Sunday, December 25, 2011

NPR Puzzle Christmas 2011 - Unusual and Uncommon What Again?

Here's this week's puzzle:
Name an occupation in nine letters. It's an entertainer of sorts — an unusual and uncommon but well-known sort of entertainer. Drop the third letter of the name, and read the result backward. You'll get two four-letter words that are exact opposites. What are they?
Well, I guess it's not a mime. Let's get Ross & Henry onto this one. Okay, while great minds are working on that puzzle... Got it.

Oh, wait--before I can wish all of our regular readers (and Will Shortz) a very Merry Christmas, I need to remind you that if you know the answer, send it in to NPR. We recommend this link right here.

Okay, I'm not going to do hints in the photos. Instead, I'm going to be entirely literal because it will be a while before Christmas falls on a Sunday.

Florence, Italy


Constitution Plaza, Hartford, Connecticut




Merry Christmas from our (undecorated) house to yours.

Time for ...

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.

Just over 440 entries. Natasha won, and I believe that's the first win for Natasha. (Email me--Magdalen (as) Crosswordman.com--with your snail-mail address and say if you want the Christmas-themed puzzle book or a Jane Austen-themed puzzle book.) Enter for the first prize of 2012 see if you'll win!

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. 

9 comments:

Natasha said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
skydiveboy said...

I am surprised at how few are getting the puzzle answers lately. I will try for 500 this week.

DaveJ said...

Given the holiday and how marvelous this puzzle is, I'm guessing a low 251-300.

EKW said...

I will try 401-450. I agree with Dave J that this is
a marvelous puzzle. I thought it was quite straight
forward after I figured out the correct approach!

Dave said...

I'll jump to the 201 to 250 range, please.

Marie said...

I'll try 551-600.

itSMF as told by Barbara said...

I'll guess 351-400. Happy Holidays and enjoy your school break, if you have one. I haven't been logged into Blogger for a while. Barbara (bhaven on twitter)

David said...

My standard 1001 to 1050, please.

Joe Kupe said...

301 - 350 please. The answer takes me back to an event that occurred on the day my cousin was Bar Mitzvahed in the 70s during the height of activity for one of the most famous of these entertainers.