## Sunday, June 09, 2024

### NPR Sunday Puzzle (Jun 9, 2024): Don't Judge My Baguette or Biscuit Storage

NPR Sunday Puzzle (Jun 9, 2024): Don't Judge My Baguette or Biscuit Storage
Q: This is a little tricky. What item containing a silent "u" is commonly found in kitchen drawers?
If you change the "u" to a different letter of the alphabet, you get a name for a similar item.

Edit: I was hinting at GUIDE --> GLIDE
A: A GUIDE is part of the construction of a kitchen drawer. But SILENT U anagrams to UTENSIL. I'll update this with the intended answer when it's revealed on Sunday.

Update: There were 64 people that submitted the intended answer of UTENSIL

1. Having read Blaine's clue, I'm now pretty certain none of the three answers I've come up with thus far is the intended answer.

1. Same here. The puzzle's a bit "vague." Depending on the size of the drawer, some people keep things like baguettes, toques, or temperature gauges in kitchen drawers.

2. Untrue of most things in life, size doesn't mater.

3. Oh, it can’t be….

2. A homophone for the intended answer can describe a utility pole.

1. We will see Thursday if that statement holds up.

2. GuiDE -Guyed. Great clue, Uncle Fishbag. It "stood up."

3. Thanks, Black swan. Guide and Guyed are what I had in mind.

3. This comment has been removed by the author.

4. Yeah, hmmmmm.
I might see what Blaine has in mind, and if so it does fit with 'a little bit tricky'.
But if that's the answer... I don't love it.

If the word I think Blaine is cluing is right, then I don't really want to give a hint. I think almost any decent hint will be TMI, and I can't even say why without giving TMI!

5. I'm submitting five solutions. Two simple, two with two U's (tricky), and one with three U's (very tricky) - but none of them work with Blaine's clue.
I wonder how many different answers Will will accept.

1. Probably overthinking it. Get simpler.

6. I am now experiencing puzzle fatigue. I looked through my drawers—kitchen, that is—and found two of my answers, but as I said, I doubt either of those is the intended one. I thought about trying to squeeze one of my guitars into the largest drawer, but alas…. I even wondered about the location of that unlikable guest, but I think he left. Perhaps I should hold my tongue. Biscuits, anyone?

1. If you opened your drawers and searched them I am certain you didn't see it.

2. This was a little too helpful perhaps

7. As a proud and open bassist, I find it sad to believe that guitar picks or disguises might be common out there.

8. Change a letter in Blaine's similar item to name another similar item. (If I have the intended item to begin with, of course.)

9. A sauce pan may be found in a kitchen drawer...

10. Like others, I have come up with multiple answers. I have one that works for Blaine's and Uncle Fishbag's clues. I think I'm going to submit my list of answers.

I feel like this puzzle would be better if it incorporated something like Blaine's clue. That is, come up with the word, and then change the word slightly to come up with something else. That would certainly knock out most of the extra answers.

I expect many of us saw this word almost 200 days ago.

11. I have come up with two answers that completely work. But I am underwhelmed by each of them. Neither apparently fit Blaine’s clue.

1. A guest napkin or a silverware catalogue (catalog)...

2. An antique ramequin?

3. jan, Isn't that bordering on incest?

12. Thanks to this blog for helping through the puzzle solving process!

1. "helping through" --> guiding --> guide

13. Do you say "kyoo-pahn" or "koo-pahn"?

14. This is definitely open to interpretation! My clue is a bit phantasmal.

1. Phantom of the Opera lyric: "to guard you and to guide you." I think there are several possible answers here, but my drawers have certainly contained knife guards and appliance guides...

15. In my kitchen, the item was left by a previous owner with questionable taste. Contemplating throwing it out.

16. You can see a silent u in the forest, the butcher shop, and the mirror--but in my drawer, I gotta be Southern to see one.

17. Do you say: "kawk" or "kawlk"

1. They say you’ll never hear a harder L than when a straight man is pronouncing the word ‘caulk’

2. I will proudly be doing some CAULKING around the house during this Pride Month.

18. Ohhhhh.
I am quite certain that I now have the intended answer.
I don't see any clues here that fit. I guess Blaine's still might, but I don't see how.
Let's see if I can think of a clue to show I have it but without getting anywhere near TMI.

1. Okay I think this should do it:
I can get two different edibles by following Blaine’s instructions, but neither could be described as “a name for a similar item.”

2. Your clue seems to be the only one that matches my answer.

3. Yes Crito. I see the two different edibles and some Christmas items.

4. Oh yeah, that's it.
Also birds. :)

19. In france is a bread box considered a drawer?

20. Tricky, tricky, tricky, Will.

1. Yes! I think we have the same answer :)

21. 7645123... I am pretty sure Will will allow just that one intended answer that is "a little tricky."

LegoWhoseKitchenDrawersAreALotLikeFibberMagee'sCloset!

22. As always, you gotta think "3rd Grade" tricky.

23. If the wording of this puzzle appeared in a set of instructions, I would have done it wrong.

24. I finally got my suitcase all sorted out.

25. I suspect there is going to be a lot of complaining about the wording of this puzzle.

1. That trickery is the whole point of the puzzle!

2. Of course, but is it fair trickery?

3. It is puzzle solving sabatoge.

26. No hint here, but the current NPR Sunday Puzzle page is dated June 8, 2024, which was Saturday. It's clear today that the new intern(s) have a lot to learn.

1. I noticed that also. Anyone heard from CAP?

27. So many interns; so little turnout.

28. Blaine's clue confirmed my answer (for once. :) Or at least that we have the same one. Also, CAP said he'd be out of commission for a week so hopefully we get some good news soon but we may not get it for a few more days.

29. Weak. I don't care for puzzles like this.

30. Looking in my kitchen drawer, in see a couple Dr. Grip pens and a book by some guy named Rick

31. I didn't expect the Spanish Inquisition!

1. The constructors of the toughest cryptic crosswords like to name themselves after Spanish inquisitors e.g. Ximenes. Sadly I had already submitted guide rail when I figured out utensil.

32. This comment has been removed by the author.

33. Alec Guinness and Edgar Rice Burroughs both have a silent U in their last names. There might be some Guinness ale buried in your kitchen drawer. However, Alec Guinness is an actor of the past, and Edgar Rice Burroughs is buried. If you take the answer to this puzzle and repeat the last 3 letters, then it will sound like a sentence related to that.

1. "Guideide" sounds like "Guy died." The last 2 puzzles were about a guy that died.

34. Anyone else here having a problem with the WORDLE answer today? I solved it okay, but am not at all happy they chose this as an answer word. After I solved it I had to look it up to find out what it means. And how did they expect I would know what it means or even have heard it?

1. Josh Wardle is 38 years old. The language may have grown while you were napping.

2. Yes, I had a similar experience.

I played a word on my third turn and could only come up with (what turned out to be) the final answer word as my fourth guess. And I paused for five minutes, trying to figure out ANY OTHER WORD as an answer, because I thought this is a VERY proprietary word, from another language, that couldn't possibly be the ANSWER.

But even though I knew the word, and finally guessed it, and it was the answer, I thought it was weird.

3. More importantly, how is CAP? Should we drop in on his hospital room and surprise him?

4. I thought it must be a female fruit.

5. Yes, an unfortunate choice for the NYT. Never heard the word before. I think it speaks ill of them more than of us.

6. As Jan intimated above, the Wordle lexicon is due to Josh Wardle, although I think the NYT tinkered with it a bit.

7. I think so too, and I came to that conclusion quickly after NYT bought it.

8. I found a list of 95 clues for the word that have been used in crosswords, so I guess other puzzlers are familiar with it.

9. I see your point, but I do not think WORDLE was created just for crossword fans. And if it was, then I think it was rather shortsighted. I like puzzles, but never do crossword puzzles. I find them annoying because they frequently use words, etc., that seem to mostly be familiar to crossword solvers, but not the rest of us. So, to me, using this word in WORDLE is only going to turn off players.

10. I see no problem with the word choice. Maybe pick up a book? Make sure it has pictures, though. But joking side, everyone should know the word. It's like not knowing the word "sci-fi" or "cosplay". There's more than one way to nerd, puzzlers.

11. Even fools are allowed their opinions.

12. The NYT bestseller lists include a "Graphic books and Manga" list. That means the word is in regular usage in the NYT. Given that, I think it's reasonable to include it in the list.

All that being said, I also paused before trying it as an answer, and had the reaction of, "it's not manga, is it?"

35. I didn't have a problem, but yes, the word applies to a specialty that not everyone sees or appreciates. I was surprised at the answer, and before getting it, I was quite surprised, having greenies for the first, second, third, and fifth letters, that I first guessed a wrong one for the fourth letter. That wrong guess is lots better known than the right answer.

36. Yeah, I know that word, but I was surprised it was in the Wordle lexicon. In fact, I wouldn't have guessed it except that my previous guesses had eliminated every other word.

37. I've got two answers that don't seem to work with any of the hints here, but seem appropriately "tricky". Both are two-word answers, and neither fits too nicely with the wording of the puzzle. My wife has two completely different answers, one of which also has two words, but neither is "tricky".

1. When you get the intended answer, you'll know.
It's one of those.

38. This puzzle is deceptive in that there are myriad answers that work. Had the twist of Blaine's letter swap been added, most of that ambiguity would vanish. It's not a great puzzle as is.

39. I look forward to a thorough debriefing on Thursday. There seem to be a lot of answers floating around out there based on testimony and cluing that doesn't jibe with my answer, which may well be wrong. (But it aligns with several people's clues so I'm not on an island by any means.) Even if there is a lot of groaning, I think this one has been more fun than many of the quick solves we've seen in recent weeks. Bravo, Will!

40. I wanted to buy some new patio furniture for my back yard, but I found Pottery Barn was rattan to the core.

41. As if this puzzle needs any more cluing, The Fifth Dimension.

42. "Finally, the Biden team rushed to produce an ad today using Trump’s own words from a rally this weekend in the broiling Nevada desert in which he said he didn’t want people to keel over because: “We need every voter. I don’t care about you. I just want your vote. I don’t care.”"

1. And that's not all the news. Hunter is now shoulder to shoulder with Second Amendment rights proponents. It would be nice to see his case go all the way to the top. The Court can declare his conviction unconstitutional - which it is - and once and for all state that the legislature can't impose restrictions, check-box or otherwise. The Biden Case could become the landmark for gun possession.

2. Really?
Please watch both of these links to the shooting battle between pimps just 2 evenings ago in the neighborhood where I live. These shootings happen several times a week now in this area of Seattle. There were two shootings last year just 5 houses up from mine. The first was only five rounds, but the seconds a few days later left more than 30 casings in the street outside this house that was all shot up in this turf war.

https://youtu.be/X-vgWrvOhL4?si=u-Z0BVgmSiTHDDbU

https://www.fox13seattle.com/video/1469626.amp

3. Sorry about the goings on in your neighborhood. That doesn't make Hunter guilty though, or his case less potentially significant. Hopefully your locals will scoop up the malefactors and put them out of circulation.

4. His case is significant only because it is being misused to hurt President Joe Biden. He is clearly guilty, but does not belong in prison. If we do not legislate meaningful gun control this will continue. And I am not anti gun. The Second Amendment is candy for idiots.

1. As is the Yew which falls in a forest, with no one to hear it.

2. jan,
Good link, but it would be helpful if you were to also point out which one is which. They both appear to be wearing wool.

43. Wish there was more guidance on this puzzle to see answer meets criteria.

44. I've read enough comments to believe that there are at least two kinds of trickery (and occasionally no trickery) being employed here. One approach leads to a unique answer, which was surely Will's intent. I'll be interested to see if he acknowledges the others.

45. Occasionally when a driver discovers he may be heading in the wrong direction he may come to the realization that he must make a silent U turn, although he may curse in the process.

1. Vance, or Young, extended you credit?

46. Just got this. Blaine's clue makes perfect sense. He's our North Star when it comes to puzzles.

47. Jiminy cricket! If I got the right answer, this is a very poorly worded puzzle.

48. I don't think I've ever been more curious about a puzzle on a Thursday morning. Unless I'm missing something, what seems to be a very straightforward path to a unique solution matches only a few of the comments here (including Blaine's). The 3:00 reveals will be very interesting!

1. That's what I think, too, except... I can't make my answer fit Blaine's clue! (Or vice versa.) The most likely explanation is that I'm just not seeing what 'similar item' Blaine means.

2. Actually, I meant to say that Blaine's clue is included among those that do NOT match my answer. The most obvious corroborating comment came from Lego.

3. Oh! Okay right, me too.

4. I submitted 3 answers, each equally correct in my opinion and none of them totally satisfactory. I have a favorite, but I am pretty sure it's not what Blaine's answer is. --Margaret G.

49. This comment has been removed by the author.

50. GUIDE

GUIDE which morphs to GLIDE and then SLIDE. Adding one or both of these transformations would have removed the puzzle's ambiguity.

Lots of alternate answers like BISCUIT CUTTER would then be eliminated.

1. I like UTENSIL containing a silent "u." It makes the kitchen drawer parameter work. And the leading pronounced U in UTENSIL makes it even more fun!

2. I agree WW. I think this puzzle very clever. I would have liked Utensil and stencil as some kind of puzzle answer.

51. A KITCHEN DRAWER'S GLIDE GUIDE (gÄ«d)

52. GUIDE is the intended answer, but in a drawer by my stove are temperature gauges, and sometimes they can be tricky to insert into the neighbor's dog I am roasting.

53. Utensil (anagram of silent + “u”)
I wrote: I finally got my suitcase all sorted out.. A portmanteau is a suitcase; however, it is also a word where there are two words combined together. One of the most famous examples of a portmanteau is a spork, which is a type of utensil that combines a spoon and a fork. About a week ago, I noticed my husband went to KFC. The KFC bag in the garbage was my first clue (I’m not exactly Sherlock Holmes), but I also noticed the telltale spork on dining room table, still in its wrapper. We have two plastic containers: one that holds plastic knifes and forks, and the other one holds spoons. I had no idea where to put the wrapped spork, but I was assured it goes with the spoons.

54. My multiple solutions, in order of trickiness:
Pourer or Dough Hook not tricky.
Pour Spout or Biscuit Cutter Two U’s, one silent – tricky.
Doughnut Cutter Three U’s, one silent – trickiest, especially as doughnut is alternatively spelled donut, lacking a silent U.

55. This is what i submitted and I am not thrilled about it:

"silent u" anagrams to "utensil"

56. FOUR VOWELS or FOUR SYLLABLES

That's what you find in "KITCHEN DRAWERS".

My wife likes DOUGH SCRAPER or SPATULA (which can be pronounced with just two syllables).

Our vegetarian niece went with MUTTON (contains a silent ewe).

1. that's not an item

2. Yes, but "containing" doesn't mean "anagramming to", either.

57. An item containing “a silent u” would be “a utensil” if you rearrange the letters. There are obviously some other answers out there, and I look forward to seeing them.

1. By the time I posted this, many alternate answers had already been posted. Good luck, Will!

58. Yeah, I came up with UTENSIL, an anagram of SILENT U.

This has to be the intended answer!

59. If Drawer Guide is the intended answer, as several comments indicate, I have serious problems with this puzzle. Specifically:

1) The puzzle statement asks for something IN a kitchen drawer; drawer guides are on the outside (side or bottom surfaces) of a drawer where they interleave with rails in the cabinet body.
2) The puzzle statement specifies KITCHEN drawer; the same types of guides can be used on any drawer, be it installed in a kitchen cabinet, desk, file cabinet, clothes dresser, bathroom vanity, or dining room breakfront.

60. Our friend Tortitude's "Slow but Sure Puzzles" takes center stage on this week's Puzzleria!
Tortie has concocted a septet of posers titled:
1. “Sitcom... and all that Jazz,”
2. “Sentimental ‘50s ‘60s ‘70s Musical Journey,”
3. “Truncated States and the Starlet.”
4. “Nominally Intertwined Americans,”
5. “Canines and Felines and Birds, Oh My!”
6. “Conversion of a Cat,” and
7. “Rock ‘n’ Roll ‘n’ Roadies Rearangement.”
We invite all to drop by, slowly but surely!
We upload Puzzleria! later today, perhaps sooner rather than later.
* a Schpuzzle of the Week titled “Movie Minus Monogram Makes A Motto,”
* an Inverted Hors d’Oeuvre titled "Upside-down brand is panned!I"
* a “Double-Letter-Amputation” puzzle Slice titled "Speedy creatures, varied features,"
* a Synonymous Dessert titled “Seeking collaborative creativity,” and
* nine riff-offs of Will Shortz’s June 9th NPR Weekend Edition Sunday puzzle, created listener Patrick McIntyre of Seattle, Washington, titled: “There’s a silent ewe in my drawer!”
That adds up to 20 puzzles.

LegoTortitudinally

61. Trying to work backwards from Blaine's hint, I thought it might be a carving fork with U-shaped tines. Replace the U with an I and you get a carving knife. Was I close?

62. I dismissed “guide” (among several others) as not “tricky” enough, but despite suffering from anagrammania, I missed “silent ‘u’” —> “utensil." Kudos to those who got what is most likely Will’s intended—and “tricky”—answer.

For fun, I submitted “vacuum” even though I knew that this wasn’t Will's (or Blaine’s) answer and that most vacuums are found not in drawers but in cabinets or closets.

After all, why not?

63. utensil --> silent u

Earlier this week I clued “The Fifth Dimension.” One of their biggest hits was “Let the Sunshine In.” Utensil also anagrams to Sunlite.

1. This comment has been removed by the author.

2. Hmm, I thought maybe you submitted Guide, and the reference was to this lyric from "Up, Up and Away": We'll search the clouds for a star to guide us.

64. POTPOURRI, GUIDE, RAGOUT.

I thought POTPOURRI and RAGOUT because every kitchen drawers I've seen contains a mess, whereas the ones I grew up with didn't have a GUIDE.

65. For Blaines' clue, change the "u" to an "A", how about SALTINE which anagrams to SILENT "A" ?

66. "silent u" and "utensil" are probably the answers.

67. This puzzle was "tricky" on the order of finding islands not in a body of water, but in an Atlas.

68. I predict over/under about 700.

1. I'll take over/under of 100 for the UTENSIL answer.

2. WW, you were right again.

69. I too thought it was "guide;" it never crossed my mind to anagram "silent u" to "utensil." Curious as to which answer is the intended one...

70. It does contain silent U, but not a silent U.

71. Hmmmm. I think Lancek is right that "A UTENSIL" is a better answer than "UTENSIL", since "contains a silent u" is hard to square with an anagram that leaves out the 'a'.
Also Jan has a point that nobody ever uses 'contains' to mean 'anagrams to'. Maybe it works if you take "a silent u" to be a kind of list of what is contained? As if you said,

My kitchen drawer contains thread pins coupons pencils...

Anyway it must be the intended answer. Otherwise it's pure coincidence that "silent u" is an anagram of "utensil", one of the most obvious terms for something in a kitchen drawer.

1. Will has occasionally edited cryptic crossword puzzles for publication, and I don't think he would allow "contains a silent u" as a clue for "utensil" because of that extra "a." The two-word answer using all 8 letters is cleaner, but I'm sure he'll accept "utensil." The real question is what he will do with "guide" and the other interesting answers shown here.

72. I'm sure it's "utensil", though I didn't come up with that. "Tricky", indeed, but a little flawed. We were directed to come up with an "item containing a silent U." "Utensil" doesn't contain an "A" and therefore isn't an "item containing A SILENT U."

73. The "A UTENSIL" answer makes it an Ã¼ber fun puzzle. U rarely gets so much delightful play.

74. Leo's comment about Blaine being our North Star led me to "guide", which led me to the saying "Let your conscience be your guide", which led me to Jiminy Cricket. If this is the intended answer, it's an unfair puzzle being the guide is not IN the drawer. If "utensil" is the intended answer, it's still poorly worded as others have pointed out, but I think I like it better. It was challenging for sure! And fun!

75. Blaine's clue led me to guide at first.

76. At first I thought the trick was the phrase "kitchen drawer" as in something that lures you to the kitchen like an aroma or bouquet. I was only a little satisfied with "bouquet" as my answer. Later I spotted silentu as the anagram, and submitted that. Thanks All!

77. From some online lists of kitchen items: BISCUIT PRESS, FLOUR SIFTER, POULTRY SHEARS, SAUCEPAN, SAUTE PAN, SPLATTER GUARD

78. Rudolfo's list (along with a bunch of others mentioned at various points above) raises the question of what exactly counts as a silent letter.
I would definitely count the 'u' in 'biscuit' and 'guard' as silent. I'm not at all sure about some of the others. If the 'u' in 'flour' is silent, what is making the second vowel sound in the diphthong?
/ËˆflaÊŠ(É™)r/
I think the ÊŠ sound is made by the 'u'.
But obviously this is not obvoius :)
I wonder if anyone has ever tried to give a careful definition of what it means for a particular letter to be 'silent' in a word, or if we just have to make do with analogy to the paradigm cases.

1. The CMUdict feels differently than your IPA about the diphthong in "FLOUR":
FLOUR F L AW ER /flaÊŠ(É™)r/
FLOUR F L AW R /flaÊŠr/
FOOT F UH T /fÊŠt/
but there are lots of ways to pronounce "flour" ...

2. Wait, that's not *different*. That's *the same*. The first one you listed is the same as the one I listed (which is from the OED).

3. The first column is the word. The 2nd col is CMU phonetics. The 3rd col is your OED IPA phonetics. CMU and IPA have visibly different opinions about the vowel relationship between FLOUR and FOOT. Maybe a real difference between Pittsburgh and Oxford, I don't know.

4. Oh, sorry, I see.
I guess I don't understand the phonetic alphabet of the CMU dictionary.
The OED is saying that 'flour' is pronounced the same as 'flower', and it says that the first part of 'flower' rhymes with 'cow'. I'm not sure if the CMU is disagreeing with that.
(Also, I gave what the OED says is the American pronunciation, not an Oxbridge one -- of course, there are many different American pronunciations!)

79. Bobby, our math guy and others:
Do you agree with this CarTalk Puzzler answer?

One Percent Potatoes
JUN 08, 2024

Time for the new puzzler. This one is interesting. Here we go.
It is a little known fact, for the purposes of this puzzler, that potatoes are 99% water and only 1% potato. Or 1% dry matter, the stuff that makes a potato a potato.

So, imagine you were to take 100 pounds of potatoes and you set them out on your back porch to dry out. You leave them out in the sun. When you do this, they will start to dry out.

As they dry out, of course the water begins to evaporate. And after a while enough water has evaporated so that the potatoes are now 98% water.

If you were to weigh those potatoes at that moment, when they are 98% water, how much lighter would they be?

Good luck.

So, after letting these 100 pounds of potatoes dry out, and they are now 98% water instead of 99%, how much lighter would they be?

If you were to weigh the potatoes at that moment, when they're 98% water, how much would they weigh?

We had stated unequivocally that potatoes are 99% water and 1% potato.

So, if you do the math, 1% of 100 pounds is one pound. So when it is 98% water instead of 99%, you'll have 2% that is no longer water.

So 2% of the new weight of the mass will still be equal to that one pound, because one pound is potato. 2% of 50 pounds equals one pound.

So the potato weight is now 50 pounds now, instead of 100.

Tricky one.

1. I agree. If it helps, imagine having 99 blue marbles and 1 red marble. You have 99/100 = 99% of the marbles being blue (water).

If you change that to 49 blue and 1 red, now the percentage is 49/50 = 98% (water).

2. Thanks Blaine.
The trick here seems to be that we are using percentages rather than whole numbers. I was thinking of it as being either a one percent or two percent answer. Well, in my defense, I was even a worse math student than my poor math teachers.

Now the next question is: What percentage of heart muscle was replaced in Cap's organ, not the musical one?

3. That is correct. If you have 100 lb. of potatoes that are 99% water and 1% potato, then there are 99 lb. of water and 1 lb. of potato. If you evaporate them so that they are 98% water, then there will be 49 lb. of water and 1 lb. of potato. They now weigh 50 lb., so they lost 50 lb.

4. I can see it clearly now. It was designed to cause us (me) to read it incorrectly. I will not make that mistake again, and instead only purchase a few potatoes at a time. Tuber or not tuber; that is the question. The eyes have it otherwise.

80. UTENSIL is an anagram of SILENT U.
Being a cryptic crossword expert(and contributor to Puzzleria! as well), I would imagine if this were the UK, the A in "(A)SILENT U" would be a bigger bone of contention than it already seems to be. I'm sure once Will has revealed the intended answer, and played on-air with the winner, the issue will be settled once and for all...that, or almost everyone here will post their objections next week about the superfluous article. I'm not really bothered by it myself. I've had other more important things to think about in these past few months without being upset over nothing, really. I think the whole SILENT U/UTENSIL trick is clever, but then I was able to figure it out(and on vacation, no less!).
pjbThinks[SILENT][U]SoundsLikeTheEducationalInstitutionWherePeopleLearnToBeMimes(Groan!)

81. I too read this clue as a cryptic - where you have to parse each and every word. I bet Will's correct answer will be A UTENSIL, of which there will be far fewer entries than UTENSIL. Doubly tricky!

1. Good point! This didn't occur to me.

82. I submitted the below text to NPR:

I think the answer you want is GUIDE, as in a drawer guide. However, there are a number of other possible answers that I have found in kitchen drawers, that also have silent U's.
KNIFE GUARD
DOUGH HOOK
DOUGH SCRAPER
BAGUETTE PAN (not as common, but we had one in a pots and pans drawer for a while!)
TEMPERATURE GAUGE
I would hope at least one of these is considered correct.

I had also clued (for GUIDE) that I thought many of us had seen this word about 200 days ago. GUIDE was the answer to Wordle 889, which was 200 days ago earlier this week.

As for the debate around whether the intended answer was guide, or a utensil, or utensil, I had noticed that the puzzle noted that the item is "commonly found in kitchen drawers." The plural of drawers there led me to thinking that it would be something that would be in multiple drawers in the same kitchen, and GUIDE would therefore be correct. The idea of anagramming (a) silent u did not occur to me, and that does make for an interesting puzzle. However, as noted by many, the phrasing of this puzzle was sufficiently vague that there are multiple answers that can be considered correct.

83. Could another similar puzzle be: What item containing a silent "a" is commonly found in kitchen drawers? I think you can figure out the answer.

84. We should all be relieved and grateful our Supreme Court has done the Right thing and protected the Rights of unborn rapid fire bumpstocks.

85. Here's my lateral thinking answer: DISH TOWEL. If u stuff it in ur mouth it makes u silent.

86. My hint, posted on Sunday, was:
7645123... I am pretty sure Will will allow just that one intended answer that is "a little tricky.
The letters in U T E N S I L, if numbered 1234567, then rearranged to spell S I L E N T U, would be re-numbered 7645123.

After more than a decade of publishing Puzzleria!, I tend to be a bit repetitious with my puzzles! Mea Culpa!
One of the reasons I was so sure that "UTENSIL" was the answer to this NPR challenge is because I have written THREE "Utensil" puzzles on P! in the 2020s!
Here they are:
1.
12/24/21
Ringing And Blinging Slice:
Silver bells? Silver bullion?
Name something silver that you see hanging around this time of year.
Interchange the two vowels in this word and add a different vowel at the beginning to spell something else silver that you see lying around at any time of the year.
These things, respectively, hang from and lie on different objects that each begin with a “t”.
What are these two silver things that you see hanging from and lying on objects beginning with “t”?
Tinsel (hangs from a Tree); Utensils (lie on a Table)

2.
7/27/23

Christmas Kitsch In The Kitchen? Dessert:
A kitchen sink, a Santa’s wink?
Name something seen in a house around the kitchen. Remove the first letter and interchange the two vowels to spell something seen in a house around the winter holidays. What are these things?
Hint: Both things are usually the same color.
Utensil, Tinsel
Lego!

3.
12/22/23

“Do You Hear What I Hear?” Dessert:
A horse of a different color, two things of a same color
Consider the following sentence:
“___ hear but don’t ______.”
Anagram the letters in the second blank to spell something that is usually a certain color.
Take a homophone of the word in the first blank. Add it to the letters in the second blank. Anagram the result to spell a second thing that is also usually that color.
What are the words in the blanks?
What are these two things?
"YOU hear but don't LISTEN."
Tinsel (anagram of "listen"); U (homophone of YOU) + LISTEN = UTENSIL
Lego!

1. Patrick McIntyre's NPR "Silent Utensil puzzle" is much more "elegant" than any of my three. "One-sentence puzzles" tend to be elegant. Congrats and hats off to Mr. McIntyre.

LegoInelegant

87. Only 64 correct responses this week!

88. (Maybe?): Think of two parts of the human body that start with the same letter. Drop one of the instances of that letter and rearrange the remaining letters to name another part of the body that not near the other two.

89. Got it. Waiting for Blaine…

No mention on-air by Will of “glide” as an alternate answer.

Happy Father’s Day. But to those who feel ambivalence today, I understand.

I think I’ll go out and shoot some baskets. Hope the body of this aging athlete holds up.

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