Sunday, December 05, 2021

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Dec 5, 2021): One Versus Many

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Dec 5, 2021): One Versus Many
Q: Think of a word to describe a single animal. Change the third letter to get a word that describes the plural of that animal. Both are nouns, and neither word contains an "s."
My first hint is on the house.

Edit: The band Head of the Herd had a debut album entitled On the House.
A: HEAD (of cattle) --> HERD (of cattle)

214 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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    1. Head of the Herd also recorded "Birds on the Roof," perhaps a prescient hint to both puzzle answers.

      Duckduckgoing "Dole of Doves" brings up several hits from the 2010's. Folks are still using the term, archaic or not.

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  2. Congrats to Tom Bible for a very clever puzzle!

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    1. Just for the record, I would not have posted this comment if I had arrived at DOVE, DOLE. The cleverness of HEAD, HERD is that neither word directly names the animal. :)

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  3. What do you call someone who really loves to eat the center of a pineapple?
    Answer: A hard core pineapple eater!

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  4. The wording of the puzzle is defective (although not as bad as I at first assumed it must be).

    But do take notice of Blaine's first hint!

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  5. Oh, and there's a fit with the on-air puzzle.

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  6. There's MOM, MOB, POP, POD, BARD, BAND to name a few...

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    1. Good! And maybe "G-man"...?

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    2. There's also a single NEWT and a NEST of newts...

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    3. And a gang rich with Gingriches!

      LegoWhoAdds"AndSchoolsOfNewtsAndMinnows"

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    4. A DEB in a DEN of DEBs greeted the BEE in a BED of BEEs...

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  7. Isn't there a misnomer in the puzzle's wording?

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  8. I hear that it's cold in Schenectady this time of year.

    (I have no idea what Blaine's clue means, but I think there may be more than one right answer this week.)

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  9. Do the two words have the same number of letters?

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  10. Being poverty stricken comes to mind.

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  11. Not as entertaining as a murder of crows.

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    1. How about an unintentional manslaughter of ravens?

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  12. My answer seems unrelated to any of the clues posted above. Does anyone else have an answer in which one of the words can be both singular and plural?

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  13. B jonlj hiix zwhrt I xblaew a iouzxut xaxlqrk aowae.

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    1. "I could have sworn I posted a comment earlier today."
      I posted "2" right below Blaine's standard reminder. I thought the answer was HEAD/HERD. HERD sounds like HEARD which was the answer to question 2 of the on-air puzzle. But that comment disappeared, or perhaps I forgot to hit the "Publish" button, I'm not sure. Anyway, it's gone.
      I used "that again" as the key for the cipher. Lancek said I could.

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  14. I haven't solved it, so no clue, just a question: Does it help to work this puzzle backwards?

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    1. I have since solved it and I believe the answer to my question is No.

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  15. Ah yes, I have a most interesting answer...

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  16. I have the answer that many are hinting at here, though I admit that I find it somewhat unsatisfying! All the same, there's no point in moaning, and I'll be curious to hear alternative answers as well.

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    1. I have a second answer now that's maybe slightly better...I'm reminded of a certain drag queen.

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    2. For "dove / dole": Tennyson's "The moan of doves in immemorial elms, / And murmuring of innumerable bees."

      For "head / herd": drag queen Hedda Lettuce!

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  17. A synonym for one of the words reminds me of a certain former Sunday morning radio host.

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  18. Replies
    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. Indeed, but too obscure to be the intended answer.

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    3. Ironic, though: the breaking news name would never have been confused with the single animal.

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  19. Glad I was able to solve it. Clues fit my answer.

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  20. Replies
    1. Dxyzw=xy(zw) is the formula for a dove in Raymond Smullyan's book "To Mock a Mockingbird".

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  21. Replies
    1. I rather suspect you didn't need it.

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    2. Well, due to an odd coincidence, your hint kept something more top-of-mind than it might have been otherwise, and led me to the solution.

      I might have gotten there without your hint. We'll never know. Doubtful your hint helped anyone but me.

      I'll explain more after noon PST Thursday.

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  22. Hey guys, I need a rest after solving this puzzle.

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  23. The answer I have is weak. But it may werk.

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  24. Replies
    1. No, but I believe timing is everything.

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    2. Destiny's Child. But for this puzzle, Jay Z is a better clue than Beyonce.

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  25. I have what seems like the answer, but it doesn't make much sense to me. The first word doesn't really describe an animal. It could describe a part of an animal. In some contexts, it might describe the whole animal, but in those contexts it is usually used for many animals. The clue "describe a single animal" seems strange.

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    1. I recommend continue searching.

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    2. My barbaric brain originally went there too… but there’s no violence needed to solve this puzzle. Perhaps try searching in a more ‘peaceful’ direction…

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  26. This is the answer I got; the dictionary specifies that the first word in the answer refers to one animal, but it has lots of other uses, including nautical.

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  27. I like a clever pun. This one isn't.

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    1. When the Soviets sent Laika the dog into space, some wits predicted that the U.S. would respond by sending up several cows, "the herd shot round the world." That pun was clever; my reference to Laika wasn't.

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  28. I predict a low submission rate this week. I learned something via this puzzle, but I am not impressed. I would suggest you head on over to Lego's Puzzleria! and take a look at the puzzle I coined that Will Shortz rejected a week ago.

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    1. A good suggestion actually. It's the kind of puzzle one doesn't see an immediate handle and then does a head slap when the solution jumps out. Not unlike today's NPR offering in a way. Of course, that's why many puzzle solvers have broad shoulders and sloped foreheads - from the initial shrugs and the ultimate slap to the forehead. No klew here, just an observation.

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    2. Besides taking a trip over to take a crack at sdb's Appetizer, it's worth a look at the image accompanying Entree 7. I think that's the doorman at Stately Lego Manor.

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    3. Early American puzzle solvers were known as Flatheads.

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    4. Another Shortz reject: Make a list of Presidents' last names, each used only once, last letter of each name same as first letter of the next one. Like: GRANT TRUMP POLK KENNEDY . Unique max is 11 names.

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    5. Looks like the makings of another good word ladder of a kind, Rudolfo.

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  29. I *think* I have the answer. Take an animal both words often refer to. Add the letter that you changed from the first word. Rearrange to get the name of a different animal and a color.

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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

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  30. Once you have the answer, drop two letters and the result, in order, will spell a common architectural term.

    Alternatively, drop one letter and rearrange to spell a synonym describing something that you no longer are.

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  31. "I did not have sex with that woman."

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  32. If my solution is correct, singular word can be either a noun or a verb. In some circles, both usages may appear in a single sentence.

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  33. I realize my answer may be an alternate, but I like it.

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  34. Musical interlude : Marvin Gaye. RIP my brother.

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  35. Couldn’t come up with a decent clue. Several I thought of are already here. So I’m going to forget all about it until Thursday.

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  36. If I have the correct answer....place the words side by side, remove the first and last letters, and what remains is the name of a medicine, although I've never heard of it.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I think you have the correct answer.

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    2. If your med is from an Indian drug maker, you've got the same answer as Iris Corona, I think. I don't think it's the intended answer, but it's valid (and timely).

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    3. Or, place them side by side, remove the last two letters in each word, and you'll get another example of the same species.

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    4. None of these work for my answer, though there are several other TMI's posted for it.

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    5. kingdom, phylum or division, class, order, family, genus?

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    6. That's what I got, also, Whisker.

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  37. Thanks! Yes it's an Indian drug maker. I'll admit I'm not happy with my solution, but a few hints on this site validated it. I'll keep searching.

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  38. I am pretty sure my answer is the target answer.

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  39. Mine works in Leo's clue too. So several of us I think are on the same page. I've decided to stick with my answer. Guess we'll find out Thursday!

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    1. I am pretty positive I have correct answer. It fits all the clues and makes sense. If not correct, than there is more than one answer. I found the answer on a list pretty quickly. Never heard of that name before,though. I usually give up if do not find right away. I do not care about getting the call and looking stupid.

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    2. I'm with you Natasha! I play for own amusement. I've never submitted an answer to NPR.

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    3. Even though I've never submitted an answer, I did send a suggestion to WS for a puzzle. I doubt he'll use it. It's one that starts: Think of a world capital.... So it's probably already been done. ;)

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    4. GB is right, Word Whisker. One of Puzzleria!s missions is to provide a platform for puzzle-makers to showcase their creativity.
      My email is jry51joroyo@gmail.com

      LegoWhoSaysHowever"WhoKnowsPerhapsWillShortzWillUseYourPuzzle"

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    5. Thanks Lego, and GB. Before I do that though, does WS respond to everyone eventually? I mailed mine (snail mail) several months ago, and haven't heard back.

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    6. He does not. You may not hear back. But, snail mail--cool old school. That might get MY attention.

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    7. "...does WS respond to everyone eventually?"
      To quote Word Woman from an earlier comment: "No."

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    8. I'll give Will till the end of the year. Maybe my snail mail is still en route, you know, because of all the holiday mail. :-)

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    9. If you submitted your puzzle suggestion via NPR you will not hear back unless it will be used. Normally Will Shortz decides within hours or less if he will use a puzzle.

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    10. I have sent puzzles to WS and usually hear back within a day. One time I didn't get a response for about a year and that was the only time he used one of my puzzles on the air.

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    11. So maybe there's a ray of hope after all!

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  40. Hmm. Now I'm starting to think I *don't* have the answer based on a lot of these clues...

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  41. guaranteed to b vrong. I'm quite mordant about it as my answer just went out the window

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    1. DOLEful ~mordant cf lou Rukeyser's comment on Bob Dole being Ford VP running mate
      a dove flew through my window= 60's commercial for dove dishwashing liquid- and a George Carlin joke take "It was my dove"
      knew it wasn't correct answer but it was all I could find

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  42. Despite being completely unresponsive to the puzzle, I really like "squad of squid" as an answer.

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    1. Yours would certainly be more welcome than a crotch of crabs.

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    2. Or a PIG in a PIT of pigs...

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    3. I couldn't find a collective for squid, which is a zero plural noun. "A “squad” of squid

      https://reef-world.org/blog/collective-nouns
      "OK, so technically this one isn’t strictly legit... yet! The official collective noun for squid is actually a “shoal,” but Cephalopod fans around the world have united in a petition to make “squad” a bona fide term."

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    4. And what about the no S's stipulation?

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  43. I like adding a third letter to neighbor's PET to get PEST.

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  44. The answer came to me watching a recent Benedack Cumberbotch film.

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  45. Hey PS,

    Did you misspell his name on purpose or is that a clue?

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    Replies
    1. Perhaps but not intentional.But really who can spell a name like that correctly?

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  46. I finally got an answer early this morning, when I woke up ahead of the alarm. It is confirmed by the nautical term mentioned above. I also came up with an alternate answer, that's weak, but I sent both in anyway.

    My alternate answer involves a kind of fish.

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  47. My answer does not fit the nautical clue. I wonder if Will will accept multiple answers this week.

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    Replies
    1. I think he will have to accept multiple answers. It is clear on this blog that there is more than one answer.

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    2. Will doesn't "have to" do any such thing, he answers to no one. I think there is really only one answer, but I spent a lot of time in the southwest.

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  48. I didn't think my answer fit the nautical clue either, but turns out it does.

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  49. One of the words has a close relationship to one of the challenges in the on-air puzzle.

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  50. Long time listener, first time caller on this blog.
    I want to submit a question on the "submit a question" page of npr.org. Maybe a silly question, but do I include my intended answer in my submission? Thanks!

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    Replies
    1. No, not if I understand what you are asking in your post. You should click on the box that asks some question about what you are emailing them about, such as ANSWER THE PUZZLE.

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    2. I want to suggest a future puzzle. I sent the answer with my proposed puzzle.

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    3. I suggest you go back and look at the upper right corner of the submit your answer page and click on the highlighted word to find the proper way to do that.

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    4. When I have submitted puzzle ideas, I have sent the puzzle, then some lines...
      ...
      ...
      ...
      ...
      and then the answer, so if anyone reading it wants to try it without seeing the answer, they have an opportunity to do so.

      Good luck!

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  51. The 1,100-pound bronze statue of Robert E. Lee that was at the center of a 2017 white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va., will soon be melted down.

    That is in today's news. They didn't say if that was another result of global warming.

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    Replies
    1. I don't want to live in a nanny state where people are telling me where I can go and what I can do.”
      ― Rand Paul

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  52. I've submitted both answers. Like Natasha I found the plural name for one answer from a list; only it wasn't alone, it was one of 7. One of the other plural words has a connection with a well-known saint. Another of the plural words has a connection with the celebrity known as Mr. T.

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    1. I hope you did OK in the flooding. My brother in laws car was destroyed by a tree on Camano Island.
      It was touch and go for a moment.

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  53. I just saw 8 names for the plural of the single name. I still stand by my answer.

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  54. I think (I know) I have the answer, and I am looking at Blaine's hint and I'm thinking, "You call that a hint?"
    I say just get your vaccines so we can all be, ya know, protected.

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  55. Yes, i thought it was also a little fuliginous.

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  56. DOVE, DOLE

    Ah yes, I have a most interesting answer...The news of Bob DOLE's death was just announced during the NPR Sunday morning broadcast.

    "On The West Side" refers to 2 things: 1. On The DOLE and 2. the west side of the island of Kauai which used to be home to lots of DOLE pineapple growing but now hosts mainly corn and pesticide research for whatever Monsanto calls itself now.

    Hey guys, I need a rest after solving this puzzle." >>> refers to bromelain, the enzyme found in pineapple, especially in the core (go Clark a Pseudonym!) and leaves. >>> "Bro, me lain!" (with apologies to the English language.)

    Another answer:

    HEAD, HERD

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  57. DOVE, DOLE (perhaps not Will’s intended answer)

    My hint: “Illeism.” Illeism is the tendency to speak of oneself in the third person. Bob Dole, who coincidentally died on the day of the puzzle, used to refer to himself in the third person.

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  58. DOVE & DOLE

    My Hints:

    "Walter" Referring to the late actor, Walter Pigeon.

    "OTWOASWD" Initial letters of the song, On the Wings of a Snow White Dove.

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    Replies
    1. SDB: I sent in Dove and Dole. Glad you got the same answer. I wonder what WS wants. Ours it the better answer.

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    2. WW: I thought Pineapple referred to Dole pineapple juice.

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    3. I agree; ours is the better answer.

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  59. My solution is HEAD, HERD.

    I wrote, "SDB--Thanks for your hint." Recall that I posted this before SDB had posted anything in this week's blog or subsequent to the airing of this puzzle in last week's blog.

    On the Tuesday before the current puzzle aired SDB presciently posted a quip that referred to "The Ox-Bow Incident." In an odd coincidence, I was reading that book at the time (and briefly wondered whether SDB was spying on me, but decided that was not likely). Most of you will know that cattle rustling plays a large role in the book. So "cattle" gives the main connection to this week's puzzle. Another connection is the "herd mentality" involved in vigilantism. Finally, I'd add that the book is written from "inside the head" of Art Cross, but maybe that's a bit of a stretch in regard to this puzzle (see what I did there?).

    I think the book was on my mind while I was solving this puzzle. It took me longer to read the book than it might have because I would read a bit and my mind would wander off to current events.


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    1. I thought you were referring to my moniker, which includes DIVE, the past tense of is, DOVE.

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    2. SDB--I wish I was that clever!

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    3. SDB: I thought of that also. Someone posted Peace with I thought fit my answer of Dove. Lady GAGA wore a Dove pin to the inauguration to symbolize Peace. I was going to post her name but thought too obvious. Never "heard" of Head.

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    4. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    5. MW Collegiate 11th for head, definition 4b (of 21 definitions, many with subparts) is "pl HEAD : one of a number (as of domestic animals)."

      MW does not define dole as a group of doves. Others have noted this use seems to be archaic.

      The Concise Oxford Dictionary is similar.

      Some uses of head that fit this context from THe Ox-Bow Incident, available free at https://archive.org/details/in.ernet.dli.2015.83352/page/n3/mode/2up, follow:

      They figured about thirty head, and four riders.

      “Way short” Ganby said, “Nearly six hundred head, counting calves.”

      "if we wait, I tell you, there won’t be one head of anybody’s cattle left in the meadows by the time we get justice.”

      “You ’mind me of Tyler and the preacher. What have they got us, your good men? A thousand head of cattle gone and a man killed, that’s what they got us. We gotta do this ourselves. One good fast job, without no fiddlin’ with legal papers, and that’s all there’ll be to it.”

      "About forty head,” Tetley said.

      We can't tell how many head, of course . . .

      Gil thought. Then he said, “Not unless they stopped in the Ox-Bow. There’s no place else from here to the Hole where they could get forty head of cattle off the road,”

      a few little washes big enough for the coach to get off the track and stand, but none to hold forty head of cattle.

      No, he was sure they couldn’t have got forty head in there;

      "Fifty head.”

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  60. head, herd

    Earlier this week I said, “Couldn’t come up with a decent clue. Several I thought of are already here. So, I’m going to forget all about it until Thursday.” My submission was “head, herd.” A head of cattle is a single cow or steer. I.e., 30 head of cattle means 30 individual cows or steers. A group of cows and/or steers in the plural may be referred to as a herd of cattle.

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  61. I wrote, “The dictionary specifies that the first word in the answer refers to one animal, but it has lots of other uses, including nautical.” The first answer word is HEAD, of which the OED_ says, "An individual animal, esp. a herd animal." And then HERD.

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  62. HEAD, HERD, as in: The farmer had 123 head of cattle in his herd.

    Alternatively, and admittedly a weak alternate, I also submitted PIKE, PILE, as in: The King's feast featured a pile of pike on a platter. I realize that a group of pike is normally called a school, but the puzzle did not state that the plural of the animal needed to be live animals. Since dead bodies, or cooked fish, can be piled and referred to as a group, I sent it in anyway. This was the first answer I thought of, and I knew it was weak, so I kept looking. When I stumbled upon HEAD/HERD, I quickly realized that it matched the nautical clue, so I knew I wasn't the only one with that answer.

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    1. In that sentence, the word "head" refers to all 123 animals. It does not mean a single animal. The clue is misleading.

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  63. A single (or ten or twenty) HEAD of cattle → a HERD of cattle.


    HEAD See definition 10: “A single animal,” and the nautical term, definition 27: “toilet, especially on a ship.”

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  64. Head (as in head of cattle)/ Herd

    Head can be either a noun or a verb.
    I worked with retired navy people, who would, “Head for the head.”


    (But I’m still disappointed that a bashful lion isn’t a prude.)

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  65. HEAD, HERD (of cattle, e.g.)

    > I hear that it's cold in Schenectady this time of year.

    HEAD (of cattle, e.g.) is an example of synecdoche. Also, "hear" -> "heard" -> HERD.

    Re: nautical references: "Hey, sailor, wanna buy a shrunken head?"

    >> Breaking news.
    > Ironic, though: the breaking news name would never have been confused with the single animal.

    Bob Dole was no dove. He was, however, a subject of Will Shortz's favorite crossword of all time.

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    1. Head, is also a nautical euphemism for toilet - dating to sailing ship days when a ship's toilet was at the front (head) end of the ship where motion through the water would wash way any dirt.

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  66. Puzzleria! is proud to present a half-dozen dazzling wordplayful puzzles created by our friend Ken Pratt (aka "geofan") on this week's Puzzleria!, which will be uploaded in the wee hours of Friday morning, after Midnight PST.
    These great puzzles appear in his ever-popular recurrent "Worldplay" feature.
    As usual, we will also provide you with a mess of other challenging puzzles, including riff-offs of Tom Bible's either heady or doleful Noah's-Ark-dove-with-an-olive-twig-in-its-beak NPR puzzle.
    Come aboard.

    LegoWhoIsJustAnotherOneOfThoseDamnAntediluviansLivingInAPostdiluvianWorld

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  67. dove, dole

    Coincidentally, Bob Dole died the day of this puzzle.

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    1. yeah i subbed that as my entry though I knew it was wrong
      tried herd early on but head did not seems like an answer to me
      final score Blaine 350- bird 0

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  68. I don't believe I have ever heard (no pun intended) HEAD used in reference to a single animal. "Rowdy, see if you can round up a head of cattle." "One of the cowboys was thrown from his horse and trampled by a head of cattle." "When the cattle stampeded I saw a head head in that direction and gave chase."

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    1. But apparently it sometimes is used to indicate the singular, if only because there is no alternative in some cases. According to the Wikipedia article on "cattle":

      "Cattle" can only be used in the plural and not in the singular: it is a plurale tantum. Thus one may refer to "three cattle" or "some cattle", but not "one cattle". "One head of cattle" is a valid though periphrastic way to refer to one animal of indeterminate or unknown age and sex; otherwise no universally used single-word singular form of cattle exists in modern English, other than the sex- and age-specific terms such as cow, bull, steer and heifer.

      Unpacking this little passage requires a dictionary and perhaps more--I'd never heard of a "plurale tantum" and I think that the Wikipedia article explaining it underestimates the perverse illogic of English, which turns a singular Celtic word "triubhas" into a plural "trousers" because English-speakers did not know any better. If you've read all the way to this point, I hope you have enjoyed our trip down the rabbit hole.

      And, by the way, cattle is the English corruption of "caput," which is Latin for "head.' So maybe we've gone through the looking glass and come back out again.

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  69. HEAD, HERD
    I clued that Jay Z was a better puzzle exemplar than Beyonce.
    Why? Because Beyonce is merely the most famous vocalist in the world.
    Jay Z on the other hand became the HEAD of DefJam Records.

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  70. I thought Blaine's clue of House referred to Noah's ark where the Dove returned with a twig or something. Shows how creative one can be..lol.

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    1. I was thinking if you list the Hebrew alphabet vertically, aleph (ox head) sits atop beth (house).

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    2. Interpreting Blaine's clues is often more challenging than Will's puzzles. After concluding that Head/Herd was the likely answer, I took Blaine's comment as a play on, Home, home on the range, where the (herds) of deer and antelope play,...."

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    3. I took Blaine's clue to hint at pigeon being the dupe and house being the dealer in a scam like 3 Card Monte or the shell game. The pigeon is allowed to win at first to entice him to bet big, and then he loses. BTW I know how to perform both of these scams. The pea is not actually a real pea and it is never going to be found unless the crook lets the dupe. There is a trick to removing the "pea" as the shell is lifted. The card scam is more legit, at least at the start, and simply slight of hand in which card is thrown at which location.

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    4. I thought Blaine's clue was self-referential, pointing at a hint already given by the first sentence of his standard instructions, warning posters not to say anything that would "steer" solvers toward the correct answer.

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  71. If “dove” and “dole” are indeed Will’s intended answers, then the words “to describe” and “describes” in the puzzle’s wording are misleading at best, erroneous at worst. (The wording should have been “that names” instead of “to describe” and “names” instead of “describes.” ) The curious wording is what first made me think that “dove” and “dole” may not be the intended answers. We’ll have to wait until Sunday to see.

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  72. Head, Herd. I was not sure about this one.Put Marvin Gaye- "Heard it through the grapvine."
    And recent Benedict film something- something dog about life on a Montana cattle ranch with poison-- rawhide.

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  73. I submitted HEAD, HERD, but I think DOVE, DOLE is a more elegant answer, because it is lesser known and applies to only one animal. Therefore, "dole" seems like a better fit with the puzzle's specification that the second word means the plural of "that animal," whereas "herd" could be the plural for many animals. However, I did note that the dictionaries I looked at described "dole" as "archaic," and that the lists of animal plurals I found on line did not list "dole" as a plural of "dove," though one of them did list "dule." Perhaps given all these considerations both answers will be accepted.

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  74. Head, herd. I think we all know what "I did not have sex with that women" alludes to. I don't think we have to use our heads.

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    1. Ew. Now I wish that clue had been Removed by Blog Administrator

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  75. I posted on Wed Dec 08, at 05:03:00 AM PST:

    I've submitted both answers. Like Natasha I found the plural name for one answer from a list; only it wasn't alone, it was one of 7. One of the other plural words has a connection with a well-known saint. Another of the plural words has a connection with the celebrity known as Mr. T.

    I submitted both HEAD -> HERD and DOVE -> DOLE.

    The list I used was Wikipedia's "List of animal names".

    A couple pages down, it its "Terms by species or taxon" table, you see:

    (The column headers:)

    Animal Young Female Male Collective noun Collateral adjective Culinary noun for meat
    .
    .
    .
    (and this entry:)

    Dove chick hen cock arc[11]
    cote
    dole[2][44]
    dule[11][44]
    flight[2][11][44]
    piteousness[2][44]
    pitying[11] columbine

    The "Collective Noun" column lists arc through pitying, including dole. The connections I noted were St. Joan of Arc, and Mr. T's statement he often gives, "I pity the fool that..."

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  76. Hm, 'dole' is a nice word, but it's archaic. I don't think archaic words are generally allowed as answers.

    At first I thought 'head' was also defective. In the usage I was thinking of, e.g. "The rancher sold 300 head of cattle at auction," it is a *plural* noun (as is obvious from the quantifier '300', which obviously couldn't take a singular noun as complement). But there is another closely related usage, displayed in "Owners are charged a per diem for each head of livestock pastured." (That's the most recent citation given in the OED.) And there it's plainly singular. So... ACCEPTABLE.

    I still thought the wording of the puzzle was extremely awkward, and (as others have said above) 'describes the plural...' is flat out wrong.

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    1. In your example, "head" is not singular by itself. It means one or more animals. The modifier "each" is required to make it singular.

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  77. I too got Dove, Dole, and I see I'm in good company. The math involved in the other solution is a little bit over my head (pun intended).

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  78. ....and I thought Blaine was alluding to birds on his house. :)

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  79. I was scratching my head, and talking herd immunity.

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  80. My clue - a synonym for one of the words reminds me of former Sunday morning radio host - “head”= loo as in Lulu Garcia Navarro.

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    1. And if not for the s constraint, how about loneliness and loveliness- for ladybugs!

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  81. Bard (Eric Burdon, an animal), band (the Animals)
    My hint to SDB was SP, Sky Pilot.

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