Sunday, January 24, 2016

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Jan 24, 2016): Three Phrase Puzzle

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Jan 24, 2016): Three Phrase Puzzle:
Q: Take these three phrases:

  • Turkey breast
  • Ski slope
  • Cash drawer
  • What very unusual property do they have in common?
    I suppose you could hire a private escort to help you get to where you need to be with this puzzle.

    Edit: If you anagram the second word in private escort you get private sector.
    A: In each phrase, the second word can be anagrammed to complete another common phrase:
    Turkey breast —> turkey baster
    Ski slope —> ski poles
    Cash drawer —> cash reward

    165 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.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Don't stop posting such hints...

        Delete
    2. I posted the following at the end of last week's blog:

      skydiveboy Sun Jan 24, 05:20:00 AM PST

      Well it "may be one of the most challenging" or it may not. I believe I got the answer right away.

      ReplyDelete
    3. I'll bet those two guys from Warsaw that used squirt guns to rob a lottery winner of his money could solve this in a New York minute.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Hey, good to see you in print, AbqGuerrilla. How the heck are you?

        Delete
      2. Now that's a quality item.

        Delete
      3. I paid my debt to society and never got so much as a "Thank you." I see all the usual suspects are still here.

        Delete
      4. Yes,
        Nice to see you back on Blaine's, AbqGuerrilla. We missed your wit and wisdom. (That's an "editorial We." I really cannot speak for other Blainesvillians.)

        I disagree with Will Shortz that, "This may be one of the most challenging challenges I've presented." But I do agree with him that it has a very elegant answer. NPR listener Fred Piscop of Bellmore, N.Y. ought to take a bow. If I would have composed this puzzle I would be patting myself on the back. Please, Fred, send me some of your puzzles to post on Puzzleria!

        LegoGreenerThanKermit

        Delete
      5. Fred Piscop is the new writer of the Split Decisions puzzles in the Sunday Times (formerly by George Bredehorn). These are some of the paper's most elegant puzzles, and certainly the most fun. Which is why I was thinking, hmmm, this challenge should be harder than it seems.

        Delete
      6. Never heard of Fred Piscop or Split Decisions puzzles or George Bredehorn before today, but something in my brain has been going hmmm, is that all there is to this?
        Maybe it's just my wiring going bad; it sounds like about 60 Hz.

        Delete
      7. I don't want to go to the trouble of changing my screen name to AbqGincarcerationdenier.
        I really don't.

        Delete
      8. Hi ABQ!
        My Mom preferred Duck, Russian style

        Delete
    4. Pop corks on your favorite bottles of champagne if you get this one!

      ReplyDelete
    5. Listen! I got this one with no time to waste.

      ReplyDelete
    6. Where did Augustine get such great ideas from?

      ReplyDelete
    7. I found this one challenging enough to spend maybe half an hour on it. But, I've spent more time on previous puzzles. So, I'd call this one middling hard.

      ReplyDelete
    8. Reminds me of what I saw when there was labor strike at a Jeff Koons exhibit.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. You wouldn't be tilting at the windmills of our minds, would you, jan?

        Delete
    9. After three hours, I was able to clear an adequate swath through the drifted snow. The rest will have to wait until the Spring thaws.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Don't fall asleep; you could break something before the Spring thaws.

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      2. Breaking a leg is not funny - but it may be humerus.

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      3. The humerus is the upper arm bone. But speaking of misidentifying body parts, the New York Times website had a headline today saying the Northeast Burrows Out (of yesterday's snowfall). I'm not sure one can properly speak of an area burrowing out, even if you're talking of the Boroughs of New York. Do burros burrow? Do I know my ass from a hole in the ground?

        Delete
      4. Efemural joke anyway. ;-)

        Not sure about other parts of the human body, but glad you went out on a limb on that one. . .

        Delete
      5. Oops. Was thinking of the old Vaudeville tradition of wishing someone "Break a leg", which, when you think about it is rather humorous....

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    10. I think this is.... Oh well, you know what I think.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. sdb, you splendiferous sob

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      2. Mom always said I was an SOB. Of course being the good boy I was, I agreed with her.

        Delete
    11. SDB: Have you tried the new Car Talk puzzler?

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Natasha,
        I listened to it while still in bed yesterday, and got the answer as Ray was reading the second word in the list. I suspect I had heard it before or I wouldn't have got the answer so quick.

        Delete
      2. Kind of like today's puzzle.

        Delete
      3. Today's puzzle took me over a minute to solve, and then I returned to bed. I then came up with a new puzzle idea for lego to use sometime in the future, if he so chooses. I am about to construct it now.

        Delete
      4. I posted this puzzle back on Feb. 23, 2014 at 8:44 pm. SDB said it was "easy" then!

        Delete
      5. Geez,
        skydiveboy and Natasha
        Why don't you two just get a universe?

        Seriously.

        Delete
      6. My real-estate rep is working on that as we speak of higher things.

        Delete
      7. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    12. Too easy? I haven't a clue! How is it supposed to be "elegant", anyway?

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. I think the elegance derives from the meaningfulness of the wordplay.
        [And I'm surprised that 'meaningfulness' got past the spell-checker.]

        Delete
    13. I take it back. It just came to me!

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Well, I don't take it back.
        So, there!

        Delete
    14. We have an answer that can't really be wrong, but certainly is not elegant.
      And not unprecedentedly challenging.
      If it were anyone but you-know-who making those claims, I would spend the week on it.

      ReplyDelete
    15. I finally got the puzzle, with help of my e-pal Eileen. I have thought of another example, but both the words have only four letters, so it might be a giveaway, and you will see no clue here. ---Rob

      ReplyDelete
    16. I found this rather elegant myself, and I like Blaine's clue. --Margaret G.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Don't you think he might have been out partying last night and was still a bit tight when he drew up that one?

        Delete
    17. Pop corks on your favorite bottles of champagne if you get this one!

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. I'd prefer to drink a glass of Scotch on the rocks.

        Delete
      2. Still have my Moscow mini vodkas from the airport

        Delete
    18. I had to read Blaine's clue over again, but now I get it. I actually have a similar idea, only one letter must be changed at the end and kept in that position. Think of a compass. Will reveal all Thursday, though I have a doctor's appointment earlier that day.

      ReplyDelete
    19. Solved it whilst on my daily trip upon the Bay Shore ferry. Brrrr

      ReplyDelete
    20. Btw
      Abq, welcome home bromigo.
      zeke

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Thanks Zeke. I thought of you often as I was able to read albeit not write while I was "up the proverbial tributary without the proper means of locomotion."

        Delete
    21. Just because the hype hasn't been heightened enough already: Sarah Palin.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.

        Delete
      2. ...and in thermo-nuclear weapons.

        Delete
    22. This comment has been removed by the author.

      ReplyDelete
    23. orry I am late to the conversation. I spent all of yesterday going to, attending and returning from an auto race.

      I did like this puzzle, but it was for me, not that hard, like, it seems, for many of the puzzle lovers here.

      ReplyDelete
    24. Careful with the clues, loose lips sink ships.

      ReplyDelete
    25. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Melissa, please delete your posting. And read the rules, up at the top of the blog: don't post the answer or any hints that could lead directly to the answer until 3 pm ET on Thursday.

        Delete
      2. Melissa Cherry:

        Please say Hello to your also stupid sister Harriet.

        Delete
      3. I'm sure Blaine will delete Melissa's post as soon as he is able.

        Delete
      4. They share double letters mid-name, but I don't think either of them meant to be mean

        Delete
    26. I’m sure Bob Piscop is a bright, creative fellow but I can’t imagine this is representative of his best work. It’s certainly not one of Will’s most challenging challenges. And am I imagining things or haven’t we seen at least part of this puzzle before?

      BTW, I sent my alternate answer to last week’s puzzle directly to Will on Sunday, doc oculist. As I mentioned earlier I did not formally submit it because I had already submitted gem emerald and you’re only supposed to submit one solution. Evidently no one submitted it. He said NPR did not send him this answer to review, but he did say it “isn’t bad.” So I ultimately don’t know if he would have accepted it or not.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Hi Chuck! I totally agree with your evaluation of this weeks puzzle. I think I have figured it out, and we will see this Thursday! If I am completely wrong, I will post my answer.. BTW, I did run a program for last weeks puzzle and I got the expected answer, and also more listed here:

        adoring dad
        ragtime era
        antique fan
        emerald gem
        unarmed gun
        Italian hit
        utility hut
        artisan jar
        inhuman kin
        invited kin
        adopted lad
        ancient man
        android man
        endowed men
        English men
        unfunny pun
        amorous ram
        Eastern sea
        excited sex
        exhibit sex
        exiting sex
        extreme sex
        Arabian war

        Were any of these YOUR alternate answer?
        Just curious....

        Delete
      2. Nope. Mine was doc oculist.

        Delete
      3. Thanks Chuck, Good one! Your answer WAS in my input file dictionary, must have missed it when editing the output.... Now moving on to this weeks puzzle, oops, got to grab a 'paper towel' ..... later....

        Delete
      4. This comment has been removed by the author.

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      5. My friend ratoig has shared with me what he believes is the answer to this week's puzzle. We've also thought of 3 more phrases which share ratoig's property.

        I thought of perhaps posting these 3 more phrases, but mixed in with 3 decoy phrases and letting folks reply with their guesses as to which are which.

        benefactor's signature
        soap suds
        crystal chandelier
        sales tax
        paper towel
        garbage disposal

        Delete
      6. I don't think you're there. Perhaps ratoig's computer program needs a two-way tester?

        Delete
      7. Hi Eco, My programs are very simple and BASIC, and were not and could not be used for THIS weeks puzzle! That would require state of the art AI programming of which I am NOT an expert! I think I and EaWAf have a reasonable answer that each of the two word phrase fits, and Blaine's clue also.
        We MAY be totally wrong! That is the fun of these puzzles!!

        Delete
    27. Two questions about this week's adventure. What does WS think "challenging" and "elegant" mean?

      ReplyDelete
    28. ratoig:

      Did you say BASIC? I love QBASIC and use it all the time. It is almost never able to solve a puzzle outright, but I find it very useful to hone an uncomfortably large number of possible answers down to a more manageable few. How would one get a hold of you?

      Chuck

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Chuck:
        You got it! However, I use 'Liberty' Basic which I find very compatible with Windows and easy to use. You can e-mail me anytime at any 'Webmaster' link on any of my websites, for example www.greenmedicineonline.com
        Cheers,

        Delete
    29. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Awfully close to a giveaway....

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      2. Agreed, eco, even though the barn door was open earlier. . .It is now closed.

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      3. Good to see MJ's comment was removed; I'm sure he didn't mean to commit state treason.

        He probably got an overdose looking at the beautiful Mendocino seashore.

        Delete
      4. Maybe that's where Augustine got his great ideas.

        Delete
    30. Sadly, I have not been able to come up with an answer for this. I appreciate all the hints!

      I would also strongly recommend checking out the new puzzles at fivethirtyeight.com/tag/the-riddler/

      These are challenging math problems, quite a bit different from the Weekend Edition puzzles, no doubt -- but a lot of fun. The current riddle about bridges across a river has the most beautiful solution I have ever seen -- and like many people have mentioned here it was something I solved in bed :)

      ReplyDelete
    31. "What's that Lassie?" Are you trying to tell me that stupid Timmy fell into the well again?" "Good dog!!"

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Yes, TomR, thanks for upping the ante before I had a chance to post my 'Agent 00 Soul' reference.

        Delete
    32. I am so ashamed.
      "Removed!" And by "a" blog administrator, not necessarly even Himself.
      But it is a good thing it is gone, because eco's comment made him an accessory.
      Are Will's millions of listeners going to be surprised come Thurs?

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. On this blog there is only one blog administrator, and that is Blaine Himself. The explanation is applied by the blog, not Blaine. If I am incorrect in any of this, I expect Blaine will correct me.

        Personally I think your faux pas is forgivable, as I can imagine it was not obvious to you when you wrote it that it was too revealing. I would only rate it a 2 on the Harriet Scale.

        Delete
      2. Is the Harriet scale 1 - 5 or 1 - 10?

        Delete
      3. Curtis,
        This is an important question and I am very glad you asked. The answer to your question, of course, is a resounding YES!

        Delete
    33. This puzzle makes me wonder how many bloggers here are unmarried. I'd like to know how they handle the single life. Also, for some reason, a sea horse comes to mind.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. I see the aforementioned private escort as your sea horse paddling an Indian canoe.

        Delete
    34. I think this challenge should be getting more respect.
      After all, Will did call it (to Rachel’s exclamation “Holy Moses”) one of the most challenging challenges he has presented.
      He further described it as having a very elegant answer.
      These are quite some claims, even if one disregards the challenge that was so challenging it had no answer, elegant or not.
      One more “very,” as in “very unusual property” finishes it off.
      So far I count at least twelve places in this discussion where that property is challenged. Do NOT call them hints; a blog administrator started it and I avoided it.

      So all Willy has to do is give us an elegant, very rare solution that we all have missed.

      ReplyDelete
    35. Replies
      1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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      2. Mon dieu! That rabbit's got a vicious streak a mile wide!

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      3. With those long vicious teeth and lapping up the blood and everything

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      4. "Hare" kiri comes to mind. . .

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      5. Eco - That was last week and I challenge that the brick road was (dye)d yellows

        Delete
      6. Eco - That was last week and I challenge that the brick road was (dye)d yellows

        Delete
      7. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    36. WW: Is that where you unconjugate your bowels?

      ReplyDelete
    37. What about people of French ancestries?

      ReplyDelete
    38. It also helps to solve it when perched upon a sunny lookout.

      ReplyDelete
    39. If I can't solve this one, it will be a super blow to my ego.

      ReplyDelete
    40. Who doesn't remember the film spool being brought into class? Nowadays they don't have that. What a time to be alive!

      ReplyDelete
    41. Who doesn't remember the film spool being brought into class? Nowadays they don't have that. What a time to be alive!

      ReplyDelete
    42. Does anyone on this blog have facial hair, like say, a brown beard?

      ReplyDelete
    43. Since for years I have only sent in answers to NPR to make trouble, I can't be sure when the service became unavailable to dial-up internet connections.
      It has been so for a while and prevented me from submitting all the two word "phrases" or things mentioned above that match Will's three offerings' special properties.
      It is not too late for someone else to do so.
      I would like to hear which ones the PM accepts.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. The second word in each phrase anagrams to another word which makes a meaningful second phrase as in:

        Turkey breast >>> Turkey baster,
        Ski poles >>> Ski slope,
        Cash Drawer >>> Cash reward


        "Just because the hype hasn't been heightened enough already: Sarah Palin." >>> Rearrange Palin to Plain as in the novel Sarah, Plain and Tall






        Delete
      2. Based on Sarah Palin's recent speech endorsing DJT, I'd say she lives in a perpetual state of anagrammation. . .

        Delete
    44. The second word in each phrase can be anagrammed to a different word that will also form a valid phrase with the first word.

      Turkey breast = TURKEY BASTER & Ski slope = SKI POLES & Cash drawer = CASH REWARD

      My Hints:

      “I think this is.... Oh well, you know what I think.” This anagrams to shit. This is shit.

      “My real-estate rep is working on that as we speak of higher things.” Speak anagrams to peaks. Higher peaks.

      “No lemon?” Lemon anagrams to melon. No melon.

      ReplyDelete
    45. The second word in each phrase can be rearranged to make a new word that combines with the first word to make another familiar phrase, i.e., TURKEY BASTER, SKI POLES, CASH REWARD.

      > Reminds me of what I saw when there was labor strike at a Jeff Koons exhibit.

      An inflated rat at inflated art.

      ReplyDelete
    46. The second word in each phrase can be anagrammed into another word which creates – along with the first word -- a different familiar two-word phrase.

      Turkey breast becomes turkey baster. Ski slope becomes ski poles. And cash drawer becomes cash reward.

      And am I imagining things or haven’t we seen turkey baster as part of a puzzle before?

      ReplyDelete
    47. Turkey breast → Turkey BASTER
      Ski slope → Ski POLES
      Cash drawer → Cash REWARD

      Retain the first word of each phrase and anagram the second to yield a common phrase. My snow clearing comment contained the anagram SWATH/THAWS while refraining from mentioning my stiff spine.

      But my favorite anagram regards Sarah Palin. Add an “S” and rearrange to get PIRANAH LASS.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. When she played basketball in high school, she was known as Sarahcuda.

        Delete
      2. Spoonerize Sarah Palin and you have parasailin'.

        Delete
    48. I mentioned I had thought of an additional answer, and then I thought of another: DOOR POST / STOP, and HOT POTS / SPOT. ---Rob

      ReplyDelete
    49. I used the word warder because the cash drawer needed someone to watch it and all the items seemed to have things that helped the activity along or was used in conjunction with the item.

      I was referring to my Mom who used to baste duck with vodka (or gin) Julia Child style - most on the duck ,some down the throat.

      ReplyDelete
    50. My post above included "auto race(care)" and "puzzle lovers (solver)".

      ReplyDelete
    51. Like others I added a couple of alternates that fill the criteria:

      loose lips [slip] sink ships - not really sure a loose slip would sink a ship, but many a sailor has been sunk by waterfront "workers" with a loose slip.
      two-way tester [street]
      state treason [senator]
      seashore [seahorse], yeah, it's one word. get over it.
      green mile [lime] - The Green Mile was a film from 1999.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oKH8DwC6Dg8

        Delete
      2. I was thinking more of https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zgt8qBSZEn0

        Not the most important footage of the 2011 tsunami, but a lot less depressing.

        Delete
    52. The second word of each phrase is an anagram of another word that can “go with” the first word.

      TURKEY BREAST>>>TURKEY BASTER

      SKI SLOPE>>>SKI POLES

      CASH DRAWER>>>CASH REWARD.

      Blaine's clue:
      Private Escort>>>Private Sector.

      My hints:
      Don't stop>>>Don't post...
      Quality item>>>Quality time.
      Don't fall asleep>>>Don't fall please; you could break something before the Spring thaws.

      I didn't post this as it would have been a dead “giveaway:” The big pest took a big step toward cleaning up his act.

      “Sea shore” and “sea horse,” “single file” and “single life,” “Indian canoe” and “Indian ocean” and others are all excellent, but close to being giveaways.

      ReplyDelete
    53. Ok, Blaine's bloggers, ready for a big laugh (I hope). I said if I were wrong on this puzzle, I would post MY answer. If anyone reading this has noted ratoig's and/or EaWAf's posts this week, here is the answer on all of that mess...

      My solution to this puzzle came VERY quickly kind of from Blaine's pictures, and of course it was NOT the expected answer at all, but it works for the phrases AND Blaine's clue! Here it is:

      Turkey Breast --- is ON THE GRILL
      Ski Slope --- is ON THE HILL
      Cash Drawer --- is ON THE TILL

      Private Escort --- is ON THE PILL

      EaWAf's and I added three others such as:

      Benefactor's Signature --- is ON THE WILL
      Sales Tax --- is ON THE BILL
      Paper Towel --- is ON THE SPILL

      Ok, at least my answer was 'VERY Unusual'

      As far as computer programs go, there already is
      a good anagram solver by Andy! I usually don't re-write programs that already work great!

      Enjoy!

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Thanks for telling us your unusual answer, I don't think that's what WS had in mind.

        I only suggested a computer program as a means to include "two-way tester/ street" as an additional clue.

        Delete
      2. Ratoig
        Love it! Should fill the bill

        Delete
    54. Well, since Al has not yet weighed in with some upside-down-digital-clock-style brilliant answer, I guess maybe our baster/poles/reward answer might actually be Will’s intended answer to “one of the most challenging puzzles” he has presented! Remember? Two years ago, the best most of us could come up with was sHERry & wHIS+Key in a liquor cabinet, or “her,” “his” and “our” in the pages of the dictionary. But we came to our senses when Al posted what turned out to be the correct answer.
      Al, are you out there?

      ratoig,
      I agree with jan. You must be a professional poet. Great SKILL!

      On tomorrow’s Puzzleria! I will post a pretty comprehensive “Ripping Off Shortz” puzzle “piggybacking” on what we assume is Will’s answer to this not-so-challenging albeit elegant offering.

      But really, the best reason to drop in on Puzzleria! tomorrow is to see what kind of puzzle skydiveboy has come up with this time.

      LegoOgleFromTheLoge

      ReplyDelete
    55. Does anyone on this blog have facial hair, like say, a brown beard?

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. "Has anyone here ever eaten black bread" might be more elegant ... or not.

        Delete
    56. "Listen! I got this one with no time to waste. "
      Listen=Silent. Waste=Sweat.

      ReplyDelete
    57. TURKEY BREAST, BASTER
      SKI SLOPE, POLES
      CASH DRAWER, REWARD
      Earlier I had suggested a similar idea and said, "Think of a compass." Here's what I mean:
      PIGTAILS(South changes to North)PIG LATIN
      And yes, I realize PIGTAILS is one word.

      ReplyDelete
    58. We've examined this puzzle to death, as is our wont, here in Grover's Cor... uh, I mean, Blainesville.

      Glenn Close portrayed Sarah Wheaton in the Hallmark TV movie.

      A strike by the security guards at an art museum might result in an unguarded M-Monet (if the curator stuttered).

      Augustine's ideas may have sprung from the Hippo campus.

      ReplyDelete
    59. I found all the anagrams of the second word of the phases. What is so "very elegant" about them? If the anagram phrases rhymed or displayed a special relationship among themselves, then they would be "very unusual" and "very elegant". These anagram phrases seemed ordinary and unrelated, so I rejected them. These are closer to the criteria:
      TURKEY GRILL
      SKI HILL
      CASH TILL
      since they rhyme. However, TURKEY GRILL isn't same as TURKEY BREAST while SKI HILL is a SKI SLOPE and CASH TILL is a CASH DRAWER. Arrgh!

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Well, neither ratoig nor I submitted the rhyming answer, but maybe somebody else did.

        I wonder if Will mentions the rhyming answer and says whether or not they would've accepted it?

        Delete
    60. Next week's challenge, from listener Michael Shteyman of Odenton, Md.: Take the name of a country and a well-known city in the Middle East — 12 letters in all. Rearrange these letters to name another country and another well-known city in the Middle East. What places are these?

      ReplyDelete
    61. Next week's challenge, from listener Michael Shteyman of Odenton, Md.: Take the name of a country and a well-known city in the Middle East — 12 letters in all. Rearrange these letters to name another country and another well-known city in the Middle East. What places are these?

      ReplyDelete
    62. Let me see if I have this right. Both countries and both cities are in the Middle East, right? Does either city have to be in either country?

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. As I parse the posted puzzle, only the cities have to be in the Middle East, and neither city has to be in either country.

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      2. After listening to it on the air, I agree.

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      3. ... But, after listening, my wife says the countries have to be in the Middle East, too!

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      4. In the solution which I submitted, both countries and both cities are in the Middle East, yet neither city is in either country.

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      5. I hope you're right, E&WAf. That narrows things down a bit. Seems like an easy one for someone who has the programming skills for it, which I don't.

        Delete
    63. This coming Thursday at noon, PST, I plan to post something close to the following:
      ─────────────────────────────────────────
      ──┬──┬──┬──┬──┬──┬──┬──┬──┬──┬──┬──┬──┬──
      ══╪══╪══╪══╪══╪══╪══╪══╪══╪══╪══╪══╪══╪══
      ──┼──┼──┼──┼──┼──┴──┼──┼──┼──┼──┼──┼──┼──
      ──┼──┼──┴──┼──┼─────┼──┼──┼──┼──┼──┼──┼──
      ──┼──┼─────┼──┼─────┼──┼──┴──┼──┼──┼──┼──
      ──┼──┴─────┼──┼─────┼──┼─────┼──┼──┼──┼──
      ──┼────────┼──┴─────┼──┼─────┼──┼──┼──┼──
      ──┴────────┼────────┼──┼─────┼──┼──┼──┼──
      ───────────┴────────┼──┼─────┼──┼──┼──┼──
      ────────────────────┼──┼─────┼──┼──┼──┼──
      ────────────────────┼──┴─────┼──┼──┼──┼──
      ────────────────────┴────────┼──┼──┼──┼──
      ─────────────────────────────┼──┴──┼──┼──
      ─────────────────────────────┴─────┼──┼──
      ───────────────────────────────────┴──┼──
      ─────────────────────────────────────────
      Okay, the post I give Thursday won't look quite as good as the above, but it should look pretty good, nonetheless.

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    64. There is indeed a good answer which is all middle east.

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    65. Anyone else really thrilled to have another anagram puzzle?

      Like E&WAf there are cities and countries all in the Middle East that fit the bill. No programming needed, just slogging.

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      1. slog : to keep doing something even though it is difficult or boring : to work at something in a steady, determined way

        easy : not hard to do : not difficult

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      2. Easy puzzles are done in my head while they're still talking.

        This one was a slog, at least for me.

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    66. "Country and well known city."
      Sounds to me that this means they have the same name.
      One would think that after Will's screw up last week that he could put one clear challenge up.

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      1. How did WS screw up? Misjudging how hard the puzzle was or wasn't?

        NPR had a screw up with the website, and we know that's not WS - he doesn't even keep digital records of his puzzles....

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    67. Eco: Sorry to see you are in the "new clothes" group.
      He mistated the difficulty (very easy), the elegance (very not) and the rarity (very not).
      As I first posted, if it had been anybody but Shortz, we would still be trying to find an answer that fit.
      The new page is up.

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