Sunday, November 20, 2022

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Nov 20, 2022): Weird Science

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Nov 20, 2022): Weird Science
Q: Name a branch of scientific study. Drop the last letter. Then rearrange the remaining letters to name two subjects of that study. What branch of science is it?
A fun puzzle, I'll give you that, but not that difficult.

Edit: I'll give you the moon and the stars.
A: ASTRONOMY --> STAR, MOON

145 comments:

  1. Me too, first branch I tried. Now to think of a hint...

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    1. Hmm, that's odd, there was a comment from SDB above mine, that then disappeared.

      Anyway, rearrange the letters in the subjects to get something someone might think while waiting for transportation.

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    2. Apologies to SDB, I had to repost the first comment with the corrected deadline which meant his comment also got deleted. SDB wrote, "I got it with my first guess. Back to bed."

      Delete
  2. Blaine:
    A few minutes ago I posted:
    I got it on my first guess. Back to bed.
    Why did my post vanish? This once happened a few years back when I was first to post on your blog.

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  3. I got the intended answer quickly (which is unusual for me) but I much prefer my answer for a branch of scientific study three letters longer than the intended one (but that does drop the same last letter).

    LegoWhoFreelyAdmits"IAmNotAScientist"

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  4. Write the two subjects of the study in alphabetical order. Drop the first two letters. You get a company that helps in transportation.

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  5. Walter White was certainly no "Mr. Ethics."

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  6. "Over 1000" entries last week, whatever that means.

    Will said he loves the Out of Left Field cryptic crossword puzzles, created by this week's puzle author, Henri Picciotto, and Joshua Kosman. I do, too.

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    Replies
    1. Ayesha Rascoe mentioned that there were over 1000 correct answers submitted.

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    2. I looked at that cryptic page; it seems especially slow opening.
      We got hooked on the Telegraph (London) cryptic puzzles several years ago. They were famous, online and free. They had prizes and were basically timed. Some took days or weeks.
      The one sample I opened here looked well made and tough.
      If Will spends a lot of time working them (as he and they claim), no wonder he spends so little prepping his Sunday Puzzles.

      Delete
    3. There are a lot of numbers over 1,000. Recent puzzle had "over 3,000" I think.

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    4. Yes, one of them is: 23456789.

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    5. I interpreted "over 1000" to mean between 1000-2000.

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    6. I interpreted it to mean that the actual number was more than or less than Will wanted it to be, so they made that up.
      There was no number at all a few weeks ago.
      I am thinking that Ayesha may be starting to push back on whatever there is to push back on.

      Delete
  7. For a related puzzle, google "geology."

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  8. This one is hard to clue. Need some coffee.

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  9. It's been a while since we've had a puzzle with such potential for alternate answers. Lego apparently has one, and I have three more. There's a lot of leeway in "subjects of that study."

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  10. My first guess resulted in microbes and s—t. Well, maybe.

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  11. Rearrange the result to describe locations some people visit in an effort to enhance their appearance.

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  12. That takes me back. Guy Mitchell was my childhood crush.

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  13. Musical clue: the key is important.

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

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  15. That took less time than splitting a jean.

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  16. Too many musical clues that give away the answer.

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    Replies
    1. Yes, I am withholding my name of a classical composer for that very reason.

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  17. I'm pretty sure it's not Marine Biology/Binomial Ogre

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  18. Along the categories of "fun" and "difficult" Blaine mentioned, I'll split this one down the middle.

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  19. Drop the last letter from the branch of science and remove any repeating letters, leaving one of each repeating letter. Add two letters and rearrange to get the last name of somebody associated with one of the two smaller words.

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    1. Drop a repeating letter from that name and rearrange to get the last name of another scientist.

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    2. Add R and G to astronm to get Armstrong. Neil Armstrong went to the moon. Remove an R to get Angstrom, as in Anders Angstrom.

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  20. I pondered for a few moments. Then it hit me like an anvil on Wile E Coyote's head.

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  21. Two of my (three) tattoos depict the "two subjects." That only helps if you know me, and y'all don't know me.

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    Replies
    1. We might have similar tattoos!

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    2. Both of mine in that theme are memorials to my late sister.

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    3. I'm sorry about your loss. I also have a memorial piece (as well as another tattoo that I share with my sister). It's a good way to bond, I've found!

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    4. My late sister liked the crescent moon & stars motif, "Procter & Gamble", we always called it.

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  22. I'm not going to complain about the ease of this puzzle since today is my wedding anniversary and who wants to spend it getting grumpy over a puzzle? That being said, if the master of enigmatology had presented this in grammar school he never would have gotten the top award.

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    1. Thanks Dr. K. Hey, doctor of what?

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    2. (If it's a certain science, better not say!)

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    3. PhD, English. If I may ask, how many years?

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    4. Dr. K,
      Would you please email me @Yahoo.com. I would like to ask your opinion of a grammar dispute I am having with Will regarding a puzzle I emailed him yesterday. I believe it to be the best one I have submitted so far.

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    5. sdb, Email sent. I hope it was the right address.

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    6. Dr. K,
      Yes, and I replied. I hope you received it in good health?

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    7. sdb, As Katherine Hepburn used to say, "Fine. If you don't ask for details." I just sent my reply. I hope it helps.

      Delete
  23. Replies
    1. Clark a p, Good for you both. May you have many more. Enjoy.

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  24. Looked up "branches of scientific study" just now, and the answer jumped right out at me.
    Musical Clue: The Alan Parsons Project
    pjbAlsoThoughtOfAnotherMusicalClue,ButSinceTheGroupInQuestionWasA"Two-HitWonder",ItProbablyWouldHaveBeenTMI

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  25. The question is: Do I feel lucky?

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  26. I've found the right answer, or at least something like the right answer.

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    Replies
    1. A nod to Robert Frost's "Choose Something Like a Star."

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  27. Three weeks in a row of "challenges" with five minute solving times sure makes for a scattered Blainesville.

    I just noticed on the side bar a list of 83 followers of this blog.
    As a long time one of those, I was surprised to see only a very few names I recognized and even fewer active posters. What's up with that?

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  28. Okay Blainesvillians,
    Here are two perhaps-more-challenging puzzles, from this week's Puzzleria!:
    (Post hints anytime, but no answers, please, until Wednesday Noon PST.)
    Schpuzzle of the Week:
    Find a two-word oxymoron – like, for example, “true fiction” or “civil war.” In this oxymoron, however, the two words begin with the same four letters in the same order. What is this oxymoron?
    Hint: Each word in this oxymoron contains two words for things you can hear. A few examples of words that contain two words you can hear are “racketeering” and “violating.”

    Dessert:
    Surgery was made safer thanks to a 19-century medical breakthrough. Rearrange its letters to spell the surname of the man responsible for this breakthrough and something he frequently conducted to achieve it. Who is this man and what did he conduct?

    LegoWhoHatesToSeeBlainesvilliansWithNothingLeftToSolve...Why?BecauseIdleMindsAreTheDevil'sWorkshop!

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    Replies
    1. It must be a rainless rainyday, n'est-ce pas?

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    2. It's not my intended Schpuzzle answer, ron, but it's a darn good alternative.

      LegoWhoIsAProponentOfHarmfulHarmony

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  29. This puzzle reminds me of Alfred Pennyworth working on the floors.

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  30. I've been sitting with my feet up since solving.

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    1. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/8/8e/Flag_of_the_Ottoman_Empire_%281844%E2%80%931922%29.svg/220px-Flag_of_the_Ottoman_Empire_%281844%E2%80%931922%29.svg.png

      Delete
  31. I hear Amy won. Show preempted by football on at least my part of west coast, with the additional insult of Joe Buck.

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    1. Yes, 3 games to 2 for Andrew and 1 for Sam. Deets here.

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    2. Uggh, MJ. Too bad. It was a good game. This Overheard clip is fun, especially Sam interjecting:

      https://www.jeopardy.com/jbuzz/overheard

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    3. I watched it on youtube earlier in the day. Usually available. Surprised Sam missed the Final question.

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    4. But, not because he was old enough to have been at the play...;-)

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  32. Replies
    1. (You could make the case for 1/1/23, too, I guess.)

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  33. Well, if I don't visit again before the big day, Happy Thanksgiving to all the puzzlers here.

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  34. Replies
    1. ASTRONOMY -Y = MOON & STAR

      I've been holding off on my musical hint: Gustav Holst. Way too revealing. He is most remembered for composing The Planets.

      Delete
  35. ASTRONOMY (-Y) → STAR + MOON

    Astronomy may study a certain STAR or the MOON.

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  36. ASTRONOMY -> STAR, MOON

    > Timely

    This week, NASA's (uncrewed) Artemis I mission went into orbit around the moon.

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    Replies
    1. That's why I posted "Topical". I also thought of posting "Wild Wild West" or "Robert Conrad" due to his sidekick Artemus Gordon.

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  37. ASTRONOMY —> STAR, MOON

    The first two words that immediately popped into my head were “astronomy” and “moon,” not necessarily in that order.

    Hint: “Guy Mitchell.” For 9 consecutive weeks in 1956-57, Guy Mitchell had the nation’s #1 hit, “Singing the Blues,” one line of which is, “The moon and stars no longer shine.” (H/T to surferwoman.)

    Happy Thanksgiving to one and all.

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  38. Astronomy --> star, moon

    Last Sunday I said, “Musical clue: the key is important.” If you add “key” to “star” you get Starkey, as in Richard Starkey, AKA Ringo Starr.

    Happy Thanksgiving all, and, while I’m at it, Merry Christmas, too.

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  39. Astronomy -y rearranges to Star & Moon

    Dean Martin’s 1953 hit song, That’s Amore begins, “When the moon hits your eye….”

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  40. Our friend geofan (Ken Pratt) has donned his toque blanche and is serving up six delicious Appetizers on this special Thanksgiving holiday edition of Puzzleria! His "Worldplayful" menu of "Hot turkey & five delicious side dishes" features
    1. a "crucial roasting step,"
    2. a "mythological creature,"
    3. a "sequential series,"
    4. a "double-duty" demonym,
    5. a "Henanatomical" recipe, and
    6. a lamentable idiomatic phrase.
    We upload this week's Puzzleria! during the wee hours of Black Friday (just after Midnight PST).
    Also on this week's "Turkey-Day Menu" are:
    * a Schpuzzle of the Week involving "Duffers who know there are no holes in 1!"
    * a slice about an amusing activity that might turn deadly serious,
    * a Dialectical Dessert that features the mascot of an annual holiday parade, and
    * ten riff-offs of this week's "A-Star-Moony" NPR puzzle.
    Enjoy nibbling on our puzzles early Friday morn, right along with your left-over turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie.

    TurkeyLegoSmothered InGravy

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  41. I knew and had submitted Astronomy ==> Star & Moon, but what about all those claims that there were multiple alternate answers?

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    1. After jokingly writing "Google is seldom of any help to me when trying to decipher WW's clues," it occurred to me that a geologist might have occasion to study a GEL. Or maybe a "sol". And I believe GOO is the correct technical term for either of those.

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    2. Ok, so that's Geology ==> Goo & Gel. That's one possible alternate solution so far.

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    3. But I'm still only joking.

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    4. Well, in paleontology you could study a tangelo -- as long as it was a fossilized one -- or a... um... loop. No. A pool! A pool of tar, or lava.

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    5. In archeology, you can study cholera by examining medical artifacts... and also go. Hm. Oh, no, it's Og! Og was the inventor of the wheel, so very important in archeology.

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    6. In biochemistry, you could study a microbe, or shit!

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  42. ASTRONOMY >>> STAR, MOON, + Y

    "HA!" >>> Houston ASTROS.

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  43. Rearrange the letters in the subjects to get something someone might think while waiting for transportation: MOON and STAR rearrange to TRAM SOON.

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  44. My musical clue was "love", because in (the last line of) Cat Stevens' song, the Boy with a Moon and Star on his head, "Love" was all he said.

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  45. A few more alternates...
    BIOLOGY (BOG, OIL)
    ANATOMY (ANT, MOA)
    BIOPHYSICS (BIOPSY, CHI)
    Lots of wiggle room in "subjects of that study."

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  46. ASTRONOMY -> STAR, MOON

    I didn't dare give a musical clue of Pink Floyd, but I am indeed fond of their Psychedelia, such as Astronomy Domine. Since all of that Psychedelia was authored by Syd Barrett, as a youth, I clued Syd the Kid. Because there is indeed some rapper named Syd Tha Kid, and I adore misdirection.

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  47. Rearrange the result to describe locations some people visit in an effort to enhance their appearance. STAR, MOON --> TAN ROOMS.

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  48. The difference between the USA and Ukraine is that we are worried about an impending railroad strike, and Ukraine is worried about impending missile strikes.

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    Replies
    1. Also, we are worried about supplies of turkey, and Ukraine is worried about supplies from Turkey.

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    2. Yes, but you didn't mention all the turkeys from Russia they are having to deal with.

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    3. It seemed better not to venture into those murky wattles.

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  49. Here are the answers to the two Puzzleria! puzzles I posted here this past Sunday:
    Schpuzzle of the Week:
    Find a two-word oxymoron – like, for example, “true fiction” or “civil war.” In this oxymoron, however, the two words begin with the same four letters in the same order. What is this oxymoron?
    Hint: Each word in this oxymoron contains two words for things you can hear.
    Answer:
    Humdrum humdinger;
    Hint: "Hum," "drum" and "ding" are things you hear.


    Dessert:
    Surgery was made safer thanks to a 19-century medical breakthrough. Rearrange its letters to spell the surname of the man responsible for this breakthrough and something he frequently conducted to achieve it. Who is this man and what did he conduct?
    Answer:
    Rearrange "its letters" to get "Lister" and "test."
    (Joseph) Lister, test; (ITS+LETTERS=>LISTER+TEST)
    The breakthrough Lister pioneered was surgical antisepsis.

    LegoWhoWillUploadTheNextNewPuzzleria!InTheWeeHoursOfBlackFriday

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    Replies
    1. Very nice, Lego. I tried to get "Lister" from "sterile somethingorother", but made no more headway than I did trying to get "Morton" from "anesthesia", or "Semmelweis" from "handwashing". I really hoped I could get my visit to the Ether Dome in Boston to pay off.

      Delete
    2. Thank you, jan, for engaging my puzzles. As I mentioned over on Puzzleria!, the "Dessert" is what some solvers might call an "unfair" puzzle. You are a good sport... and a great guy.

      LegoWhoNotesThat"jan"RhymesWithTheSecondSyllableIn"Magnanimity"

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    3. ASTRONOMY, STAR, MOON
      Lego is right. That Dessert was unfair. I was honestly led to believe it would be all one word made up of the letters in LISTER and TEST. And like jan, I too tried to make something using the word "sterile". It seemed at first as though none of us back on P! actually got the intended answer, but in the end we did. BTW There actually is an Ethan Dome, who is an architect(I checked just now), and his name is a perfect anagram of METHADONE. Wonder if Jan had that in mind in his last post?
      "If I promised you the moon and the stars, would you believe it?/Games people play in the middle of the night"-The Alan Parsons Project, "Games People Play"(1980), from the album "The Turn of a Friendly Card".
      It's one of my favorite songs by Mr. Parsons and Co. I would've referenced Golden Earring's 1982 hit, their second, "Twilight Zone"(the line there is "My beacon's been moved under moon and star"), except they only had that one and "Radar Love", which came out eight years earlier.
      pjbNowRealizesOzarkMountainDaredevil's1975Hit"JackieBlue"FeaturesTheLine"MoonlightAndStarsInYourStrawberryWine",ButTheyTooWereATwo-HitWonder(TheirFirstWas"IfYouWannaGetToHeaven"ThePreviousYear)

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    4. BTW Happy Turkey Day, everyone!
      pjbRemindingY'All:TryNotToGobble MoreSittingAtTheTableThanTheTurkeyDidJustWalkingAround!

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  50. Sorry I'm late to the party…been crazy busy today. Obviously the answer is ASTRONOMY — STAR, MOON.

    My clue:
    Along the categories of "fun" and "difficult" Blaine mentioned, I'll split this one down the middle.
    With the last letter removed, you get "astr-onom," where the first half (astr) anagrams to "star," and the second half (onom) anagrams to "moon." That's how that even split of sorts came about.

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  51. Why did Walmart come out today admonishing some of their workers for taking too long to leave their break room?

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  52. As already noted by others, ASTRONOMY – STAR, MOON.

    I had earlier posted that it was related to ornithology. Charlie Parker's Ornithology uses the same chord progression as How High the Moon.

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  53. Today's Wordle is very Shortzian. My partner, (whose birthday is today) took a flyer and got it in 2 for a nice present!

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    Replies
    1. I loaded Original Wordle from the Wayback Machine site, and today's word is completely different there. I'm sure the New York Times has played with the word list.

      Delete
  54. A simple puzzle for today. Think of a two syllable word associated with today. Add a letter at the end of the first syllable.Read the result to name something associated with a prison.

    Happy Turnkey Day!
    Oh my, a typo. I hope Blaine doesn't delete me!!!

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    Replies
    1. I had the answer while still only half way through reading your puzzle. Have a fun day.

      Delete
    2. SDB, It was meant to be easy. I would have been disappointed if you hadn't gotten it. No one wants to work on a holiday!

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  55. I had posted a two-part clue, the first part mentioning that I solved the puzzle quickly, so it must have been my lucky charm (Lucky Charms cereal features both stars and moons among its marshmallow shapes). I also said the puzzle called to mind two famous musicians who played the same instrument (Ringo Starr and Keith Moon).

    Blaine removed my clue, but I'm wondering which part made it too obvious? Or was it both of them together?

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  56. Darn! I forgot yesterday was the deadline. Anyway, I said "Easy as pie". I was actually thinking "pie in the sky," but knew that would removed.

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  57. Reminiscent of the old Sam Loyd puzzle "The New Star", which notes: "the letters A-S-T-R-O-N-O-M-E-R-S form the pretty anagram 'no more stars'. We may mention that a still more appropriate anagram can be made with the same eleven letters."

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  58. This week's challenge: This week's challenge comes from listener Alan Hochbaum, of Duluth, Ga. What common eight-letter noun can be shortened in two ways — using either its first three letters or its last four letters? The answer is a familiar item.

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  59. My understanding is that the eight-letter word, its first three letters, and its last four letters are supposed to refer to (essentially) the same thing.

    So far I have a semblance of an answer, but I wouldn't call it a familiar item.

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    Replies
    1. It would be to Alan Hochbaum.

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    2. So the eight-letter word, its first three letters, and its last four letters do refer to (essentially) the same thing?

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  60. This would have been a better puzzle for last week.

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    Replies
    1. This does suggest I have the right answer…! (It sort of twists the "familiar item" hint.)

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  61. Yes, I've got it. Waiting for Blaine...

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  62. Does "using" mean "removing" the first three letters or the last four letter???

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    Replies
    1. There are 3 words that mean the same thing.

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    2. As in BULLOCKS, remove BUL yielding LOCKS or remove OCKS leaving BULL???

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    3. Ron--In your example, BUL, OCKS, AND BULLOCKS would all mean the same thing.

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    4. If BULLOCKS were the answer, then BUL and OCKS would also refer to the same thing as BULLOCKS

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    5. Take (1) an eight-letter noun, "abcdefgh." Now take (2) that noun's first three letters, "abc," and (3) the last four letters, "efgh." All of these refer to essentially the same thing.

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    6. Something like KEYSTONE yielding KEY & TONE?

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