Sunday, February 21, 2016

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Feb 21, 2016): The Letter G, Served Three Ways

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Feb 21, 2016): The Letter G, Served Three Ways:
Q: Think of three eight-letter words that are identical in spelling except for the fourth letter. Each word contains a G ... that is pronounced differently in all three words. What words are they?
I didn't know the answer at first, but I received some reinforcement; I feel much better now.

Edit: Hints were "don't know"=stranger, "reinforcement"=stringer, "feel much better"=stronger.
A: STRANGER (soft g sound), STRINGER (nasal ng sound), STRONGER (hard g sound)

136 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
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    1. There were "over 1200" entries last week, so Jan had the winning range.

      If you want to pick a range for this week, reply here with your pick as to the number of correct answers that will be submitted. Only one range per person and only one person per range.
      0 - 25
      26 - 50
      51 - 75
      76 - 100
      101 - 125
      126 - 150
      151 - 175
      176 - 200
      201 - 225
      226 - 250

      251 - 275
      276 - 300
      301 - 325
      326 - 350
      351 - 375
      376 - 400
      401 - 425
      426 - 450
      451 - 475
      476 - 500

      501 - 550
      551 - 600
      601 - 650
      651 - 700
      701 - 750
      751 - 800
      801 - 850
      851 - 900
      901 - 950
      951 - 1,000

      1,001 - 1,050
      1,051 - 1,100
      1,101 - 1,150
      1,151 - 1,200
      1,201 - 1,250
      1,251 - 1,300
      1,301 - 1,350
      1,351 - 1,400
      1,401 - 1,450
      1,451 - 1,500

      1,501 - 1,550
      1,551 - 1,600
      1,601 - 1,650
      1,651 - 1,700
      1,701 - 1,750
      1,751 - 1,800
      1,801 - 1,850
      1,851 - 1,900
      1,901 - 1,950
      1,951 - 2,000

      2,001 - 2,250
      2,251 - 2,500
      2,501 - 2,750
      2,751 - 3,000
      3,001 - 3,500
      3,501 - 4,000
      4,001 - 4,500
      4,501 - 5,000

      More than 5,000

      Delete
    2. Hi Blaine,

      Interestingly, your "guess the right number of answers" reminds me of a response I posted back on December 4, 2011, which included:

      "Regarding the number of “correct” answers that are submitted (which at times may be subject to interpretation) you reminded me of a method that I came up with for tilting the chances of being called in favor of the long-time listeners – sort of a bonus for being loyal to the show:

      Along with the answer to the puzzle, the listener must guess how many correct answers will be received. Only those guesses within 100 of the correct answers will be in the pool for being called. Typically, the long-time listeners will have a better feel for that number than the newbies. This needn’t be done every week, but might add a little interest if done occasionally. Any thoughts?"

      Thanks -- Phil J.

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    3. I will choose 176-200. I have a few "piggyback" puzzles planned for my "Riffing/Ripping Off Shortz" section in this Friday's Puzzleria! My differences in the "G" pronunciations will not be quite so subtle.

      LegoWho,LikeNathanael,HasNoGuile(AndAllTheBestPuzzlemeistersAreGuileful!)

      Delete
  2. Gee, this is mighty tough going.

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    1. So it must be a non-cough(-off)or a non-tough(-uff) non-lough(-ock) or a non-bough (-ow).

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  3. So I have three words that fit the pattern and seem to match Blaine's clue, but the way I pronounce two of the three words, the G is identical sounding.

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  4. I have three words, one of which has a G that sounds completely different from the other two. The other two G letters, well, they sound very similar if I pronounce the words carefully, but they sound different if just used in speaking. I have looked up pronunciation guides, and though I don't understand all the symbols for the sounds, the symbols are different for the two, so that's the answer I am putting in. Too much striving for this one already!

    ---Rob

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  5. I'll take 201 - 225 this week. What are the odds I'll be right twice in a row?

    I'll report that I've got the same answer as Blaine, pblues, and Rob. There seem to be two ways to pronounce one of the words, one that's the same as one of the others, the other different, though to my ear, they sound the same.

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  6. I believe I’ve found the same three words that fit with Blaine’s clue. So I sent them in. And it’s such a nice day here, now I think I’ll go fly a kite.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Had to find something gone to get the 3d word. I did not know that word had 2 different pronunciations.

    I can sleep with the television on now.

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  8. I keep trying words with the G in the third position... would it be within thw rules for someone to confirm if that is corrext?

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  9. I keep trying words with the G in the third position... would it be within thw rules for someone to confirm if that is corrext?

    ReplyDelete
  10. It is correct to keep trying words with G in the third position.

    But that might or might not be the right position.

    ---Rob

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. JIM Murphy, this group can, at times, be a clever pain in the arse.

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    2. Sorry, Jim. That was just my clever or pain-in-the-ass way of saying that telling the position of the G would be giving too much information away before the answer can be officially revealed. ---Rob

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    3. Sorry, Jim. That was just my clever or pain-in-the-ass way of saying that telling the position of the G would be giving too much information away before the answer can be officially revealed. ---Rob

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    4. That's ok, did finally get it. And also learned more about the subtleties of pronunciation.

      Delete
    5. That's ok, did finally get it. And also learned more about the subtleties of pronunciation.

      Delete
  11. I've written a program which would find the answer,... If ONLY I could find a THOROUGH WORD LIST!! It would be just a simple ASCII text file list of all valid words in the English language. -- Only it must include all plurals of all nouns (i.e. the top page must include not only aardvark and aardwolf, but also aardvarks and aardwolves). Also all gender variants (i.e. not only executor and executors, but also executrix, executrices, and executrixes. (Yes, the dictionaries list BOTH of those last two feminine plural variants!)

    Also, it must include all tenses, as well as all adjective and adverbial forms of all verbs. (i.e. not only include abandon, but also abandonable, abandoned, abandonedly, abandonee, abandoner, abandoning, abandonment, and abandons.

    Blaine, could you recommend such a thorough word list? Could anyone?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your PROGRAM is in error! I have the answer, and these three words are VERY common and can be found in the simplest pocket dictionary!

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

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  12. I get a funny weird feeling about this one.

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  13. I think I have also found Blaine's answer. Seems just a bit odd though.

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  14. Did anyone else have trouble finding this puzzle on the NPR website? It's still showing last week's.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, it still has last week's puzzle on it! Somehow they forgot to include this week's! How does Blaine even know what it really is if it still has last week's puzzle?

      Delete
    2. Damon good thing I don't have an answer to this stupid puzzle! I've got nowhere to send it!

      Delete
    3. As jan mentioned, you can find it from the Programs page, then Weekend Edition Sunday. That's where I found it and why I was able to link to it in my original post.

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    4. I meant DAMN, not Damon! That might have been an autocorrect problem. Sorry!

      Delete
  15. I have Blaine's answer also, but here is a curiosity I'd like to share that fulfills almost all the stated conditions except the Gs are all pronounced the same:

    OUTFIGHT
    OUTRIGHT

    OUTSIGHT

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ron,

      Thank you, for that example! I realized that the wordlist I was using has those words and so my program should've listed that trio of words as a possible solution. I've since fixed my program and found both Blaine's answer and a possible alternate answer.

      Delete
  16. Here are some numbers related to this week’s puzzle:
    >=2 (The number of hints posted on this blog that led me quickly to the answer.)
    3,500 (The approximately length of one of the lists of 8-letter words containing “g”, which, thanks to the number >=2 above, I did not have to consult!)
    226 – 250 (My choice for the range this week because Jan took my first choice!)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The three g sounds are: j, ŋ, ŋ-g.

      There is an association with musical instruments.

      Lorenzo’s list easily reduces to 5 or 6 before different pronunciations become an issue.

      Just straightforward coolie labor.

      Delete
    2. There are those three sounds, and also the straightforward G sound that starts "garage," and the ʒ sound of the second G in that word, sort of a zh sound.

      How anyone learns English as a second language is a complete mystery to me! ---Rob

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    3. What about the case of a silent g as in night or gnome? And Rob has covered the "zh" sound as in genre or the second g in garage. Let's not give away which pronunciations may or may not be in the set of 3 words.

      Delete
    4. I wonder why the machine sometimes doubles up on postings submitted but once? ---Rob

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    5. Rob:
      I see you and I don't pronounce "garage" the same way in regard to the second G. You seem to massage it, whereas I barge right in at it, as I sometimes do anyway.

      Blaine:
      So what else is gnu?

      Regarding your pick a range (war) scenario. Wasn't it your intention that we post our guesses as sub-posts to the range list, as I did last week? This being so you can tabulate them easier.

      Delete
  17. Asok, vubq'a uy ebwdm ann Y'q ejkcwqbs
    he sf:
    Epixm emwtixw jah vhq xilnbo fw iid, Q
    aoonnot xthqusp zmgj gqms's bwafg ann
    wefxgrql ib obv fpm rmvoq dicui wa Y
    eogtr ns jrq nqreb ba recvqvq q yizvsd.
    Tebfcvafmtk, trow cc butsbmqfwlo, ub
    budvmp cut de fq zcn. (U eozhun fw khulm
    twm aleyf dwmnmfe ji. bmvoee, ivkkay.)
    Ki M iqu daqbs ge, kzl bhuvsubg aleyf
    jje zmk bipjxm (uuxbqfosksdk), fxg
    azakqf fybxmd uvba ay hoqh. Nuhodm
    egsiduwvizo 'pak' it rqtbupep bc aqsed
    bw mq (dmdm pocimnba bqkoggu dtm eodl
    'zmbge' gqw ejklx nzaojszo ibacb ub my
    ckfoepsoqcgg), Y lqoin fzgubg ty jludm
    or ib ubdyocwue pqzh. I hycip yp oz bvq
    cdo iwzd an bts thbui U't de xmoeh
    bswmty fw ces in merhutsmbwab, qxp,
    aqnom Q'y bot kbp fxct riauzykd eqtt bpq
    herwyrabqgk ibp/ch cxivg an rairnkbmec,
    K sqbhxst yz i 'niepqzu' repuvqdee mvr
    zcjsoml ttib, emmbybmoqnlk, Q vmr
    qvdmidk bgbsd axt taivep. Ac
    U qewymvtql wz HHAD, qrp jjez vcfwsop Q
    pap itec dryftqt c mazs aplsaca huvb
    (ivicr qfeenufmzk VQN fw je pzwbded lo
    WACGOZM htwi gqms).
    Azl btws cycqqdv rqizxm iractd nm i
    dspli js Xetezhc'e qewymvt, ncb U'a
    triyrs dqt fw pq hey ajdiaca.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Are you using the vigenere cipher? If so, none of my answers seem to be your code word. So maybe there's more than one set of answers? --Margaret G.

      Delete
    2. It is a Vigenere cipher. The key is not the answer to this week's puzzle, nor any part of it.

      Delete
    3. Quick reminder: The words have to have 8 letters, so WACGOZM cannot be correct. Besides, it sounds rude no matter how you pronounce the G.

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    4. The key is 'Truth is greater than fiction' applied twice (or 'Miomo qk miiamii moaa kqemqca' applied once), so WACGOZM translates to SOMEONE, and, you're right, it does sound rude, but I thought it was cool that Dilbert's intern showed up, okay?
      I remember from my youth (long ages ago) that a stringer is a gadget for holding caught fish ... and > is an angle.

      Delete
  18. I have found a possible solution. Two of the words sound alike to me although the dictionary shows different pronunciation symbols. It may just be my New Yawk ears. As Alice said, "Mysteriouser and mysteriouser."

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  19. I'll guess 501-550 - it was quite a struggle for me. I think these 3 words' G's sound quite different. As SuperZee said, maybe it's the accent. --Margaret G.

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  20. It's possible you may get this more easily if you are overseas.

    I do hear a distinct difference. . .

    301-325 please.

    ReplyDelete
  21. I don't really get the pronunciation guide that is in the dictionary for the third word. I wonder if people who live in Boston, near Harvard Square, get this subtle difference?

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  23. We weirdos enjoy these feisty threads. 450-475, please.
    Sorry for the rough talk.

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    Replies
    1. Weirdo stranger
      Threads stringer
      Rough stronger

      Delete
  24. Should have included this in my earlier post - 401-425 please...

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  25. After several experiences with Will Shortz puzzles based on pronunciation, I expected ambiguity here.
    I actually used that propensity to come up with what I think is the intended answer, words which becomes less aurally satisfying the more one tries them out.
    I think there will another low turnout.

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  26. Yes, a relatively low number of correct answers. And another puzzle where I'll bet dollars to donuts that no one who doesn't use a computer to do at least part of the work won't be a winner.

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    1. Well, Rachel doesn't give an address to send postcards to any more, so, yeah. (And, have you priced donuts recently?)

      Delete
  27. Thank you, Blainesville people. I had the right answer unknowingly until I visited and saw the advice to check the dictionary pronunciations if you think you have a near-miss. I grew up in Metro New York where it’s common to hear two of the words with the same “G” pronunciation. Yes, my formative years weren’t far from Long Island (lawn GUY lind).

    I predict 275 correct answers with only 5 from the New York Metropolitan Area.

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  28. All three words are movie titles.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Reel good observation. I like it.
      Though I haven't seen any of them.

      Delete
    2. I didn't believe it until I checked IMDb.com. And all 3 are movie titles both with and without "The."

      That may sound like a clue, but it's more of a red herring.

      Delete
    3. I checked, thought of maybe adding "and also both regular and pluralized" (which applies to the first word, assuming we're listing the 3 words in alphabetical order), but no "The <plural>" movie title for the second word, and I realized the third word, like fish, moose and sheep, is its own plural.

      Delete
    4. STRANGER, STRINGER, STRONGER

      "It's possible you may get this more easily if you are overseas." >>> as a STRANGER in a strange land or as a STRINGER foreign correspondent.

      I do hear a distinct difference. . . >>> as a STRONGER difference between the sounds.

      Delete
  29. stranger, stringer, stronger

    Last Sunday I said, “I believe I’ve found the same three words that fit with Blaine’s clue. So I sent them in. And it’s such a nice day here, now I think I’ll go fly a kite.” Using kite string of course.

    ReplyDelete
  30. STRANGER, STRINGER, STRONGER

    > What are the odds I'll be right twice in a row?

    Strange.

    > I'll report< that I've got the same answer as Blaine, pblues, and Rob.

    A stringer is a freelance reporter.

    > There seem to be two ways to pronounce one of the words, one that's the same as one of the others

    \ˈstrān-jər\, \ˈstriŋ-ər\, \ˈstrȯŋ-gər also -ər\

    ReplyDelete
  31. From my comment Sunday: ". . . as is not uncommon with this sort of puzzle, once I start pronouncing a list of three words aloud, I start to have greater and greater doubts . . ."

    uncommon - STRANGER

    list of three words - STRINGER

    greater and greater - STRONGER

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  32. STRANGER --> STRINGER --> STRONGER

    And possible alternate answer:

    FRIDGING --> FRIGGING -->FRINGING -->

    ReplyDelete
  33. That's what I had, just going by what the dictionary's pronounciation guide showed, but to me, stringer and stronger sound the same... Is there a good example showing the difference between the two?

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    1. 68Charger, I suppose I hear the UK pronunciation more for STRINGER.

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    2. First, for those of us now using Windows 10 and Microsoft Edge, the buttons didn't work for me. I had to click on the 3 dots at upper right and select "Open with Internet Explorer" which can activate those buttons.

      Now, the only difference between the US and UK pronunciations that I heard only differ in that the US pronunciation ends with an "er" sound while the UK one ends with an "uh" sound. They both have the soft "ng" sound with nothing else; 'STRONGER' has its ng sound with a hard g connected to it.

      Delete
    3. I hear the soft "ng" sound more clearly in the UK version. Indeed, the hard "G" in stronger sounds different to my ears. Hardly, you say?! ;-)

      Delete
  34. That's what I had, just going by what the dictionary's pronounciation guide showed, but to me, stringer and stronger sound the same... Is there a good example showing the difference between the two?

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  35. For most of the week I have been wondering if what is happening is actually different letter pronunciations.
    The "g" in string and strong are the same.
    In stronger the "g" is repeated, not so in stringer.
    So the words are pronounnced differently, but perhaps not the "g's.

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  36. Stranger…Stringer…Stronger
    Were it not for the phonetic symbols in Merriam Webster teaching otherwise, I’d argue that the g’s in Stringer and Stronger sound alike. If someone posts a sound clip that demonstrates the difference, this former New Yawker will say thanx. That auditory confusion, and the desire to join the wordplay on strangeness (and oddness) lead to my comment, “Mysteriouser and mysteriouser.”

    As a side note, I thought the line, “Mysteriouser and mysteriouser,” came from Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland. However, after searching for the line, it appears that what Alice actually says is, “Curiouser and curiouser.”

    It is a puzzlement… (as the King said...)

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  37. For the sake of the Puzzle legacy [?] I really hope there's another answer that everyone missed.

    Notwithstanding M-W's pronunciation guide, the subtleties between stringer and stronger escape my ears.

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  38. As I mentioned in my reply to Word Woman above, 'STRINGER' has the soft "ng" sound with nothing else; 'STRONGER' has its ng sound with a hard g connected to it.

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    Replies
    1. At least there's no such dispute with my possible alternate solution:

      FRIDGING --> FRIGGING --> FRINGING

      -- at least with the Gs in the 5th position.

      Delete
  39. Today I got the phone call to play the puzzle on the air. I had submitted stranger, stringer and stronger.

    I'm excited to get this call after many years of submitting correct answers.
    Any pointers from the experienced on-air players are appreciated.

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    Replies
    1. Congrats, Barbara! Find a quiet room to take the call in, have paper and pencil handy. It can be helpful to have a friend around. Relax and have fun!

      Delete
    2. Thank you, jan
      From the phone call, I know the number of correct answers, so disqualify myself from that competition.

      Delete
    3. Oh, boy! Congratulations. I got picked about two years ago. Yes, pencil and paper. And I wrote down all the alphabet beforehand, just to be able to see all the letters; it helped a little with the puzzle Will gave me, but of course it all depends on what he dishes up.

      Oh! Make sure you write down what puzzle he announces for the challenge next week; then you can give us a head start.

      I was a little nervous; maybe you will be, too, but it is completely benign, and both Will and the host were welcoming, and it was just fun.

      Enjoy it! ---Rob

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    4. Rule 1: You get the Weekend Edition lapel pin no matter what, so enjoy.

      Take some extra time in responding and make some mistakes so that we at home can feel superior. That was my approach when I was on in 1997, albeit unintentionally.

      Be ready for the "Are you ready?" question. "Yes" is least trite response I've heard. I don't remember what I said. Given another chance, I would likely make an ass of myself by saying, "Yes, I've been up all night reading the dictionary backwards and upside down." Don't be like me.

      On Sunday morning, we'll hear 40 minutes of mostly variations of stuff we've heard before. And then you'll come on. Thank you.

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    5. Congrats! He will ask you what you do for a living and how you solved the puzzle. Have answers ready.

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    6. Congratulations - very exciting! --Margaret G

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  40. I see that 326 - 350 was still up for grabs, so I'm taking it.

    Oh and congratulations, Barbara H.!

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  41. Congrats to Barb but, I thought it was tape delayed and everyone plays when they call on Thursday. I'd like to ask Will Shortz a question or two related to the NYT crossword puzzle!

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  42. Congrats to Barb but, I thought it was tape delayed and everyone plays when they call on Thursday. I'd like to ask Will Shortz a question or two related to the NYT crossword puzzle!

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    Replies
    1. The call on Thursday is just to let you know about the call on Friday, when the segment will be recorded.

      Delete
    2. yes, Jan is right. They call to let you know you were selected and to arrange a time for playing on Friday. I thought that they didn't choose as many people from the Pacific time zone because taping schedules were harder.

      Thanks, 68Charger, Word Woman, SuperZee and Enya_and_Weird_Al_fan.

      Delete
  43. I was on the right track. I just didn't think STRINGER was that much different from STRONGER.

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  44. Barbara H., if you have someone else in the room with you, make sure they don't say anything. Otherwise they may have to edit part of it out. Also, I hope you have something better than a landline to talk to them.

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    Replies
    1. What would be better than a landline? Not sure what I could attach a decent microphone to. I have a microphone from podcasting that connects into my laptop.

      Delete
    2. Congrats Barbara,
      We'll be cheering you on at the Waffle House. :)

      Delete
  45. STRANGER (strān'jər)
    STRINGER (strῐng'ər)
    STRONGER (strŏng'gər)

    ReplyDelete
  46. Barbara –
    Congrats on being selected! From my experience playing on the air, I think Jan gave some good advice several posts above this. I would have nothing to add.

    STRINGER / STRONGER –
    As to the pronunciation of G in STRINGER and STRONGER, I have no problem hearing a distinct difference. But for those who don’t, I would suggest going to dictionary.com. Select STRINGER. Click on the speaker icon. Listen a few times. There’s almost no G there. Then select STRONG. Click on the speaker icon adjacent to STRONGER. Listen to that a few times. There’s a big G sound. Then go back and listen to STRINGER again. I’d say the difference is significant.

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    Replies
    1. Technically you're right, of course, there is a difference. But with all the ways "g" can be pronounced (silent, zh, "f" when combined with h, etc) I was hoping for something more substantial, and not a technical difference. Been disappointed before, will be disappointed again.

      Congratulations Barbara H., good luck and try not to get too stressed. I think they edit out the parts where contestants get really addled.

      The pronunciation subtleties remind me of a Japanese student who was staying at my college co-op house. Her first course was English for non-native speakers, and she was struggling with a list of words the instructor had given her: look, luck, lock, lack, lick, and maybe a few others. I said try them on me, and she said "Ryuk, ryuk, ryuk, ryuk, ryuk." She was unable to hear the differences, which makes for some very unseemly stereotyping humor.

      Years later some Chinese friends were trying to teach me some simple phrases. They rolled with laughter at one point; I apparently said something very dirty because I used the wrong inflection. There are tonal inflections that they can hear that we can't - apparently if you aren't exposed to them at an early age you never hear them. I wonder if Chinese folks make stereotyping jokes about our pronunciation capacities?

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    2. eco, I had similar issues with our Japanese students. Merriment all around.

      And, in Mexico, while looking at the stars from our village with no electric lights I tried to convince the villagers that the amount of stars in the sky was "sin cuenta," "without counting," akin to cincuenta, "50." No one else understood the pun. They laughed, but not about the pun, but about my trying to convince them it was funny! :-)

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    3. Eco, you are right about not being able to hear some sounds. When I was growing up I was unable to hear my parents say no.

      Delete
  47. Barbara H: Make sure you tell them if you have subjects you don't do well in. Mine would be anagrams and pop culture, e.g..
    Ask him how much NPR Puzzlemasters earn.

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    Replies
    1. Anagrams and pop culture are the WORST for me, and that's what it was. Both when I lived overseas and at another time raised children, I wasn't at all aware of the films and awards.

      I had a sigh of relief at the end of playing the puzzle. I hope they edited out any sighs.

      Delete
  48. Break a leg, Barbara H.! I have nothing to add to all the great advice above (and likely below). Maybe have a bottle of water handy, like Marco Rubio does. You'll do fine. Don't sweat it.

    LegoBreakingIntoTheatricIdioms

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  49. Hey saukriver- as a huge Billy Joel fan, I especially liked your "sleeping with the television on" clue for the Stranger.

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  50. Granted, I stopped working on this one early in the weak due to a personal conflict. I had a job interview scheduled for the call time, so I wouldn't have been able to respond anyway. But, I'm going call foul on this one, and echo what Ecoarchitect mentioned. There are sooooo many ways G can be pronounced that it seems inconsequential to differential between variations of the hard G sound.

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. Curtis,
      I am posting two "piggybacks" of Will's "Stranger" puzzle on tomorrow's (Friday's) Puzzleria! (I upload in the morning.) The words in my puzzles' answers have distinctive differences in pronunciations of "G".

      My two puzzles also give clues for the words or put them into context.

      Better yet... not one but TWO fresh puzzles created by skydiveboy!
      Plus three movie-themed puzzles as a nod to the Oscars ceremony on Sunday. Plus a political dirty-tricks puzzle.

      LegoSaysPleaseDropByAndPeruseOurPuzzles

      Delete
  51. I don't like it when a singer lingers on one note of a song longer than he or she really needs to.

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    2. Well I happen to be an FAA Certificated Master Parachute Rigger and I have an old Singer lingering in my basement and hope it will linger longer.

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    3. Oh, Pfaff! (I actually have one of those too.)

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  52. Now that we are all waiting for Sunday morning with, absolutely nothing to do, it might be a good time to head on over to Lego's Puzzleria! where he is now running two puzzles of my creation. The first he is running as an appetizer and the second as a main menu item. However I consider them all canapés.

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  53. English is source of a hundred years of wordplay.
    Pronunciation, as with this week's challenge, is an easy target, as are puns and Spoonerisms.
    Does anyone here know which, if any, other languages are such easy targets?

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  54. I convinced myself that the middle word could be pronounced with a /ŋ/, making this trio valid...

    SPAGGING
    SPANGING
    SPARGING

    Anyone else cut and paste a list of 8-letter words containing "g" into Excel and then use LEFT and RIGHT functions to create a column of the first three letters and a column of the last four letters and then sort alphabetically and use IF(AND) formulas to eliminate non-matches or matches of two or fewer and then sound out the remaining words for possible correct answers? NERD!

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    1. Good catch, jsulbyrne; I can't believe I missed those! My program's output of possible answers DID include them!

      I had used http://www.bestwordlist.com/8letterwords.txt, which has all 3 of those words, although I notice that 'SPAGGING' is not recognized by
      either Dictionary.com or TheFreeDictionary.com.

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    2. When making the above reply post, I had problems with the reCAPTCHA software, so I re-edited, selected all, copied, then opened this page in Internet Explorer, which posted it OK.

      Now, Microsoft Edge is insisting that I complete the post I had begun HERE.

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  55. Boo! Right now, ten minutes before the show is to start, the website puzzle page says:

    Last week's challenge: Think of three eight-letter words that are identical in spelling except for the fourth letter. Each word contains a "G" that is pronounced differently in all three words. What words are they?

    Answer: Stranger, stringer, stronger.

    Winner: Barbara Haven of Folsom, Calif. [Congratulations, Barbara!]

    Next week's challenge: Think of three eight-letter words that are identical in spelling except for the fourth letter. Each word contains a G ... that is pronounced differently in all three words. What words are they?


    Boo! That's not next week's challenge! Come on, web lackeys!

    Get ready to transcribe from the broadcast. ---Rob

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    1. OK, here's the transcription:

      What two eight-letter terms in math are anagrams of each other, one from geometry, one from calculus?

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  56. What 2 8-letter terms in math are anagrams of each other? One is from Geometry, the other form Calculus

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  57. Next week's puzzle: What two 8-letter terms from math, one from geometry and one from calculus, are anagrams of each other?

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  58. I must say that you did a much better job than I could ever have done with the subject matter. How about you this week's puzzle tie in with Johnny Cash?

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  59. Upon Auditing that last post I suggest subtracting the you

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  60. Is it possible that the challenge given 2/28 is as easy as it looks? Or are there other, less-well-known terms we should be looking for?

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  61. Anyone who made it through high school should get this one.

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  62. Got it in just a few "secants". One of the answers has something in common with last week's answers.

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  63. Hardly had to give this one a go.

    Sheesh!

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    1. I got it pretty quickly but it made me realize how few terms I even remember from taking calculus 30-odd years ago. I couldn't do an equation now if you put a gun to my head.

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  64. Musical clue: Just about half the love songs ever written -- yeah, I know, that covers a lot of ground!

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  65. The difference in challenge levels between last week and this week reminds me of a comment by a Facilities Manager. "If half the people complain it's too hot and half say it's too cold, on the average we're ok."
    2501-2750 please.

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  66. I created last week's challenge and enjoyed reading people's comments here. When I sent it in, it didn't occur to me some people might pronounce the "g"s the same in "stringer" and "stronger," but my daughter-in-law (who's from New Jersey) pointed out that that might be an issue. I guessed about 300 or so correct answers, so I was a little surprised to hear 170. It was fun hearing my name on NPR, though!

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