Sunday, September 04, 2022

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Sep 4, 2022): Postcards from Two Countries

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Sep 4, 2022): Postcards from Two Countries
Q: Name two countries with a total of 12 letters that, when spelled one after the other, form six consecutive state postal abbreviations. What are the two countries?
Anagram all the letters and you get something that means "loony sail".

Edit: Rearranged you get "mad spinnaker"
A: DENMARK, SPAIN (Delaware, New Mexico, Arkansas, Kansas, Pennsylvania, Indiana)

146 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. This is a simple matter of scanning lists.

    I get 1 exact answer, one alternate with 5 US states plus a Canadian province, and one wannabee with 5 states and only the last letter incorrect.

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  3. wrt Blaine's hint: or what he might suffer if he misbehaves.

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  4. Take the first letters of the six states involved. Rearrange. You get a word associated with crime.

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  5. I enjoyed solving this one, and I got Blaine's hint for once

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    Replies
    1. Yes, this puzzle was so easy even I got it in a couple of minutes. As sometimes happens, I expect that figuring out the hints will be more interesting than the puzzle.

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  6. Or a moving root, if you anagram all letters.

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  7. Blaine stole my clue! How about a priest's relative?

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  8. How does Blaine have 'this week's NPR puzzle' when NPR still has last week's puzzle (Switcheroo) up ?

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    Replies
    1. He simply transcribed the puzzle from the on-air puzzle segment.

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  9. One of the countries is a place I'd love to be in again every so often, except in a certain part of it. (By the way: As of this post, NPR still has "Switcharoo!" up.)

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  10. The last two letters of one country are the first two letters of that country's currency.

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    Replies
    1. Either we have different answers (🤔?), or it's… "Switcharoo!" 😉 (Still up as of this post.)

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    2. They are still the first two letters. Just not in order.

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    3. Exactly what I was getting at—unless Musinglink somehow has an "alternate answer." (I didn't find one in the case of this puzzle.)

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    4. Take the name of ONE of the two counties in question. Take the final two letters of same. Those two letters, in esrever redro, are the same two letters that begin the name of the main monetary unit of that nation's currency. Obviously, this is modeled after the on-air puzzle, which is probably the only reason it wasn't deleted.

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  11. Anagram the second country, and get something many of us experienced as a result of last week's puzzle.

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  12. Take the even-numbered letters in your 12-letter string, invert one of 'em and rearrange the result to get the answer.
    LagaLamdca(WhoCouldn'tGet"Kenya"ToWork)

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    Replies
    1. Oddly, the same instructions could get you to commit a crime.

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  13. No clue here, but a quick solve. My kind of puzzle!

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  14. I have it now. I was stuck on MALAWI...

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    Replies
    1. If you're stuck there, make the most of it. You probably can easily go swimming every day.

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    2. I found an alternate, if unconventional, solution that started there.

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  15. I tried to make INDIA work, but I couldn't find a seven-letter country ending in H, M, R, or W to precede it.😏

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    Replies
    1. I think the slip by Will last week might be attributed to him celebrating becoming a member of the septuagenarian club. Happy birthday Will! On a similar note, our most beloved quadragenarian - Serena - had her hopes of winning the US Open ruined recently, but there’s still good ladies tennis to watch by players not from one of these countries.

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    2. I thought she was going to bow out gracefully, but she seemed to raise a racket.

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    3. I guess that means, India is not one of the answers. Keep looking, it IS out there.

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  16. You can rearrange the 12 letters to make a four-word sentence describing something that happened on a wine tour.

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  17. Another anagram! Rearrange the names of both countries to get two words associated with old-timey writing.

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  18. i thought these were limited to one a year.? What next an Airport abbreviation puzzle?

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  19. Clearly, the Webmaster @ the NPR Puzzle must be off on summer vacation. He/she did manage to put down the Mai Tai and FINALLY update last week's puzzle, but they must be still vacationing, as of 10:45am CDT they haven't updated The Puzzle for this week.

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    Replies
    1. I've got the answer, but I'm afraid the 'submit answer button' is going to go in to last week's bucket.

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    2. Are you really going to allow yourself to submit to that?

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  20. Six states to avoid: CACOGALACTIA

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  21. Fairly easy, and fun. My question is, will there be more than 2,072 correct guesses?

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  22. Print the capitals of the two correct countries, and anagram to get a #^!!}&{ encrypt.

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    Replies
    1. Ha, I was working on anagramming those letters too, and I can kinda get in the neighborhood of what you're suggesting, but I don't quite see it.
      But I did find what might have been the centerpiece of the plot of Animal Farm, if Orwell had decided to go in a slightly different direction.

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  23. This is like a puzzle that I did on Puzzleria!

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    1. Here is the link to the Puzzleria! edition to which Bobby refers. It is an "Appetizer" titled "Global Coding Appetizer: Countries and Postal Codes" in his Puzzle Fun by Bobby Jacobs feature.
      Enjoy! (or "Re-enjoy!)
      Lego

      LegoWhoIsPleasedAndProudToFeatureBobby'sCreativityOnPuzzleria!

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    2. I had a trio of puzzles on Puzzleria on January 22, 2021 called "Countries and Postal Codes". The answers included Denmark, Spain, and Malawi.

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

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    1. I think that's tmi! (And I'm not even a big golf fan.)

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  25. LOL. The NPR Puzzle Webmaster has put down the Mai Tai and NOW we have this week's puzzle.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for the heads up; I've updated the link to the specific puzzle rather than the main page.

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  26. Pffft. You call that a puzzle? No list needed.

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    1. I did some of it without a list. I came up with two possible countries for the second country, and thought I might have hit a situation where there were two possible answers. Thankfully, that was not the case.

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  27. Anagram the two countries to get two-word phrases referring to:
    -- a plus sign
    -- average antics
    -- an extra race of humans
    -- a crazy sail
    --
    --

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    1. Lots of amusing anagrams for this one. What about thoughtful cheese? Perfect meal items?

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    2. Beverages for Tarzan, perhaps? Epitaph for a male nudist? Takes someone's noodles for a ransom? Sort of public relations for geniuses? Makes the place where skaters hang out wet?
      pjbHasTheAnswersThisComingThursday

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    3. DENMARK, SPAIN(Delaware, New Mexico, Arkansas, Kansas, Pennsylvania, Indiana)
      Anagram answers(in order):
      1. APEMAN DRINKS
      2. NAKED MAN'S "RIP"
      3. KIDNAPS RAMEN
      4. KINDA MENSA P.R.
      5. DAMPENS A RINK
      Best one of mine: #1(The rest each ended up being a bit of a stretch. Not as easy as one might think coming up with good anagrams for the answer.)
      RIP Queen Elizabeth II
      pjbThinksNextTimeWhenItComesToMakingUpAnagramsLikeThese,MaybeWeShouldSPAREMANKIND!

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  28. I had an alternate "solution" using a short name for one of the countries but it didn't work with the hints here. I'm not sure if Will would accept it so I'll shut up now.

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    Replies
    1. Nepal America = Nebraska Pennsylvania Louisiana Maine Rhode Island California

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  29. I have written a couple of dozen of quizzes and puzzles based on the Postal CODE, several RBS (Rejected by Shortz).
    I enjoyed this one.
    I am trying to come up with one thing Will handled professionally last week. Maybe tomorrow.

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    1. My thinking now is that the onus is on NPR, rather than as much on Will, because they apparently would not update the website until after the deadline although he wanted them to. Also they made no mention of it, but left it all up to Will. I have no problem with NPR being upset about the glitch, but I think they handled it poorly, with little consideration of the listeners.

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    2. I can think of one thing: I appreciate that he didn't blame Paula Egan Wright, the puzzle creator. It's up to him to verify that a puzzle, indeed, works as advertised.

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  30. If I were unhappy with the "loony sail," I could (weakly) get a nicer craft.

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  31. Replies
    1. "Something is rotten in the state of Denmark" A quote from Hamlet. The conversation between Horatio and
      Marcellus contains a non sequitur.

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  32. It's obviously the nation of "Nepal" and the island of "Andorri"
    NE PA LA ND OR RI :~D

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  33. Anagram the two nation's names together and you get something that might happen when the bridesmaids raid a bachelor party.

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    Replies
    1. Denmark Spain anagrams to Maiden Pranks which might happen if the bridesmaids raid a bachelor party.

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  34. We know Will Shortz and NPR did not bother to post an error or correction notice until after the Thursday deadline and perhaps even after the Friday taping.
    We also know he posted a correction notice here on Monday; we don't know where else he did so.
    His failure to spend under a minute to test the puzzle turned an easy challenge into an impossible one for all players who didn't get the early hint.
    The answer to the proffered puzzle was NOT Malta.
    An alternative answer to an alternative puzzle was sent in by a claimed 100 players whom Shortz professed himself to be in awe of. It seemed that that was the pool of possible winners.
    As one of many players who have sent in hundreds of legitimate alternative answers and been ignored or derided instead, I think the PM needs to review his act.
    I got my first puzzle book about the time Will was born and since I found his weekly show, I have come to regard him a usurper, not a Puzzlemaster, plying his wares on my NPR dime.

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    1. Just curious Jim-how many of your creations have been used on NPR?

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    2. Yes, I agree. Shortz's (al)most interesting claim to fame is that he came up with his own four-year curriculum for a Bachelor's in enigmatology. Actually, a nice appology our way would have been a more difficult puzzle. Not an impossible one, just more challenging. Like that one about three years ago that went "five equals four, six equals nine, seven equals five, what does twelve equal." Those were the days.

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    3. I am zero for 5 or 6 for being used.
      For that matter, I am only one for those for getting acknowledgement or thank you replies..

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  35. Is Will's approval rate worse than the Prez??

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    Replies
    1. Is this comment appropriate for this blog? Ancient Astronaut Theorist say, "No".

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  36. There is a partially beautiful alternate answer to the one that's clearly being alluded to in discussions here, although it's probably just as well that it's not discussed here (unless perhaps it's the one that John referred to in his post of Sun Sep 04, 02:22:00 PM PDT), as it works only if we're not included.

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  37. Many Brits may be feeling sad at the poor health of their queen, but Prince Charles seems to be holding up rather well.

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  38. C'mon!, I realize that it hasn't even been a half-hour ago, but am I really the first to post here,

    R.I.P. Queen Elizabeth II.

    ?

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  39. I take issue with the New York Times headline. She never really "ruled" for one moment, let alone 7 decades.

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    Replies
    1. I think it properly puts all this nonsense into more realistic perspective.

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  40. Wonder if the Brits will run a contest for Charles's regnal name, or is one Boaty McBoatface enough? I'm betting on George VII, though between the beheaded Charles I, Bonnie Prince Charlie, etc, and another shot at the Madness of King George, he's got his work cut out for him.

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  41. Having to meet with both Boris Johnson and Liz Truss in the same day is enough to do anyone in.

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  42. Okay, she's expired. Can England please start driving on the correct side of the road now?

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  43. Wanna become "DiscomBobbylated?!"
    If so, Puzzleria! is the place to be! Our friend Bobby Jacobs, in his "Puzzle Fun" feature this week presents a pair of perfectly puzzling conumdrums about a boy who asks questions like “Do you or do you?” or “Does it cost 50¢ or does it cost 50¢?”
    We upload Puzzleria! every very-early Friday, just after Midnight Pacific Daylight Time.
    Our menus this week also include:
    * a Schpuzzle of the Week that asks the question, "Is the love you make really equal to the love you make?"
    * a Puzzle Slice about Paul Bunyan and other such fellers,
    * a Dessert Puzzle that asks, “How much skin do you have in ‘the ol’ ballgame’?” and
    * ten riff-offs of this week's NPR puzzle, titled "COpeNHagen & MAdRID."
    "I plead guilty to bein' just a country-bumpkinetic puzzle hack hopin' again that all mah mad riddles an' such that we post this week on Puzzleria! won't be too dauntin' fer y'all, and that all dem markedly discombobbyling posers don't cause y'all copious pain!"

    LegoWhoAsks:"IsPuzzleria!FunOrIsPuzzleria!Fun?!"

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  44. DENMARK, SPAIN -- DE, MA, AR, KS, PA, IN

    "Peaches" The two countries anagram to "PEARS MANKIND"...But I am a peach fan.

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  45. DENMARKSPAIN → DE, Delaware, NM, New Mexico, AR, Arkansas, KS, Kansas, PA, Pennsylvania, IN, Indiana.

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  46. DENMARK, SPAIN

    Hint: “Anagram the second country, and get something many of us experienced as a result of last week’s puzzle.” SPAIN —> PAINS

    Rest in peace, Elizabeth the Second.

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  47. Denmark and Spain, for:

    DE, NM, AR, KS, PA, IN



    One of the countries is a place I’d love to be in…, except in a certain part of it.

    The part of Spain I wouldn’t want to be in is…why, pain, of course! 😉

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  48. DENMARK, SPAIN

    > How about a priest's relative?

    Padre kinsman

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  49. DENMARK, SPAIN. My hint said, “You can rearrange the 12 letters to make a four-word sentence describing something that happened on a wine tour.” (MEN DRANK A SIP.)

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  50. I was on Martha's Vineyard in 1992 when the Queen Elizabeth II ran aground, ironically off the Elizabeth Islands there. Watched from Gay Head as a motley bunch of ferries disembarked passengers.

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    1. I well remember this. My wife and I had cabins booked on its very next voyage from England to the US (I was ending my Air Force tour in England), and it turned out we had to fly instead, since the ship was in repair. Rats.

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    2. One of the ferries involved in the disembarkation was the Schamonchi, which used to carry people and bikes (alas, no cars) between New Bedford and Vineyard Haven. I even bought a commemorative T-shirt ("The Schamonchi Comes to the Rescue!"). The ship is now rotting ignominiously in Newtown Creek in Brooklyn.

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  51. Same as everyone else, DENMARK, SPAIN.

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  52. Denmark, Spain (DE=Delaware, NM=New Mexico, AR=Arkansas, KS=Kansas, PA=Pennsylvania, IN=Indiana) or Malawi, Malawi (MA=Massachusetts, LA=Louisiana, WI=Wisconsin, MA=Massachusetts, LA=Louisiana, WI=Wisconsin)

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  53. Queen Elizabeth II has now passed. A woman known for her success in raising horses. Not so much for raising children.

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  54. Intended Answer:

    DENMARK/SPAIN (Delaware, New Mexico, Arkansas, Kansas, Pennsylvania, Indiana

    Alternate Answer (Using a non-US State and its Postal Code)
    MALAWI - Massachusetts, Louisiana, Wisconsin, and
    MONACO - Montana, NAYARIT (Mexican State), Colorado.
    Nobody said the states had to be U. S. States!

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  55. Denmark, Spain. My clue was in the same style as the on-air puzzle. Denmark's currency is the Danish Krone. Denmark-krone. If Spain had a currency that was n-i-something, it woulda worked too!

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  56. Yes, echoing thoughts about Queen Elizabeth II. May she rest in peace after so many years of service.

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  57. Denmark + Spain → DE NM AR KS PA IN (intended answer)

    Alternates:
    Malawi + (the) Gambia → MA LA WI GA MB IA (includes one Canadian province)
    Nepal + America → NE PA LA ME RI CA (using informal name for USA)

    Nepal + Andorra → NE PA LA ND OR RA (near miss – last pair is false)

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  58. I'm hearing a lot of sympathy for someone who makes all the famous-for-being-famous glitterati look like pikers. The richest woman in the world by virtue of being born. I think I'll go listen to George III's "You'll Be Back", followed maybe by the opening scene of Monty Python and the Holy Grail.

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    1. It has long amazed me at how enamored the American public is with the British Monarchy. Why?

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    2. I believe that it is because it is a (in the view of some) glamorous institution that the USA does not have.

      I had a Finnish-American friend who was fascinated with all things royal. Finland also had no history of monarchy (other than as a subject of foreign ruler: the Tsar or the Swedish king).

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    3. "That means Queen Elizabeth II’s eldest son, Prince Charles, became king immediately upon her death. However, it may be months or even longer before Charles’ formal coronation. In Elizabeth’s case, her coronation came on June 2, 1953 — 16 months after her accession on Feb. 6, 1952, when her father, King George VI, died."

      I know how painful that can be. Just a few years ago I had to wait weeks to have an infected tooth crowned.

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    4. Someone tweeted, "Can't believe they are going to make a MAN queen. This woke nonsense has gone too far."

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    5. Found the two clips I mentioned above:
      Monty Python, and
      Hamilton.

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    6. sdb asks:
      "It has long amazed me at how enamored the American public is with the British Monarchy. Why?"
      It seems jan missed that affair.

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  59. Denmark, Spain

    Last Sunday I said, “Musical clue: Elton John.” The lyrics to Daniel say the singer’s brother is “heading for Spain.”

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    Replies
    1. And of course Elton and Bernie started by writing songs for other people out of an office on Denmark Street in London (otherwise known as Tin Pan Alley).

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  60. My clue was that anagramming the capitals reveals "what might have been the centerpiece of the plot of Animal Farm, if Orwell had decided to go in a slightly different direction." If the plot had featured democratic cows instead of totalitarian pigs, there would have been a HORNED CAMPAIGN.

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    Replies
    1. Aren't you missing a second D and E?

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    2. Oh yeah.
      Jeez, I guess I thought it was HORNED CAMPAIGN or CAMPAIGNED HORN!

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  61. My partially beautiful alternate answer (which I see geofan also had) was NEPAL AMERICA (Nebraska, Pennsylvania, Louisiana, Maine, Rhode Island, California).
    It's partially beautiful because of "America the ..." (I didn't specify selon Katharine Lee Bates, because that would have been TMI, although I was considering saying something about Wellesley but decided that would be too obscure).
    My comment about it working only if we're not included refers to removal of US from USA to get just the A, that is, just AMERICA.

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  62. Yes, Denmark/Spain. RIP Queen Elizabeth. What a long and fulfilled life.

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  63. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  64. My reference to the capitols of the correct countries anagramming to a #^!!}&{ encrypt explained:
    COPENHAGEN/MADRID = A G*DD*MN ENCIPHER

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  65. King Chuck should have a really good speech for us since he has been preparing it for decades now.

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  66. What do these people have in common?
    Her Majesty Elizabeth II
    Harold Wilson
    William Kite
    Edward Keith
    Lucy O'Donnell
    Mao Zedong
    Prudence Farrow

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    Replies
    1. By the way, that's Edward Heath. Listen to Taxman, or get the lyrics.

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  67. They were all mentioned in Beatles songs.

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  68. I was away for a few days. Just dropping in today to note that my clue of 2,072 (and the corresponding 1,288 in the replies) is the distance in kilometers (or miles) between Copenhagen and Madrid. Glad to see some folks picked up on it.

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  69. It is getting so hard to keep on top of the titular news these days.

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  70. This week's challenge: This week's challenge comes from listener Roy Holliday, of Nyack, N.Y. Name something, in eight letters, that you might hear at an opera. Drop three of the letters, without changing the order of the remaining five. You'll name something you might see at an opera. What things are these?

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  71. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  72. Got it. Waiting for Blaine...

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  73. I have a feeling there will be many alternate answers this week.

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  74. Nuts. "Kill The Wabbit" has too many letters. Back to work.

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  75. I have an answer, although the "something you might see" is not something I would typically associate with an opera. Could it be I got one of the "alternate answers" you alluded to?

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  76. The only thing coming to mind so far is the way too obvious operetta ==> opera. If Blaine kills this post, then I suppose it must be the answer. ;-)

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  77. More than 400 correct submissions last week.

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  78. I think that Nepal-America should have been accepted. A lot of countries have a one-word name as well as a longer name.

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