials N-P-R. The answer is a common phrase.
My wife's first answer: Nipple Piercing Ring. Okay, just forget I said that.

Edit: In other words, remove that thought.
A: Nail Polish Remover

115 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 a chain of thought, or an internet search) 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. The answer came to me in less than three seconds, but even that did not break my record. It's nice to spike one occasionally, but a bitter sweet victory none the less.

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    Replies
    1. A neon parachute ripcord may not be the common answer for which they are looking. Oops, that was a dead giveaway.
      (I believe it's two words, but I could not resist) :-)

      Delete
    2. Hey, ace, tone it down! You could spill the beans, and I wouldn't want to touch that with a 150-foot pole.

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    3. Nice, Jan. I do know some guys who use this product in science experiments.

      Spoofing answer: Nice Pink Razors.

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    4. Yes. I once substituted this product in organic chemistry lab when my desired product yield was insufficient. Good thing the instructor did not perform a mass spectrometry analysis. I would have been busted for sure.

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    5. Yes, and I'd argue that the key ingredient in this product is used at least equally by both men and women.

      Welcome, jlantz974. We haven't had to perform any mass spectrometry analyses before on Blaine's Blog. There's always a first time.

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    6. Ah, remembering my organic chem class. Ethel, Ethan... oh, wait, I forgot Esther.

      True organic chem lab story: we were measuring the distribution coefficient of acetone between water and chloroform layers (I think I remember the chemicals right). One student pipetted her sample by mouth instead of using a rubber bulb, and got a mouthful by mistake, just as the TA walked by. Not wanting to get a bad grade for technique, she kept her mouth shut until he left. She told me she went back to her dorm after class and slept the rest of the afternoon.

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    7. @jan,
      Just got back to my phone. You really hit that one on the head.

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    8. Aldehydes & ketones. Only the professor knew enough, and didn't volunteer information, regarding gowning up or staying away from chemicals such as formaldehyde, picric acid & benzene.

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    9. OK, that's really crazy, Blaine, we just had a guy 2 blocks West of here who had pierced nipples w/ rings who just went out in a blaze of gun fire: Paul Schenk, Yellow Springs, OH.

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    10. So I would guess the cops nailed him and nipped it in the bud. The question remains—did they empty their clips?

      Delete
  3. I don't know, Blaine, but I think your Wife's "first answer" just about reached the tipping point.

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  4. Could be like a former manufacturer of electronic musical instruments.

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  5. Blaine should delete all the posts this week. He's the hammer around here.

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  6. Straining for this one: "Never Praise Republicans."

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  7. SDB - you win. It took me ten to twenty seconds.

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  8. It could be Nature's Perfect Remedy to all your problems.

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    Replies
    1. I believe that's the answer. Why would you post this?

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    2. Do you have hemorrhoids? Try some horse chestnut seeds.

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    3. Actually, inter alia, I'm just a good old pharmacist.

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    4. And you know, therefore, that hemorrhoids is a mainly feminine affliction?

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    5. Actually, back in the day, I can't recall this being a common product MAINLY used by a man.

      And Ron, you ought to be more oral!

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  9. I'm going with Non-Portuguese Riesling.

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  10. Actually, it's Neutrally Painted Rhinos. (Funny, that sounded better in Swahili.)

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  11. 3 NPR political reporters did the Register Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa last week (see: returntoiowa.tumblr.com ). Their fronts of their t-shirts read: "24-Hour News Cycles". The backs said:

    "No Pie Refused"

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    Replies
    1. My daughter and I heard about this race in Iowa enroute to MN...Iowa folks were pretty darn welcoming.

      No Pie Refused indeed!

      Delete
  12. nighttime panty raid

    We’re having a quite enjoyable, albeit unusual, late July cool spell in St. Louis. Great night for grilling. I think I’ll throw on that perfect combination of protein and cholesterol -- a couple of kielbasa.

    Chuck

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    Replies
    1. Slick. Here in New Jerzy, it's warming up again.

      Delete
  13. Nose Poke Response (used in animal research)..tried this on my wife once and got slapped!

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  14. Headed up to Keystone, though I shall not bring sunscreen, shoes or slippers.

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  15. Naughty Panty Rinse.

    Neck Play Rub. (I cleaned this one up a bit.)

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  16. NPR announced recently that it's no longer National Public Radio. Like CBS and NBC before it, it has decided that its initials are now so iconic they stand for nothing but themselves.
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/harry-shearer/npr--the-initials-stand-f_b_697670.html

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  17. Neapolitan Pizza Restaurant?
    Nine Pound Roast?
    Nice Pastrami [on] Rye?
    New Prince Recording?

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  18. No Pill Rayon (modern spoof response)
    New Poor Richard's (200 year throwback spoof response)

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  19. My wife beat me to this one. I submitted under her name. I figured I owed it to her for earlier times when she would find me in puzzle solving space.

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  20. In the bawdy spirit of this thread so far, how about a Nude Pantyhose Romp? (Although perhaps that would be a product more likely to be sold to men.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Just be careful not to apply the product to pantyhose unless you want to destroy them.

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  21. Replies
    1. This was more obvious than I intended. I was thinking of cuticles, but I didn't recall the brand name CUTEX until sometime this morning. Honest.

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  22. One of the words in the correct solution is a heteronym and I'm surprised no one has made a joke about this.

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    Replies
    1. You are not counting appropriately indirect references, I take it.

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    2. ron: You don't seem to know what a heteronym is.

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    3. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heteronym

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    4. Perhaps you don't understand what the meaning of identical spellings is.

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    5. Two words are heteronyms if they have the same (identical) spellings, different pronunciations, and different meanings. One word of the correct solution to this week's challenge is a heteronym of another word with the same spelling, but different pronunciation and different meaning. Above are two indirect references to these heteronyms, but no jokes. Hope that is clear.

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    6. My apologies, I thought you were thinking of a different word.

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    7. Yes, one of the words is a heteronym and another is a homonym.

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    8. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

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    9. WOW!!! First time SKB ever "apologized" for anything>

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  23. That is correct. There are two references but no jokes.

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    Replies
    1. There must be some. The question is how many.

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    2. Like how many of them does it take to change a light bulb? Five; one to hold the bulb and four to rotate the ladder.

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  24. All this chemistry is bogging me down. Now our old country recipe involves taking an olive, palm and a loving spoonful of madgic.
    Problem solved, all the ladies are happy

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    Replies
    1. The old country recipe is Palmolive with old manicurist Madge.

      Delete
  25. This puzzle should be easy for women, and for any guy who has been in an LTR with one. They are all fixated on whether their ass is toned.

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    Replies
    1. My donkey doesn't seem to care. . .;-)

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    2. May have to burro deep for this one.

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    3. UJ, that's one of the best clues I've ever read on this blog.

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    4. Thank you, Ruth, and WW. Right: "acetone", or nail polish remover. I wondered if his royal highness would delete.

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  26. Why are we even discussing this one? It's so easy!

    There is another product that uses two of the three letters in NPR and moves the other letter one position. In fact, it could result in two names--one a brand name, the other what it's used for. However, hearing the purpose of this product read over the air might make some listeners uncomfortable. Let that be our challenge for the week.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My initial guess was some kind of PAIN RELIEVER, of which MIDOL is a brand, leading me to the answer MIDOL PAIN RELIEVER before arriving at the actual answer.

      What MIDOL is used for is the generic version of this answer, but like the purpose for which Nature's Perfect Remedy is used, is one that doesn't sound appropriate for family-friendly radio.

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  27. What bugs me is that Will also said it's a "common phrase".

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    Replies
    1. That "common phrase" confused me, too. I suppose this means that the product name is not a brand name, but is a regular phrase.

      Delete
  28. Cinematic Hint: Local Hero. This movie is pretty obscure, and the reference in it to this puzzler is even more obscure.

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  29. Still don't have it? Sleep on it and you may get it once you stop dreaming.

    ReplyDelete
  30. bronze statue from the era of a Nubian Pharoah's Reign
    Hmmm was that bronze or brass?

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    Replies
    1. That statue is looking kind of dull.

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    2. Brass tax will do that to you.

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    3. Yes but not as harsh as streaking by on a bronzed budget.

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    4. Rodin, Rodin, Rodin (sung to the tune of Rollin', Rollin' Rollin'). ;-)

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    5. Yeah: use too much of the product in question, and you might end up with Rawhide.

      Delete
  31. Ng gur fbhaq bs gur gbar, cyrnfr yrnir n zrffntr.

    GBAR

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    Replies
    1. NPR called...but was cut off after the N! =)

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    2. I found it interesting that NPR rot13's to ACE.

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  32. Replies
    1. NPR --->>> NAIL POLISH REMOVER

      Science experiment referred to the main ingredient, acetone, used in nail polish remover.

      Keystone with no 's' is keytone >>> ketone.

      Maybe next week, we'll anagram Will Shortz and Rachel Martin.

      Delete
  33. "Nail polish remover." My hint re-"ketones," of which acetone is the most basic and is probably found in nail polish remover.

    Dealing with "Natures Perfect Remedy," it's always interesting to play up something like that, when it might have some merit, since if Blaine agrees - it is gone.

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  34. NAIL POLISH REMOVER

    My hints:

    "The answer came to me in less than three seconds, but even that did not break my record. It's nice to spike one occasionally, but a bitter sweet victory none the less."
    I NAILED it. Spike = to POLISH off. Nails tend to taste bitter.

    "I don't know, Blaine, but I think your Wife's "first answer" just about reached the tipping point."
    NAILS are tips.

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  35. nail polish remover

    Last Sunday I said, “We’re having a quite enjoyable, albeit unusual, late July cool spell in St. Louis. Great night for grilling. I think I’ll throw on that perfect combination of protein and cholesterol -- a couple of kielbasa.” Another name for kielbasa is polish sausage.

    Chuck

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  36. COMMENTARY ON MY POSTS
    (Something I almost never do.)

    I knew at once that everyone would post his or her "N...P...R... Phrase" and I decided to choose mine to be an ACTUAL PRODUCT (but, of course NOT the real solution to this week's Challenge which I had already guessed: NAIL POLISH REMOVER). I chose NATURE'S PERFECT REMEDY, a product that treats hemorrhoids. Benmar, having been a pharmacist, recognized this product & thought it was the solution to the Challenge. However, a product that treats hemorrhoids is not the kind of product that would be "sold MAINLY to women." Therefore, Nature's Perfect Remedy could not be the correct or intended solution.

    Next, a bit later, I posted the proposition that one of the three words in the correct solution was a heteronym. This was the word polish/Polish (from Poland). See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heteronym_%28linguistics%29 to view a short yet exhaustive list of English heteronyms. You will observe that polish/Polish is on that list. I then said I was surprised that there were no jokes expressed about this heteronym, Polish, i.e. Polish Jokes. I also said there were at that time two indirect references to this heteronym, namely Chuck's reference to a Polish sausage and Jan's reference to a Polish George (Jerzy), two brilliant and extremely clever clues. Of course there were many references to the other ordinary "polish," particularly the acetone references.

    I would like now to offer an old "Polish Joke" which I could not post earlier because it would have given away the correct solution to this week's Challenge. I hope it will still provide a few chuckles:

    "Did you hear about the Polak who thought
    his wife was trying to kill him? On her
    dressing table he had found a bottle of
    POLISH REMOVER!"

    Finally, one last puzzle for everyone to ponder...

    Try to sort out & distinguish the heteronyms from the homonyms and the almost-homonyms in the following sentence:

    At present, let us present our presents,
    while in the presence of the president,
    setting a new precedent, to those prescient
    enough to be present here today.

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    Replies
    1. That Ron knows his "brilliant and extremely clever" when he sees it :)

      Chuck

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  37. > Hey, ace, tone it down! You could spill the beans, and I wouldn't want to touch that with a 150-foot pole.

    Acetone is commonly used in nail polish remover. According to the DOT Emergency Response Guide, isolate spill area for 150 feet in all directions.

    > Ah, remembering my organic chem class. Ethel, Ethan... oh, wait, I forgot Esther.

    Ethyl ethanoate (also known as ethyl acetate), an ester, is also commonly used in nail polish remover.

    > Slick.

    I.e., polished.

    > Here in New Jerzy, it's warming up again.

    Polish spelling of the common given name.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jan, I didn't know that about George. Do you suppose the royals might call the new heir to the throne Jerzy for short?

      I do think "Ace" Tone would be a cool name for a detective, fitness instructor, or chemist.

      Standing 151 feet away.

      Delete
    2. I think the Ace Tones sounds like a doo-wop group.

      Delete
  38. I posted above: "Still don't have it? Sleep on it and you may get it once you stop dreaming."

    "REM over".

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  39. In Local Hero, there is a band playing in the background of a party called Ace Tones, which can be clumped together to form acetones.

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  40. Hey SDB. My solving it "in 10 to 20 seconds" referred to the number of polishable digits on the body.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So, I take it you're not bald yet.

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    2. I don't know about you, but the CPU under my chrome dome is analog, not digital.

      Delete
  41. My reference to "Swahili" was an indirect nod to "Polish", which I later thought had been recognized, but apparently wasn't. (Not that the two have anything in common - just the fact of a foreign language heteronym being part of the answer.)

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  42. I knew I was wrong when I read SDB's heteronym clue but I stuck with no perm relaxer anyway.

    ReplyDelete
  43. New puzzle is up:

    Next week's challenge: Name a foreign make of automobile. Cross out several letters in its name. The remaining letters, reading in order from left to right, will spell a food that comes from the country where the car is made. What is the country, and what is the food?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I recall that for the past few weeks some of the early posters would post about how they happened to figure out the puzzle as they were either preparing or eating their Sunday breakfast.

      I don't think many folks here would choose to have the puzzle's asked-for food for their breakfast.

      Delete
  44. Another non-puzzle. Now I really would like something I feel is more substantial.

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  45. Interesting side story:

    As a lark, after I had submitted my answer to NPR, I decided to look up List of automobile manufacturers of France to see if I could find a possible additional answer by finding the letters of "crepe" among them.

    Well, no luck with either Major current manufacturers, Minor current manufacturers, or Current microcar manufacturers; but among Former manufacturers, not only did I find the letters of crepe within Crespelle (1906–1923), but immediately following THAT, was Croissant (1920–1922)!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I found something similar closer to home.

      I also note that, as the puzzle is worded, the automobile manufacturer is not part of the answer.

      Delete
  46. As some would think this puzzle stinks, I don't.

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  47. Another quick solve. Might as well roll back into bed and get some more zzzzzz's.

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  48. I was thinking about going back to bed, but a good bowl of breakfast cereal will be a real treat.

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  49. Also within this first word is another word that also is sometimes used to describe a food and it has a strong connection to Indianapolis.

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    Replies
    1. Is this a food that originated in New London, CT?

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  50. Not so long ago, there were just about zero restaurants in the U.S. serving this food. (Zeke Creek should understand that clue.)

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    Replies
    1. We had a lot of home cooking, so to speak.

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    2. Hard to get the cookin' just right on this one.

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  51. I did a master's paper on a certain type of infection in the U.S. from eating this kind of food (partly just to tick off my wife, who loves the stuff).

    It's hard to type at 6AM without making errors.

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  52. Hmmmm, do you generally pick topics to tick off your wife, Jan? Leaving her rolling on the ground?

    ReplyDelete