## Sunday, February 16, 2014

### NPR Sunday Puzzle (Feb 9, 2014): Studying the Body of Literature

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Feb 9, 2014): Studying the Body of Literature:
Q: Name a title character from a classic work of fiction, in 8 letters. Change the third letter to an M. The result will be two consecutive words naming parts of the human body. Who is the character, and what parts of the body are these?
This answer came quickly once I switched search engines.

Edit: The hints were quickly (SWIFT) and search engine (YAHOO). A Yahoo is a legendary being in the novel Gulliver's Travels (1726) by Jonathan Swift.
A: GULLIVER --> GUM, LIVER

1. I have one further comment about last week’s puzzle...

I write this post with kudos to Al for divining the intended answer. He was miles ahead of me and almost all others here.

I couldn’t tell you exactly when I started solving Sunday Puzzles but it goes all the way back to the good old Post Card days. I’ve paid my dues. And I guess through all that time I’ve averaged a 90% – 95% success rate. Played on the air once. Really look forward to Sunday mornings.

But last week’s puzzle – in my memory – is absolutely the stupidest puzzle with the most bogus solution I can recall. A digital clock is not an appropriate response to the adverbial query “where in most homes?” A digital clock is not a where. Plus it’s an upside down, backwards digital clock at that. Where do you keep yours?

Is WH:O a question, Dad? No, Son, it’s an upside-down backwards unit of electrical resistance, the O:HM, with an extraneous character inserted in each word. A lot of us around here talk and write like that. Just turn the book over and get on with the program. Oh, I see now. Thanks, Dad.

Fifteen correct answers nationally. In academic circles when an instructor gives an exam and everyone – or substantially everyone – fails, a question arises: Is the class composed of Bozos, or did the instructor construct a flawed, unfair or inappropriate exam? I’m sure one can infer my answer to that question.

Now I’ve gotten everything off my chest. I will have no further comments on this subject :)

Chuck

1. Right on!
I couldn't have said it better even if I were not writing this upside-down as I am now. I have no intention of missing out on anything else in life by going around the way most people do. As you saw, only 15 got the "right answer." Even Will admitted there was an alternative answer, but our lovely host did not even consider it worthwhile to mention how many submissions there were with that answer, which I am sure was far more substantial and I would like to know the figure. If this country had a justice system, instead of a legal system, I would take this all the way to the Supreme Court, even if it is packed with political hacks. Instead I think I will simply take an extended trip to far away places where I won't have to hear any more of these asinine puzzles.

2. Chuck and SDB,
I appreciate your stance, and was also frustrated by the not solving the puzzle -- but once Al divulged his solution, I got that familiar "Aha!" feeling in my that comes with only "good" puzzles and solutions. Sherry/Whiskey was never satisfying, and a "dictionary" answer was even weaker -- more akin to an elementary school joke/riddle than an actual puzzle.
The diversion was unfortunate, as many of us weren't sure if we should keep thinking about it more.

With that, I submit that an entry-submission tally is neither *necessary* nor *sufficient* for the quality of a good puzzle. A "lame" puzzle could be understood and solved by many; a good puzzle might also be a tough one; an overly tough, obscure puzzle might not be fun. And all of it may or may not be independent of each other! It's interesting to reflect on what makes a "good" puzzle -- puzzle theory, if you will -- and pour moi, the previous puzzle was "good" enough despite my inability to solve it.

Perhaps the puzzle could have been stated better, maybe with a few more examples (and I might have added "modern homes"). I might have gotten it if "BOB" and "LEE" were examples, as I have on several occasions told my wife it's "BOB-o'clock" at 8:08 (granted, with the non-upside down requirement)...and I'm surprised she stays married to me.

As to the punctuation, and on to middle school, check out beghilos. All of us chaps knew what "58008" meant, as well as the more innocuous "0.7734", and nobody worried about the decimal point. (And the first introduction to the concept of hexadecimal was, for many, converting 173406926 from decimal) Regarding upside down-ness: if I write a word on a piece of paper, and flip it upside down, is the word no longer written on the page?

I see the "controversy," but I think a survey of opinion on the puzzle would be more indicative than sheer entries. In any case, it's interesting to think about puzzle construction and optimization. Cheers and puzzle on!

3. Mike, I think BOB-o'clock may be why she stays married to you. We had our own calculator speak in middle school. While the guys were writing 58008 and tittering away, we girls were writing 57708 (well, it was close).

4. I like it that I was one of those 15 "right" answers, even if the bizarre puzzle maybe hints at Wil being somewhat dated in his social awareness (1950s). But man, if we always had odds like that everyone of us would get their lapel pin in NO time!

5. 'I don't understand you,' said Alice. 'It's dreadfully confusing!'
'That's the effect of living backwards,' the Queen said kindly: 'it always makes one a little giddy at first—'
'Living backwards!' Alice repeated in great astonishment. 'I never heard of such a thing!'
'—but there's one great advantage in it, that one's memory works both ways.'
'I'm sure MINE only works one way,' Alice remarked. 'I can't remember things before they happen.'
'It's a poor sort of memory that only works backwards,' the Queen remarked.
'What sort of things do YOU remember best?' Alice ventured to ask.
'Oh, things that happened the week after next,' the Queen replied in a careless tone. (TTLaWAFT, by LCarroll)

Causality/time may run in reverse and digits appear backwards there, but the last time I checked my mirror, Looking Glass inhabitants were not storing their digital clocks upside down.

6. Still, time marches on for the Glass Menagerie. And reverse is when you repeat a poem out loud, but not backwards. At least I hope that is the case. Or as the great Sarah Bernhardt said as she climbed into her coffin, "I case my rest."

2. Greetings from the great state of Utah where a trivial marijuana buy’ll land you a two-year stint in the pen. I’m not talkin’ about me. I’m referrin’ to a poor Ogden teen that was transferred here from juvenile hall after his conviction for conspiring to purchase an ounce from an undercover agent. I hate this place, but my new cellie, Jack, tells me I should at least be thankful I’m not tied down with three wives any longer. Speakin’ of ironies, my former cellmate, Andy, was a gay Native American guy from Salt Lake. I’ve been joking with the other inmates in the dining hall that I traded a red queen for a black jack. That’s all I’ve got to report this week, but in closing, I’d like to make a modest proposal: Let’s all try to eschew leaving giveaway clues for a change.
(6 clues)

PS I agree with Chuck. Last week's puzzle bull pucky.

1. Don't know who Jack and Andy are, but your marijuana clue lead me right to the answer. A little too obvious.

3. Too easy, they say, so I will go for a Six Degrees of Separation marker: Did Yellow Hair really get a buzz cut?

4. I'm going with Snipper's clue from last week.

1. You threw me off with this clue...seemingly referring to a wrong answer.

5. This comment has been removed by the author.

1. This may be some sort of elegant-in-its-purposeful-removal clue, Bob, but I am a bit slow today.

2. WW, sorry, no, not a clever clue. Quite the opposite. I had a thought of a comment about the "official" puzzle, typed it up in the comment box, realized it was "TMI", then found I didn't know how to get rid of it. (Answer: Edit, enter innocuous words, allow them to be posted, then delete. If there is a more elegant way . . . well, why bother asking; I'm hoping never to get into that trap again.)

6. Musical clue: Elvin Bishop.

7. Finally, this week I have had no trouble unravelling the answer to this week's challenge. If sherry/whiskey had turned out to be the answer to last week's challenge, I was prepared to apologize to everyone for having posted the "answer" which I was sure could not possibly have been the answer.

1. And I apologize for casting an aspersion on your decision-making skills, Ron. Will's "honorable mention" for sherry/whiskey this morning is the only thing that has kept me from weeping in outright shame. As for the digital clock thing, Will should have amended the clue to read "in most bats' caves..." as opposed to most people's homes.

2. No worries, ron. We might have put some bitters in that liquor cabinet but, as Chuck said above, moving on. . .

Working on this one: I have my mirrors, yoga pants, and punctuation books ready.

Ok, now moving on. . .

3. Good for you!

4. i thought it was waSHEr and wHISkey.

5. shelves and whiskey

6. Laura, have you perhaps wondered why your clothes smell funny? ;-)

8. My clue: William H. Macy

9. "The answer came quickly", said Tom hurriedly.

11. A certain film character 's voice describing the perfect pairing is forever etched in my brain.

12. You may have to travel through a few lists to get this one. And there is a connection with the (wrong) answer to last week's puzzle.

13. Here is a reposting of my two hints I posted near the end of last week's blog:

1. It is not a character from John Steinbeck.

2. I just got my NPR response in email.

I was also going to post that it wasn't Momy Dick, but jan beat me to it, once again proving that great minds think alike. Which reminds me that great mimes tend to look alike.

I will also say that I didn't have to go far in order to solve this one; in fact I simply went back to bed and got the answer almost right away.

14. This week's "piggyback puzzle" (thanks legolambda for the name): Take a fictional character in 8 letters, the third of which is an M. Change the M to a different letter and, in order, get two body parts.

1. That shouldn't be a very big problem to solve . . .

2. One might use a digital clock (upside down or not) to get there.

3. W,
You stole my thunder. I was going to say the answer relates to last week's non-alcoholic solution. (Thanks for the puzzle, David, and for the "piggyback puzzle" shout-out.
LegoLambdigital

4. Piggyback being quite apt for this puzzle, oui oui?

Anyone have a piggyback on the piggyback puzzle for us?

5. Yes, take a fictional character in 8 letters, the third of which is an M. Change M to a different letter and, in order, you get two tools.

6. I believe there's a non-fictional character that fits the bill, but then, there's a sucker born every minute.

7. A piggyback of Charles’s piggyback of David’s fine effort: Take two body parts, each four letters long. Sandwich between them a Spanish article and a height enhancer to form a fictional character.

No clues necessary this week. I predict a few more than 15 correct answers.

Incidentally, I had never “picked a range” over on Ross and Magdalen’s AESAP blog [which is nearly “fabulous” ;-)] until last week. I realized the difficulty of the likely intended digital-clock solution, assumed Will would disallow the flawed booze-cabinet-key solution, and picked the “fewer than 50” range. I did this late Friday night not realizing there was a Thursday deadline (which makes no sense to me. By Thursday most bloggers know the answer; why have any deadline?) Anyway, I was the “enterprising chap who guessed so late it was clearly illegal.” I’ll put that feather in my cap!

David, my friend Mary, who claims lukewarmth toward our puzzling proclivities (“You people have too much time on your hands! Get a life!), came up with a “not-your-intended” solution to your puzzle which uses the fourth and fifth letters as the ending and beginning, respectively, of both body parts. “Very clever!” I said to her. (I’m trying to encourage her puzzling.)

Her answer is not so digital, but does have a connection to this week’s NPR “Zadora” (that is PIA, Presumed Intended Answer), a term that probably won’t take root on this blog, but maybe the term “piggyback puzzle” has a chance to stick.)
Lego…

8. jan, there are a traditional fictional character, the stage-named character you are referring to, and even a machine, all with the same name.

9. Charles,
Pretty nice piggybacking! I solved it by using my gravity boots to get the new letter.
W,
Oui, indeed. Mark it down to serendipity. Is the piggyback the nail or pad?

15. Theanswercamequickly - with a nod to SuperZee. And I will say, the digital clock answer was a little clever, in my opinion,

16. All the clues suggest I have the correct answer, but one of the two words isn't a body part. If anyone challenges me on this, I'll knock your teeth out!

1. jsulbyrne, I could singularly challenge you on that one but I shan't since you've been away awhile. Welcome back to both you and Laura!

2. go for it Bubba. they're sitting by the armoire. :-)

3. I don't think I ever heard the term "skiffle" before yesterday, but Zeke's comment led me to my second run-in with it. Musical clue: Lonnie Donegan.

4. To paraphrase AbqG--if you haven't got a yacht, a skiff'll do?

5. If you haven't got a yacht, please don't bother inviting me to your luncheon. Thank you very much.

6. I hope that didn't come across as snooty as my valet, Rudy implied.

7. WW:
I realized when I posted the two above comments that few, if any, would comprehend, but being that you are Word Woman, I thought you would fathom the humor, but since you tend to respond to most anything, I can only assume no one, including you, understood the joke and its' connection to the past. I do understand that humor does not work as well in print sometimes, but still you are Word Woman. :-)

8. skydiveboy, is that your Valleentine?

9. I gnu you'd figure it out! Yes, as they say in Australia when the marsupials get below them, roo de valley. Or the poor French chef who ruined his roux by spilling it on the rue where he was to deliver (not de liver) it. But us not rue the day.

10. And here I thought you were just being semi-sweet for the holiday week. ;-)

11. Bitter think again.

17. Name a title character from a classic work of fiction, in 8 letters. Change the third letter to something other than an M. The result will be two consecutive words naming parts of the human body. Who is the character, and what parts of the body are these?

1. Paul,
Is your puzzle possibly the same as David’s 11:38 AM PST post?

2. Possibly, not necessarily.

3. A similar puzzle: name a title character from a work of fiction, in 8 letters, the third of which is an M. Change that M to a different letter. The result will be, in order, a word naming a part of the human body, and an anagram of a slang term for a human body part. Who is the character, and what parts of the body are these?
Lego...

18. Do mermaids have last names? Namely, was Disney's surnamed Bow?

1. Mr. E.,
Maybe. Clara Bow certainly could have portrayed the title role in a silent version of ”The Little Mermaid.” But we’re still stuck with what part of the body an “Ari” is.

2. Thanks, Paul,
I was confused, assuming Mr. E was responding to your February 9 3:14 PM post (pi post!… or perhaps that should be “hIE post”), instead of Will’s puzzle this week. Of course, the answer “Ariel Bow” would suffer a fate similar to last week’s multitude of “bend-an-elbow” SHErry-wHIS-KEY-liquor cabinet responses. But Mr. E. likely knows that.

I have been recently been encouraging my fellow Blainesville bloggers to post their own puzzles in this website. (I hope this is okay with Blaine. The posting of original puzzles ebbs and flows here, often depending on the nature of a given week’s NPR puzzle. Often our posted posers are fresher/more challenging than Will’s weekly offering.)

The upshot of multiple puzzles, however, at least for me, is similar to the plight of that popular act on the old Ed Sullivan Show where a guy wearing a tuxedo would run around the stage trying to keep about 15 dinner plates spinning atop sticks. Here on Blaine’s stage. I too sometimes lose track of which puzzle I’m spinning.

LeVertigoLambda

19. There's a connection with one of my comments from couple of weeks ago.

20. Think of an actor who played in this role. Change a D to a B and rearrange to name two more body parts!

1. We are amused.

(That's royalese for "I like it!")

2. A riddle: What is the favorite dessert of many Hawaiians, especially those who enjoy having “seconds”? (Hint: Even if they’re in the midst of enjoying seconds, at 3:17 sharp Hawaii-Aleutian Time they must either take a nap or assert, “I hate this dessert!” At 1:37 sharp, they must don (Ho!) a garland of blossoms/blooms.)
Riddle answer revealed at end of this post.

Ward,
Nice puzzle! Like Paul, I am amused, but not bemused. I have no dent in my fender and no need for an auto body shop (nor auto body experience) thanks to an acronym/homonym of one of those body parts that appears on my dashboard. (No, not on my car’s digital clock, either upside-down or upside-up; it’s an idiot light, stupid!)

sdb,
Regarding your Sunday 11:17 AM PST post, “great mimes tend to look alike.” They also sound alike and, in some cases, their first and last names tend to sound and look alike.

Future NPR puzzle: The first five letters of an internationally acclaimed entertainer’s first and last names are identical, and in the same order. The remaining letters in the entertainer’s name can be rearranged to form a dance performed by a Cockney. Who is this entertainer?

Riddle answer: Pineapple Upside-down Clock

LegoLambdent

3. A species protector similar to a tree hugger?

4. Hugh,
Thanks for your guess to my “future NPR puzzle.” You may well be correct but your veiled response is beyond my limited ken. Sorry. But a hint to the puzzle is Rachel Carson’s “Silent Spring.” Also, on this entertainer’s Wikipedia page is a photo that screams “separated from birth from Keith Richards.”
LegoLimited

5. "future puzzle" - could say this entertainer is/was bipolar, but that's a heavy tag to lei on anyone.

6. Lego, was Pineapple Upside-down Clock a spin-off of the group that did Incense and Peppermints?

7. jan,
great minds, etc.

8. jan,
Thanks for the wake-up call. Posts on this topsy-turvy blog often border on the alarming.
Seems to be some confusion regarding the I&P lyrics on the Interwebs. All I know is that the color of time (not thyme!) can be anything, as long as it’s LED/digital.

BobK,
“Bip! Ooh-lar-lar,” as Kennedys vacationing on the Riviera would say.

LegOoh-la-larmClock

9. Paul,
Yeah, I know. I noticed the SAC/PU-dC connection about a minute after I clicked Publish and proved I was not a robot.
LegreatMime-da

10. lego'
I have yet to hear the sound of china tinkling.

Wishing I could fill i the details,
Pablo

11. Any song like Incense and Peppermints that mention nouns, meaningless or not, likely has meaning to our group. Time for a theme song?

"Who cares what games we choose
Little to win, but nothing to lose

Incense and peppermints, meaningless nouns
Turn on, tune in, turn your eyes around
Look at yourself, look at yourself, yeah, yeah
Look at yourself, look at yourself, yeah, yeah, yeah, no"

12. in of course

13. W,
I like the theme song idea. In I&P, the chorus sure rings true:
WE care what games Will chews
Little to win (lapel pin, puzzle books, Scrabble game
But nothing to lose (See KK's Bobbie McGee. In my case, the last shreds of self-respect vanished months ago!)

Paul,
Wishing you could too. But abandon your dream of hearing that elusive sound; Chynna Phillips, I'll wager, seldom uses public restrooms anymore.

Lego...

Correction: Don't see KK's “Me and Bobbie McGee.”
(Although, yes, we've got freedom here, too much freedom!)
See instead BD's “Like a Rolling Stone”
(I got my “nothin' (left) to loses” mixed up.)

LegoLoser

21. Or, as Bea Lillie put it, songwriters are wrong "The best things in life are SO expensive."

Comments don't always go where I expect them to go.

22. Quickly journeying away from home was very helpful in solving this puzzle.

23. I would have gotten this sooner but I've been tied down lately.

1. Put that down to a fast-paced lifestyle, Aaron?

24. OK, I gotta try this one out I just now made up.

What do you call a working holiday for Ralph Lauren?

1. I think it would be a fabrication.

2. She appeared in ads for him, so I am going to suggest a Penelope Cruise.

3. Ward,
That would be a totally fun cruise; not a fabrication.

Speaking of Ms. Cruz, have you seen her in Woody Allen's film, Vicky Cristina Barcelona?

25. My grand daughter Lilly put in her first response to NPR. :-)

1. Oh, how sweet! My grandmother, an emigrant from Germany, always said, "Ja, who can you love more than a granddaughter?" Unfortunately, I was a grandson.

26. Ah, I remember sending my first one, "in the postcard days", as they say, via Pony Express.

1. Mine went by boat.

27. Tug boat to boot.

28. What was the first puzzle you submitted an answer to?

Mine was:
"The phrases "Gasoline Pump" and "Fountain Pen" each contains the five vowels (A, E, I, O, U) exactly once. What familiar two-word phrase, having two letters in the first word and six letters in the second word also contains all five vowels exactly once. Hint: The first and last letters of the six-letter word are the same." This was the puzzle of April 7, 2002.

1. David,
Merci beaucoup for this puzzle blast from the past. One way to solve it is to realize that you had better get two vowels in the first word, or else you'll face the formidable task of finding a six-letter word with four consecutive vowels in its middle.

But maybe there is more than one answer? Do you remember your approach to solving it?

Lego...

2. It was the two vowel approach. With only 20 combinations, it was pretty easy to cycle through them. The six letter word somehow magically "appeared" once I got the right two letter word. From my first puzzle, I learned that Will can be tricky.

3. The tricky ones can be quite fun. No memory of my first Will puzzle, though.

4. Is it auf wiedersehen?

5. GULLIVER >>> GUM + LIVER

>>>"Bob, I am a bit slow today."

Versus swift as in Jonathan Swift

>>>"I have my mirrors, yoga pants, and punctuation books ready."

Mirrors were featured in Gulliver's Travels (GT).

>>>"Mine went by boat."

On a ship in GT.

>>>"Put down to a fast-paced life-style, Aaron?"

Lilliputian

>>> "Singularly challenge..."

Gum versus gums

29. yeah we had that for dinner last night :-)

30. Gulliver (gum/liver)

My hint re- William H. Macy, in Showtime's "Shameless," Frank was looking for a new liver.

1. Are you sharing a computer with Word Woman today?

2. SKB: All original!

3. I was referring to you both posting @ 11:59 PM.

4. Oh!

P.S.: Just trying to get ahead of YOU!

5. Finally, what's wrong in providing the response at 11:59 PM?

6. The answer to that question might be found by a reading of "Lord of the Flies," by William Golding. It seems a bit odd to me that the question is even asked. Perhaps a sign of our times.

7. PM versus AM, skydiveboy. Go ahead, laugh a little. Life is just not that serious all the time.

8. In case you haven't noticed, I use humor more than frequently, however to me ethics, protocol, respect for conventions that make sense, and common courtesy are not minor things. An example of how this works is what the Republicans are doing to deprive the poor and low income and retired from their just due. Take away a tiny bit of food and Social Security and healthcare here and then it will be easier to take away a bit more soon after, and then why not just take it all? Another way this works is the lack of respect people have for stoplights. As I get older I am finding it rapidly reaching the point of anarchy on our roads. Our vehicles/cars are far safer than they used to be, but we have found ways to still make driving more dangerous than it needs to be. I could go on and on, but what would be the point if people feel so entitled as to simply do however they please when it suits them? They have fallen into the trap of believing they are somehow special and it is all about them and to hell with the others. Size does matter. It is lack of respect for the little things that leads to lack of respect for more important things.

9. SKB: "THE KING OF ZERO TOLERANCE!" Or perhaps he holds himself at apostle rank, e.g. St. Peter, St. Paul, et al. Notify the Pope, he will be very happy.

10. benmar,
What does "SKB" stand for?
That aside, you asked a question to which I responded with an answer. Apparently you were not asking so much as asserting. Thank you for helping me make my point.

11. Why are you so angry???

31. Lemuel GULLIVER > GUM & LIVER

My Hints:

“…Instead I think I will simply take an extended trip to far away places where I won't have to hear any more of these asinine puzzles.”
Hinting at travels.

“It is not a character from John Steinbeck.”
Hinting at Travels With Charlie.”

“I just got my NPR response in email.”
Hinting at Yahoo. Yahoos are characters in Gulliver’s Travels.

“I will also say that I didn't have to go far in order to solve this one; in fact I simply went back to bed and got the answer almost right away.”
Another hint at Gulliver’s Travels.

1. You are all reminding me that I also had a hint pointing at Swift, but for got about it.

32. GULLIVER -> GUM, LIVER

> I'm going with Snipper's clue from last week.

Journey -> Travels

>>> If anyone challenges me on this, I'll knock your teeth out!
>> go for it Bubba. they're sitting by the armoire. :-)
> I don't think I ever heard the term "skiffle" before yesterday, but Zeke's comment led me to my second run-in with it. Musical clue: Lonnie Donegan.

With your teeth by the armoire, does your chewing GUM lose its flavor on the bedpost overnight?

> There's a connection with one of my comments from couple of weeks ago.

The LIVER pÃ¢tÃ© was delicious. (But the bacon-onion jam was better!)

33. Title character: Lemuel GULLIVER

from GULLIVER'S TRAVELS, by Jonathan Swift. {Surprisingly, only one Tom Swifty posted, Tom said astonishingly.}

Change the third letter to M to obtain GUM + LIVER (2 body parts)

My clue was the word “unravelling” (“I had no trouble unravelling this week's challenge.”) which contains the letters “gulliver” + ann

I did recognize all the hints using “travel” & “journey.”

“Piggyback” puzzles:

1.Tom Thumb/toe+thumb.
Yes, there's a thumb sucker born every minute!
2. Tom Thumb/ tooth+bum
4. Marcel Marceau/ula, an ancient Tongan group dance! Maybe performed by a Cockney.

1. Thank for recognizing my Tom Swifty. I was beginning to feel I was the only person who remembered them, he said reflexively.

34. My Six Degrees of Separation marker: Did Yellow Hair really get a buzz cut? - Although a Google search says what I had learned in the past wasn't true, I had always heard that the Indians called General Custer "Yellow Hair." So George Armstrong Custer teams with Buzz Aldrin to get the guys who landed on the moon in a Lunar Excursion Module, or LEM, cluing Lemuel Gulliver. To me, makes as much sense as most of the one-step clues given!

35. Odds and ends:

The comment I struggled so hard to delete was a suggestion that the challenge as originally submitted may have said, "Replace the third letter of the character name with the letter preceding it in the alphabet." Only after I typed it out did I realize that the M had been given, so that would give away the L in GULLIVER.

In reply to David, "That shouldn't be a very big problem to solve . . .". referring to the diminutive stature of Tom Thumb.

To jan, "even a machine," - Tom Thumb was the name of a locomotive.

"future puzzle" - could say this entertainer is/was bipolar, but that's a heavy tag to lei on anyone. - One of Marcel Marceau's characters was Bip the Clown; lei was a nod to HULA.

In response to zeke creek's "Lilly put," "Ja, who can you love more than a granddaughter?", a blatant Yahoo.

1. Bob, I believed your half erased clue referred to a Gulliver's Travel quote: "...but those half erased, and the rest blotted and blurred by corruptions." I thought it was terribly clever of you.

2. Odds bodkins and loose Ends:

David’s NPR puzzle from 2002 was an enjoyable diversion. (My answer, “Au Revoir,” is a “familiar two-word phrase,” I guess, if you and your ilk bought into that Commie “America the Beautiful” Coca-Cola commercial broadcast during the Super Bowl!) Is there a better answer peut-etre?

In response to Charles’s tricky “two tools” puzzle, I wrote, “I solved it by using my gravity boots to get the new letter.” (SAM SPADE becomes SAW SPADE when you look at the M -- and only the M, not the rest -- while suspended upside-down in your doorway.)

Ward’s nice puzzle: Ted Danson was the Gulliver portrayer. Changing a D to a B and rearranging letters results in the body parts ABS and TENDON. “I have no dent in my fender…” (NO DENT anagrams to TENDON.) “…one of those body parts that appears on my dashboard.” (ABS, an acronym of Antilock Breaking System and homonym of “abs,” is an idiot light on many cars.)

My riddle: What is the favorite dessert of many Hawaiians, especially those who enjoy having “seconds”? (That is, “seconds” as units of time, although do any digital clocks display seconds?) “Hint: … at 3:17 (which, upside-down, reads LIE) Hawaii-Aleutian Time they must either take a nap (LIE down) or assert, ‘I hate this dessert!’ (which would be a LIE). At 1:37 (which, upside-down, reads LEI), they must don a garland of blossoms/blooms (aka a LEI).”

My unresponded-to puzzle: “Take two body parts, each four letters long. Sandwich between them a Spanish article and a height enhancer to form a fictional character.” Answer: RUMP EL STILT SKIN
(Note: Two body parts used in my puzzles this week were RUMP and BUM. I just feel like such an ass.)

BobK.
“Six Degrees of Separation”? More like Six Zillion Light Years of Separation! BK, I nominate for an Oscar your “Little Miss Magic Marker” (RIP Shirley Temple) as “The Clue Least Likely to Be Removed By The Blog Administrator.”

ron,
You aced my puzzles (#2 and #4). Here’s one more for extra credit: Take the name of a Blainesville blogger. Change one of the letters to a P, then rearrange the letters to form: 1. A part of a geometric figure, 2. A part of a tropical tree, and 3. A word that might follow, “(S)he has a nice ___.”

LegoLambda

3. I too got “Au Revoir,” but posted it as "Auf Wiedersehen" in order not to give it completely away, but just put it next door, so to speak, ja?

36. Sorry, messed up that first paragraph. You know I really meant:

Q: Name a title character from a classic work of fiction, in 8 letters. Change the third letter to the next letter in the alphabet. The result will be two consecutive words naming parts of the human body. Who is the character, and what parts of the body are these?

37. Jan -
In referencing my "journey" clue from last week, i thought you were referring to "arm" from "open arms", but then I caught on!

- Snipper

38. Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World. In Four Parts. By Lemuel Gulliver, First a Surgeon, and then a Captain of Several Ships --- hence, my first clue, "Primum non nocere"

Regarding my "royalese" response to Ward's puzzle, royalese is an anagram of Leo Sayer, who had a hit with "You Make Me Feel Like ______".

Regarding my "tapeworm" (not "piggyback") puzzle, if your instinct told you "change the third letter to something other than an M" implied that the the third letter was originally an M, then it was indeed virtually identical to David's puzzle. If your instinct told you my title character couldn't possibly be the same as Will's/Steve's title character I'd be suspicious of that instinct. If your instinct told you that "something other than an M' might be a numeral, or an upside-down numeral, or anything other than a letter, that was a bad instinct. Bad, bad instinct. If your instinct tells you that I'm certainly using the word instinct a lot, and there might be some reason for that, that's a good instinct. Now if we can get sdb or somebody to translate for us ... voilÃ .

39. 36D. (At least, it's after Thursday.)

1. (And no, it's not a bra spec; it's a crossword ref,)

2. Lilliput!

Happy Valentine's Day to all those little people and to all you big-hearted, big-brained bloggers.

3. Sounds like you're saying size matters.

4. Sighs matter, for sure. ;-)

40. Happy Valentine's Day to all.

“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”
― Rumi

“Words are a pretext. It is the inner bond that draws one person to another, not words.”
― Rumi

For more Rumi (rumination) quotes click HERE.

1. Thanks for the Rumi, ron. 14 kindergarteners with endless hugs, teddy bear zip lines, and igneous chocolate fudge have made for a fun day so far. We also made a meandering stream on the playground. The latter reminded me a bit of our conversations here. Thanks for the meanderings, mitzvahs, and musings.

41. WW, thanks for noticing that Lilly put in is a lilliputian.
Elvin Bishop played Travelling Shoes.
The armoire was just a playful response of arms to JB,s toothless threat.

42. Next week's challenge: Name a famous entertainer: 2 words, 4 letters in each word. You can rearrange these 8 letters to spell the acronym of a well-known national organization, and the word that the first letter of this acronym stands for. Who's the entertainer, and what's the organization?

43. A little logic helped me solve this puzzle quickly.

44. I was afraid that solving this one was going to be a major league struggle, but to get the answer I had to lower my expectations a couple of notches.

45. Took twelve steps to solve this one!

46. Pretty sure the organization is not nearly as well known as is the entertainer, but now I can go back to watching the Olympics.

47. That one was a little too easy, but I'm happy I got it. I wonder if a recent news headline inspired this puzzle.