Thursday, October 15, 2009

NPR Puzzle - 10/11/09 It's Snowing Outside...

When we heard this week's challenge, it was 90 degrees in Florida. That wasn't entirely conducive to solving it. Here's the puzzle:
Think of a beverage with a 2-word name. The first word has 3 letters and the second word has 9. Arrange the letters of the 9-letter word in a 3x3 box with the first 3 letters across the top, the middle 3 across the center and the last 3 across the bottom. If you've named the right beverage, you can read down the center column to get the 3-letter word in the beverage's name. What beverage is this?
We were concentrating on drinking cool and cold beverages, so the answer, HOT CHOCOLATE, wasn't likely to come immediately to mind. Ah, but the beverage gods had other ideas. When we left Florida, it was still mid-summer: hot & sunny. By the time we got to Georgia, it was low-70s and cloudy. Our second night was in Columbia, Md, where it was 50s and raining. As we drove home this afternoon, it was snowing. Now it's hot chocolate weather!

This is Mimi in the snow. I'll admit this photo is from last October's snowfall, and our neighbors have confirmed that today's snowfall is two weeks earlier than last year's, but the concept is the same: It's autumn, not winter! The snow does melt at this point in the year, but there are some complications. For example, I was supposed to start mowing the meadows as soon as we got back from Florida. We were instructed to mow the meadows after the first hard frost; it's supposed to encourage wildflowers. But the hard frost came just days ago, while we were toasty warm in Florida. And now the meadows are weighed down with snow. Okay, so this is hardly a real problem, but still...

The other difficulty is that it's disconcerting to be prepared to return to autumn, and find that it's winter instead. I suddenly started to think about Christmas, and it's way too soon for that. So, this snow can melt away and stay away.

On to this week's value-added puzzle: The following are clues to two-word phrases, but they could be F-- SU--, U-- F-- or M-- U--. I used three of each.

Uses a yardstick to get dimensions MEASURES UP

Prime condition for a high SPF? FULL SUN

The Stars and Stripes UNION FLAG

A single theory to explain all natural phenomena UNIFIED FIELD

Certainly FOR SURE

David Beckham's former football club MANCHESTER UNITED

Cod-liver oil, eg UNSATURATED FAT

Play along FOLLOW SUIT

Think about MUSE UPON

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