Sunday, March 08, 2015

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Mar 8, 2015): Blank and Blank

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Mar 8, 2015): Blank and Blank:
Q: Take a familiar phrase in the form "[blank] and [blank]." Put the second word in front of the first, and you'll name a common part of a large company. What is it?
No hint this week; you'll just have to earn it yourself.

Edit: For helping out, you'll earn room and board.
A: ROOM and BOARD --> BOARDROOM

91 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. This week’s CHALLENGE is as easy as “night and day.” Shift day and night to obtain “day shift” and “night shift.”

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  3. For Will Shortz to come up with such an intriguing and diabolically clever puzzle such as this he must have relied on numerous colleagues.

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  4. strange that few bloggers are meeting here today. Maybe Blaine should serve refreshments.

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  5. Replies
    1. This answers the question: "How do they do that?"

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    2. ron,
      You have a real knack for coming up with great diversions when the puzzles are a bit on the easy side, as is this week’s. I appreciate your similar efforts over at that other puzzle blog that begins with a “P,” ends with a “!” and has an “uzzleria” in between.

      LegoronIsADiversionMiningMachine!

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    3. Thanks ron,
      And I always thought each one of those pasta pieces was cut by hand by dedicated Italians.

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    4. Thanks to both of you. I am pleased some enjoyed this.

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    5. Master puzzle chef Lego Lambda always cuts the puzzle slices by hand over at Puzzleria!
      Alas, in the process he often puts his foot in his mouth!

      LegoMmmmgrhhfrrgrrffjmfffgh!

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    6. I hope someone will invent a toaster that works.

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    7. sdb,
      I understand Dean Martin and Foster Brooks were gainfully employed.

      LegoToSkoal

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  6. I find the second (ultimate) answer, phonetically, to often be apropos. And I'm thinking the musical clue needs to be a certain genre.

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  7. I think Will's already done this one before. In fact, I'm sure of it. It was one of the first Sunday puzzles I'd ever done. Doesn't he check to make sure he doesn't repeat himself?

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    Replies
    1. You are correct. And not too long ago, either.

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  8. I think Will's already done this one before. In fact, I'm sure of it. It was one of the first Sunday puzzles I'd ever done. Doesn't he check to make sure he doesn't repeat himself?

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    Replies
    1. On the other hand, you just repeated yourself here yourself.

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    2. Nyuk nyuk nyuk.

      You say Ang Lee, I say (his brother) Ahn Nwee.

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    3. Sorry, I thought this thing said there was an error the first time it published. Clearly, it still published.

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    4. We have so moved on from all that!

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  9. This is a repeat. How dull an eventful.

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  10. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  11. Fly me to the moon
    Let me play among the stars
    Let me see what spring is like
    On jupiter and mars

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  12. The PM worded the original version of this puzzle slightly differently, but that doesn't change the answer.

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    Replies
    1. Anyway this puzzle sucks! Not only that, but it is so much more poorly worded than last time he used it. What a slacker!

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  13. Will Shortz is King of Crosswords,
    But with him I have some cross words.
    __His recent NPR teasers,
    __Have not been pleasers.
    As they only appeal to posh nerds.

    Perhaps he has become too conventional,
    And I am sure it is not intentional
    __All we ask of Will
    __Is to challenge our skill.
    But crosswords are so two dimensional.

    So come on now Maestro Will,
    And present us with a real thrill.
    __Please get some new cohorts,
    __To provide you, Mr. Shortz,
    With no more of this simple krill.

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  14. SDB I agree so with you/To repeat is so lazy to do/We expect more from Will/As a man of such skill/Than to give all his fans deja vu!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, but it didn't work when I first posted it four years ago.

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  15. Poorly worded puzzle, but you'll know the answer when you get it.
    You might find the homophone mildly amusing (describing how the people in that area may feel).

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  16. Blaine,

    Fair warning! Please poise your mouse-clicker over your “delete” button as you read this comment. Why? I am about to reveal what I believe to be the only possible answer to this week’s NPR challenge… as it is stated!

    As Blainesvillians may be aware, every large insurance company employs underwriters. And, in the often hectic environment of busy insurance offices, an underwriter is often referred to (and I am somewhat sure I may be correct about this) by the shorthand term “under” as a means of expediting the business flow in an atmosphere of chaos.

    I am also somewhat sure that this process of expedition may be common practice at The Andover Companies. But you might want to check with them first. I presume Will Shortz checked with them about the “underwriter-gets-shortened-to-under” truncation before he aired this week’s stickler.

    Sorry, Blaine and Blainesvillians, to ruin all the fun. Your chances this week of winning the lapel pin have just plummeted. Las Vegas has now set the over-under for the number of correct entries Will will receive at 10,000. I’d bet the over.

    LegOverAndOut

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  17. Nice try, but I think you're just pulling our collective Lego.

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  18. Since this week's puzzle is a rerun, here's a puzzle idea I have that I doubt has been used before: Think of something you almost always see in the sky. Now think of a certain property this thing possesses. Switch the second and third letters of both words, and you'll name a well-known TV show of the past. What are these?

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    Replies
    1. Yes, but don't burn your Bridges before you cross them.

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    2. Even Lloyd Bridges would agree this is a poorly worded puzzle. "Switch the second and third letters" has several meanings unnoticed by PJB. Meaning 1: REVERSE the order of the letters (see Lego's brilliant solution below). Meaning 2 : REPLACE or EXCHANGE the two letters (the actual intended meaning). Meanings 3 and 4: combinations of REPLACE and REVERSE while changing the letters.

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  19. I hope you won't be in too deep with this one. I know you guys are bright enough to get the answer.

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  20. I hope I'm not burning any bridges behind me with this puzzle.

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    Replies
    1. patjberry,

      I know you thought I was pulling your collective lego with my “Andover Under” answer, but this time I am deadly serious:

      You almost always see some GRAY in the sky. Gray possesses a certain metallic GUN-like quality. Voila!

      LegnuLandover

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  21. keeping with the status quo, rum is often needed here to really decide something, but "one bourbon..." is good too

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  22. george thorogood and the delaware destroyers "one bourbon one scotch one beer" is my musical hint

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  23. GUNY GRA? I must have missed that show. Nice try Lego.

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  24. ROOM & BOARD > BOARDROOM (Same as almost four years ago.)

    My hint:

    “For Will Shortz to come up with such an intriguing and diabolically clever puzzle such as this he must have relied on numerous colleagues.” (Perhaps in the BOARDROOM.)

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  25. Phonetic reference was to "bored"room. Music genre reference was to R&B.

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  26. ROOM and BOARD >>> BOARDROOM

    "Clade: stool pigeon" points to the original BOARDROOMS where the head of the meeting sat on a chair and everyone else perched on stools.

    "His brother Ahn Nwee" = ennui = boredom.

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  27. In my comment last Sunday, " it can seem that Blaine's Standard Rule is being violated!" referred to Blaine's standard "don't post the answer or any hints that could lead directly to the answer" with emphasis on "directly", a nod to the BOARD of Directors of the corporation.

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  28. I used to work at a male-employee-dominated company for a boss who reminded me of Robert Bly. Our staff meetings invariably began with a bout of group transcendental meditation in which all were encouraged to chant our mantras aloud. During the meeting proper we would pass a small Ouija board around the conference table. The person who held it had the floor while all others remained silent, much like the Native American “talking stick” tradition.

    Ergo, my answer:
    Andro Om Board

    LegOOOOMMMM

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  29. ROOM & BOARD, BOARDROOM

    > Ho hum.

    I'm board...


    This is the same puzzle that Will used on April 23, 2011, just over four years ago.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. jan, I think you meant just under four years ago.

      We should take bets on how long before he uses it again. It is such a wonderful puzzle, don't you think?

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    2. Wonder what the over/under would be on that bet ;-).

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  30. Well the answer to my puzzle is SUN HEAT SEA HUNT. A little more creative than ROOM and BOARD BOARDROOM, don't you think? My clues included being "in too deep"(scuba diving occurs on this show), "bright"(as the sun), and "bridges"(Lloyd Bridges, the star). Mendelbaum! Mendelbaum!

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  31. BTW I obviously meant take the two letters, second and third, of one word and use them to replace those two in the other, and vice versa. Sorry if I didn't make that clearer. I have other things on my mind.

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  32. ROOM AND BOARD.”

    A large Company usually has a BOARDROOM.


    Will used this same puzzle with a slightly different wording on April 24, 2011. See the answer the following Sunday HERE. The puzzle is a good one, but this is a pathetic repeat of a relatively recent puzzle!

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  33. Not really. What was your interpretation of it?

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  34. Rommel N' Board seems like a bit more than two words. How about work hard / hard work?

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    Replies
    1. Please correct my spelling: Room N' Board. New IPHONE 6plus not finger friendly.

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    2. Yeah, "Rommel and board" is when your overflow dorm is a Panzer.

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    3. jan,
      Perhaps I have this wrong, but my understanding of dorms and their relationships with Germans and Americans is that the Germans engaged in Panzer raids, whereas the Americans tended more toward panty raids.

      Delete
  35. Saturday, the 14th: International Pi (π) day. And this year is a once in a century (but twice in a day) gala. For the only time this century the first 10 (!) digits of Pi align: 3 -14-15 @ 9:26:53 am and pm.

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  36. How does anyone even begin to know something like that? All I know about Pi is it goes 3.14 and then trails off in a long list of numbers. I hardly know any of them after 3.14.

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    Replies
    1. And for math geeks, it's ePIc.

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    2. If you need a crutch, pjb, how about:

      God, I need a drink! Alcoholic of course, after the heavy lectures involving quantum mechanics.

      (Count the letters.)

      Or, for teetotalers:

      Can I have a Pepsi? Carbonate it please. Right now!


      Word Woman likes limericks:

      If, inside a circle, a line
      Hits the center and runs spine to spine,
      And the line's length is D,
      The circumference will be
      D times 3.14159.


      Or:

      It's a favorite hobby of mine
      A new value of pi to assign.
      I would fix it at 3
      'Cause it's easier, you see,
      Than 3.14159.

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    3. Awkward pause after "pi are squared, no pie are round" joke just now on Science Friday.

      Thanks for the limericks!

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    4. patjberry,

      You wrote:
      “All I know about Pi is it goes 3.14 and then trails off in a long list of numbers. I hardly know any of them after 3.14.”

      No, I bet you know all of them. They are all the usual suspects: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 0.

      There is lots of pretty good Pi Day revelry over at Puzzleria! this week, including the following limerick I just recently posted:

      Three-Point-Four-From-Plenty-Blackboards Pi

      Zero blackbirds are baked in my pie,
      Only blackboards from class, math and sci:
      Constants, signs, an ellipse
      Decimal points, superscripts
      Shall Pi lovers’ taste buds satisfy.

      Reads my recipe: “Add one sweet P
      To an mc2 Equivalency,
      Fold around one hot current (sIc)
      With a whisk or a stir-in stick…
      Bake, let cool, and then serve P-I-E!”

      Serve up one 2.7 ounce segment
      Then a slice with a sweet P-green pigment…
      What remains in the pan
      Is not pumpkin, pecan
      But of imagination a figment.

      LegoPiAreSomewhatCylindrical

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  37. Kate Bush did a terrific song called "Pi" from her Aerial album about 10 years ago. She sings 117 digits, though apparently skips 22 digits starting with #80 or so. Songs are great mnemonics, here's your chance, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kZSHr5E7fZY, with a wry twist the last 3:14 of the posting is blank.

    Here's a variant on Will's puzzle: Take a familiar phrase blank and blank, and like Will's, put the second blank in front of the first, and you'll get the name of a well-known American magazine.

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  38. I meant I don't know the exact order of the numbers. I know the numbers themselves. Pi just ends up being an infinite list of numbers. That's my point.

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  40. Just got back in town. A glorious happy pi day to one and all. Mamaw Zeke was born on towel day, 5-25, not to be confused with tau day, 6-28.

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  42. Next week's challenge: The challenge came from Ed Pegg Jr., who runs the website mathpuzzle.com. Parables of Jesus is an old collection of stories. Remove three of the 15 letters in this phrase and rearrange the 12 letters that remain to get another old collection of stories. What is it?

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  43. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    Replies
    1. That's a bit too much of a giveaway.

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  44. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    Replies
    1. Also a giveaway. How's this for a guideline: if you Google "collection of stories" and a phrase in your hint, and the answer appears on the first page of hits, it's too obvious.

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    2. Agreed.

      When first published, this collection used pica-sized type.

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    3. OOPS. Hadn't seen the Google collection connection.

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  45. Now I am wondering why it took Jim so long to figure it out.

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  46. The author is from a very frigid place.

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  47. An author published in the original collection of the former and the author of the collection of the latter share the same nativity.

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  49. According to Housman, the usual way to solve this would be to note that MAHABHARATA is eleven letters, ILLIAD/ODYSSEY is 13 letters, etc.

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    Replies
    1. My Latin teacher, Miss Rosebrook, liked to say "It makes me ill when you spell Iliad with two els." And, yes, she was just what you would picture a 75-year-old Latin teacher named Corinne Rosebrook to be.

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    2. Mea culpa. I know better, but type poorly!

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  50. Speaking of Hous(e)man, Blaine, I thought your clue referred to this.

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    Replies
    1. Even if Blaine wasn't referring to that, Will was, in today's NYT crossword. 120-A: How to make money "the old-fashioned way": EARN IT.

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