Weekly discussion on the NPR puzzler, brain teasers, math problems and more.
Q: Name a famous movie in eight letters that has had multiple sequels. The title is one word. Rearrange its letters to get a two-word phrase for a satchel. What is it?
A: SUPERMAN --> MAN PURSE
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.
The synonym for "satchel" is a pretty silly term, one that irks me. Why not just use the second word and have done with it? Modifying that second word with the first makes it sound like an apology, like the persons who might carry a first-word-second-word wouldn't think of calling it a second-word, but it is OK to call it a first-word-second-word. To my ears, calling it a first-word-second-word just emphasizes the embarrassment of carrying a second-word.And I use a handbag as I go to and from work. It has the crest of my college on it. It's not a second-word, it's a handbag, and a big one. ---Rob
Blainesville: a place where Colin Powell one week and this answer the next are both treated with some verve as in "You've got some verve!" ;-)
I wonder if the featured character in this movie, or its sequels, ever uses a satchel.
Think of a somewhat related 7-letter word. Remove the first letter, and the last 3 letters. Add an 'R' and rearrange. That's my hint.
[M]ati[lda] + R => Rita [...the bag across her shoulder made her look a little like a military man]
This so called "puzzle" is an embarrassment!
I’m originally from back east and you see a lot of these around DC. I’m sorry to say but I think they’re stupid and probably always will.Chuck
You probably see a lot of the "satchel things" too in DC.
Makes me want to pull a mencer.
Sure does.I am right now. . .after an early morning walk without this. Though I do often walk with Satchel Paige, my very favorite Portuguese Water Dog.
An ageless Portupooch with a mean fastball. That would really ruff up the batting order. Mine is Sidartha Finch, a Pookapooch.
That's great, zeke creek. My friends just said good-bye to their canine, Sartre, and, before that, to his pal Duchamp. Maizie and I were with them all when 19-year-old Sartre passed on naturally in July. Sartre lived up to his namesake (Read that any way you like; it works).
Let's see if this alternate puzzle also earns SDB's scorn:Take the title of a famous American movie, one word. Separate into 2 words, translate into another language, and you get a famous place. The movie and the place are not related, and extensive knowledge of foreign languages is not required.
Great puzzle, eco. The surname of a main character in the movie should be familiar to followers of this blog.LegoEcoThisPuzzleIs(Was?)WillWorthy!
A couple of years ago, I imagined a costume for Will that's apropos this week.
You will believe it's European!
Great Seinfeld episode
I was wondering if mentioning Seinfeld would give it away. Yadda yadda yadda it's European.
He is a big fan of the title character.
Is the "A" a clue in Blaine's comment or an error?
I believe it's his delightful, classic clue. . .
This comment has been removed by the author.
Yet another WS.
It was a typo.
Blaine, perhaps you can reuse the clue with the "A" next time Will runs this puzzle. ;-) Until then. . .
WW, enjoyed the youtube referrral so much!
I am glad Natasha. She was so very genuine and funny in a genuinely funny way.
The actor who played the lead first surely carried one.
That was long, long ago. . .
Saw this puzzle, decided to take a walk. Got 3 doors down the block and the answer came to me.
Name a famous movie in eight letters that has had multiple sequels,and includes a scene that plays on the difference between a satchel and the phrase that this week's puzzle anagrams to. The title is one word (plus an article). Rearrange its letters to name a bird and a farm animal.
Or a Greek letter and a certain type of eater. . .
Or a beverage and a city in Montana.
The protagonist of the movie constantly reminds me that home is where the heart is.
And Nome is where the hearth is.
To be so loved by many and yet to be so alone is a strength to this person.
Take most of the initial letters of the movie. Remove the rest (the end of) the movie title. Replace the letter(s) removed with several letters, to get a longer (than the movie title) word. The added letters are an anagram of the second word of a well known movie with many sequels.Coincidentally, I saw the long word during my run this morning.
David, in your puzzle above, are you referring to Will Shortz's movie or to Jan's movie (which I finally figured out, although I've never, as per usual, heard of it.)
OKay, never mind, David, I just figured it out....thanks to your hint about having seen one during your morning run...since I decided to try using the Will Shortz movie, which obviously now I know was the film you meant us to use.
I actually looked up satchel online, and I can at least tell you neither the word strap nor the word bag apply here. I'd figured it out right away, then thought of Seinfeld. Serenity now!...or should I say "hoochie mama"?
I solved last week’s offering much faster than this week’s. Eventually though I saw right through it. Still, I deemed it a powerful puzzling experience.LegoWithNearBoundlessAdmirationForThisPuzzle
With an interesting connection to YOUR blog, Lego!
Excellent observation, ViolinTeddy. I am almost certain that Will Shortz and his minions are monitoring my Puzzleria! blog 24/7/4.0-4.43/12, combing it for subject matter to use in their dastardly NPR puzzles! They happened to turn this week's puzzle's subject matter around faster than usual.LegoMyIntellectualPropertyIsSituatedOnTheWrongSideOfTheTracks
While not yet having solved David's puzzle (whichever movie title he was to), here's a stumbled-upon-in-the-attempt puzzle of my own: Keep most of the initial letters in Will Shortz's movie title, removing some at the end. Replace with another group of letters (two more than you removed) to get another word. Then rearrange only those added letters to name the second word in a 1950s movie (no sequels involved.)
Finally solved tonite after all those cryptic clues.
Hmmmm, Snipper, I thought they were fairly blatant but, perhaps my sarcasm reader is off this evening.
Much less blatant than many of those above.
I have the answer, but I'm not too happy about it [Groan]. Another answer works a bit roughly: AMNESIAC (2013), sequel 2015. MAIN CASE, a satchel, n'est-ce pas?
Hmmm, ron. . ..à pas de géant?
"As you open the main case..." SATCHEL, BRIEFCASE. A petits pas de géant...
I see you making a main case for this. . .but it is still a stretch, even for someone like Neil Armstrong :-).
Musical clue: The Kinks
Also, interestingly enough, getting back to Mr. S., if you've watched his show closely enough you may notice Jerry is quite a fan of the title character in the film. He even once dated on the show a woman with an interesting wardrobe quirk similar to the title character, or at least he observed she may have had a closet much like that of the character.
If I'm not mistaken, he also dated a woman who dated the title character.
Teri Hatcher played Lois to Dean Cain's Clark. They were spectacular.
Paul, I'm still not sure what this clue means.
That's because it's really meaningless, WW.As noted below, Movie 43 is an 'anthology film' which I have not seen and don't believe I want to.'Loose Shoes' [AKA 'Coming Attractions'] is a film in the same genre which I wish I hadn't seen.And in order to figure out how '36' fits in, you'd have to go back in time and ask 'Paul of a week ago'. I don't think you want to do that. I'm me and I haven't.
I'm kind of disappointed by this puzzle. But it makes powerful sense that Will's giving out an easier one for a couple of weeks running. --Margaret G.
NOT A CLUE: Is Blaine a Dungeons and Dragons player from olden days? I haven't heard the term " Bag of Holding" in quite some time!
Musical Clue: The Earl of Greystoke
Just got it. Rob's original remark is the perfect confirmation. Had to check on the phrase - never heard it before.
Seems like there aren't so many comments this week. 2 weeks ago was a challenge, last week's was easy but had some politics....Any controversy on this was pretty much taken care of by Rob in the first comment. I carry one of "these" things, but it's large for my laptop and drawings, and I just call it my (hemp) bag.Could it be this puzzle is just boring?
In terms of making an anagram, it actually doesn't require much. I hope I'm not giving too much away by saying a part of the answer remains intact after the change.
Looks like npr updated its answer submission site?
. . .and left off several fields?
Yes. You are no longer asked for your phone number!
Well what would be the point of their asking for our phone number if they are never going to call it?
They must have changed the site during the week. Just to be on the safe side, I filled out that one and sent it in too.
Normally don't post here but not amused to discover there was no space for a phone number for the puzzle entry. NPR has succeeded in destroying the program with this move. Is there a link to submit the entry using the old format? Given their rules, it is a BIG mystery to me how they plan to PHONE someone.
99 little bugs in the code.99 little bugs.You take one down, patch it around,127 little bugs in the code.
Ok, in order to keep calm and carry on, either:1) they messed up and just left out that field.2) they have found it easier and faster to get hold of players via e-mail and to ask for a phone number in that later confirming e-mail.or3) gremlins.I do like the drop-down boxes for other countries. . .and, in the U.S., ZIP code will get you everything.
I'm voting for #1. My question is, why did they feel the need to fix a web page that wasn't broken? (And, my little plagiarized ditty implied, what else will they break trying to fix the fix?) Certainly, up till now, they have contacted puzzle winners by phone. And, I believe, if you don't answer the phone, they move on to the next random winner, since they have to set up the recording session for the next day. I really doubt they'd really decided to use email to contact the winner, since then they'd have to decide how long to wait for a reply before rescinding the award and moving on the next winner, and so on.
The bug has been fixed.
It is an issue with the NPR website? Is that what I am to determine from your "code?" So ist das Leben?
I just wrote to NPR and told them about the omission of contact phone number. I submitted my answer on Sunday and the old form was still there.
I wrote several emails to various NPR departments and finally sent in a submission with my phone in the space for the answer which will most likely get it rejected. Maybe NPR will wake up after their inbox gets flooded.
And now from bad to worse: NPR has a box below "submit your puzzle answer" which asks for your PHONE number. That's it. No other information including a puzzle answer. Who is the webmaster?
I'm so glad I didn't panic over this glitch, especially since I see they have now fixed it. Thankfully I can remain cool in a seriously threatening situation. Now can anyone tell me how to stop my wrists from bleeding?
No worries: all bleeding stops eventually.
I guess you should know. I got it stopped with duct tape. I figured it was coming from tiny ducts. You might say I duct the issue.
SUPERMAN > MAN PURSEMy hint:"This so called "puzzle" is an embarrassment!"Many men would be embarrassed to carry one. Perhaps it would require a superman to pull it off. I don't care. There certainly is nothing super about this stupid puzzle either.
SUPERMAN >>> MAN PURSE "43" refers to 1943, the year Superman was first broadcast on radio. "Staphylococcus" refers to MRSA, Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, which is now resistant to many antibiotics used to treat it. MRSA, which is "pronounced" Mersa or Mursa reminds me of Murse or Man Purse. (This might be a good time for "What a long, strange trip it's been!"). I believed the leading "A" in Blaine's original clue was a clever way of pointing to iAgo, William Shakespeare's original man purse holder in Othello. "That was long, long ago." also refers to Iago. Ya, (gotta) go.
Superman; man purseLast Sunday I said, “I’m originally from back east and you see a lot of these around DC.” DC Comics, that is.Chuck
And I thought you must mean supermen.
SUPERMAN -> MAN PURSE> 36Atomic number of Krypton, Superman's home planet, and a nod to the late Dr. Oliver Sacks, who unwittingly celebrated my Europium in July.> A couple of years ago, I imagined a costume for Will that's apropos this week.Back when the puzzle answer was "underwear drawer", I wrote: "I keep imagining Will in his Puzzle Master super-hero outfit: cape, tights, shorts on the outside, Shortz on the inside."> Name a famous movie in eight letters that has had multiple sequels, and includes a scene that plays on the difference between a satchel and the phrase that this week's puzzle anagrams to. The title is one word (plus an article). Rearrange its letters to name a bird and a farm animal.(The) Hangover -> raven, hog.
Or vegan, rho.
Which causes me to wonder how the Baltimorean vegequarian is doing? All is well, I hope?
Superman / Man purse (really?)The hardest part of the puzzle this week was submitting the answer, which I didn't remember about until this morning.
"I decided to take a walk...."https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tpl6ncyxLGwThree Doors Down...Kryptonite.
I misinterpreted WW's reference to "43", I thought it was back to President 43 Bush. Anagram "mencer" with "bush", to get Ubermensch, Nietzsche's original term for Superman.
I interpreted "mencer" as a Brooklyn version of MRSA, ecoarchitect. And I thought 36 was for krypton.W. as anything remotely connected to Superman? I'm embarrassed to share even one initial with W.Word Woman
Originally "The Superman" was conceived of as a villain intent on dominating the world. He was also bald and had telepathic abilities. Except for the telepathy that's more Cheney than Bush, I suppose.Only later did he become a hero, and later still the clean-cut vision we have now.
Ah, gotcha, ecoarchitect. Thanks for clarifying!
Searching for "43 superman" led me to this anthology film. I thought I found a connection between "36" and a similar debacle, but I seem to have been mistaken.
SUPERMANMAN PURSEIndiana Jones wore one, a man purse, or a satchel. The satchel is referenced in the movie The Hangover, where the character Alan Garner says "it's not a man purse, it's called a satchel. Indiana Jones wears one."
Superman+++>> Man PurseMy comment, at the end of last week's blog, "I think I'll PACK it in and head BACK to bed." Emphasis added) was a reference to BACK PACK as an alternate to a, "Man Purse,"
My comment from last Sunday:"I know this will be easy for some of you. You know who you are."It retrospect, I was unhappy to think that some might think this was some kind of slur on anyone who carried a man purse. My original and quite innocent intention was to refer to Superman's secret identity. I.e., you superheroes know who you are but the rest of us don'tAmazing, put those glasses on and even Lois Lane doesn't recognize Clark Kent as Superman!
No worries from me, Bob K.For some reason, Lois Lane always makes me think of this.
I have the opposite problem to Superman - if I take off my glasses I don't recognize anyone....
I always thought it a bit odd that Lois didn't recognize Clark Kent as Superman. I always figured she was just attracted to his cute little overpants.
Here's WW's link without the kink.
WW's link still leads to an awful song.Paul's kink's link reminds me of something that happened to me many years ago soon after I moved to San Francisco:I got called for jury duty, and the trial was for assault and battery at one of the cheap SRO hotels on Market Street. While on a break I saw a person in the hall, and wondered whether that was a man or a woman. I decided it didn't matter, it was, after all, San Francisco. A few minutes later we were back in the jury box, and that person was called as a witness.The DA asked his questions, the typical "Miss Bustamante, tell us what happened on ....."After the DA finished, the judge instructed the jury that "Mr. Bustamante's" statements were to be treated as hearsay evidence. We jurors all gave each other sideways glances, silently confirming the discrepancy we heard.Then the defense attorney stood, cleared his throat, shuffled some papers, and said, "How would you like to be addressed, is it Miss Bustamente, Ms Bustamente, Miste....."From the witness stand, "Just call me Lola."Somehow we managed to keep straight faces, though we were all belly-laughing on the inside.
And I imagine Lola was laughing on the inside at least as hard any anyone else in the courtroom.
And some guys are just plain mean.
Paul:Thank you so much! I had never made the Clark Kent/Superman connection. So now I understand why he kept rushing into those phone booths. Was Perry White really Lady Gaga? Why didn't my parents tell me?
And where are those phone booths today? One village I visited in England replaced the phone in their iconic red, centrally located phone booth with a defibrillator. (Don't say, "I'm shocked! Shocked!")
I must say I am glad the "Lola" song brought up your Lola story, ecoarchitect. See, it was worth it, right?!Maybe, it's the "She was a show girl" that gets to me. I don't listen to this song but once every score of years. . .so I'm good til 2035. You probably are also.
Paul:I'm not even sure what part of the cemetery they are in.
Your cute little overpants comment reminded me of a comment my friend made about the banning of yoga pants in Cape Cod schools. She is calling for a "ban" to those tight pants football players wear also. Else, how can anyone study anything any more? [sarcasm]
sdb:I'm not even sure that's the way to locate them.
WW: I've got to say it's been hard to get Barry Cantaloupe out of my head this afternoon, thanks a whole bunch for the earworm.....please never mention his name again until 2035.
ecoarchitect, that's a promise (unless you-know-who is the subject of a Will Shortz puzzle, of course. . .)
I guess that's what makes it such an awful song.
Paul:I agree. And that is why I have never visited their graves. I also never go to the wrecking yard to see my former cars.
Paul, I am going to tread lightly here because I know you thought the Teri Hatcher-Dean Cain duo was "spectacular." And yet, the link you posted from the movie about not knowing the person is both Clark Kent and Superman with and without glasses is kind of where I'm going with that.All that being said, I also really liked the Hatcher-Cain duo. I just wish the Superman story didn't make us suspend quite that much belief.
Disbelief.Generally it's disbelief that's suspended.Why is that?
True dis, Paul. I am climbing up the Cole Ridge to see if it makes sense from way up there. All this little over/underpants talk has me suspending disbrief!
My clue - Finally solved tonite after all those cryptic clues - contained "crypt" and "tonite". Btw, I think the Seinfeld clues were a giveaway.
Snipper, I agree about the Seinfeld clues being giveaways and I was hinting at that. My "k." referred to your crypt-tonite >>>kryptonite clue (great, btw).All the cryptic and kryptonite clueing inspired this week's blog on Cryptobiotic Soil Crusts.
Clues in my Sun Aug 30 at 03:31:00 PM comment:I solved last week’s offering much faster (than a speeding bullet) than this week’s. Eventually though I saw right through it (x-ray vision). Still, I deemed it a powerful (more, than a locomotive)puzzling experience.LegoWithNearBoundless(close to “a single bound”)AdmirationForThisPuzzleThe “interesting connection,” noted by ViolinTeddy between WS’s puzzle and my Puzzleria! blog, and the mock umbrage I feigned in response alluded to my so-called Superhero puzzle, “Reversal Of Fiction Slice, Pranswer precedes VIXen.”LegoShirleyBoothShouldaPortrayedLoisLane
Thanks WW. I look forward to purs-uing this weekend's puzzle.
I meant to write something about pursing my lips this week but lost steam/interest after all the Seinfeld posts.Any search engine will bring you to man purse with "satchel Seinfeld." You can also get there with "meme satchel." Here's to great purs-uing this week. . .and not quite so obvious clues.
I wanted to give Laurie Anderson as a clue. But it would have been a giveaway. Hard to believe this was done only 4 years after Copacabana.The Seinfeld clues weren't a giveaway for me, I never liked the show.
I'd not heard Laurie Anderson's "O Superman" before, ecoarchitect. Her visual performance is riveting, in a Rosie kind of way. Ms. Anderson's voice speaking, breathing, and singing is chilling, strange, and interesting. A bit of an odd earworm to start my day with the kindergartners. . . As to Seinfeld, one can use a search engine without liking the show, n'est-ce pas?
Laurie's been a hero for 35 years, well worth listening, though some can't deal with her minimalism and non-melodic style. I think kindergartners would like her, though "O Superman" has rather dark and "unAmerican" lyrics if you listen carefully.If course you can use Google to find anything....but click on the link and see what happens.
No Laurie Anderson at kindergarten today. After science, the ice cream social was on. Met lots of fun parents who met working in Antarctica, South Africa, Czech Republic, and Havre, Montana, of all places (Paul)."Georgia on My Mind" was Ms. Mary's music of choice.As to search engines, ecoarchitect, I now use Duck, Duck, Go instead of Google. ron recommended it; I like the idea of not being tracked everywhere. Have you tried it?
I forgot to give the answer to my very easy alternate puzzle (well-known movie, translate to another language = famous place). The answer, of course, is Casablanca, which translates to White House. And Lego of course noted the connection to our host. Coincidence? I don't think so....
My connection to the Kinks was their song from 1979, "Wish I Could Fly Like Superman". But Lola and Lois Lane didn't occur to me until I read today's blog.
Next week's challenge, from listener Ben Bass of Chicago: Name a well-known U.S. geographical place — two words; five letters in the first word, six letters in the last — that contains all five vowels (A, E, I, O and U) exactly once. It's a place that's been in the news. What is it?
hard to top that...
When I first read this challenge, I wanted to take a peek at my atlas. Then I realized I'd spelled it wrong.
TROUBLE!!!!!Anybody here tried to submit the answer? You're now directed to a new page we haven't seen before. It's called "NPR contact". It's a form: "I want to" and eight boxes, the seventh of which is already highlighted for you, and a place in which to enter your phone number. NO PLACE TO ENTER YOUR ANSWER, and NO SUBMIT BUTTON!!!(I've already tried entering the answer in the search box at the top - no help there!)
Stuck there, eh? Maybe that's the new strategy: an easy puzzle, but hard to submit?
E&WAF - Click on the "Answer the Sunday Puzzle" button and an eMail form comes up. At least it did for me...
What finally worked for me was not using INTERNET EXPLORER!Maybe IE might still work for others, but when I was using it, the help page had all eight options in a SINGLE STACK, and then only the phone number field was shown.Using Google Chrome instead, I saw the eight options in two stacks and all the entry fields I've seen in the past, including the "Message" field and the "SEND EMAIL" button.
You know what they say at the Road Kill Diner, "There's no plate like chrome for the hollandaise."
I used Chrome to submit my answer, but the form showed up OK for me with Windows 10's Edge browser also. The e-mail confirmation I received did not have in the body the answer I had submitted, unlike the old format.
So, to sum it all up, again we don't get a real puzzle.
Considering how low the bar has been, I found this one refreshingly different.
Bad, bad puzzle.
I love it when puzzles come with Cliff Notes
Memo Creek did not like the new puzzle submission format. I just used itt, and it was alright with me, I think she's making a mountain out of a molehill.
My daughter just wrote from Ethiopia, that some of her students are "gobaz" (clever).Salam naw.
I'll ask a dumb question- while these half-baked puzzles are getting easier, is it me or are the clues becoming more obvious as well?
Agreed, Snipper. See my comment at 06:11 this morning.
Uh... nailed it!
To show that I know the answer: If you go to Wikipedia, enter "<5-letter-word> <6-letter-word>" into the search box and click on the magnifying glass icon, you will be re-directed to <6-letter-word alone!> If you then <cntrl-F> and enter "<5-letter-word> <6-letter-word>" and search, you will find TWO occurrences! - the first of which is within the "(redirected from ...) note at the top! The only occurrence that was on the page already of both words - one right after the other - is in the last sentence of the short "History" section.
Although the five-letter word is sometimes used in referring to this place, it is not part of its official name.