Sunday, May 19, 2024

NPR Sunday Puzzle (May 19, 2024): Easy as 1, 2, 3...

NPR Sunday Puzzle (May 19, 2024): Easy as 1, 2, 3...
Q: Think of a famous film with a three-word title (six letters in the first word, three letters in the second, and four letters in the last), in which the first and last words are rhymes for consecutive numbers. What movie is it?
The movie title also contains the letters of the next two consecutive numbers.

Sunday, May 12, 2024

NPR Sunday Puzzle (May 12, 2024): Mother Earth

NPR Sunday Puzzle (May 12, 2024): Mother Earth
Q: Think of a well-known seven-letter geographical name in a single word that has just two consonants and yet is pronounced in five syllables.
I'm seeing a genus of aphids in the anagram.

Edit: First the word "seeing" sounds like the letters CN which are the two consonants. And the word anagrams to ANOECIA, a genus of aphids. Interestingly the reverse, (AICEONA) is also a genus of aphids.
A: OCEANIA

Sunday, May 05, 2024

NPR Sunday Puzzle (May 5, 2024): Rhyme Doesn't Pay

NPR Sunday Puzzle (May 5, 2024): Rhyme Doesn't Pay
Q: Think of three common six-letter words that have vowels in the second and fifth positions. The last five letters of the words are the same. Only the first letters differ. And none of the words rhyme with either of the others. What words are they?
I can think of multiple answers, but a similar puzzle was given more than a decade ago.

Edit: The answer to the NPR puzzle from November 2009 would work (BATHER/FATHER/GATHER) and so would FINGER/GINGER/SINGER. There are probably others.
A: BALLET, MALLET/PALLET, WALLET

Sunday, April 28, 2024

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Apr 28, 2024): Male Singers of the Past

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Apr 28, 2024): Male Singers of the Past
Q: Think of a famous male singer of the past with two A's in his name. Drop both A's and the remaining letters can be rearranged to name a popular make of automobile. What is it?
Take a model of that automobile, drop all A's to name a sports figure.

Edit: LeBaron --> LeBron
A: RAY CHARLES --> CHRYSLER

Sunday, April 21, 2024

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Apr 21, 2024): Upcoming Events

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Apr 21, 2024): Upcoming Events
Q: Think of a a major American corporation of the past (two words, 15 letters altogether). Change the last three letters in the second word and the resulting phrase will name something that will occur later this year. What is it?
Mazda Motor is a Japanese corporation, so that's not it.

Edit: Mazda was a registered trademark of General Electric for a line of incandescent light bulbs.
A: GENERAL ELECTRIC --> GENERAL ELECTION

Sunday, April 14, 2024

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Apr 14, 2024): America Online

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Apr 14, 2024): America Online
Q: Think of a popular online service. Change the first letter to a Y and rearrange the result to get what this service provides. What is it?
Yes! Will is back! If you add 4 letters to the service and rearrange, you get a color.

Edit: If you add RIIL and rearrange, you get VERMILION
A: VENMO --> MONEY

Sunday, April 07, 2024

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Apr 7, 2024): The Bible as a Tool

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Apr 7, 2024): The Bible as a Tool
Q: Think of a nine-letter word naming a kind of tool that is mentioned in the Bible. Remove the second and sixth letters and the remaining letters can be rearranged to spell two new words that are included in a well known biblical passage and are related to the area in which the tool is used. What is the tool and what are the two new words?
If you change the fourth letter so it is two later in the alphabet (e.g. A becomes C) and rearrange, you get something rowdy.

Edit: You get HORSEPLAY
A: PLOWSHARE - LH = REAP, SOW

Sunday, March 31, 2024

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Mar 31, 2024): Women's History Month

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Mar 31, 2024): Women's History Month
Q: The English language developed in a patriarchal society, so many words in our language were traditionally assumed to be male, and turned into female versions by adding a prefix or suffix. Waiter and waitress, comedian and comedienne — those are just two examples of the many stereotypically "male" words that become new "female words" by adding a suffix.

There is a common English word that works the opposite way. What is the common English word that is generally used to refer exclusively to women, but which becomes male when a two-letter suffix is added?
The answer hit me squarely on the forehead.

Edit: A forehead is where you might see a widow's peak.
A: WIDOW + ER = WIDOWER

Sunday, March 24, 2024

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Mar 24, 2024): Periodic Puzzle

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Mar 24, 2024): Periodic Puzzle
Q: Each chemical element can be represented by a one or two-letter symbol. Hydrogen is H, helium is He, and so on. There are two commonly known elements whose names each can be spelled using three other element symbols. Name either one.
Could they be Zirconium and Tungsten, but a small quantity?

Edit: Zirconium (40) and Tungsten (74) make 4074. Convert that to hexadecimal (FEA) and add a small quantity (gram = g) and you have Fe,Ag
A: Iron = Ir (Iridium) + O (Oxygen) + N (Nitrogen), Silver = Si (Silicon) + Lv (Livermorium) + Er (Erbium)

Sunday, March 17, 2024

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Mar 17, 2024): A Couple of Trees

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Mar 17, 2024): A Couple of Trees
Q: Take two three-letter tree names and combine them phonetically to get a clue for a type of fabric, then change one letter in that word to get something related to trees. What are the two trees?
Anagram the letters of the clue to get an appropriate surname.

Edit: Well, I had ASH + YEW --> A SHOE --> LEATHER --> HEATHER, so I was hinting at O'SHEA for St. Patrick's Day. So can I say I was half right?
A: YEW + FIR --> EWE FUR --> WOOL --> WOOD