Thursday, October 28, 2010

NPR Puzzle 10/24/10 - Is it a Kuba in Cuba or a Louse in Laos?

Here's this week's puzzle:
Name the capital of a country. Rearrange the letters to spell a word that sounds the same as the name of another country. To approach the puzzle backward, name a country that has a homophone that is an anagram of a different country's capital. What country and what capital city are they?
I got an answer that is so nearly legal I honestly don't know if Will Shortz will allow it to be counted.  The capital of Azerbaijan is Baku, which anagrams to KUBA which is maybe a homophone of Cuba.

First note:  KUBA is a word, at least according to Webster's Second:  An important carpet or an Arabic measure in Libya.  Yeah, I wasn't impressed either.  And there are other problems.  Does KUBA sound like Cuba?  Plus, even I could tell this wasn't quite what he wanted.  I just couldn't see how this wasn't right.

Anyway, as I was alone in a hotel room in Iselin, New Jersey, I whipped out five photos of Azerbaijan and five photos of Cuba (one of which, I gather, is recognizable by the inclusion of a Transtur coach), and called that a day.

Thank goodness I admitted I wasn't sure I'd gotten the answer right, because I hadn't gotten the answer right.  The clearly intended answer is LAOS = LOUSE = SEOUL.  And in case you wondered, as we did, if LAOS & LOUSE are homophones, I was watching last week's episode of Project Runway, and Andy explained how his parents came from Laos, and he pronounced it as a single syllable word.

So, here's what I've done.  I have edited last Sunday's post (here) so that all ten of those photos are now linked back to their correct Flickr pages.  And just to show I'm a good person, really I am, here are some photos of Seoul and Laos.

Seoul:




Laos:




And this one's for Will Shortz especially (I hope it makes you scratch a little, you know, reflexively):

The male head louse -- trust me, there were even scarier pictures, ones that made even me scratch!

Time for ...

P I C K   A   R A N G E

Here are this week's picks for the ranges:

Fewer than 100
100 - 200
200 - 300
300 - 400
400 - 500

500 - 600
600 - 700
700 - 800
800 - 900
900 - 1,000 -- DAPF

1,000 - 1,100 -- Phredp
1,100 - 1,200 -- Tom
1,200 - 1,300 -- Dave
1,300 - 1,400 -- Ross
1,400 - 1,500 -- Magdalen

1,500 - 1,600 -- Henry
1,600 - 1,700
1,700 - 1,800 -- David
1,800 - 1,900
1,900 - 2,000 -- Mendo Jim

2,000 - 2,100
2,100 - 2,200
2,200 - 2,300
2,300 - 2,400
2,400 - 2,500

2,500 - 3,000

3,000 - 3,500

3,500 - 4,000

4,000 - 4,500

4,500 - 5,000

More than 5,000

More than 5,000 and it sets a new record

No comments: