## Sunday, December 03, 2023

### NPR Sunday Puzzle (Dec 3, 2023): Car Parts To Wear Out

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Dec 3, 2023): Car Parts To Wear Out
Q: A muffler is part of an automobile. It's also the name of something you can wear. Think of two other parts of automobiles that are also things you can wear. These two words have the same number of letters and the same first two letters in the same order.
I wanted to wear a belt, but couldn't find anything to go with it. As for the answers, I wear one part much less frequently than the other.

Edit: I occassionally wear a hood (with a jacket), but the other much less frequently.
A: HOOD, HOSE

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

2. Oh, rats. I was being so coy. Sorry.

3. Rob, if you keep incurring the wrath of the administrator, you’ll develop a reputation as “The Bad Boy of Blaine’s Blog.”

2. A kind of seasonal answer. (Vauxhall drivers might think of a different answer, except the two words don’t have the same number of letters.)

1. Yes, Wolfgang. I thought of this pair, too.

2. I think there's a pair that fits your alternative clue and the two words *do* have the same number of letters. Don't dash off just because you found one pair!

3. I think I found this pair as well. 6 letters each?

4. Hm, just found a pair that is 6 letters each ... one of them is seasonal ...

3. Got it quickly. Maybe I'll go for a walk, or do some yard work.

1. As in, go for a walk in the neighborhood, aka hood, or work in the yard, with a hose.

4. The two car parts also name things that are found in houses and in their yards. One of the car parts also anagrams into something else you can wear that is also a car part.

5. On last week’s thread, Jan described this puzzle as the alpha and omega of dumb puzzles. I’d call it a sham.

6. I have more than one answer that works, but I also know which is the intended one. Not a good puzzle.

1. We live in a world. Of birds surrounded by an ocean of poop, SDB. Don't set your sights too high

2. I have a second answer as well.

7. I can think of a third car part with the same number of letters and the same first two letters in the same order that names something you can wear . . . on Halloween?

1. Your third word fits well with Nodd's. (This may be an easy puzzle, but it has the pleasant effect of allowing lots of whimsical comments that are not TMI.)

2. A SHOE (Nodd's third word) fits well with a shoe HORN.

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9. A third word with the same criteria can be added to the two answers to name something a car might do.

10. I have it also...

11. Bob and Doug

12. Two weeks of low numbers meant we were due for a super easy puzzle to get those numbers up.

1. I.e. >>> a loss leader puzzle

2. I wonder if the low numbers indicated a disgust with easy puzzles. Neither was difficult.

13. in patois: proximity.

1. (in the 'hood.)

14. Funny that we had rear seat, which was preceded a few months earlier by butt cheek. I’d ask NPR to keep it cleaner, but then I realized the phonetic pronunciation for one of this week’s answers!

15. A car usually has only one of one of the things but a number of the other thing. Similarly, a person would use one of the things in the singular and the other in the plural.

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17. Well, it's a beautiful day, and I think we all have this one covered

1. Curtis, hello snowy neighbor!

2. Hey neighborino…

18. I awoke amid darkling marine snowfall in the middle twilight zone. Ayesha',s clarion voice warned me of birds overhead. People were speaking a strange language where places like Terre Haute and Decatur were all spelt wrong. I grabbed onto the Sunday Puzzle as something comfortably easy and familiar.

19. Recently discovered the "skirt" and "skin" of a vehicle. However, my spidey senses are leading me in another direction.

1. Besides, the words have the same number of letters.

2. Those are terms more common to auto designers, and I doubt would have been simple enough to warrant Shortz's attention. Good on you for the observation. I like your answer better than the intended.

20. Does anyone ever wear one of the two items anymore? I quit that nonsense years ago.

1. Sure, with a broader definition.

21. On August 13, Ayesha' reported a story about nuisance Florida wildlife. Not gators or Burmese pythons. Peacocks in Pinecrest, soon to be vasectomized. Hmm.

22. First thing I thought of was a spare tire.

23. Insert a letter in one of the words, and you will get something that there are a lot of in the other word.

1. Put a U in hose to get house. There are a lot of houses in a hood, short for neighborhood.

24. Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam

1. With or without Full Force?

2. By which I mean "Head to Toe"

25. One of my words originated in another country

26. If you say the intended words in the phrase, "We've got a lot of _____ in the ______." you get a totally different context.

1. I discovered that there exists a song for that.

27. If this were the UK, not the US, there would be two other answers that both fit all criteria of the puzzle, EXCEPT one has two more letters than the other.
pjbDoesn'tFindEitherOneMentionedAsOftenAsOneMightThinkInTheirCrypticCrosswords,Surprisingly

1. See Wolfgang's 5:53 AM comment and thread above.

2. Just now looked up "Vauxhall", had totally glossed over the original comment while scrolling through them all yesterday afternoon. Still, that point about the British terminology for car parts does bear repeating, IMHO.
pjbHasNeverFoundTheName"Vauxhall"MentionedInCrypticCrosswordsEither,ComeToThinkOfIt

28. Tailpipe seems wrong on so many levels.

1. I would mention Axel Foley's use of a banana almost 40 years ago, but it wouldn't be tasteful here.
pjbCan'tBelieveThere'llBeAFourth"BHC"ComingOutSoon!

29. Anyone here heard of this fake news story?
Yesterday I was talking on the phone with a guy who lives across Puget Sound from Seattle that I never met who was selling an old Coleman lantern on Craigslist. It looked almost like it had not been used and I was giving him some advice on it. He turned out to be a conspiracy theorist.
He told me Justin Trudeau, at the beginning of the pandemic, forbid Canadian citizens to travel to other Canadian cities. I told him I had not heard that before, and he told me they refused to obey. Hard to tell him he is wrong when you are blindsided with such nonsense. Then he went on to tell me Anthony Fauci will be tried and convicted for lying about the vaccines and bla, bla, bla. I told him he was wrong about that and hung up.
I tried to Google this with zero results as I suspected. I would like to know if anyone else has heard of the Canadian travel story???

30. Well here we are again, I say to myself. I picked up a DVD of a movie starring Meryl Streep and Lucas Hedges, I had not heard of before, at the library today. I am watching it now. The name is, Let Them All Talk, and it seems a little thin. MS is a well known author who is afraid to fly, and refuses to go to Europe to accept a prestigious prize. It is suggested to her that she go on the Queen Mary 2. So there we are, all of us, actors, crew, and we too, trapped on this waterborne vehicle and a plot line begging me to know why I am watching this boring crap. I know of course, it is because these 2 stars are usually in good films. Not this time. I have just now paused the film where 2 of the other actors are sitting with a chess board in front of them with many of the pieces in play. So I had to pause and backup just a bit to examine the way the pieces are laid out on the board. Black is facing the actors. Most of the black pawns in view of the left side of the board are in visible play, with one white pawn in position of checking the black king which is positioned where the queen would start, and the queen is positioned where the king would start. Anyone who plays chess even just a little would know this is not at all realistic. Why does it cost so much to make a film and yet so little attention is payed to such an easy scene to set up?

1. Robin Hood: Men in Tights [Mel Brooks, 1993]

31. SDB: Great that you spotted the error. A relative of mine is set producer for movies and consults as many experts as needed yet still there are errors that I have noticed.

32. You can fit the wearable items in the glove compartment, but not the car parts.

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34. No clue, but a history joke (?), from a book I mentioned a few weeks back:

A Roman walks into a bar, hold up two fingers, and says, "Five beers, please!"

1. Maybe he was a centurion celebrating a victory.

2. Or an ancient astronaut, visiting from Vulcan.

3. Oh, you mean Paul Allen?

4. Actually, Paul Alien, from Cercano.

5. I think it is the other way around.

35. Dr. K - yes to the Fred reference last week. The YouTube video I saw showed six girl puppets in the back seat not seven. Wonder where that other one was.

1. I have no idea what the puppet thing is about, but perhaps she was on the floor, waiting for someone to give her a hand.

36. Now that most everyone has solved this week's Sunday Puzzle, here's one to think about. Just post the answer - don't wait.

From where do we know Ted Statesma?

1. The United States Marines?

2. Good work, Cranberry. It’s in the last line of every verse of the United States Marines’ Hymn: Uni - TED STATES MA – rines,

37. Why are there no polar bears in the Antarctic?

1. https://www.livescience.com/why-no-polar-bears-antarctica

2. SDB: Great question. I think I found the answer.

3. They can't bear each other.

4. And besides that, polar bears are dangerous enough as it is. So I don't think it would work well if we had bipolar bears.

5. cute SDB I like

38. This puzzle wouldn't be too hard for Santa Claus.

39. Well I'm not wearing my tachometer and taillights at the moment, but I could ...

40. Somethings a juvenile delinquent wouldn't have opted for ?

1. juvenile delinquent = hood
opted = c(hose)

41. I have an alternate answer that involves a term from welding that you can see on a car.

42. Sometimes, when I'm cruising the city in a \$200K vehicle, I lean back and think, "If the bus driver doesn't speed up I'll be late for work."

43. Last week's puzzle about road signs got me thinking about DEER CROSSING signs. Why do they post them when we all know deer cannot read?

1. Do they need to?

2. What did one mathematician say to the other?

Sine, sine, everywhere a sine.

1. Thanks for correcting my ignorant error. I shouldn't jump to conclusions.

45. HOOD, HOSE

"I.e. >>> a loss leader puzzle" points to LEDERHOSEN.

"Curis, hello snowy neighbor!" >>> In our neighborHOOD.

46. Horn and hose

1. That was a mistake on my part. I meant HOOD, not HORN. I was rushed and sending from my cell phone while stopped at the side of the road and did not catch my error. I had to drive across town and pick up a free Coleman lantern and cooler free that should sell for \$250 after I rebuild the lantern.

47. HOOD, HOSE

Hint: “On last week’s thread, Jan described this puzzle as the alpha and omega of dumb puzzles. I’d call it a sham.”

I was casting no aspersions on Will’s puzzle selection but rather hinting at Sam the Sham and the Pharaohs’ 1966 song, “Lil’ Red Riding Hood.”

48. HOOD, HOSE

> The alpha and omega of dumb puzzles.

> I can think of a third car part with the same number of letters and the same first two letters in the same order that names something you can wear . . . on Halloween?

HORN

49. HOOD → HOSE
I might wear a HORN on Halloween!

50. Our friend Tortitude is treating us to a sextet of excellent word puzzles (titled "Sitcoms, Sajak, Singers, Synonyms, States") on this week's Puzzleria! They appear in her recurrent "Tortie's Slow But Sure Puzzles" feature. The centerpiece puzzle (titled “Is there an ‘S’, Pat?”) is a Wheel of Fortune-themed puzzle that challenges you to solve ten song-category puzzle-boards in which Vanna has turned over only the esses!
Tortitude's other five puzzles are titled:
“Unique, consecutive, leftover letters,”
“Brit band’s big hit,”
“Product creation clones”
“Singular synonyms,” and
“Sister cities.”
We upload Puzzleria! between Thursday and Friday around Midnight PST, or perhaps even earlier.
Our menus this week also include:
* a Schpuzzle of the Week titled “Red-letter lessons from the Maestro,”
* a Professional Hors d’Oeuvre titled “Beanbag, horseshoe, ring toss?”
* a Vowelless Slice titled “FHLMNQRSX and always Y,”
* a Hall Of Fame Dessert titled “Hitter ROT10 = Pitcher,” and
* fourteen Riffing Off Shortz Slices titled “Little Red Riding Hood in Hose.”
That adds up to 24 puzzles.
Drop by, join Vanna and Pat and Tortie, and give Puzzleria! a spin.

LegoWithGratitudeToTortitudeForHerPuzzleyPlentitude

1. Thank you, Lego. That's a lot of puzzles, but at least I've already solved the Apps!

51. My hint was, “Take those two starting letters of both words and say them together. Make up your own hint from there, because I am not going to specify.” I really did think I was being coy in not specifying that this was seasonal, but Blaine, quite rightly, took this one out. Apologies again.

1. I don't really see how that would give away the answer to anyone who hadn't already figured out the two words. But what do I know?

2. I agree with Nodd. It's gracious of you, but I don't think you need to apologize. My Sun 8:23 AM "Bad Boy" comment was of course in jest.

3. Sorry, only certain repeated syllables make words (MAMA, PAPA, YOYO, ...) and if you go through them, you probably realize that HOHO might be something you'd want to not mention as being TMI this time of year.

4. Exactly so. I didn't mention any seasonality, but it could have been paired with other remarks here. Thanks.

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52. I meant Hood Hood and hose I'm in the car having trouble with the phone anyway I made a mistake but I had the right answer how do I post this

53. HOSE, HOOD. "The two car parts also name things that are found in houses and in their yards. One of the car parts also anagrams into something else you can wear that is also a car part." (Garden HOSE, kitchen HOOD; brake SHOE.)

1. Of course. My "Vauxhall" clue was an allusion to the British, and how they might think of "boot" and "bonnet." (Yes, I know, not the same number of letters—as I said.)

54. Chatgpt got the answer after I explained the puzzle.

1. Yeah, ChatGPT needs a lot of prompting to get to the right answer. I tried patiently to get ChatGPT to solve the Frank Sinatra / franks in a tray puzzle, but only had success once I mentioned that the singer's daughter also had hits.

I believe there is a way to train ChatGPT on custom data sets, so all of the NPR puzzles could be fed into it. Don't know if it requires the paid version. I'm guessing that would yield better results.

2. Tortitude: That would be interesting to train ChatGPT to solve NPR puzzles. I could have gotten the answer from Chat's initial solutions just by rephrasing the question. I had already solved the puzzle though.

55. No Nonsense is a hosiery company. I mentioned: "I quit that nonsense years ago." Worst part about Sunday was having to wear tights to church when I was a kid. HOOD/HOSE

56. My clue "Bob and Doug" was about the McKenzie brothers from The Great White North. They frequently called each other hosers, which I finally learned means a foolish or uncultivated person.

1. Maybe it's from my growing up nestled against Canada but I am shocked that entry stayed up. I got it immediately, you hoser!

57. hood, hose

Last Sunday I said, “A car usually has only one of one of the things but a number of the other thing. Similarly, a person would use one of the things in the singular and the other in the plural.” One hood – many hoses. One hood – a pair of hose.

58. I got hood and hose, but initially thought either bonnet or clutch could be word #1.

59. Yes, BONNET works ... with BOWTIE. Bowtie is the familiar Chevrolet emblem, which I believe is still physically present on most Chevy cars.

1. A fine six-letter alternative answer, Rudolfo.

LegoWhoFoundAABonnetWithABowTiedOnItAndABonnetWithA"Bowtie"OnIt

60. How can i stop having emails sent to me with every new entry on the blog, please? Thanks. steve

61. Leave the Notify Me box unchecked.

62. SteveB, uncheck the "Notify me" box that pops up when you start to leave a comment. That should do the trick. And welcome!

63. So no one else thought "coat" as in "coat of paint" and "cowl" made a valid answer? I shoulda known.

1. "Coat and cowl" is a wonderful alternative answer in my opinion, Bob Kerfuffle. Congrats!

LegoWhoHasNeverSeenAPurpleCowlWornMyAMonkAndNeverHopesToSeeOne(MostAreBrownOrBlackAndBoring)

64. HOSE and HOOD
The British terms are BONNET(their term for HOOD), and BOOT(their term for TRUNK).
pjbSaysIfYouSpendEnoughTimeDoingCrypticCrosswordsLikeHeHas,YouImmediatelyRealizeTheyDoTalkRealFunnyOverThere!

65. I had the probable answer early on but while searching for it, I came across a 'new to me', automotive term. On the Ford F-150 Lightning electric truck, there is now an area called the "Frunk". It is a combination of 'front and trunk'. It is the area that used to contain the engine on the gasoline powered Ford F-150. Not a bad storage size, too.
I tried for a little while to get this to work on this week's puzzle, but no luck!

1. The VW Beetle famously had a frunk, except in the UK, where it had a froot. So, instead of doing donuts, they did froot loops?

66. Since a horn may be worn on either a bracelet or a thong around the neck as a lucky charm, my answer was horn and hood. Oh well.

67. I thought of that one too, but I doubted WS would know that buttons are used, although not well known.

68. NEED TECHNICAL HELP: I am still getting every new entry to the blog emailed to me, cluttering up my inbox. i've unchecked notify me. How can i stop this from happening? thanks. sb

1. In the email itself is an unsubscribe link. Have you clicked that?

2. All set, thanks, Blaine! Keep up the good work!

69. My clue - asking NPR to keep it cleaner after recent buttcheek/rear seat puzzles - was a reference in this case to one of the answers phonetically not being so clean either - HOSE, as in “ho’s” (slang for whores). Looks like Buck Bard was on the same wave length with “hose in the hood”.

70. I submitted BUCKLE, BUTTON when I realized that my car had plenty of buttons. I don't see anything wrong with it as an answer, nor with the other solutions that people have mentioned. I'll be disappointed if any of them aren't mentioned as valid.

Given the multiple viable answers, I'm a bit surprised how much agreement we've seen on HOOD, HOSE. Does anyone have an idea why so many people were drawn to that solution?

71. I wonder why the British drive on the left even though they joust on the right. They also have their horse racing tracks going counter clockwise, whereas the Italians Sienna point in that and instead ride their race horses clockwise.

72. This week's challenge comes from listener Steve Baggish, of Arlington, Mass. Take the phrase WINTER SEASON. Add a letter of your choosing. Then rearrange all 13 letters to spell three related words. What are they?

73. Got it. Clever. Waiting for Blaine...

74. Apparently the intended answer was HOOD, HOSE and there's no evidence that any alternatives were accepted. Pretty disappointing.

For NPR puzzle posts, don't post the answer or any hints that could lead to the answer before the deadline (usually Thursday at 3pm ET). If you know the answer, 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 assist with solving. You can openly discuss your hints and the answer after the deadline. Thank you.