Sunday, December 18, 2016

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Dec 18, 2016): Adding Historical Figures

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Dec 18, 2016): Adding Historical Figures:
Q: Take the initials and last names of two opposing historical figures. Add a C and mix all the letters together. You'll get the title and last name of another historical figure from approximately the same era. Who are these people?
I'll just leave this space empty.

Edit: Custer's last stand was at Little Bighorn, MT (Montana).
A: U.S. GRANT + R.E. LEE + C --> GENERAL CUSTER

111 comments:

  1. Here's my standard reminder... don't post the answer or any hints that could lead directly to the answer (e.g. via a chain of thought, or an internet search) before the deadline of Thursday at 3pm ET. If you know the answer, click the link and submit it to NPR, but don't give it away here.

    You may provide indirect hints to the answer to show you know it, but make sure they don't give the answer away. You can openly discuss your hints and the answer after the Thursday deadline. Thank you.

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  2. I got an answer, but it lacks specifics. ---Rob

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  3. I got the answer watching the moonset.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hm, were you praying for inspiration?

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    2. Crito, perhaps for an "unpresidented" outcome for tomorrow.

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    3. Hmmm... a flamboyant media personality who doesn't need intelligence briefings?

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    4. With a daughter who may play "First Lady," despite all the conflicts of interests with her businesses?

      It's all creepy, in many more ways than one.

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  4. Once again Will Shortz has given us a puzzle with somewhat of a gray area.

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  5. DT has declared that, as of 1/20/17, we'll be using 'Murican units of weights and measures. Hence, anagrams will become anaounces, he anaounced. ;-)

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  6. If one person were Adolf Hitler, are his "initials and last name" AH HITLER or A HITLER? I have the answer to this week's challenge, but I wanted to clear up this confusion. It's A HITLER, I have assumed.

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    Replies
    1. AH HITLER would be OK only if Adolf had the middle initial H (which he didn't). JS BACH would be OK, JSB BACH wouldn't.

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    2. What would you do with Louis C. K.?

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    3. So George Bernard Shaw would be GB SHAW, not GBS SHAW.

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  7. If you end up with an Abnormal Haircut, you have the wrong opposing historical figures.

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  8. This as a hint if you need it, as a wish if you celebrate, as both or neither depending on Venn you watch it.

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    Replies
    1. They didn't set the figgy pudding on fire, that's the best part.

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  9. Being from Montana, I know if you go eight seconds doing this, you win.

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  10. Lvruzhz qtfeepamxo mo bookrea mh elf qtmutfztmtso?
    Q nmvr dwfx jsv kgz hngm kxlp dpkmp.
    V owg'm heob za gb.

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    Replies
    1. Translation:
      Anybody interested in tickets to the inauguration?
      I have some you can have real cheap.
      I don't want to go.

      "I don't want to go" is an oft-repeated line in a novelty song recorded by Larry Verne.
      I was only joking; I don't really have any tickets to scalp.

      Delete
  11. There is an ironic twist to this puzzle, that Dr. Seuss would appreciate.

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  12. The initials plus the added letter form a fitting anagram.

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  13. I don't want to blow my own horn, but I got this pretty fast.

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  14. Since I solved this one right away, I will keep a civil tongue in my mouth about it.

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    Replies
    1. New Year's resolution early this year, cb?

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    2. CB: ...and there it is. Thank you.

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  15. I am okay with this puzzle - but on air - it was described as elegant.

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  16. Must've been some interesting alumni get-togethers!

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    Replies
    1. I'll try downloading it to my tablet.

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    2. Paul, I just checked and the app will not be ready until after January 16, 2017.

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  17. Drop one letter from the third historical figure's last name, and rearrange the rest to get a word that would surely help any opposing historical figures' relationship.

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  18. I got the answer while in the shower; I'm glad I still have something left to shampoo.

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    Replies
    1. "Shampoo" is a reference to Lee Grant, who won an Oscar™ for her performance in that movie. The "something left" comment is directed at Custer, whose corpse was left on the battlefield with all its hair.

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    2. That is true, but it was not long hair as he had cut it short.

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  19. I just got it! I keep going down an electric route thinking Edison vs. Tesla. As it turns out, the third figure in this weeks puzzle was part of the answer to an old NPR challenge having to do with a certain silent film star.

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    Replies
    1. That very old puzzle is perhaps my all time favorite and I was thinking yesterday of posting about it too. I remember lying in bed and hearing it and when I heard the year referred to in the puzzle I knew instantly what it was about and only had to play with it a bit to get the full answer. This time I had the first two names as I was reading the question. I then returned back to bed and a few minutes later had the final name. Too easy, but I like this puzzle.

      Here is another hint: The New York Times.

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  20. Obscure musical clue: Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In.

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    Replies
    1. Another obscure musical clue: just two.

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  21. Backing up just a bit to revisit last week's odd sign puzzle, I am wondering why so many fast food joints post this sign:

    BURGHERS AND SHEIKHS SERVED

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  22. I got the answer while enjoying a nice crème brûlée.

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    Replies
    1. A Nice crème brûlée would have even been nicer.

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    2. Except on Bastille Day...too surreal, and that's no post-truth.

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    3. We certainly don't want no truck with that.

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    4. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  23. Replies
    1. I've been getting spam encouraging me to inspire my representative in the US Senate to approve Trump's cabinet picks.
      What am I to make of this?

      Delete
  24. Last I heard, DT’s position on the undocumented in this country – deplorable. Especially when you consider the specifics. I, too, got the answer while enjoying a nice crème brûlée.

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    Replies
    1. “Last” + position (“stand”) = Custer’s Last Stand. undocumented (immi”GRANT”s) this country (“US”a) cREme brûLEE

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  25. We got dat oxymoron thang goin' on

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  26. I must leave empty and waitin'

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    Replies
    1. must leave empty - “must” minus “m, t” = US. I must leave also as I “GRANT”. waitin’ for the R(Robert) E LEE

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  27. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  28. Elegant, from The Free Dictionary:
    "Characterized by or exhibiting refined, tasteful beauty of manner, form, or style."
    Since this week's challenge was based on an anagram, I didn't work on it.
    I am looking forward to applying the above standard to it in three hours.

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  29. R.E. LEE + U.S. GRANT + C = GENERAL CUSTER.


    "I got the answer watching the moonset." refers to George Armstrong Custer and
    Neil Armstrong, who landed on the moon in 1969.

    "THIS as a hint if you need it, as a wish if you celebrate, as both or neither depending on Venn you watch it." >>>FIGGY PUDDING >>> CUSTARD >>> CUSTER (and Merry Christmas to Blainesvilleans who celebrate!)

    "There's an app for that!" refers to the APPomattox Courthouse where Lee and Grant signed the document to end the Civil War.

    "Paul, I just checked and the app will not be ready until after January 16, 2017." refers to Tuscaloosa, Alabama, celebrating Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert E. Lee on the same January day.

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    Replies
    1. TABLET is either an anagram of BATTLE, or it's the TABLE Sheridan gave to Libbie with a T tacked onto it. Whichever is least elegant.

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    2. WW - I thought your "moonset" clue might have referenced "Two Moons", a Cheyenne Indian Chief who participated in the Battle Of The Little Big Horn!
      Two Moons


      Delete
  30. Generals Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee and George Headstrong (sic) Custer

    My Hints:

    “Once again Will Shortz has given us a puzzle with somewhat of a gray area.”
    The Civil War was between the Blue & the Gray.

    “The initials plus the added letter form a fitting anagram.”
    CURSE

    “Here is another hint: The New York Times.”
    The N.Y. Times is nicknamed The Gray Lady.

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  31. RE LEE + US GRANT + C -> GENERAL CUSTER

    > The "title" of the third figure is not it's best known one, but it was correct at the time the three figures were together in one place.

    Custer was a lieutenant colonel when he was killed at the Battle of the Little Big Horn. But he was a brevet major general when he was present for Lee's surrender to Grant at Appomatox.

    > Hmmm... a flamboyant media personality who doesn't need intelligence briefings?

    Remind you of anyone?

    > Must've been some interesting alumni get-togethers!

    Lee was in the United States Military Academy class of 1829, graduating 2nd out of 45 cadets. Grant was class of 1843, 21st out of 29. Custer was class of 1861, dead last out of 34.

    > Obscure musical clue: Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In.

    The announcer of that show was Gary Owens, which is also a variant of the nickname and the marching tune of Custer's 7th Cavalry.

    > Another obscure musical clue: just two.

    Grant said, "I only know two tunes. One is Yankee Doodle, and the other one isn't."

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  32. I wrote, "I got an answer, but it lacks specifics." But what it lacks in specifics, it makes up in generals. I crack myself up. ---Rob

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  33. I have one big problem with the puzzle presentation. "You'll get the title and last name of another historical figure from approximately the same era." This sentence to me is an obvious indication that whoever wrote it does not know his history. All three generals in this puzzle were present at the battle and following surrender April 9, 1865 at Appomattox. Custer did NOT become famous over eleven years later when he was killed in Montana, he became famous during the Civil War. BTW, he also rode out on his horse without permission and accepted the flag of surrender at the end of the war. I would characterize him as Pre-Trump. He also had presidential aspirations.

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  34. R. E. Lee and U. S. Grant. + C anagrams to General Custer.

    My reference to Dr. Seuss was based on the fact that neither Seuss, born Theodore Seuss Geisel, nor Ulysses Grant is known by his first name. President Grant’s given name was Hiram Ulysses Grant. A Congressman, who nominated Grant to be admitted to West Point thought that he had been given his mother’s maiden name (Simpson) as a middle name.

    After trying, unsuccessfully to get the error corrected, and after seeing that both his West Point diploma and commission as an officer had his name as Ulysses S. Grant, he adopted the name.

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  35. R. E. LEE and U. S. GRANT, GENERAL CUSTER
    I referenced the Civil War(civil tongue in my head). When you drop the S and rearrange the rest, CUSTER becomes TRUCE.

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    Replies
    1. Historical figures who face opposition might do well to develop a bit of a CRUST. It doesn't pay to be too thin-skinned.

      Delete
  36. Last night I attended the PNB ballet presentation of The Nutcracker as choreographed by George Balanchine. It has been somewhat controversial here in Seattle because the sets designed by the late Maurice Sendak had been used since he designed them back in 1983, when Kent Stowell and his wife, Francia Russell, were the ballet's artistic directors back in the 1980s. The new set design is now is its second season here. As you can see, managing a large ballet company can be a Balanchine act.

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    Replies
    1. Be sure to check out the baleen-sing act now playing at PEotS.
      [You're welcome, WW.]

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    2. Thanks, Paul!

      Enjoy the above minke link as you have a whale of a time this Christmas Eve eve.

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    3. SKB: Love the Balanchine Nutcracker. Used to take ballet class with Ballanchine's prima ballerina in that ballet.

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    4. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  37. The Opposing Historical Figures:

    U.S. GRANT + R.E. LEE + C =
    GENERAL (George Armstrong) CUSTER

    My hint: RELEGANT (Index) anagrams to LEE + GRANT.

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  38. Oxymoron thang
    Bubber Miley according to Duke Ellington coined the phrase referring to if I don't swang it don't mean a thang .
    The oxymoron being a little big, and Bubber Miley being the horn player.
    Little Big Horn-G A Custer a general in the insurrection of our southern states.
    U S Grant and the opposition RELee

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  39. Misspellings and poor punctuation are free .;)

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  40. This weeks give away clue came from the artist formerly known as patjberry. I had no idea what the answer was until I read the "civil tongue" remark. Could this be a reference to the Civil War? You know, Robert E Lee & U.S. Grant? Would someone really publish a clue that blatant? I had my answer in just a few seconds.

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    Replies
    1. Yup, a blatant clue.

      How about "polite, courteous, well mannered, well bred, chivalrous, or gallant tongue?"

      All would connote the answer without giving it away. . .

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    2. P.S.

      Q: What does a Thesaurus eat for breakfast?



      A: A synonym roll, of course.

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    3. What’s the difference between a football team and a symphony orchestra?








      Answer: The football players have to wait until the end to learn the score.

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    4. Thanks VT, I made it up sometime back, but in a very different form. I think this form works best.

      Merry Christmas

      Delete
  41. Seeing how "The Donald" is having trouble lining up "A" list celebs for his inauguration, I suggest he think outside the box. 
    He might consider getting "The California Raisins" or go the extra mile and get "The Trump University Marching Band". Just a suggestion!

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  42. We have nine holiday-themed posers over on Puzzleria! this week, plus a trio of Riffing/ripping Off Shortz Stumpers.

    Click on "Joseph Young's Puzzlria!" in Blaine's PUZZLE LINKS.

    LegoYuleTidy

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  43. Replies
    1. Merry Christmas and enjoying the above freezing temperatures, too!

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  44. Happy holidays to all my fellow Blaineiacs! Also enjoying mild weather in Cambridge with my new granddaughter!

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    Replies
    1. jan, congrats and have fun with your granddaughter! Say hi to my brother, Pete, in Cambridge. He is 6'6." You can't miss him! ;-)

      Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Merry Kwanzaa, and Happy Saturday to all.

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  45. Merry Christmas to one and all. Six children, their spouses, seven grandchildren, my dad, my brother, Mamaw and Papaw creek will be crowding into our humble shack this beautiful Christmas Day. The only thing missing will be our extended Blainesvillian family.
    Your puzzling brother, zeke creek.

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  46. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  47. My most memorable Christmas memory was from Christmas Eve in 1968.
    Apollo 8 and Christmas Eve

    With all the turmoil and uncertainty in the world that year, it closed out with the first manned lunar orbit by Apollo 8 with the three astronauts reading from the book of Genesis. It also had the famous photo of the earth rising as viewed from the moon.
    Anyway, it left me with some optimism for the future.
    Merry Christmas everyone!

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  48. Think of three words used in golf. Say them out loud one after the other. They'll sound like a group that was in the news in 2016

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  49. Goes along with the recent Evan McMullin puzzle, a la a certain children's author.

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  50. Merry Christmas, all!

    Terrific job, Margo!

    248

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    Replies
    1. Just listened to the puzzle segment. Awesome job, Margo.

      Our White Elephant/Christmas Eve exchange among 28 of us last night included a garden gnome, squirrel underwear, and a statue of Pocahontas. That'll put any Scrooge in the Christmas spirit. ;-)

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    2. Yes, Margo, you gave a wonderful virtuoso performace this morning on NPR's Weekend Edition Sunday program.
      You should take a bow!

      LegoWhoBelievesThatMargoIsQuiteFamiliarWithTakingBowsAndMakingBeautifulMusic

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    3. I'm blushing, Paul, WW, and Lego. You are all so kind. My heart is full!

      Delete
  51. Got it in about fore seconds, of course.

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  52. In an effort to emulate SDB’s uncanny ability to solve certain puzzles very quickly, the answer to this week’s puzzle popped into my head before my feet hit the floor this morning. And I don’t even play golf :)

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  53. Yeah, this one is pretty easy. Once you work out the second word of the group, it's simple to backtrack and get the rest of the answer.

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