Thursday, July 19, 2012

NPR Puzzle 7/15/12 -- Eye Rhymes

This should be your last dose of Crossword Man in a while, as Magdalen takes over with the next post. Our answer to last Sunday's NPR Puzzle:
The name of something that you might see your doctor about is a two-word phrase. Three letters in each word. When these six letters are written without a space, a three-letter word can be removed from inside, and the remaining three letters in order also form a word. What's interesting is that the four three-letter words — the two in the original phrase, the one that was removed, and the one that remains — all rhyme. What is the original phrase?
is dry eye, which I doubted was an actual medical condition ... but Wikipedia has just proved me wrong. Take rye out from the inside and you are left with dye. dry, rye and dye all rhyme with eye.

But these are oddly enough not eye rhymes, which I wanted to riff on last Sunday. Since I couldn't do so without giving too much away, I've left it till today. Before getting on to that, we're curious about the alternative answers that Seth and Skydiveboy mentioned in comments. Please spill.

In trying to solve this puzzle, I kept coming across (3,3) phrases in which the two parts look like they ought to rhyme but don't ... e.g. cut out and put out. Especially when used in poetry, these are known as eye rhymes, as in the last couplet of Ode to the West Wind:
The trumpet of a prophecy! O Wind,
If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind?
I thought I'd have no difficulty choosing a lot more phrases with eye rhymes, but they are actually rather uncommon. Each picture below illustrates a (4,4) phrase, in which the last three letters of each word in the phrase are the same, but don't rhyme. One of these is WAY more obvious than the others, so I've chosen an unusual context in the hope of making the puzzle harder. Drag the text between the square brackets to see the answers, and click on the image for the attribution:


Time for...
Here are this week's picks:
Fewer than 50
 51 - 100
101 - 150
151 - 200
201 - 250
251 - 300
301 - 350
351 - 400 -- Curtis
401 - 450 -- skydiveboy
451 - 500 -- Ben
501 - 550
551 - 600 -- Ross
601 - 650
651 - 700
701 - 750 -- Magdalen
751 - 800
801 - 850 -- Marie
851 - 900
901 - 950 -- KDW
951 - 1,000
1,001 - 1,050 -- David
1,051 - 1,100 -- Henry BW
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 + 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")


skydiveboy said...

OK. That martini I mentioned was of course a dry martini and stirred, not shaken. I am a purist.

Alternate, problematic answer:

SAD DAD + ADD & SAD again. Will did not specify if any words were repeated, so he might accept this answer, but I had the correct answer and submitted it only.

David said...

At $100 to $200 a month for a prescription, of course it's a medical condition.

Stye also rhymes.

skydiveboy said...

Not to be piggish, but shouldn't that be STY, without the E?

Seth said...

My alternate, tricky, sneaky, devilish answer that I really hoped was correct was BAD A.D.D. You could read A.D.D. as ADD, which rhymes with BAD. You can then remove DAD from the middle, and you get BAD again.

Darn. I liked that.

David said...

SDB, I have seen both, but I believe that "stye" is preferred. According to Wikipedia, The World's Number One Source of What is True and Right, (if that is not the trademark, it should be), "stye or sty, ... also hordeolum", but then uses stye throughout the rest of the article.

skydiveboy said...

Wikipedia is for those too lazy to use respected reference books.

Anonymous said...

I wondered at one point if I could justify WRY EYE as a squint.

My newly upgraded office computer (IE9 and an early Java 6 on Windows 7) will not post to this blog. When I click the "publish" button, nothing happens except that the button changes color. (This computer has Java 6 Update 33.)

Henry BW

Mendo Jim said...

SDB: I would love to have a contest with you with, say, five questions or areas of research.
I would have the essentials from Wikipedea before you got halfway across town to the UW library, where you might find enough of the "respected reference books" to begin your efforts.

Of course, Wikipedia has shortcomings, but is is absolutely magnificent when I am sitting in my rural living room.

And I am surprised you would tout over at Blaine's the dictionary that the Puzzlemaster uses, as if that hasn't gotten us in enough trouble.

skydiveboy said...

Mendo Jim:
Have you considered a career in standup comedy?

Mendo Jim said...


Wiki-free challenge.

For your further ameusement, tell us (from your respected reference works, of course) a little about Elmer Morgan and the town named for him.

Unfortunately I am somewhat long in the tooth for a new career.