Sunday, October 23, 2011

NPR Puzzle 10/23/11 - Shopping Tripped Up

Here's this week's NPR Puzzle:
Think of a two-word name of a nationally known chain of retail stores. Insert the second word of the name into the exact middle of the first. The result will spell the name of a well-known electronics manufacturer. What are these names?
Ross solved this one.  On Thursday, I will explain why my efforts to cheat didn't work.  Thank God Ross's brain came up with the answer "the natural way."

And after you've solved it the "natural way" so go ahead and send your answers in to NPR here!

Big excitement this week chez CrosswordMan!  The dog got skunked -- and Ross has published a digital book.  (No relation between those two facts, by the way.)  I can't tell you what the magic weapon is in dealing with a skunky dog, because she still smells bad.  But the house is MUCH better because of a tip I got off the Internet:  Bake a pan of cinnamon in a 250° oven for 1 hour.  At the end of that time, the house smelled like the inside of a scented candle shop in the mall, but that's better than what it had smelled like.

The book?  It's an anagram book for your Kindle.  Okay, so mostly it's a test case so that we can learn how to publish books ("we" being a euphemism for "Ross did all the work") before Harmony Road Press goes live later this year.  I'd suggest you all buy a copy, but it may turn out to be "the prize" for the Pick-a-Range contest...Nah, it's only 99¢ so you should all buy a copy, if you have a Kindle, that is.

Photo time.  Once again, I've picked one of the words or names in this week's puzzle and looked it up in Wiki.  I never got to the "right" page because the "disambiguation" page yielded more than enough specific place names.  In no particular order, then:

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 of our unspecified choosing.
Oh, Unpaid & Underappreciated Intern, you wound me.  The stated number of entries this morning was "around 600."  What happened to "delightfully specific"?  No winner this week.   

Pick a range in the comments to see if you'll win a prize!

Here are the ranges:
Fewer than 50       
51 - 100
101 - 150
151 - 200
201 - 250
251 - 300
301 - 350
351 - 400
401 - 450
451 - 500

501 - 550
551 - 600
601 - 650
651 - 700
701 - 750
751 - 800
801 - 850
851 - 900
901 - 950
951 - 1,000
1,001 - 1,050         
1,051 - 1,100
1,101 - 1,150
1,151 - 1,200
1,201 - 1,250
1,251 - 1,300
1,301 - 1,350
1,351 - 1,400
1,401 - 1,450
1,451 - 1,500

1,501 - 1,550
1,551 - 1,600
1,601 - 1,650
1,651 - 1,700
1,701 - 1,750
1,751 - 1,800
1,801 - 1,850
1,851 - 1,900
1,901 - 1,950
1,951 - 2,000
2,001 - 2,050
2,051 - 2,100
2,101 - 2,150
2,151 - 2,200
2,201 - 2,250
2,251 - 2,300
2,301 - 2,350
2,351 - 2,400
2,401 - 2,450
2,451 - 2,500

2,501 - 2,750
2,751 - 3,000
3,001 - 3,250
3,251 - 3,500
3,501 - 4,000
4,001 - 4,500
4,501 - 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").  And yes, this rule is most-likely obsolete but I just like having fine print. 


phredp said...

1,101-1,150 although I thought the retail chain had three names and one of the words was more "symbolic".

DAPF said...


in defense of the puzzle (but not of the mismatch between the confusing on-air and online versions), the puzzlemaster did say:
"this is the name as it is popularly known"
to qualify the name of the retail chain.

However, I am also annoyed by the other problem that you mention (the "symbolic" one), which is the reason why I missed the answer the first time I thought of it this morning. And here I am, many hours later, revisiting my options out of frustration, finally seeing the light...

Jim said...

As DAPF pointed out, Will must have known that he was offering up another of his flawed challenges.

Maybe it's what Magdalen means by the "natural way", but I wasted alot of time looking at lists of retailers and electronic firms. Later it just came to me. I can't recall if I saw either of the names in my search.

I don't have a Kindle, but I'll go for the prize anyway with 1351 up.

Here is a neat little one minute video I was sent yesterday.

Marie said...

It's obvious, but problematic.
I'll take 851-900 this week.

skydiveboy said...

I see 800 in my future.

Dave said...


Anonymous said...

I thought the name "as it is popularly known" was WS's attempt to dodge the imprecision in the symbolism.

May I have 551-600, please. These puzzles don't seem to get as many entries as they used to.

Henry BW

David said...

I still haven't figured out the answer, but I need to stick with my standard 1001 to 1050.