Sunday, November 15, 2020

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Nov 15, 2020): Watch TV or Read a Book?

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Nov 15, 2020): Watch TV or Read a Book?
Q: Name a title character from books and TV (5, 5). You can rearrange the letters to get two words describing what you can hear and do in church. What character is it?
Are you expecting me to give you a hint for free?

Edit: As in "freemason"
A: PERRY MASON --> SERMON, PRAY

197 comments:

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

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

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  2. Associated characters: a bird, a way, and a food.

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  3. About 650 correct responses last week.

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  4. Got it this morning backwards, in < 5 min. Blaine's picture is a hint, in a way. Gee, that was easy.

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  5. Cool puzzle.
    The character's creator had a cameo appearance in one episode.

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  6. I predict about four times as many correct responses this week. By the way, kudos to whoever came up with "Run pup, run!" last week. The symmetry, the minimalism, and the frugal use of one vowel were all quite elegant.

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    Replies
    1. I did UNRIPE PRUNE -- at least WS found it funny ... this week's is pretty easy.

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    2. Actually, JC, I liked that one too. Two words that are almost anagrams of each other. But, as the old folks say, "There's no 'I' in prune!"

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  7. Had the answer in about 2 seconds. No clue here.

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  8. Yes, a cool puzzle. And my favorite tv character (and actor in the role) of all time.

    Still struggling for a clue that doesn't give too much away.

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  9. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  10. I posted on Sun Nov 15, at 05:16:00 AM PST on last week's thread:
    The two words are separate. The first word is something you can hear. The second is something you can do.

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    1. Before realizing this, I was trying to get something involving the singing of hymns to work. Now a particular hymn comes to mind.

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  11. I think I've finally come up with a clue that's not TMI.

    Park Avenue

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  12. Suitable puzzle for the cold weather.

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  13. Got up, read the puzzle, returned to bed and got the answer right away. Not much of a puzzle.

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  14. A certain structure in Queensland is a dead giveaway.

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  15. Done and dusted. Now I have to get back to canning my fruit. --Margaret G.

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  16. The Roger thumbnail I clicked on hyperlinked to this!

    LegoWhoObserves"ThatIsOneSketchyThumbnail!"

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    Replies
    1. Sounds like you are "all thumbs" like "clumsy."

      P.S. I have the answer...

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  17. Residents of Danby, NY have the advantage this week.

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  18. Always wondered if the character would end up on easy street.

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  20. Like a ship without a wheel.

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    Replies
    1. old IRONSIDEs minus WHEELchair equals Perry Mason.

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  21. I see some relationships to last week’s puzzle.

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  22. The Adventures of Shemp Slyne is an overlooked gem. (hymns, sleep)

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  23. This character was referred to on an episode of All in the Family. It was an awkward but hilarious reference.

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  24. Only 650 correct last week. Predict way more this week.

    Nice on air tribute to Alex Trebek.

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  25. My spouse worked backwards and got the answer. I have only attended church for funerals and weddings, since I'm Jewish. I guess I should have deduced it anyways because I watched this program so much. I totally loved it. I loved the author as well and my parents shelves were stocked with that series and also the nom de plumes used.

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    1. sophizgood: I as a Gentile can appreciate your quandary. I remember I was playing Pictionary one game night some years back. My word to convey to my partner was "crucifix". Unfortunately he was Jewish!

      In the other direction, at another game night we were playing a game in which knowledge of Yiddish was an asset. I speak German, so understand most everyday words and terms, but not the religious ones (which derive from Hebrew). So I was the handicapped one in that regard.

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    2. I also got it by working backwards!

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    3. geofan -
      I believe Jesus was also Jewish, but was not proficient with Yiddish. Probably didn't watch TV either.

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    4. sdb: Yiddish did not exist yet, at that time.

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    5. I know, and I wasn't blaming him. But how about cross dressing?

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  26. I forgot that this character originated in books. I came up with the church words and then realized they anagrammed into the character. Looking at the Wikipedia page, I learned the amazing number of novels the author wrote about the subject. No wonder there was enough material to spawn a TV series.

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    1. ESG also wrote under these pen names and created other characters: Kyle Corning, A.A. Fair, Charles M. Green, Carleton Kendrake, Charles J. Kenny, Robert Parr, Les Tillray

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  27. We the people shouldn't have too much trouble with this one.

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    1. As obtuse and acute as ever, TB.

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    2. Well put, Paul. Elegantly unBlogAdministratable.

      LegoWhoBelievesTommyBoyIsAnExcellentPuzzleBrainAndPuzzleHinterToBootMyMy!

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    3. Deftly caroming off the "lateral surfaces"...

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  28. This reminds me of Magritte's famous punchline: "Ceci n'est pas une porte."

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    Replies
    1. "When is a door not a door?" "When it is ajar." Which leads to Mason jar, sort of.

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  29. As a lapsed Catholic, this puzzle has me feeling defensive. To counter this feeling, I am going to say that "A Mighty Fortress is Our God" might be considered a musical hint.

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    Replies
    1. Hey,Neal, I attend Mass at 6 p.m. just so I can the Sunday puzzle.

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  30. Replies
    1. Are you suggesting he had a union card?

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    2. By which I meant, are you calling Shaq a brickmason?

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  31. There’s a cartoon reference, if you go back far enough.

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  32. Musical clue: *The Magic Flute*

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  33. For once I got Blaine's. But I DID need to get the answer first!

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  34. If you anagram a non title character, you get something you might see if you skipped church today.

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  35. Should also work for the Synagogue.

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    Replies
    1. But one that is closer to Orthodox end of the scale.

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  36. The other day, I tripped and have a mild limp because of it. When I was "limping" my dogs this AM,the theme music from the TV show starting going around and around in my head.

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  37. Who says "You're fired!" more often than Donald Trump?

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  38. Anagram this actor's name and you'll get a two word phrase that describes people talking about about their neighbor's abuse of alcohol.

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  39. Won't have to wait for the second coming.

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    Replies
    1. The remake (second coming) of Perry Mason began in June of this year.

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  40. The first 3 letters of the character's first name followed by the last 3 letters of their last name spell a 6-letter word that describes the character. The first 2 letters of the character's last name followed by the last 2 letters of their first name spell the name of an example of the 6-letter word.

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    1. Very nice observation, Bobby.
      For those of you who have solved this fine NPR puzzle, here is a timely tidbit of a puzzle to chew on:
      Take the surnames of a pair of pols. Remove the 2-letter abbreviation for the direction they lean, and replace it with the 3-letter monogram of a pol who leans in the opposite direction. Rearrange the result to name, in one word, what the pair of pols recently got.
      Who are these two pols and what did they get?


      LegoWhoGotNuttin'Else!

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    2. Lovely, Lego! There are those who might disagree with you, but they'll never solve that puzzle.

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    3. Perry Mason is a person. Mary is a person.

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  41. This one wasn't too hard to solve.

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  42. Clever, but when I do it, the first two letters of the last name plus the last letter of the last name spell something specific about this character. I am also reminded of the great theme song associated herein, which I have never heard in a church.

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  43. Clue: Rudy G probably knows this one

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  44. Something formerly known as SRI is related to this puzzle.

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  45. This Sunday puzzle has an interesting tie-in to the PuzzleMaster's day job!

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  46. The person who played the TV role used to be part owner of a very nice Italian restaurant near me and was often there to greet and chat with patrons.

    The set of a second series with the same person was used in more than one Bay Area production.

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  47. My late nephew has a slight connection to the character.

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  48. This character was also referenced on an episode of The Brady Bunch!

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    1. Uh oh, you said Brady Bunch. I can't resist! Here goes: "Pork chops and apple sauce." Probably not the episode you were thinking of.😀

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    2. While we're at it, this character was also referenced on an episode of "Sanford and Son".

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    3. Also, the character actually appeared on an episode of "The Jack Benny Program".

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    4. @wordsmythe, not that episode, but quite well done there!

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  49. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  50. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    1. I did not realize my post was a clue.

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    2. Your post wasn't a clue but was a narrowing of choices. It's like the music notes puzzle where some people assumed the word was made up of do-re-mi. I deleted comments that explicitly stated that those notes weren't part of the answer.

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    3. Blaine, Thank you for explanation. I assumed it was obvious to others except me.

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    4. Blaine, It did "deflate" my ego.

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  51. Replies
    1. Stevie Wonder recorded "A Place in the Sun" in 1966.
      Raymond Burr played a prosecutor in "A Place in the Sun" in 1951.

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  52. Purely for giggles, and for those who like playing 6 degrees of separation. I can get from the Boston Marathon to the title character in 6 steps. (No Kevin Bacon involvement.). Can you?

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    1. In 5 steps, via Richard Henry Dana II.

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    2. SuperZee,
      Thanks for this challenge. I like it. But I need a clarification:
      Does the progression from the Boston Marathon to the title character proceed like...
      LIST A
      1. Boston Marathon
      2. Rosie Ruiz and Wu Zhaofeng
      3. Cheaters
      4. Glasses
      5. Tumblers
      6. Padlocks...
      or instead like
      LIST B
      1. Boston Marathon
      2. Boston Garden
      3. Rose Garden
      4. Rose Bowl
      5. Finger Bowl
      6. Finger Food...
      ?
      Thanks

      LegoWhoThinks98.6DegreesIsAnIdealTemperatureForFryingKevinBacon

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    3. gaeofan:
      It looks like you MASTered it.

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    4. Lego - My ladder is a series of sentences, each creating a link between two things. The first step (balance to be revealed on Thursday) is, "The Boston Marathon is run on Patriot's Day."

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  53. Going meta a little bit, if it's tough to get people to answer the phone to get on the show, why not shoot people an email or text (or give those options on the site when you enter). Kinda crazy to get peeved at people for not answering calls from novel numbers when so many people are bombarded with spam calls all the time. Leaving this comment assuming Will and Lulu lurk here constantly.

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    1. Just saying, because it would kill me to know I missed a crack at getting on, but that's exactly what'll happen if I get a rando call....

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    2. Good suggestion.

      I am curious about dropping the last letter of words. How did random become "rando?"

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    3. Good suggestion.

      I am curious about dropping the last letter of words. How did random become "rando?"

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    4. Yeah, it's totes cray-cray.

      But if it's always the last letter that's dropped, it's not very rando.

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    5. It may sound like a good idea, but it would not work. They don't have time to waste waiting to see if someone may return an email. You need to keep in mind that the phone may ring around the deadline.

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    6. Speaking as someone who made thousands of phone calls to Mainers in support of Biden/Harris and Sara Gideon (win some/ lose some), the vast, vast majority of which were not answered, I understand why pollsters do so poorly.

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    7. How about a text? Then you know who is contacting you right away and get immediate feedback.

      If one has no cell phone just specify "please call."

      Lately it is totes cray-cray that many people expect a text (my mom excluded) asking if now is a good time to call.

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    8. Again, they don't have the time for that. As for me, I rarely have my cell phone with me. I hate texting too. I think the real solution is for the government to address all the illegal scam and robo calls, etc., and force the phone companies to stop them.

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    9. In the 19th Century the fad at schools such as Rugby was to cut a word in half, then add a syllable. That's how the Brits came up with "rugged" for "Rugby," "preggers" for "pregnant" and "soccer" for "Association football."

      Do speakers of other languages chop, bend and twist words as much as English-speakers do? Here's the chance to show off your erudition.

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    10. "Rugger" not "rugged." Damned automistake.

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  54. Has anyone else noticed that blogger has discontinued the generic icons for those who do not have a photo?

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    1. OMG--I've turned into a question mark. Very Kafkaesque.

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    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    3. I do not see a question mark to the left of your name, in fact to the left of your name I see nothing at all! I do see skydiveboy's picture to the left of his name and I'm sure I'll see my picture to the left of my name once this here comment I'm working on gets published.
      Something else concerns me here. For the past few months I've been posting to this blog via my iPhone, not through Safari, but through Google Chrome. I only just recently acquired a new laptop running Windows 10, and as soon as I sought to post to this blog with it, I saw "Comment as: ", and in the gray box I see only "Google Account". No problem, I simply download and install Google Chrome, and with that I see "Comment as: ", and in the gray box I see "Enya_and_WeirdAl_fan". So I can post with my new laptop just fine. The problem is, now when I try to post with my iPhone, even using Google Chrome I see "Comment as: ", and in the gray box I see only "Google Account"! Does Blogger only recognize your Google Account through only one device at a time!?

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  55. Interesting that my alternate answer to last week's puzzle led me directly to the solution this week!

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    1. And I find it interesting that you can try searching for "Howie Roark" within the entirety of last week's thread and "0 matches found". Even if Blaine had just now deleted your last week's post, your name still would have remained. Did you just recently change your handle here?

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    2. It doesn't work that with the search engine.

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  56. It just now found both "Howie Roark"s on this page!

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    1. No change in handle. Life got busy last week and I didn't post. If I had, pretty confident that my comment above would have been instantly deleted. If you've already solved this puzzle, you might apply your solution to last week's challenge to come up with my alternate answer. Will post on Thursday.

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    2. PERRY MASON, SERMON+PRAY My alternate answer from last week open in prayer already had me in church mode.

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  57. Take a letter in this popular character's last name, duplicate it and insert it a certain position ( in the last name) and you will end up with the last name of another ( very criminal) real life character.

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  58. Replies
    1. My wife does private tutoring online, one-on-one.

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    2. I just started this week teaching nursing on zoom.

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  59. Replies
    1. ron: Wrong link this time, just gets one.
      When the whole bunch does come up, Abe in shades is great.

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    2. All of them are really good this week.
      Giving such fodder to cartoonists may be the only good thing Trump has done.

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    3. I get a grey screen that at the top says cannot open because it contains errors. I get no cartoons at all.

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  60. Eco's presidential Rebus puzzle on Puzzleria has a couple of good hints.

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  61. PERRY MASON —> PRAY, SERMON

    My clue: Park Avenue

    The title of the theme song from Perry Mason is “Park Avenue Beat.”

    Yes, Andrew, agreed: despite its lyrics, definitely not Green Acres.

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  62. Perry Mason  Pray, Sermon.

    My connections ladder, from the Boston Marathon to the puzzle solution is:

    1. The Boston Marathon is run on Patriot’s Day.
    2. American patriots celebrate July 4th as Independence Day.
    3. On Independence Day, the USS Constitution sails into the Charlestown Harbor, and is turned around to balance sun exposure on her two sides.
    4. The USS Constitution is nicknamed Old Ironsides.
    5. Ironside was a television drama, starring Raymond Burr.
    6. Prior to his role as Ironside, Burr had the title role as Perry Mason.
    7. Perry Mason anagrams to Pray and Sermon.

    My comment on the puzzle being, “Cool,” hints at Brrrr being a homophone for Burr.

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    Replies
    1. Very nice, SuperZee!

      LegoWhoDidNotSolveSuperZee'sChallengeButWhoAlsoAdmiresItsCleverness

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  63. My clue was intended to point to Earl Stanley Gardner. I posted: “Something formerly known as SRI is related to this puzzle.”
    Investing according to one’s values used to be known as Socially Responsible Investing (SRI). Today, it is more fashionable to call this Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) investing.

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  64. PERRY MASONSERMON (what you can “hear” in church) + PRAY (what you can “do” in church)

    My hint: P. (pray) S. (sermon) I have the answer.

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  65. PERRY MASON -> PRAY, SERMON

    > The title character made hamburger of the opposition [Deleted -- Why?]

    The name of the district attorney, Hamilton Burger, was chosen as a joke.

    > Soldier

    PERRY MASON anagrams to ARMY PERSON.

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  66. PERRY MASON --> SERMON, PRAY

    "1949 ;-)" refers to the year the color periwinkle was introduced in Crayola crayons. Peri for PERRY, followed by a wink.

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  67. Replies
    1. Franken and Sotomayor were partially correct: There were two cases that Perry Mason "lost." One was an ambiguous loss, which involved a client who had misrepresented his identity to Mason, so when Mason exposed him as a fraud and guilty of murder, his actual "client" (the man whose identity the guilty party had assumed) was in fact exonerated. The second case began with Mason's client's guilty verdict, and the episode concentrated on Mason's ultimately successful attempt to exonerate her. Once, when asked by a fan why he never seemed to lose a case, Raymond Burr quipped, "Madam, you only see the cases that I try on Saturdays.

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    2. Makes me think of my favorite Agatha Christie mystery, The Murder of Roger Ackroyd.

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  68. I wrote: “Associated characters: a bird, a way, and a food.” That’s Paul Drake, Della Street, and Hamilton Burger.

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  69. Tomorrow on Puzzleria! we feature four fantastic "Worldplay" puzzles by geofan (Ken Pratt), titled:
    ALpha and omeGA
    Out the window
    You win!
    Thumbs up, thumbs down
    ...plus 11 other puzzles.
    On Blaine's blog on Sunday I posted this timely tidbit of a puzzle to chew on:
    Take the surnames of a pair of pols. Remove the 2-letter abbreviation for the direction they lean, and replace it with the 3-letter monogram of a pol who leans in the opposite direction. Rearrange the result to name, in one word, what the pair of pols recently got.
    Who are these two pols and what did they get?

    The answer is COMEUPPANCE
    TRUMP+PENCE–RT(Right)+AOC(Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who leans Left)=UMPPENCEAOC=>COMEUPPENCE
    (Thanks to Lancek for his nice compliment about this puzzle.)
    My hint this week was:
    "The Roger thumbnail I clicked on hyperlinked to this!"
    ROGER THUMBNAIL is an anagram of HAMILTON BURGER, Perry Mason's courtroom nemesis.

    LegoWhoNotesThatgeofan'sFourPuzzlesOnPuzzleria!AreAll"ThumbsUp"ChallengingAndFun

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  70. Perry Mason, sermon, pray

    Last Sunday I said, “Reminds of a singer.” Perry Como or Katy Perry --> Perry Mason

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  71. Perry Mason-pray, sermon. ECo's Rebus puzzle on puzzleria had Aaron Burr as one of the answers.

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  72. The hints:
    "Got it this morning backwards, in < 5 min."
    Morning is AM, suggests PM for Perry Mason.

    "Blaine's picture is a hint, in a way."
    The round CRT outline and rabbit ears each suggest late 1950s televisions.

    "Gee, that was easy."
    Gee => G suggests the G + compass on Masonic temples.

    "A certain structure in Queensland is a dead giveaway."
    The Mount Perry Masonic Lodge in Queensland (Australia) is a historic site.

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  73. My clue -
    “I see some relationships to last week’s puzzle” was referring to Perry Mason as a proper noun and his name has N, P and R in it (along with some other consonants).

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  74. PERRY MASON(SERMON, PRAY)
    My late nephew was named James Mason Berry, but we called him by his middle name.
    Fun fact about PERRY MASON's appearance on "The Jack Benny Program": By the end of the episode, Perry himself admits he committed the crime of which Jack was accused. The crime? Murdering Jack's rooster! Murder most fowl indeed!
    pjbSaysCockADude'llDoIn!

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  75. Some weeks, the puzzle is just a burr under your saddle ...

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  76. My musical clue was *The Magic Flute*, the libretto of which is full of all sorts of MASONic nonsense.

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  77. I was wondering. Will the Orange One pardon the White House turkey this year?

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    1. I’ll be surprised if several White House turkeys aren’t issued pardons. Whether the bird also receives one is the question.

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    2. Do you think he'll still try to pardon himself?

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  78. My reference to what you might see if you skipped church was TALL RED TREES (from Della Street)

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  79. "Rudy Giuliani is a horrible goblin of a man but it is weirdly inspiring how he keeps stumbling into major roles in historical events because he is so comfortable and confident in his goblinness while I'm rewording a single low-stakes email for 20 minutes."

    --J. Morrow --

    Might you relate?

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  80. My clues:
    Wwjd-JD refers to Juris Doctor
    “An American legend”-Matthew Rhys who plays Perry Mason in the reboot starred in “The Americans”

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  81. I've never been quite sure about what a bassinet refers to. Is it a container for a baby or a fish?

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    Replies
    1. I thought it was a low range woodwind instrument.

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  82. There are idioms and common phrases I have been trying to figure the meaning of for years with no success. An example is: "Farm a Sioux tickles."

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  83. Yesterday afternoon I went to stand in line for my annual flu shot, but was turned away for being inoculate.

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  84. Just wondering here. Can ram parts be catapulted over ramparts?

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    1. Like the horns, for instance? You asking could it throw a shofar so far? Fo' sho'!

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    2. Yes, and that rare wartime footage is almost as revealing (pun intended) as Batley Townswomen's Guild Presents the Battle of Pearl Harbour.

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  85. I'm wondering how many of the Blainesvilliens here know all four verses of The Star-Spangled Banner, and how many know all six verses of "To Anacreon In Heaven", the song whose melody The Star-Spangled Banner took?

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  86. This week's challenge: This week's challenge comes from listener Alan Hochbaum of Duluth, Ga. Name a marine animal in two words. Remove two consecutive letters in the name and read the resulting string of letters in order from left to right. You'll name a major American city. What is it?

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  87. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  88. I (very briefly) worked with this animal in grad school.

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  89. Solved before the coffee was ready.

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  90. This week's challenge: This week's challenge comes from listener Alan Hochbaum of Duluth, Ga. Name a marine animal in two words. Remove two consecutive letters in the name and read the resulting string of letters in order from left to right. You'll name a major American city. What is it?

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    1. Got it fairly quickly by working from the city to the animal.

      Have to wonder why the necessity to qualify it as a "marine animal" instead of just an animal???

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  91. Got it. Will post clue and spin-off puzzle later.

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  92. I'm having serious trouble, or rather www.blogger.com seems to be having serious trouble, with the new week's thread of Blaine's Puzzle Blog. I can neither post to it nor get it to notify me.

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