Sunday, November 1, 2009

NPR Puzzle -- 11/01/09 The Big Old Anagram!

Someone has been playing around with long titles... This week's puzzle is
Take the name "Noah Adams," as in the former host of All Things Considered. Add the phrase "false teeth." You can rearrange all 19 letters to name a famous work of literature. What is it?
Another one from Ed Pegg, Jr., a familiar name in this context.  He's created a few puzzles for the NPR series.

We've seen Wordplay, the documentary about the NYTimes crossword, and the annual crossword tournament, the ACPT.  When I first saw it, all the people in it were movie stars, at least in terms of remoteness.  Now one of the characters featured in the movie is a beta-tester for Ross's potential crossword puzzles, and we met several others at last February's ACPT.  That doesn't make either of us any more elevated in the firmament of crosswords, just reminds us that there's fame dust sprinkled around more liberally that we realize.

Blogs, in particular, are a wonderful form of self-publishing.  I have several blogs; you can dust them off and read them if you like.  (Watch for cobwebs, though.)  My principal blog is about my life in general, which has always skewed toward the narrow end of the bell-shaped curve, but recently I've been writing about romance novels.  That sounds odd, but isn't.  I'd always thought I'd end up writing romances . . . until I discovered how hard it is to do.  Oh, the writing is easy enough.  Writing publishable novels is hard.  Or it was; I've started again, and I'm now (finally) (in my fifties!) confident I can do this.  Having been a lawyer helps; I definitely have more material to work with since I graduated from law school, but also a thicker skin.

So I've joined NaNoWriMo -- the National Novel Writing Month project.  I stayed up late last night and wrote the first 987 words (out of 50,000 required by NaNoWriMo) of a new novel.  Whoo-hoo.  (Not too late to join, btw.  Or follow my progress on Twitter: MagdalenB)

Okay, this week's value added puzzle is a variant on the on-air puzzle. Here's Will's puzzle from the radio:
Every answer is a familiar phrase in the form of ____ and ____. Each clue is a sentence with two blanks. Fill in the blanks with two words that complete the phrase. But here's the twist: The words that complete the sentence are homophones of the words in the answer phrase.
What I'm going to do is similar:  The clue will be a sentence with two blanks.  Fill in the blanks with words that complete the clue.  But one of those answers will be an anagram of half the familiar X and Y phrase.  So for example, if the clue is "You can get that _____ at the Acme Liquor Store in ______, Oklahoma," the answer would be WINE & DINE (= Enid).  One last thing -- the clue filler that gets anagrammed might be more than one word, but those words will always be the anagram to a single word for the X & Y answer.  Okay?  And to help, the fill-in-the-blank answers are in the same order as the familiar X & Y phrase.

We'll need more _______ if we're to bed ______ the horses.

________ the Conquerer needs more men for his ______.

I ______ too much and deserve your _______ because now I feel really sick.

Julianne ______ is the perfect actress to play _________.

_________ Williams is bummed; her sister ________ to playing doubles today.

We're on the wrong ______, so you must have made an _______ deciphering that hiking map.

I've just started the second ________; that's going to have to _______ for the first day of NaNoWriMo!

We _____ against the other team, _____ took them out for a drink.

Do you think your _______ would like some mashed _________?

The witness took the _________ and  __________ the horror of what the defendant had done to her.

Russian ______ had a complicated relationship with the _______ in the Eastern Orthodox Church.

5 comments:

Roxie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Roxie said...

I am stumped... And have been perusing "best books in history" lists for hours now...

Dan said...

I have searched far and wide. There is no citation whatsoever of the "extra word," but your answer is correct. The question is, do we submit our answer with the extra word or not?

Roxie said...

Well, that only took 5 hours... And Will Shortz is going to take some heat for that one.

Magdalen said...

Wow -- This is very odd. I didn't have this problem (you *know* how I solved it; I won't even bother with the promotional link at this stage), but I went back today to see if TEA would cough up the answer sans the "Extra Word." No problem.

Which leads to the following question: Where did TEA get the "full" answer from? [It does occur in the original source material; maybe that explains it...] Like Dan, I can't find the full answer on the Internet; even if I Google the full answer, it just shows the version I'll call "the common answer."

I'm with Roxie -- Will's got some `splaining to do!