Sunday, September 03, 2017

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Sep 3, 2017): The Cat's Away...

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Sep 3, 2017): The Cat's Away...

I'm unable to post the puzzle this week, but I didn't want to leave you without a place to post comments on the puzzle. Somebody help me out by posting a copy here. Then feel free to add your *hints*.

Here's my standard reminder... don't post the answer or any outright spoilers 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. Thank you.
Q: Rearrange the 15 letters of COOL HIT FARE IN L.A. to name a famous song that's appropriate to the given phrase.
A: "Hotel California" by the Eagles

222 comments:

  1. Here's the puzzle:
    This challenge comes from listener Patrick Berry of Jasper, Ala., who had the clever AMERICAN DAD + C = CANDID CAMERA anagram a few weeks ago. This challenge is another anagram. Rearrange the 15 letters of COOL HIT FARE IN L.A. to name a famous song that's appropriate to the given phrase.

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  2. Gee, L.A. seems a fruitful place to inspire lyrics. A good puzzle, Cranberry. Congratulations again.

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  3. As I've stated before, I normally do not attempt POPULAR CULTURE PUZZLES. I do have the answer to this one and interestingly enough, the given letters also anagram to a famous GHOST TOWN !

    I have never heard of the "hit song" and I wonder if Chuck has heard of it. Many older NPR listeners do not follow POPULAR CULTURE at all.

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  4. Do be informed- I got help from Blaine's wee beastie.

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    1. Hugh, "Blaine's wee beastie" -- is that a new group?

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    2. No, but perhaps I should have said "wee beasties" to lead into a word I'm covering up.

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  5. I got this puzzle in about 6 1/2 minutes, it was made to order. I guess all anagrams are made to order, or at least they are out of order.

    It was a good puzzle, though easy, so how about a bonus slightly harder anagram puzzle? Take seven consecutive letters of the alphabet, remove one, and rearrange the remaining six for a famous author's last name.

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    Replies
    1. Good one. I have the answer and will post Thursday.

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    2. Rearrange to get something in a salad.

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    3. Jan: maybe in Jersey, but not on the west coast!

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  6. Replies
    1. Even worse is being forced to listen to it, particularly after a rough night.

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    2. The original post by eighdreeuhn was a sly reference to the scene in The Big Lebowski in which the Dude pleads with the taxi driver to turn off the Eagles, which he loathes.

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  7. As said before, au revoir, maybe not.

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  8. Couldn't solve this one in bed.
    Can't understand it yet.
    My only guess is that nonsense plays a part, being "appropriate" to the given phrase.

    Last week's puzzle was a snap. Is the explanation for only 450 answers in the listenership or the same folks that don't understand "random?"

    We spent Friday afternoon in San Francisco on its hottest day (by 3 degrees) in history.

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    1. I bet a lot of people didn't consider non-English phrases, and assumed there would be a consonant in the first word. I wonder if there were any common interesting non-answers submitted? :)

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  9. If you know classic rock, you'll know this song. That's all I'll say.

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  10. I solved it, but don't understand the phrase at all.

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  11. I bet there will be over 2000 correct answers this week -- this is a cool anagram! :) But difficulty-wise, I think this is on level with the "orangutan" puzzle earlier this summer.

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  12. Good anagram, Cran. And and good puzzle, too.

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  14. Another anagram puzzle. There's just no escaping them.

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  15. I got this answer in a flash - and I bet the old gray hairs will even know it.

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  16. Chuck, thanks!
    Also, I hope the heat wave breaks soon for everyone and their A/C is the only thing that has to work overtime this weekend!

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    Replies
    1. For the inner Bay Area the heat wave is finally breaking now. As I mentioned to SDB last night we don't have individual A/C, we have a collectivist system that is powered by the state. Usually it works well, but it had a slight breakdown Friday/ Saturday.

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  17. That was so easy, I just had to check out everyone's comments about it.

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  18. Should have gotten it more quickly.
    Not a bad puzzle as anagrams go.
    Heard the song live long ago.
    I hope someone will explain what the phrase means on Thursday.

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  19. Did anyone else notice during the on air puzzle Will said Miley Stewart and not Miley Cyrus!

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    Replies
    1. The fictional character, Miley Stewart (played by Miley Cyrus) is the alter ego of Hannah Montana.

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    2. Seems interesting you know "Hannah Montana", but don't usually attempt puzzles involving Pop Culture;)

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    3. I have never seen the show and didn't know about it. I just looked it up (see "alter ego of Hannah Montana" above).

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    4. Thanks guys for the clarification!

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  20. I had a technique that worked to find the name of the song. Otherwise, I would never have thought of it since I never heard it before.

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    1. Natasha, that is a surprise. I am in the ear worm group.

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    2. Word Woman, What is ear worm group? I guess I am not very with it.

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    3. Natasha, someone who heard this so often as a pre-teen/teen it plays over and over in one's head at the slightest mention of said song.

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    4. Word Woman, thanks for the explanation. I am in that group when it comes to ballet music.

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  21. Well cranberry, I must say you really ought to be enjoying your slice of humble pie. It wasn't too long ago you were cursing NPR, this blog, and Will Shortz himself. Now, you've had 2 puzzles shared nationally. Excellent work. Personally, this song is one of those that my ears become a prisoner to. It's been in my head all day. Thanks for that, by the way.

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  22. I mean no harm. Like anyone else here, I just want to solve the puzzle, that's all. And with one of my own used by Dr. Shortz, I don't even have to solve it. I'm out of the running this week. Funny I had to find out like this, while on vacation. It's actually a great song, particularly if you like guitar solos(hope that doesn't give it away for any of you!).

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  23. Raise your hands: Who lives in the SF Bay Area? I think Blaine does and Eco is a neighbor almost, I believe. It is too hot here!!

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    1. Not in the Bay area, but 95 degrees in CO was quite toasty today!

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    2. I am not in the Bay area, however I do have Rice-a-Roni in my kitchen cabinet. Does that count?

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    3. Natasha: It's very hard to type with my hands raised!

      But yes, I am also in Berkeley, and I believe Blake is in the area too, except when he's away, like now. He is almost certainly in the cooler.

      And SDB, I don't know of a single Bay Area denizen who would admit to eating Rice-a-Roni.

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    4. eco, is Blake Blaine's evil twin?

      FWIW, I have never once eaten Rice-a-Roni.

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    5. eco, Who is "Blake?"

      Yeah, why are they so secretive about their national dish? Actually I am, as we type, cooking Basmati rice to go with my wild caught, local King Salmon, yum!

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    6. Sorry, I met Blaine. I have an engineer named Blake, and there's very little extra room in my Brake, er, Brain.

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    7. How could I resist, I ask you?

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    8. True. My brain magically turned met into meant. Must be my Blaine Brain ;-).

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    9. I met "meant"! Dam it! Still too hot to tink!

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    10. Mine did too on the first pass, but then I caught it. I would've hated to let that one slip by unnoticed. :-)

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    11. And, how could one ever be sorry to meet the esteemed Blaine?!

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    12. Speaking of the Bay area, and more specifically, San Francisco, has Tony Bennett's heart ever been located?

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    13. I want to apologize for taking so long to get to the heart of the matter.

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    14. Did you have a heart block?

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    15. No, it just took me a while to figure out how many Tonys Mr Bennett has.

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    16. Speaking of heart. I am heartened to hear our dear leader proudly proclaim, as he tries to deport Hispanics, that he has "a big heart."

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    17. SF Bay Area is a great place, that's why I go broke to live here....

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  25. NatashaSun Sep 03, 05:13:00 PM PDT

    WW: That heat qualifies!
    SDB: Rice-a-Roni? Ok...you are accepted for sure..The San Francisco treat! I can still sing the rice-a-roni song..much more than I can sing today's song. I just listened to it and I do like it. I liked reading about it and what it meant. I became very educated today! Thanks cranberry!
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  26. Musical clue: Wait, no, not gonna do that, cuz it'd be too obvious. Must put that clue on ice.

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    Replies
    1. To honor (in a very small way) the sad passing of Walter Becker (this brother is free), I'll suggest "Deacon Blues" as a clue.

      Natasha: this is more ballad than ballet, but you might like it.

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    2. Eco, that is truly sad. Yet another rock icon from my youth has passed way too young. May he rest in peace.

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    3. Thanks Eco. Will listen to it.

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    4. Eco: Liked Deacon Blues a lot! Thanks. I read about the history of it too. Wonderful video. Very colorful. Music very relaxing. Great saxophone.

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    5. As a huge Steely Dan fan myself, I am shocked and saddened to hear of Mr. Becker's sudden passing. He will be missed. He has reeled in his last year.

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    6. Sorry to hear about Steely Dan's passing. Just as I am learning about his music. I will listen to more of it now.

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    7. Everything about Deacon Blues is eternally wonderful. Those lyrics, those notes. . .Ah, Walter Becker, you are missed. RIP.

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    8. Have you folks heard any of the new stuff from Fagan and his new band fronted by Connor Kennedy? If you like Steely Dan you might like this as well.

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  27. Eco: Can't you just speak into your computer and raise your hands too?

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  28. Eco: I think I heard of speaking into computer. I cannot do that on my computer but I can speak when I text, although rarely do that.

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    1. Most of what I say to my computer is much better not recorded, so I'm glad I don't have that capacity. And I've never sent a text in my life.

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    2. Well, if we're going to brag about this, then I want to state that I have sent just as many text messages as you have, but no more.

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    3. I think that may be a world record!

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    4. Okay SDB, challenge on. How often do you use your cell phone?

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    5. Okay, eco, I have one of those cheapie, basic cell phones that you can obtain should you happen to make less than Trump each year. It must be used at least once each 60 days in order to continue qualifying for the free service. I frequently have to be prompted by the server. I still have my land line phone, which I much prefer, unless the cord gets wrapped around my rear axle. I like the cell phone when I want to make a long distance call, such as to Iowa, where they actually do have phone service finally!

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    6. Gotcha! I've never owned a cell phone.

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    7. I've only had mine a short time now, and at first I was happy to have it, but found it was more a nuisance than a help. Now, I frequently find myself not even taking it with me when I leave the estate. I really only need it with me if I am going to be expecting a phone call when away and don't want to miss it, such as when meeting a friend for dinner, but not knowing exactly when or where to meet. Everyone else seems to be either holding it to their ear, or texting as they walk into me, or something else they don't see, or seem to be mentally ill and talking to their imagination as they walk along, but then I notice they have an ear bud and only appear to be idiots. It is then I realize it must be I who is the idiot for not also being controlled by this absurdity that has taken over our lives. At least I will not be squashed by the freight train that crushed the 18 year old girl who was texting as she walked along the track a few years ago near where I live. I guess it must have been important whatever she was doing.

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  29. This has been a weird summer for my area, near Kansas City. It has not been real hot and the heat waves did not last long, but what we did have were torrential rains that caused a lot of flooding. Plus, these storms had large hail, sometimes golfball to baseball size. Fortunately I live near higher ground (no connection to Brewer & Shipley) but it had been kind of spooky.
    The rains came about every three weeks and seemed like they would never let up.
    My concern is this winter. If we get this kind of precipitation during a cold snap, we could get snow in the range of feet instead of inches.

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    1. So, are you sizing things up?

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    2. I guess I'm just saying that the weather patterns are changing wither we like it or not!

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  30. I'm checking out of this puzzle.

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  31. Went to a concert in 1973 featuring The Beach Boys. Stayed for the opening act and left thereafter. The opener was Steely Dan.

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    Replies
    1. zeke creek, cool. Earworms worth having.

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  32. I saw Steely Dan live in St. Louis a few years ago. Amazing show. I had no idea how they could even come close to duplicating their studio tracks in person. But they did. There were so many musicians on stage that if Becker (and to some degree Fagen) had died on stage the music would have continued uninterrupted and you wouldn’t even have noticed! Becker did little or no singing.

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  33. I find it difficult to believe that anyone in America has not heard this song at one point or another, except maybe an immigrant from a non-western country. It was the first song I thought of given the geography of the clue.

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  34. I'm guessing "New York, New York" and "On Broadway" are both way off base...

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  35. I'm a cheater, I admit it. I looked it up on an anagram solver. Took me all of 30 seconds. But that's why it's not a great puzzle. I didn't submit my answer, but I'm sure others will, and that's unfair to those who did it the hard way.

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    1. Pizza Guy:
      You did not cheat! Will Shortz has stated more than once, on air, that it is fair to solve the puzzles any way you want. He has also said he tries to pick puzzles not easily solved using the Internet, but I don't think he tries all that hard in this regard.

      This is a poor puzzle because it was obviously created by simply entering the answer into an anagram program and then saying what the results were is a phrase, when it is not a phrase anyone has ever heard before and is meaningless.

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    2. I don't think it's a phrase no one's ever heard of - it depends on your background - but I guess in Will's defense, it may not be easy to come up with good puzzles week after week. I have no idea how many suggestions he gets, and many of what he gets may not be very good.

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    3. Pizza Guy:
      I have submitted many to him. I submitted another yesterday. None have ever been used. Lego has used several of them on Puzzleria! Lego will be using one Friday I submitted a couple of months ago that has not been used, so I offered it to him. You can check it out this Friday @ Puzzleria! and see what you think as to it not being used on NPR. I would be interested in your opinion.

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    4. As the founding and so far only member of the Society To Reduce Anagram Puzzles (please join) this points out the inherent weakness of a straight anagram. Most anagrams are easy (big relief on challenging cryptic crosswords), and modern tools make solving any anagram that is a known phrase too easy.

      While some have criticized the puzzle phrase, to PJB's credit it is hard to come up with an anagram that is relatively relevant. I think if anagrams are to be used they have to be more sophisticated as puzzles, or they will be simple census puzzles. I tried to make the Bonus Puzzle a little harder.

      Maybe anagrams should be creative puzzles, for example "COOL HIT FARE IN L.A." can also anagram to:
      "IA, I'LL CON FOR HATE"
      "LOCATE FRAIL IN HO"
      "FAITH IN REAL LOCO"
      "LOAN TO CHIEF LIAR"
      "LIAR LOON AT CHIEF"
      "CHEATIN' FOOL LIAR"
      "O HEIL, FAT CON LIAR" (or "O HEIL, NO FACT LIAR")
      "FACE OIL IN HARLOT"

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    5. One more, for the people of Guam:
      "FEAR COLONIAL HIT"

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    6. Here below is an anagram puzzle I created that requires no letter changing of the type you describe. Lego used it @ Puzzleria! It is what I would call a pure anagram puzzle.

      People and products from France are French. If from Italy they are Italian. Think of another country and replace the last letter with a different letter to get the word commonly used to refer to their people or products. Now, rearrange those letters and you will name a fruit this country produces and exports. What is this country and what is the fruit?

      Answer: Argentina > ARGENTINE > TANGERINE

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    7. SDB, it should interest you to know that I never used an anagram solver at all when I came up with the phrase. It is an original phrase of my own creation. I am however amused by ecoarchitect's other possibilities, most of which seem to allude to a certain pseudopolitician currently in the news thanks to several misguided voters(some in my own family, I'm sad to say). Still, I stand by my own anagram, no matter what any of you think about it. It is what it is. It's also not my first go-round making up anagrams obviously. It comes with the territory when you make up your own cryptic crosswords. There you usually need a word to specify it's an anagram in the first place(words such as crazy, dancing, off, out, etc.). The anagram in this week's challenge can clearly stand alone.

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  36. Be thankful that this weeks puzzle theme did not include a reference to  Eduard Khil   as noted on the Google homepage, whose birthday would have been yesterday. It could be a horrible ear worm for some!

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    1. Who is that creep? I never heard of him or the song. I kept looking for the strings because he looks just like Howdy Doody. And where did he get that awful toupee? Even the late Howard Cosell would not have been caught dead in that mop!

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    2. SDB - Sorry about encroaching on your great anagram puzzle!
      I never heard of him until I clicked on the Google homepage link. He is so awful and now I can't get that awful tune out of my mind.

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    3. 68C -

      You didn't encroach at all.

      Thanks; glad you liked it.

      That creep is so disgusting as to make Trump even look human.

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    4. Too bad we can't flood the airwaves in North Korea with that, I bet the little Kim problem would be over quickly.

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    5. You don't want anyone with a bad haircut problem running things.

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    6. Or is grossly overweight. Or surrounded by generals. Or had an overbearing father. Or has weird and almost pathological fear of "the other".

      And the list goes on. And on. And on.

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    7. Or has "a big heart and loves everyone."

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    8. You're right, but it's so goofy looking, too! I guess it was a big hit on Reddit.

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  37. Kind of interesting listening to my little shortwave receiver tonight. I was listening to a few of the hurricane frequencies and could hear a few people talking about Irma. Someone was running on a generator for power and was talking about the rain and high winds around him.
    While listening for Irma, hurricane Jose was being tracked. Plus, now another hurricane, called Katia has been named, but it is supposed to stay in Mexico.
    It's interesting to hear but still sad that so many people will be affected.

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  38. I did see the answer to this week's puzzle in a post, but that was a while ago.

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  39. Just thought I would share a letter that I received today from the NPR Ombudsman regarding the selection process:
    "I had a long chat yesterday with the newsroom executive who oversees the puzzle and we discussed in detail the process. As you can imagine, the switch to online entries has made the process a bit more complicated than in the postcard days, and more than one system has been used, but always in a best-faith effort to make the selection a random one. The process has changed in recent months; the current system is not the one you describe. And I am satisfied that it is indeed random, with every correct entry given an equal chance of being drawn. I hope that is helpful."

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    1. It would have been more helpful if they had described the actual process.

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    2. Well it would be helpful if he had described what method they are now using. It sounds like he doesn't really have full confidence in it. Kinda like Trump saying he loves the Dreamers and everyone, but then shits on them.

      Thanks for posting.

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    3. I agree. Why not reveal the process if it is truly random?
      I am done pursing this anymore.

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    4. Natasha:
      You might consider replying to their letter with a simple question, such as:

      Is your new, "random" method a secret, and if so why?

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    5. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    6. This is another letter I received from NPR this morning. I wrote that I would like to know what the selection process is:
      "Thank you for contacting NPR.
      We see that you recently received an email from NPR’s Ombudsman Elizabeth Jensen. The information that Ms. Jensen provided is the same information we would have provided.

      Thank you for being an avid Sunday Puzzle participant and thank you for your continued support of public radio.
      Sincerely,
      Kendra
      NPR Audience Relations"

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    7. I suggest you do not give up when you are getting their attention.

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    8. They may not reveal the method because if sounds like they are always changing it. However, they should reveal the method. Something is rotten in Denmark!

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    9. Good point, but it doesn't hold water because you are asking individually, not them describing the method on air. Why the reluctance to reveal the current method is it is indeed fair?

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    10. They are afraid of something, and you are forcing them to reveal what it is. Keep at it!

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    11. According to the physicist I consulted, their method is random. He stated that it is non random if there is a strategy that can give one player an advantage over others. He could not think of a way to game the system. and if I cannot either than it is random. Do you understand that? I don't.

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    12. Aren't you gaming the system if you realize you have a better chance of being chosen if you submit later in the week when fewer are submitting their answers? I think so. Also how about submitting at the same time each week?

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    13. I would say that picking a time is random, but the chances are not equal for the participants who submit early. Therefore their chances are not the same as for others, which in my mind challenges the fairness of their method being called random.

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    14. SDB: I told them about the method we were told and they said they are not using that particular method.

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    15. I have lost respect for NPR because they will not reveal their method.

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    16. Natasha, I understand that, but without revealing what their current method is, it is only reasonable for us to assume it is not much different than what they told us it was before, in other words probably about the same.

      I have been losing respect for NPR for a long time now. It keeps deteriorating in my opinion, but the begging for money is increasing, not to mention the nausea I feel when they ask us to "laugh along with Peter Sagal as he laughs along with the news." Obviously he doesn't live in Houston, Texas, or is Hispanic. And, where is the rest of my swag? Not to mention others who have not received theirs.

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    17. They will never reveal their method of selection of the winner. They consider their process random and believe that is ethical I guess. So disillusioning.

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  40. HOTEL CALIFORNIA

    "Small" refers to "colitas," or small buds in the opening lyrics of HOTEL CALIFORNIA.

    "90" refers to the 2 "45's", Don Felder and Don Henley, involved in composing the music and writing the lyrics for "HOTEL CALIFORNIA."

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    1. I assume you referred to Pink Champagne with your PC comment...

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    2. Yes, indeed, Curtis, I did.

      Fascinating lyrics, eh? Paul,
      The line, "They stab it with their steely knives but they just can't kill the beast" is a reference to Steely Dan. The bands shared the same manager (Irving Azoff) and had a friendly rivalry. The year before, Steely Dan included the line "Turn up the Eagles, the neighbors are listening" on their song "Everything You Did."

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  41. COOL HIT FARE IN L.A. = HOTEL CALIFORNIA, title track from the Eagles' album of the same name.

    My FAMOUS GHOST TOWN: HELTO, CALIFORNIA.

    So, never having heard of the “hit song” Hotel California, how did I solve it? It was easy with this classic anagram solver.

    Jan's HOTEL CALIFORNIA in Palm Springs, CA.

    ECO's challenge: OPQRSTU, drop the Q and rearrange to yield PROUST, or SPROUT, something in a salad.

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    1. Wow..that site is amazing.
      Thanks.

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    3. At the risk of nit-picking, I don't think you can call Helto a "famous" ghost town, since nobody knows where it actually was.

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    4. That's what made it "famous."

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    5. You mean like Jimmy Hoffa? I'm glad I'm not famous.

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    6. No, like the famous parachutist, D.B. Cooper.

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    7. I think it would be more appropriate to refer to him as a hijacker. I certainly would not refer to my former one time students as parachutists, besides the fact that we have no proof Cooper even activated his parachute.

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    8. I should have said: "the famous parachutist (irony intended), D.B. Cooper."

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    9. So SDB, you were a co-conspirator? And Ron, your Cooper link goes to Palm Springs, not southeast Washington.

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    10. eco - I think you mean southwest Washington.

      I suspect Cooper never was able to pull the ripcord due to several factors, including the temperature; his clothing; unfamiliarity with the equipment; the rain; the high speed of the plane; all of this indicating he would have been disorientated by the shock he experienced on exit. It does not surprise me that his body has not been discovered, and that some of the money was found, but not by the body. I suspect he lost control of the money during the descent, whether or not he had a canopy open or not.

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  42. "Trying to maintain composure, here." >> STOICAL >> COLITAS

    I never really thought "police gas" made any sense, but it was all I could figure until this site came along. I'm still not absolutely clear about the meaning of colitas.
    Although I have appreciated the "Mercedes bends" pun from the first time I heard it, I definitely never heard "Tiffany twisted" until a few days ago.
    I never thought "kill the beast" sounded like "spill the beans". It always makes me think of Lord of the Flies, and "steely knives" always makes me think of Steely Dan, which is how I happened to be Googling in the right place to learn of Walter Becker's passing shortly after the news broke.

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  43. I saw The Eagles play their Hotel California tour 40 years ago, at the Merriweather Post Pavilion, in Maryland.

    "I got this puzzle in about 6 1/2 minutes, it was made to order."
    “in about” >>> ”inn circa” (abbreviated ca) >>> “Hotel California”.
    The song runs 6 minutes, 30 seconds.
    Helto California was a settlement of the Maidu (made to) people.

    “Deacon Blues” was a small honor to the late Glenn Frey’s son Deacon (small fry), whose presence may revive the band.

    Bonus Answer: the letters OPQRSTU – Q anagram to Marcel PROUST. And sprout for Jan's salad, but that, like The Eagles, is so 1970’s.

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    1. eco, Proustian Sprouts are in my lunchtime salad. Radish sprouts today ;-).

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  44. I wrote, "Gee, L.A. seems a fruitful place to inspire lyrics." The initial six letters anagram to EAGLES.

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  45. HOTEL CALIFORNIA

    > Been there (in Palm Springs).

    A few years ago, I woke up in the Hotel California, several times, around Christmas. Such a lovely place. Not too far from nice hiking in Joshua Tree National Park, and elsewhere.

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  46. Easier than all that. “L.A.” in the anagram and “appropriate” in the description made me think of “California”. So I subtracted those letters from the anagram, Then easy to rearrange the remaining letters to make “Hotel”. I had never heard of the song (my taste in music runs to traditional jazz), so I Googled the two words to get the song title in the right order. Because I am not familiar with the song or with the group that put it out, none of the clues here made any sense to me.

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  47. My head revs when there’s an easy puzzle; since I couldn’t rid the earworm I had to rework it, in the spirit of Weird Al. I hope it infects you.

    On a dark dessert foray, Kool Whip in my hair,
    Warm smell of fresh Ho-Ho’s, rising up in the air
    Up ahead in the distance, I saw Twinkies so light
    My gut is heavy and my thighs ain’t slim
    I had to stop for a bite,
    There I squeezed through the doorway,
    I’m like a Green Glo Ball
    And I was praying to myself
    “Please be a Buffet and please be Eat-All”
    Then I pinched my love handle and I pulled out a tray
    There were Cupcakes all across the store,
    I knew I had to stay…

    Welcome to the Hostess Snack Emporia
    They have Coffee Cakes (They have Coffee Cakes)
    Stuff your pudgy face
    Really not food at the Hostess Snack Emporia
    Down some Suzy Q’s (Down some Suzy Q’s)
    Weight you’ll never lose

    My hind is Cinnamon Roll-fed, I can’t do any knee bends
    I got a lot of Honey, Honey Buns, my glut-ends.
    Now I fill up with Bear Claws, sweet Wonder Breads,
    I’ll graze Yellow Zingers, gobble Frosted Donettes

    So I called to the Sales Clerk
    “Please bring me more Cremes”
    He said “We’ve got that filling here in Big Wheels and Banana Dreams
    And still those Ding Dongs are calling from far away,
    Fill me up with Cherry Sweet Rolls
    I just have to stay…

    Welcome to the Hostess Snack Emporia
    They got Dunkin Stix (They got Dunkin Stix)
    Get your sugar fix
    I’m eatin’ it up at the Hostess Snack Emporia
    Glaze on fried Fruit Pies (Glaze on fried Fruit Pies)
    Shines before your eyes

    Crullers are so thrilling
    The Pink Sno-Balls are nice
    Brownies made with Milky Way bars, and dark Brownie Bites
    And Lemon Li’l Angels
    Berry & Cheese Danish
    I’ll add them to my Lucky Puffs
    I am blessed with Choco Bliss

    Last thing I remember, I was
    Waddling ‘cross the floor
    For Chocolicious Wonka Cakes
    Cause I wanted to eat more
    “Relapse,” said the night nurse,
    “E.R. told us to revive.
    You can pig out any time you like,
    But you will not survive!”

    All 27 products in bold are real, you can see them here. As an odd coincidence, I had picked the song refrain before I knew that there was a very real connection to the name. Maybe 68Charger can give us a field report.

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    1. Weird Al himself would be proud, eco.

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    2. ECO - Very good on the lyrics!! I didn't know they have had so many different products!
      I've never been by the Hostess plant in Emporia but just up I-35 from me, in Lenexa, KS., is a Hostess plant. During different times of the day as you drive by on the freeway, you can smell the familiar yeast/dough aroma even with the car windows up! It is great! I think they specialize in Twinkies but they may have diversified in the last few years.
      I will have to admit though, that I have bad feelings about Hostess products.
      In 2012 Hostess had a terrible labor problem and fired their striking workers in an obvious bad faith bargaining process.
      It was just an ugly labor dispute that ended up with Hostess shutting down for a couple of years. There is a frontage road between the plant & I-35 that I drove on during the strike & I will always remember seeing the frustration of the picketers as their jobs started started evaporating.
      I think that plant is still being run by the same company mentioned in that accompanying link. It would be interesting to see what their wages & benefits are now. 

        I have vowed to myself to never buy another Hostess product ever again.

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    3. Bravo, eco!
      Enya_and_Weird_Al_Fan should really "weigh" in on these lyrics, however. He is the expert, after all. But IMHO, Weird Al himself ought to pay you for these lyrics and put out a video using them! If he passes, perhaps Hostess might be interested. It would make for a campy commercial.

      This week's Puzzleria! is now uploaded. Go there to try solving a really nifty but not excessively tricky "on the road again" puzzle created by skydivedoy. (See "Joseph Young's Puzzleria!" in Blaine's PUZZLE LINKS.) I guarantee you will smile when you solve it.
      Six other P! puzzles to boot this week, all pretty good.
      Drive on in.

      LegoWhoIsAndEcoAndWeirdAlFan

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  48. HOTEL CALIFORNIA

    Lyrics excerpt:
    "And she said, 'we are all just prisoners here, of our own device'."

    My ears become prisoners to this song.

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  49. HOTEL CALIFORNIA
    I had never heard of HELTO, CALIFORNIA. You learn something new every week on this blog.

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  50. "Do be (doobie) informed"

    "wee beastie" (Robert Burns To a Mouse, refers to Blain's mouse's little tail.

    Googling "colitas" turns up the puzzles answer in large type followed by "People also ask"

    "Colitas" means "little tails" in Spanish; in Mexican slang it refers to buds of the cannabis (marijuana) plant.

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  51. Being some 2000 miles, and two time zones from home, I didn't get to post earlier today. Like Jaxon I looked at L.A., guessed CALIFORNIA and subtracted, leaving the letters for HOTEL.

    My hole in one on a par three hole reference, which I hope wasn't too much of a clue, was a reference to The Eagles, who released HOTEL CALIFORNIA in 1977. Can it really have been 40 years ago?

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    1. Close, it was 1976. :-)

      Enjoy your travels!

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    2. Wiki has the release as a single, in February 1977. It followed the release of the album of the same title in 1976. See

      https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hotel_California

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  52. The song(and the album, for that matter)was on the charts from the later part of 1976 to the earlier part of 1977.

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  53. Oddly enough, HOTEL CALIFORNIA was the Eagles' attempt to come up with lyrics that sounded more like Steely Dan's disconnected writing style.

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  54. The questions about the randomness of selection and the accuracy of the number of submissions reflect another area of stonewalling by NPR Sunday.
    I imagine folks may be amused (or maybe just tired of) by my suggesting contestants ask Will Shortz how much we pay him for the puzzle.
    I think it is a legitimate question, but a lengthy exchange of emails with the staff there a few years back got essentially the same answer Natasha and others are getting now: It is none of our damn business.

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  55. NPR is a disappointment. The letters I received were so transparent. Just pr stuff. As dt says..SAD!

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  59. I have friends and family to worry about in florida.

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    1. I hope they will be well and that they aren't listening to Rush Limbaugh.

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    2. That asshole is fleeing right now, and still saying it is a Liberal lie.

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    3. He's trying to compete with Amy Goodman, his show will be called Hypocrisy Now!

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    4. Good, but Hypocrisy Then And Now! might be more accurate. There must be a very special place waiting to welcome him into heaven when he finally dies.

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    5. Thank you eco. They are not leaving their living places as they do not think it will be that bad. I am worried.

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    6. Sorry about all deletions. When I post from my cell the posts duplicate. I will try not to do that again.

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    7. Won't Mar-a-Lago offer safe sanctuary from the storm to those who are unable to escape Miami?

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    8. I will tell my relatives and friends to knock on the door at Mar-a-Lago.

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    9. I hope that will not be necessary.

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    10. Eco & SDB: That Rush is such a hypocrite. I think I know a place for him in the hereafter, it will need all the A/C they can muster!!

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  61. Reading poetry. I can't think of a verse way to spend your time.

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  62. Natasha - where at in Florida are your friends and relatives?

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  63. Orlando and Miami and west palm beach.

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  64. They all think they will be fine. My niece's husband is a pilot for an airlines and flew some relatives out of florida to Baltimore.

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    1. Wow, I hope so! Keep us informed, this is scary stuff!

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  65. ATTENTION!

    We are about to reach the 200 post mark. In order to view and post beyond this point you must scroll down and click on RELOAD OR ADD MORE.

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