Sunday, November 20, 2011

NPR Puzzle 11/20/11

Here's this week's NPR Puzzle:
Name a food item. Divide this word in half. Take the second half followed by the first half twice, and you'll get a familiar saying. If you take the second half twice by the first half, you'll name a well-known person. What are the food item, saying, and person's name?
Believe it or not, I have the most attenuated connection to the person involved. I dunno, something involving my brother, my great-aunt (now deceased) or another famous person. Details on Thursday.

If you have a relative or friend connected to this person, or if you know this person uh, personally, or if you just solved the puzzle the REGULAR way, send your answer in to NPR here.

Meanwhile, let's see what places are mentioned in this individual's Wiki page.

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.

180 correct answers in 800 entries. Oh, dear. The Unpaid and Underappreciated Intern has gotten VERY zealous and is now giving us BOTH numbers. I'm going to use my Grand Pooh-Bah status and declare Curtis the winner, although the rules make it clear what we're really looking for is the total number of entries (right, wrong, and really really wrong) that NPR receives.

Anyway, Curtis--send your real address to me via email (Magdalen {at} Crosswordman {dot} com) and we'll send out a prize.

For next week, I'll be looking for the total number of entries. And if all Audie tells us is the number of right entries, well, we'll all have guessed too high. But if we get both numbers, I'm looking for the larger number. (It's in our rules, honest.)

With that now clear as mud, 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. 


David said...

I will go with my regular 1001 to 1050 slot. I might not bee too high this week.

I got this answer before they repeated the question on air. Once again, part of the answer was in a recent Sunday New York Times crossword puzzle.

Mendo Jim said...

Dr. Shortz regularly offers challenges and comments that emphasize his culture currency and understanding.
For the most part, when he refers to "famous TV star" or "well known singer," I think "Oh well, not my subject. Maybe next time."
This time I kind of think the "saying" he wants shows a lack of such understanding and borders on impropriety.
Or maybe I just have the wrong answer.

skydiveboy said...

I think I may have the food item and the phrase, but the person I'm not sure of. Am I right in thinking of the army in regard to the food item? Also, am I not understanding the meaning of 'Half'?

201 this time.

Anonymous said...

I think Mendo Jim and myself are on the same page. I'm a little shocked that Mr. Shortz would even acknowledge the phrase that I came up with. But, the answer certainly fits the puzzle formula...

DAPF said...

I am pretty sure I have the intended answer and the saying is not a saying at all. On the other hand, the meaning of half is pretty obvious here: for example, if you start with an 8-letter word you end up with two 4-letter words (first four letters and last four letters). I don't see any problem there. Finally, the name of the famous person could have used a dash of precision on Will's part.

David said...

I'm sure some will find the phrase offensive, but, as happens so often, things move from offensive to mainstream. Just try searching for the phrase on the internet. At least I can't find it in a commercial.

Joe Kupe said...

World record for me on this one, one second!
Happy Thanksgiving everyone.
I'll take 1,051 - 1,100.

Natasha said...

I select the 401-450 range this week. Magdalen, you are missing a word in your statement of the puzzle (followed).

Anonymous said...

My usual 501-550, please.

The interesting question is, what answer(s) did the remaining 620 entrants last week send in, and why?

Henry BW

David said...

Henry BW: Maybe my obvious but not satisfying answer (110), (based on the misstated question). The series of numbers, then the same series of numbers, with a trailing 0.

skydiveboy said...

I finally came up with what I fear may be the intended answer. If so, I can't believe it. I never heard of this person either. Can this be the answer?
I thought at first it was a slang term for a lousy food served in the army, but I could not make it all work.

skydiveboy said...

I just figured it out. Thank god I was wrong in my earlier guesses. I think I will now reward myself with a Dunkin Donut.

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

This person was recently featured on NPR in a couple different shows. But, I'll leave it at that, since I don't want to make it too obvious. I'll guess 801 - 850 total entries (right, wrong, etc).

skydiveboy said...

I'll bet he just sat there the whole time too.

David said...

skydiveboy- I (we?) want to know what your wrong answer was.

skydiveboy said...

Wednesday, if I can bring myself to tell you.

Dave said...

Short week, so I'll pluck the 351 to 400 spot.