Sunday, July 15, 2012

NPR Puzzle 7/15/12 - Rag Bag

Magdalen's Stonecoast MFA residency isn't quite over yet, so this is Ross again to blog for you. And I should warn all our readers that the rest of the July is going to be a bit weird: the next two Sundays are travel days for us and when we'll find time to solve let alone talk at length about puzzles, I don't know.

In case you've forgotten, Magdalen's in the spotlight: her unpublished novel Blackjack and Moonlight is one of the finalists in the Contemporary Single Title category of the 2012 Romance Writers of America® (RWA) Golden Heart® contest. We'll find out the winner in Anaheim on Saturday July 28. Good luck Magdalen!

So to this week's NPR Puzzle, from National Puzzlers' League member David Rosen in honor of their 2012 convention:
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?
I thought this was a lovely original idea: not as difficult as the rather wordy explanation portended ... our dog Mimi woke me up in the middle of the night so I thought I'd take a look at what was in store and had worked it out before falling back to sleep. As usual, send your answers in to NPR here.

My photo challenge this week features other (3,3) phrases where the two halves rhyme (they are in alphabetical order). Click on the picture to discover the phrase, but don't try taking these to your doctor!:

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. Or skip the comments and send an email with your pick to Magdalen (at) Crosswordman (dot) com.  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 choosing.

I believe the entries were announced as "about 400". Time to dust off that tie-break rule. Wait! I don't understand the small print (not for the first time). I have to check in with the lawyer in the family. Meanwhile, all I can say is that Someone has won. Congratulations Someone! Watch the comments for our verdict on this.
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. 


Curtis said...

I'll stick with the 351 - 400. I can't really imagine why the response to the NPR Puzzle is on such a downward spiral again.

KDW said...

What's the Munich Brass Trio's favorite--the sousaphone or the homophone? And what's the good word in the Houses of Parliament?

901-950, please.

David said...

It took me about two minutes to solve after. I read the puzzle online last night. There is another word related to one of the four "answer words" that also rhymes with those words.

I didn't get a response to my question from last week. When I responded this week, I sent in the original phrase that was asked for, and also sent in the two additional words. Will I be disqualified for sending in too much? Anyone? Anyone?

I'll go back to my 1001 to 1050 range.

Anyone said...

David: I think the consensus we have reached here is that it is likely only the submission selected is read. If it is wrong, then another is "drawn."

If last week you had submitted "Tinker Bell" (or perhaps "Tinkerbell" or "TinkerBell"), you would have been in. If you had added Ben Stiller, you certainly would also have been. If you added Rod Steiger, who knows.

I don't think Will Shortz cares any more for the selection process than he does for coming up with challenging, rigorous challenges.

Curtis said...

Since I've won a couple times in the past, I would think fairness would suggest the prize should go to KDW.

Ben said...

451-500 for me this time. - Ben

skydiveboy said...

401 and now for a much needed martini.

Ross Beresford said...

Thanks so much Curtis.

KDW: congratulations on winning this week's Pick a Range; please send your postal address to Ross At and your prize will be on its way.

KDW said...

This lady appreciates your gentlemanly gesture, Curtis!

Anonymous said...

My usual 1051-1100, please.

And there ought to be a law against the caption for the Clayton Bates picture. (If you don't understand that, read it more carefully.)

Henry BW

Curtis said...

@KDW - De Nada. The Pick a Range contest should be about fun, and not competitiveness.

Seth said...

I came up with an answer, but I have a feeling it might be wrong because it involves something tricky in a sinister sort of way. If this is the answer, cool. If it's not, and I came up with a sneaky alternative, I can't wait to share it with you.

And if this constitutes too much of a hint, sorry! Take this post down!

skydiveboy said...

Since Seth has spoken, I have also comu up with an alternative answer, but it uses one word twice.

Marie said...

Don't understand the low numbers, but I'm hoping this is easy enough for a big jump...801 please and thank you.