Thursday, April 14, 2011

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Apr 10, 2011): Weight Weight... Don't Tell Me

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Apr 10, 2011): Weight Weight... Don't Tell Me:
Q: Name a unit of length in the plural form. Rearrange the letters to spell two units of mass, also in the plural form. What units are these?
Don't worry. My memory may not be the best, but I wasn't going to forget to post the puzzle. On that note, I was thinking of a couple award-winning hints, but they were too obvious. Instead, I'll just point out that technically the puzzle should have asked for units of mass, not weight. I've made the correction above.

Edit: My first hints were worry/memory which were a clue to angst/rom. My second hints were note and award-winning which should have pointed to music awards, specifically the Grammy and Tony Awards.
A: Angstroms --> Grams and Tons


  1. Here's my standard reminder... don't post the answer or any hints that could lead directly to the answer (e.g. via Google or Bing) 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. Thank you.

  2. Again, last week's hint was "Oh Mary Ann"--(Evans)

    This week's hint: Oh AJ's swedish meatballs.

  3. As for a small musical clue, I am thinking of one particularly smart song but it was not sung by ABBA.

  4. There may be a possibility of nationality playing a part in this week's puzzle. I'm not sure.

    My musical clue is something by Ray Charles, and my "numeric" clue is 1E-10.

    Bonus joke set-up clue: A guy walks into a restaurant and orders soup...

  5. Yesterday I was afraid I might have trouble solving the puzzle when it got posted because I discovered one of the computer discs I use to solve these things was damaged and would not work. But not to worry! The puzzle is the easiest one so far this year once again. It took me just over a minute.
    I don't think this one lends itself to obscure hints though. In fact I'm giving up on trying to come up with something and instead will share an NPR story with you from yesterday.

    I was eating breakfast and listening to Car Talk yesterday when Tom Magliozzi, while laughing, gave out a larger than his usual snort, which caused me to laugh out loud, and this caused one of the legs on the old ladder back chair I was sitting on the break. And Tom and Ray were no help at all in advising me how to repair it either.

  6. I approached the day with trepidation

    As I turned the dial to my NPR station.

    I listened straight through and accepted my plight

    And in short order, I saw the light.

    With a wee bit of help from across the pond

    It was as though I could wave a magic wand

    And put this enormous task behind me.

    I forgot my last line. Can someone remind me?

  7. Combine the first syllable of the first name of a well-known movie director with the last syllable of the last name of a less well-known movie director and get a unit of length. Please do not post your answer.

  8. They both set sail in '54.
    Their firsts should now be clear.
    But if you need some faunal help
    Think tiger and whitetail deer.

  9. I was nervous that I got this one so quickly. Perhaps it was way too easy and I was wrong? I think it's right, though.

    -- Other Ben

  10. Actually, my faunal (and seasonal) clue would be a hairy Easter bunny -- what's up, doc?

  11. Ben:
    If you are really that worked-up over this then may I suggest you rely on my statements? :)

  12. SDB -

    Clearly you weigh too much. Or maybe have too much mass. That's the long and the short of it!

  13. Well, when Blaine said it was Mass I immediately thought the Kennedy Clan must have something to do with it.

  14. (in honor of Eleanor Fitz)

    A unit of mass
    may be 50 minutes
    your church may take longer at Easter
    but a unit of weight
    comes from what you ate
    and often goes right to your keister

  15. spokethewalrus "Oh sturm und drang ..."

  16. Shakespeare would have called it Measure for Measure.

    Speaking of measurements, this reminds me that my sextant is old and needs Viagra.

  17. Maybe because of last week's puzzle, this one reminds me of the literary classic, Rabbit, Run.

  18. The first one I thought of is the standard waist measurement – a slobz (slobzs in the plural) – which anagrams into lbs and ozs. But I haven’t sent it in yet.

    Anyway, I just wanted everyone to know that Eleanor Fitz stole my favorite hint and published it in her poem, above, which I don’t think is fair. I’m telling the Blog Administrator and don’t think I won’t.


  19. With great trepidation, I defer to Chuck. Sorry, Charlie.

  20. So @SDB, if the Kennedys were Senators from Mass; was Thurmond from Miss? or was that S.C.?

  21. Steve, have you seen my 7" Gangly wrench?

  22. Did Will specify we cannot use the metric system?

  23. Not the kind of useful hint here if you don't have the answer -- it's more of a fun observation when you do -- so no spoilers until Thursday:

    Take the singular unit of length in the answer, and remove two consecutive letters closest to the middle.
    Recombine the remaining letters. Rearrange, and spell another unit of measure.
    This obscure unit itself is rarely used itself, but a derived unit is much more frequent.

  24. Tommy Boy, was your poem an answer to my puzzle? If so, my first director is the same as yours, but not my second. You used the first syllable of the last name, rather than the last syllable of the last name. You're barking up the wrong tree.

    I like your clue, Hugh.

  25. Dave, check out the time stamps of our posts. I am in no way slick enough to solve your clue in two minutes, much less poetically. I was typing when your post posted.

    We are in agreement on the first 'first'.

    My second 'first' started a much different journey in '54 lasting 49 years. The whitetail deer is a clue for the location.

  26. Tommy Boy, I assumed you were answering my puzzle because we agree on the first answer. I don't know who your second answer is. Do you know my second?

  27. I found your second and now we can con'cur' on your solution. My second is not apples to apples to yours. (OK, there's both AA nominations).

    You obviously know the first name and the last name was mentioned in an above post. Think of another bloated industry filled with over-paid loudmouths.

  28. I told you that you'd been barking up the wrong tree. Nice! Now take me home, James.

  29. Wasn't intentional, but what the heck. What farmer doesn't have one?

  30. Musical hint: Tennessee Ernie Ford and Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young.

  31. Curtis, I think I know what your clues reference. Is the first one a number and the second a name?

  32. Thanks to a great techy trio of fun sites during the week - Blaine, Tommy Boy, and Lavesh

    Alzheimers won't catch me!!

    Dave, Alasse! Doggy treats all gone!

  33. I said something about nationality playing a part in the puzzle, I was referring to "tons" vs "tonnes". The musical clue was "Two Ton Tessie" covered by (amongst other people) Ray Charles. An Angstrom is 1x10^-10th meters, and the joke is: A man walks into a Chinese restaurant and asks for some soup. "Won ton?" the waiter asks. "No, just half a ton, I'm not very hungry today."

    That was a knee-slapper back in 3rd Grade :)

    And does anyone know why this page takes so bloody long to scroll through in Firefox? Gad.

  34. My clues:
    I began with an exercise in mendacity in order to provide clues. Afraid = angst and computer discs = ROMs. Then the silly story had snort and legs. Change legs to the slang: gams and anagram snort and gams to get angstroms.
    In another post I said: worked-up to indicate angst and: rely on my statements. The first letter of each of these 4 words = ROMS.

  35. I was referring to "Strom" Thurmond and playfully poking at SDB but I could not tell by your serious, terse answer if you honestly thought I did not know he was from my ancestral state of S.C.

    Thanks Dave for the references to "My Life as a Dog" even though I am a cat person.

  36. Innnn...the general direction of Doctechnical: I note that Ray also covered at least one effort by a Ms. Safka.
    I liked the "won ton" joke; it reminded me of a "hominy grits " joke with which I will not bore anyone unless requested.
    To the issue: What, if anything, about Firefox do I need to know (bearing in mind that all I know about Firefox is (duh) "It's a web browser") that you think I should know?

  37. RoRo:
    You were right; I did not get your question until shortly after I replied. Maybe because he caused me so much angst in the past.
    Now let's hope we get a more interesting puzzle for next week.

  38. "the long and the short of it":

    1 long ton = 2240 pounds.

    1 short ton = 2000 pounds.

  39. ANG Lee: born 1954, directed "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon:.

    STROM Thurmond: elected to the US senate representing South Carolina in 1954. The whitetail deer is the state animal of SC.

    This week's puzzle is ready for all.

    This way to the puzzle

  40. FWIW, my Rabbit, Run clue referred to that book's main character, Rabbit Angstrom.

  41. It's Friday, already. On the off chance this blog hasn't completely dropped off mike_hinterberg's radar, I'd like to say thanks for the highly educational observation earlier this week.
    Also, thanks to DaveJ for his enlightening comment.

  42. RoRo, I guess I unintentionally provided a double clue. "My Life As A Dog" works, but so does LASSE Halstrom.

    Curtis, did your Tennessee Ernie Ford clue refer to his song, "Sixteen Tons," and did your CSNY clue refer to GRahAM Nash?

    Paul, let's hear your hominy grits joke.

    Tommy Boy, why CAN I NEver solve your puzzles?

  43. Dave,
    Please don't say I didn't try to warn you.

    Customer: Grits, please.
    Waitress: Hominy?
    Customer: Oh, about a dozen or so.

    I'm thinking Boy's Life magazine, early 60's, the "Think & Grin" page, but it might have been some other magazine featuring jokes and humorous anecdotes...."my memory may not be the best".

  44. @Paul - liked your joke as well. Concerning Firefox.. it's my browser of choice, but for some reason Blaine's puzzle page seems to take longer to navigate through (for example, page up and page down) than most pages. I have no idea why.

    New puzzle is up early. I've spent half an hour on it so far and haven't cracked it yet. Tantalizingly close, though.

  45. As soon as I read the new puzzle it raised concerns because I am not into the common sports stuff, but I will hold my tongue.

  46. @Paul: Liked your joke as well, glad you liked "morgan(s)/centimorgan(s)"!

  47. The new Saturday Puzzle has been up for almost three hours now. It is an easy one this week. Shhhhh!

  48. Is ophthalmology a contact sport?


For NPR puzzle posts, don't post the answer or any hints that could lead to the answer before the deadline (usually Thursday at 3pm ET). If you know the answer, 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 assist with solving. You can openly discuss your hints and the answer after the deadline. Thank you.