Sunday, January 02, 2022

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Jan 2, 2022): Chopped-up Vegetable

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Jan 2, 2022): Chopped-up Vegetable
Q: Take the name of a certain vegetable. Move the 7th, 5th, and 6th letters — in that order — to the front of the word. Phonetically you'll name another vegetable. What vegetables are these?
Now take the 2nd, 3rd and 1st letters of the new vegetable and add them at the end and phonetically you name yet another vegetable.

Edit: Take 'BROCCOLI' and add the letters 'ROB' at the end and phonetically you have BROCCOLI RABE
A: KOHLRABI --> "BRA-KOHL-I" --> BROCCOLI

184 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. Blaine, your third vegetable is one of my favorites.

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  3. Fairly easy this week... I usually have one of these vegetables two or three times a week.

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  4. Can someone clarify for a mom-native speaker: does "Move the 7th, 5th, and 6th letters — in that order" mean "7-5-6 are now the starting letters or "6-5-7 are now the starting letters"?
    I can't tell if we're supposed to move the letters together or one at a time.
    Tia

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    1. It is ambiguous, but 7-5-6-1-2-3-4 is intended.

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    2. The first one. For example, PUMPKIN --> NKIPUMP

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    3. I'm a native speaker, and I had this same question. So thanks for asking it! (and answering, Jan and Blaine).

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    4. We're all mom-native (other than MacDuff and others born by caesarean section if you want to argue the point).

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  6. Write down the second vegetable. Strike out any letter that is in the first vegetable. You get a term used anachronistically in e-mails.

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  7. There's a relationship with the on-air puzzle.

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. Got that just about as fast as spelling out the vegetable.

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  9. Replies
    1. Robby Benson voiced the Beast in the Disney film. The Beast was really a prince, so I can imagine someone yelling "Here, Prince!" to CALL ROBBY. (If my pronunciation is faulty ... oh, well!)


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  11. I suppose it doesn't count if you start with alfalfa and wind up with another alfalfa.

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  12. Frankly, I was totally unfamiliar with the first vegetable until seeing it in a list.

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  13. Anagram the second vegetable correctly spelled two times, and get two idiomatic phrases for a place you’d like to live and a place you’d rather not.

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  14. Certain vowel sounds in the two vegetables don't quite match in all dialects. We Bostonian speakers can bond together in defiance.

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  15. The answer as written invokes the name of a pop culture character that I like.

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  16. Never hear of one of these. Maybe I've been in a coma. (No hint here).

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  17. I have eaten both of these vegetables. One of them I had last night. I have not successfully grown either of them in my own garden.

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  18. Clever little puzzle. I have eaten and grown both yummy vegetables.

    Siena is my clue.

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    1. WW - It’s a rare day when I understand one of your clues. Perhaps today.

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    2. Lorenzo, perhaps, indeed. Hope I didn't deprive you of a SOYO (Solve-On-Your-Own).

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  20. The second half of the second vegetable is an acronym used in the life insurance industry.

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    1. I see another acronym in the industry, but not consecutive.

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    Replies
    1. Same clue that got me the answer upthread.

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    2. Oops, I guess I should delete my post before Blaine does.

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  22. "Spectacles, testicles, wallet and watch."

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  23. The vegetables remind me of myself.

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    1. The B in Broccoli and the "abi" in kohlrabi, when said together, sound like "Bobby".

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  24. When I was at the store early this morning and heard the puzzle enroute, all I could think was "This puzzle is such a joke!"

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  25. Replace the first syllable of the second vegetable with a number and get a reason you might not want to eat vegetables.

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    1. An irrational number for an unnatural result

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    2. I was glad to be able to invoke the Universal Hint yet again. Replacing the first syllable of “broccoli” with the number e results in e coli, which has scared people away from leafy vegetables in the past.

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  26. Replies
    1. And I agree, although I never agreed on anything else.

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

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  28. JAWS - I’m familiar with that term - i wonder if they’ve developed an e-business for that as well!

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    1. I suppose it's possible, but I'm not aware of it.

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    2. I did, but I don't want to let anything slip before Thursday.

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  29. I have never cooked or bought veggie #1 but #2 is a huge favorite in my house.

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  30. They can both be eaten in the same dish. Delish!

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  31. I looked hard for, but failed to find JAWS's acronym, but worse than that, I looked really hard for, but failed to find Blaine's supposed THIRD VEGETABLE!

    I tried looking for both the 2-3-1 appended to the 2nd vegetable name, and removing the 1-2-3 from the 2nd vegetable name but then adding the 2-3-1 at the end. Either way I could not find a single vegetable whose name would sound like either construction. The closest I could come was removing the 1-2-3 beginning, appending 2-1-3 at the end, but also replacing one vowel sound with another, and also replacing one vocalized consonant with it's non-vocalized counterpart (i.e. the b as in ban would become p as in pan, the d as in din would become t as in tin, the v as in van --> f as in fan, the hard g as in ghost --> the k sound in coast, the z as in zip --> s as in sip, etc.)

    Blaine, come Thursday I hope you've got a really good explanation for your clue.

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    1. I didn't work quite that hard, but I'm also having trouble with 3rd vegetable.

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    2. Blaine should, unless your pronunciation is different from standard.

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    3. 1) I doubt you will be able to find the acronym with an online search, unless you know what it stands for. It is possible, however.

      2) I totally get Blaine's clue, for a change!

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    4. I get Blaines clue too and it is actually my favorite vegetable!

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    5. Just learned a secret to cooking it properly, during 2021. Culinary tip to be revealed on Thursday!

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    6. EaWAf, I'm curious as to what's you missed in my clue?

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    7. I tried but also failed to get your clue because I have never heard of this veggie before. Now I feel rabed.

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    8. I looked at Wikipedia's List of vegetables again today and only now noticed Rapini (broccoli rabe) after Cichorium intybus. Was that parenthetical note after Rapini really there last Sunday?

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    9. Ah, I too probably wouldn't have known it except for watching too many episodes of "Chopped" on Food Network. I can confirm that Wikipedia article hasn't been edited since Dec. 17, 2021. :)

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  32. These veggies can be enjoyed by kings and butlers.

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  33. Not sure, but I think Blaine is adding those letters onto the end, but not moving them from the front.

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  34. This put a small nail in my coffin.

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    1. broccoli and kohlrabi and rapini.

      broccoli = small nails.

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  35. Fun puzzle! If you're feeling stuck, you might perhaps consult a trusted mentor.

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

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  37. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. Quite an erudite rejoinder, Nodd. But I associate the name with the noise someone makes when sitting on a whoppee cushion!

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    3. I suppose they are aptly named, but I'm not sure they cushion the blow.

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    5. Well, there's a c-span. org webpage dedicated to this person's "15 minutes of fame."
      His voting record on cases affecting civil rights, a callous comment that he made, I believe to a law student. Just the fact that his appearance on the scene was a purely political move. All those rubbed me the wrong way.

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    8. Nodd, so noted. Veggies and English lauguage definitions at Blaine's. What a week!

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    9. FYI, Nodd's hint about the four-letter judge, and the ensuing discussion, was enough to give me the answer (which I had not thought of unaided). (I don't think it would be fair for me to submit the answer.) That's the first time I've ever seen a solution reference on Blainesville that gave me a solution that I didn't already know.

      I'll compound the possible excess of information here by noting that the two vegetables are botanically related (although I won't say how closely).

      By the way, like Lancek (above), I thought of alfalfa.

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    10. DMR,
      It has been some years now, but Will Shortz has said there is no way to cheat on solving and any method you may use to come up with the answer is appropriate. Submit on, Dude.

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    11. DMR,

      Despite not seeing your comment until this relatively late hour, I regret that my hints led you to the answer and have taken them down to avoid any potential repeat of such an occurrence within the next 32 minutes.

      Delete
  38. a cousin of veg #2 looks like a fractal

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    1. for sure. I was walking through Metro Mkt and saw it. Stunned to see math in action. I had to buy it, stir fried, it was delicious

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    2. "I can't go for that. No can do."

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  39. That first vegetable should be avoided, particularly when it's jumping. If you don't get the point I can explain it to you Thursday.

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    1. I was hoping that one of the vegetables would be kohlrabi because it's an intrinsically funny name. As shown by Walt Kelly's "Pogo," which taught us about the dangers of the jumping cold Robbies: http://whirledofkelly.blogspot.com/2010/10/jumpin-cold-robbies.html . Those words "I can" is an indirect clue, since "possum" is Latin for "I cam," as in "cogito ergo possum."

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  40. The second vegetable was one of the first ones I tried. If only I'd thought to work it backwards....

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    1. I had the same problem for a bit. Then I set up a spreadsheet that worked both ways. When I entered my initial thoughts, the answer jumped out at me.

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  41. One sounds more common than the other, at least for me anyway.
    pjbHasEatenOne,ButNotTheOther

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    1. KOHLRABI, BROCCOLI(BRA-KOHL-I)
      I've eaten the latter, but I wouldn't know the former if I were looking right at it.
      pjbKnowsTheLatterResemblesSmallTreesAndTheElderPresidentBushDidn'tLikeItAtAll

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  42. A wise man once told me that the atomic bomb didn't win World War II. Radar won World War II.

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    1. The Atom bomb had nothing to do with winning WWII. The European war had already ended and the Japanese were beat and it only caused them to unconditionally surrender sooner, rather than later. Radar was certainly important, but so were many other things, including breaking the codes and Penicillin and others. If you are interested in radar, I would suggest reading about Lord Dowding.

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    2. Radar was the company clerk at MASH 4077. He was too young for WW2. :-)

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    3. Rolls-Royce. Otherwise it would have been over way before the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor.

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    4. The German attack on Pearl Harbor is one of the best kept secrets of the Crimean War.

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    5. I was told that the decisive events of WWII were occurred in steel mills and shipyards. The US built ships and weapons faster than Germany could destroy them.

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    6. KOHLRABI & BROCCOLI

      My clue was that a wise man once told me that the atomic bomb didn't win World War II. Radar won World War II.

      Who knew that so many in Blainesville were amateur military historians!?! I guess I should have guessed it, since we are a pack of self-selected know-it-alls.

      In fact, when World War Three starts, and they need to re-staff Bletchley Park with a crackerjack team of Puzzle Solvers, perhaps Blaine can host us all in the flesh?

      Anyway, back to my clue. The only interesting thing about my sentence was the man who said the quote to me. He was I.I. Rabi, who I had the great fortune to meet and interview at his home near Columbia University, shortly before his death, around 1986.

      Dr. Rabi was an amazing man, a brilliant physicist, and an able host. He is considered one of the greatest Physics minds of the 20th Century. And although Rabi worked on the Manhattan Project, he moved over to MIT and spent most of the war years working at the MIT Radar Laboratory on Naval Radar for the Pacific theater.

      SDB is right -- perhaps the greatest reason for the Allied Victory at Midway was breaking the Japanese Naval Cypher and determining that Midway was the target of operations, as well as the rough date of operations. But US Radar was also a huge advantage, and won the war for us more than did the Atomic Bomb.

      Finally, we have the most important legacy of I.I. RABI. He's one of the only discreet clues I could think of for KOHLRABI.

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  43. I hope you all are having a cromulent day.

    That is all.

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    1. Why thank you. I feel so...embiggened.

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    2. My, what a hallucinatory of sesquipedalian vocabulary!
      pjbKnowsMorgulTheFriendlyDrelbPersonally,Too

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    3. Read "hallucinatory" as "gallimaufry".
      pjbMustIndeedDamnThatAutoCorrect!DamnItToHell!

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  44. I feel like this one is going to have a very high solve rate

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    1. Hmm. There are a few hurdles that might stymie the casual solver. If the over-under is set at 500, I think I'll take the under.

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    2. my weathervane, who has trouble with sunday puzz, got this one monday, so that indicates easy take the over

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    3. Bird. Have you ever seen a Brown Thrasher? State bird of GA since 1923. I have yet to see one after four years of Southern exile from Seattle. They are supposed to be very "pushy" around feeders. Thought you might know.

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    4. thrushes yes, thrashers no. here in fishhead city the thrashers come down fromn the mountains in winter and camou in our leaves

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    5. I guess you are not far from me here in Hotlanta.

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    6. And say hi to the weathervane for me.

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    7. my weathervane (former office mate at GM is retired from Clemson) whilst I am still in the pacific NW looking for quant work. I guess it was way too murky but perhaps I am in the witless protection plan

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    8. over 1400 I figured people who weren't familiar with the first would be able to google to solve

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  45. Skipping this one.
    I am afraid that the combination of somewhat misleading instructions, a "phonetic" aspect and the possibility of an unknown veggie are going to lead to disappointment Thursday.

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  46. Musical clue: Motley Crue (well, almost)

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  47. I thought of an answer, which I think is wrong. I sent it in anyway.

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    1. Cap,
      I agree that it is probably rong. Otherwise you would know you had the answer, and you, of all people on this blog, should know the answer. Here is a related clue: The Spy Who Came In From The Cold.

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  48. PS. The first one was a vegetable used in a foreign cuisine. Hell, I really don't know

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  49. Hey, have any of you tried Wordle? It's a once a day online word game, where you get six guesses, and Master Mind style clues, to guess a five letter word. I tried it today after reading about it in the New York Times. This looks like it will be fun.

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    1. My son does it daily and let me know about it.

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    2. I almost gave up on it until I discovered Color Blind Mode. But I spend too much time already on crosswords, cryptics, Spelling Bee, and this, so I'm not sure it's going into the rotation.

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  50. This one required looking at a list, which I don't like to do. I prefer solving in my head. The answer made me think of the local shopping center.

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    1. I posted earlier today at Partial Ellipsis of the Sun about lists but it seems relevant here as well:

      "The list is the origin of culture. It’s part of the history of art and literature. What does culture want? To make infinity comprehensible. It also wants to create order — not always, but often. And how, as a human being, does one face infinity? How does one attempt to grasp the incomprehensible? Through lists, through catalogs, through collections in museums and through encyclopedias and dictionaries.” ~~ Umberto Eco ~~

      Happy birthday, Signore Eco, semiotics aficionado!

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    2. Great quote. I also read this is why we gossip. We want to know---everything about everyone.

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  51. Happy New Year everyone, but I know it will not be so. It will be another nasty year of political discord and fascism and lackluster media which will allow it to continue. I know no one wants to hear this, but please pay attention to the ongoing destruction of our country. We are headed to a civil war and it is up to us to deal with it; not those in power who do not care. Pretending that things will all work themselves out will doom us.

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  52. I almost never got (to) this puzzle. My mind was still busy holiday-shopping, I guess.

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  53. KOHLRABI, BROCCOLI

    "Siena is my clue." The first European written record of KOHLRABI is by the botanist and doctor, Mattioli, of SIENA who wrote that it had “come lately into Italy”.


    "When I was at the store early this morning and heard the puzzle enroute, all I could think was "This puzzle is such a joke!" >>> When I was a KOHL's, I thought of all the jokes starting with "A RABbI, a priest, and a minister." It made me laugh to think of a cabbage rabbi, KOHLRABI.

    I also learned that the Brassicas (including both veggies) are COLE crops, not COLD crops.

    Blaine's 3rd veggie, BROCCOLI-RABE is also a COLE crop.

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  54. KOHLRABI → BRAKOHLI = BROCCOLI

    Blaine's 3rd vegetable: BROCCOLI RABE, (Rapini)

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  55. KOHLRABI & BROCCOLI

    My Hints:

    "I didn't have to get up and attend church to figure this one out." Nor did I need to go to a synagogue where I might see a cold rabbi this winter morning.

    "41" Bush 41 to be exact. He is known for his hatred for broccoli.

    "AB" The initials of Albert Broccoli, the producer of all the James Bond movies.

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  56. KOHLRABI —> BRAKOHLI —> BROCCOLI

    My hint: “Anagram the second vegetable correctly spelled two times, and get two idiomatic phrases for a place you’d like to live and a place you’d rather not.”

    BROCCOLI —> COOL CRIB
    —> LOCO CRIB

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  57. Kohlrabi/Broccoli

    Bugs Bunny is one Cool Rabbit.

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  58. KOHLRABI, BROCCOLI

    My hints – which I later deleted in response to a comment they were TMI – were:

    “Phonetically, the first vegetable names a king of song and an iconic non-human sci-fi character.” (Old King Cole, Robby the Robot from “Forbidden Planet.”)

    “Or anagram the first, second, fifth and seventh letters of the first vegetable to name a notable US judge.” (Bork.)

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    1. Sorry to have been the guy who IDed your Bork reference as TMI. But, just to follow up on something I said then about the two vegetables being botanically related, they're both (remarkably) varieties of the same species, Brassica oleracea, along with cabbage, cauliflower, kale, collard greens, Brussels sprouts, etc. Who would have thought that one species could take so many forms?

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  59. KOHLRABI -> BROCCOLI

    > There's a relationship with the on-air puzzle.

    (5. BLUSH CHARTER)

    Bush 41 (a number skydiveboy got away with hinting) famously hated broccoli.

    > 007 [a number that got my post removed by a blog administrator]

    Albert "Cubby" Broccoli produced many of the James Bond films.

    > Fondly recalling John Oliver's pissing contest with Robert Murray.

    He didn't think much of Coal Robbie.

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  60. Our friend Plantsmith's always challenging yet delightful Garden of Puzzley Delights, will take center stage on this week's Puzzleria! (uploaded on Friday, just past midnight PST). Plantsmith's puzzles this week involve a holiday treat, horizontal and vertical movement, and some athletic equipment.
    Also on this week's P! menus:
    * a Schpuzzle of the Week about birds with hooked bills,
    * a puzzle slice about a Finnish composer and swampy shrubs,
    * a Dessert puzzle about mice and chipmunks, and
    * seven riff-offs of this week's "NormVanBroccoli/RobbieColtran" NPR puzzle (including one composed by Ecoarchitect).
    Why not join us for some delightfully puzzley enjoyment?

    LegoLayingLowInTheSwampyShrubs

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  61. I wrote, “Write down the second vegetable. Strike out any letter that is in the first vegetable. You get a term used anachronistically in e-mails.” That’s CC, which almost never anymore means “carbon copy.”

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  62. KOHLRABI, BROCCOLI

    I had said that the second vegetable ends in a life insurance acronym COLI is an acronym for Corporate Owned Life Insurance.

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    Replies
    1. And I added "I see another acronym in the industry, but not consecutive." I was referring to BOLI (Bank Owned Life Insurance).

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  63. KOHLRABI → BRAKOHLI → BROCCOLI🥦

    The shadow of a clue I posted just over an hour ago: "My mind was still busy holiday-shopping"—an oblique reference to Kohl's, since the first four letters are the same as in "kohlrabi."

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  64. The same as everyone else: kohlrabi/brakohli/broccoli.
    My clue, "Spectacles, testicles, wallet and watch," is from the 1990 movie Nuns on the Run, where Eric Idle and ROBBIE COLEtrain learn how to make the sign of the cross. I emphasize ROBBIE COLEtrain to lead you to kohlrabi.

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  65. Following the instructions (Move the 7th, 5th, and 6th letters — in that order — to the front of the word) "kohlrabi":
    Moving the 7th (b) first "bkohlrai," then the 5th (r) "rbkohlai," then the 6th (a) you get "arbkohli".
    I guess that "sounds" tasty.
    For some reason I remember Pogo as having the cold robby wiiliwahs.

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  66. KOHLRABI & BROCCOLI

    My clue was that a wise man once told me that the atomic bomb didn't win World War II. Radar won World War II.

    Who knew that so many in Blainesville were amateur military historians!?! I guess I should have guessed it, since we are a pack of self-selected know-it-alls.

    In fact, when World War Three starts, and they need to re-staff Bletchley Park with a crackerjack team of Puzzle Solvers, perhaps Blaine can host us all in the flesh?

    Anyway, back to my clue. The only interesting thing about my sentence was the man who said the quote to me. He was I.I. Rabi, who I had the great fortune to meet and interview at his home near Columbia University, shortly before his death, around 1986.

    Dr. Rabi was an amazing man, a brilliant physicist, and an able host. He is considered one of the greatest Physics minds of the 20th Century. And although Rabi worked on the Manhattan Project, he moved over to MIT and spent most of the war years working at the MIT Radar Laboratory on Naval Radar for the Pacific theater.

    SDB is right -- perhaps the greatest reason for the Allied Victory at Midway was breaking the Japanese Naval Cypher and determining that Midway was the target of operations, as well as the rough date of operations. But US Radar was also a huge advantage, and won the war for us more than did the Atomic Bomb.

    Finally, we have the most important legacy of I.I. RABI. He's one of the only discreet clues I could think of for KOHLRABI.

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    Replies
    1. Don't forget that we did not invent RADAR. Also Germany and Japan also had RADAR. It was the British who used it most effectively to win the war in that they used it to help prevent the German invasion of England. And, I repeat that the Atomic Bomb had nothing at all to do with our winning the war. The war was already won in Europe and essentially won in Asia, but for mopping up and terms of surrender. The two bombs we dropped had more to do with sending a message to Stalin than anything else.

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    2. What won the war was the huge undamaged industrial (and agricultural, extractive, etc.) capacity of the U.S. Arranging to fight your wars Over There rather than Over Here is key.

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    3. All that is true enough, but no single thing won a war this huge, unless you want to consider the movies made at that time starring Marion Morrison.

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  67. Kohlrabi --> Brakohli (Broccoli)

    Last Sunday I posted, “I am reminded of 007.” I thought it was pretty innocuous, but evidently Blaine didn’t and deleted it. No matter. Several James Bond movies were produced by Albert R. Broccoli.

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  68. My clues - riffing off of JAWS comment re life insurance business, my e-business suggestion was “E-Coli”!

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  69. SDB,
    I neglected to tell you how saddened I was to hear of his death.

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    Replies
    1. Cap,
      I fully understand, but had you done so I would have told you how happy I am for him. He apparently led an exemplary life and has now graduated on to better things. We should now all feel grateful for the gifts he bestowed upon each of us regardless of our understanding or appreciation of what he did. I only wish I had done as much.

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  70. This week's challenge: This week's challenge comes for Joseph Young, who conducts the blog "Puzzleria!" Let A = 1, B = 2, C = 3, etc. Think of a five-letter word whose letters' values add up to 51. Now take this word's last two letters. Add their values. (For example A and C would total 4.) Change these two letters to the single letter of the alphabet that represents their total. (In this case, D.) The result will be a new word that is the opposite of the original. What words are these?

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  71. This week's challenge: This week's challenge comes for Joseph Young, who conducts the blog "Puzzleria!" Let A = 1, B = 2, C = 3, etc. Think of a five-letter word whose letters' values add up to 51. Now take this word's last two letters. Add their values. (For example A and C would total 4.) Change these two letters to the single letter of the alphabet that represents their total. (In this case, D.) The result will be a new word that is the opposite of the original. What words are these?

    Congratulations, Lego!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, skydiveboy and Dr. K,
      But actually, " This week's challenge comes from Joseph Young..."

      LegoWhoBelievesOneTwoThreeFromFiveEqualsTwo

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    2. Perhaps it is a forerunner to spinoffs.

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    3. Send not to know for whom the puzzle comes, it comes for thee.

      We may not all solve this puzzle, but all of us will be dissolved eventually.

      Delete
  72. Replies
    1. Sdb, you are a better man than I (at least thus far).

      Delete
    2. Congrats, skydiveboy. Now get outta bed and eat some breakfast!

      LegoWhoAdds"NiceHint"(AndWhoWondersIfskydiveboyEverEatsBreakfastInBed?)

      Delete
    3. I know sometimes he has Crow.

      Delete
  73. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  74. More than 1400 correct responses this week.

    Congrats, Lego!

    ReplyDelete
  75. Took longer to verify the math than to think of the opposites.

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  76. Solved using a short awk script on my PC, so my clue is:

    IBM

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