Monday, January 10, 2011

NPR Puzzle 1/9/11 -- Wedding Pictures, All With Clothing

So sorry about the delay -- NPR didn't have the puzzle up Saturday night and just as I was finding all sorts of lovely photos on Sunday morning, our Internet provider threw a wobbly (as the Brits say) and we were without an Internet connection for over 14 hours.  In fact, I have no idea when service was restored because I went to bed.  It's Monday now.

Here's this week's puzzle:
Name an article of apparel in the plural form, ending with an S. Rearrange the letters to name an article of apparel in the single form. What things to wear are these?
We have two right answers, one of which is clearly the answer intended.  Note to any of our British friends who might be reading: there's a reason why your reference books may not help you get to the right answer.  (And if anyone else thinks that's a hint, fine by us.)  We have a third answer, which isn't quite legal for two reasons, but otherwise fits the bill.  I'll say more about all three pairs of answers (right, nearly right, and not quite nearly right) below, in the Photos section.

Last week's puzzle was harder than either of us had imagined -- fewer than 200 entries!  So no one won last week, which is fine by us.  In fact, we're going to make the ranges of Pick-a-Range smaller so there are more choices for everyone (and yes, less chance we give out a prize every week).  Our goal is to give out a prize about once a month.  Just keeping it honest.

Living with Ross now that he's an American citizen is interesting.  The immigration folks in Philadelphia didn't require him to relinquish his British passport, so technically he has dual citizenship.  Which translates to situations like the other morning when he woke up whistling John Philip Sousa's Stars and Stripes Forever march, followed that up with snippets from our national anthem, and then researched and printed out the Windsor family tree.  We wanted to understand better the relationship between The King's Speech (which we saw last weekend) and The Lost Prince, a British made-for-TV drama about Johnny, the youngest of George V's sons -- the one who had epilepsy and had to be hidden away.  What we learned was that David (Edward VIII, aka the Duke of Windsor) and Bertie (George VI, played by Colin Firth in the movie) were roughly ten years older than Georgie and Johnny.  But what really interests us is The Missing Prince:  in between David & Bertie in the movie and Georgie & Johnny in the TV drama is Henry -- who isn't mentioned or portrayed in either.  Now I want to see a drama about him!!

Time for photos -- I'm going to focus on weddings because all of the answers we've thought of get worn sometime or another at weddings.  But then everything -- and nothing; think of nudist colony weddings -- gets worn at weddings eventually.  Plus, not every item of clothing is in every photo, and I think I have at least one photo where none of the six is apparent.  So I don't think I'm giving too much away by presenting to you the following happy couples and their attendants:

James & Caroline

Louise & Norman --
photograph taken by Michael Hazelden

Chrissy & Steve

Jim & Caryn

Frank & Sylvia

No, I just thought this looked pretty

Time for ...

P I C K   A   R A N G E

This is where we ask you how many entries you think NPR will get for the challenge above.  If you want to win, leave a comment with your guess for the range of entries NPR will receive.  First come first served, so read existing comments before you guess.  Ross and I guess last, just before we publish the Thursday post.  After the Thursday post is up, the entries are closed.  The winner gets a puzzle book cunningly selected to be relatively inexpensive to mail.
Please note the new, improved, expanded, deliberately-less-easy-to-win, set of ranges!  If you pick a range of 100 out of sheer habit, we'll arbitrarily pick either the first 50 or the second 50 depending on our whim.

 As always, troublemakers risk winning the American Girl puzzle book, so play nice.  :-)

Here are the NEW ranges:

Fewer than 50
50 - 100
100 - 150
150 - 200
200 - 250
250 - 300
300 - 350
350 - 400
400 - 450
450 - 500

500 - 550
550 - 600
600 - 650
650 - 700
700 - 750
750 - 800
800 - 850
850 - 900
900 - 950
950 - 1,000
1,000 - 1,050
1,050 - 1,100
1,100 - 1,150
1,150 - 1,200
1,200 - 1,250
1,250 - 1,300
1,300 - 1,350
1,350 - 1,400
1,400 - 1,450
1,450 - 1,500

1,500 - 1,550
1,550 - 1,600
1,600 - 1,650
1,650 - 1,700
1,700 - 1,750
1,750 - 1,800
1,800 - 1,850
1,850 - 1,900
1,900 - 1,950
1,950 - 2,000
2,000 - 2,050
2,050 - 2,100
2,100 - 2,150
2,150 - 2,200
2,200 - 2,250
2,250 - 2,300
2,300 - 2,350
2,350 - 2,400
2,400 - 2,450
2,450 - 2,500

2,500 - 2,750
2,750 - 3,000
3,000 - 3,250
3,250 - 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.

Our tie-break rule: 
In the event that a single round number is announced, AND two separate people picked the ranges leading up to and leading up from that round number, the prize will be awarded to whichever entrant had not already won a prize, or in the event that both entrants had won a prize already or neither had, then to the earlier of the two entries on the famous judicial principle of "First Come First Serve," (or in technical legal jargon, "You Snooze, You Lose")


David said...

I'll go with 1950 - 2000.

Here I was on the other coast, sleeping in and figuring I wouldn't be first to post, even though I got the answer quickly.

DAPF said...

Yes, I got the answer quickly too. In fact, this is the first time that my 6-year-old helped me solve the NPR puzzle!!! I asked her to come up with items that she wears and she found the answer on the fourth attempt. Of course, I was the one to turn it into its anagram. So, a joint effort in the DAPF family and a mighty celebration it was!

Oh, and since my favorite range is gone, I'll go with 1500-1550 this week.

Jason said...

I'm going low this week: 950-1000

Marie said...

Gosh, less than 200 entries, there went my best chance at getting the call!! I'll say 1500-1550.

Magdalen said...

Marie -- pick again, okay? DAPF already snagged that oh-so-desirable range! (Or, if it's still available, we'll give you 1450-1500, which I think is just as desirable.)

Mendo Jim said...

The first time The Puzzlemaster used the "ayes/a yes" challenge (August, 2005), he couched it in rigorous and unambiguous language.
That was a confused time in that Hurricane Katrina took the segment off the air. I think I may remember working on it from the website.
Obviously Will doesn't remember it, since he attributed the source that time and this to different contributors.
This time, his offering was neither rigorous nor unambiguous, allowing answers such as "sunsets" and "toothaches" to be just as correct as his desired one.
That could be just a lapse in his concentration. Not accepting or even mentioning the valid alternatives is a lapse in integrity.
I also have to admit I suspect a little obfuscation in Liane's "fewer than 200 ENTRIES received," (emphasis mine), no mention of correct or not. Actually that line, the basis for our Range Contest, has come to mean less and less.
A few months ago I figured to give Dr. Shortz 3 or 4 more flawed challenges before I quit the game altogether. This one counts as two.
This week is so easy as to nearly count as another one. If there are really 2 or 3 answers, he should have discovered them and asked for them.
I'll take 2350 to 2355.

Natasha said...

"Think of a word whose meaning you can make plural by adding an A at the start. Start with a very common singular noun, add the letter A at the beginning, and you'll make the meaning plural. What word is it?" This was the wording of the puzzle on Aug. 28, 2005 *Ayes, yes

Marie said...

How unobservant I am! Okay, I'll take 1550-1600.

Anonymous said...

I will take 2300 -2350


Dave said...

I'll nab the 850 to 900 slot.