Sunday, July 22, 2012

Sporting Life

Here's this week's NPR puzzle:
Name a sport in two words — nine letters in the first word, five six letters in the last — in which all six vowels (A, E, I, O, U, and Y) are used once each. What is it?
We're at the Philadelphia Airport and I've sent Ross and Henry off to solve the puzzle and eat breakfast (in that order) while I blog. (They were only half-successful: they got breakfast but didn't solve the puzzle yet.)

As you did not have to get up at 4:00 a.m., I assume you solved the puzzle with dispatch and you can send it in to NPR using this form here.


I my search for Dr. Shortz's sport I found an anatomical term that almost meets the parameters of the puzzle. (As it was SUPER EARLY, I missed the addition of the Y.)

All photos relate to that term. See if you can figure it out. And by "figure it out" I mean either discern what 9, 5 phrase with AEIOU might be that relates to the photos, or add a Y to the end to get a joky adverbial phrase in 9, 6. Or ignore the whole thing and just admire the photos. :-)

As previously explained, Pick-a-Range will be added later. (Yes, later even than right now.) You can go ahead and pick your range now, but it will be several hours before we can congratulate the winner from last week.

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 1,100". In this instance, Henry BW is the winner. But the Tie-Break Rule is officially no longer obsolete. Because the actual number of entries is some number near the round number announced (this week, it could have been 1,089 or 1,103) the winner could be the person picking 1,051 to 1,100 or the other person picking 1,101 to 1,150. We want new players to win prizes (it sucks them in, uh, encourages them to come back) so we're going to abide by the spirit of the Old Tie Break Rule, which has been revised (see below). Luckily, Curtis graciously withdrew his claim to the prize last week, so it's been dispatched to KDW, who had not previously won. If the on-air announcer actually says, "We received 1,100 entries," thus implying that 1,100 is the specific number of entries received, then we'll give it to the person who picked 1,051-1,100.

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 with a qualifier such as "about" or "around" (e.g., "We received around 1,200 entries."), AND two separate people picked the ranges of numbers just before and just after 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").  As of July 2012, this rule is officially no longer obsolete (and also I just like having fine print). 


KDW said...

Magdalen, the reason Ross and Henry haven't solved the puzzle yet is probably that NPR initially posted the letter count of the second word wrong. It's 6, not 5. They've corrected it.

Good luck at the RWA conference! Hope you have a wonderful time.

skydiveboy said...


Jon88 said...

It's also arguable whether the first word is nine letters, or ... well, the answer I found I would enumerate (4-5, 6) if I were feeling generous.

skydiveboy said...

Not arguable at all. It is not even a compound word. It is a stand alone word as spelled in nine letters. The fact that it also contains other words does not change this.

Curtis said...

I agree, SDB. I've owned one of these nine letter items, and I've not seen it spelled as two individual words. I'll take my usual range: 351 - 400.

Paul said...

I don't know very much about these items, but isn't it true that a 5 may be 4 without being a 9, and a 9 need not be 4?

Dave said...

I thought I'd get a leg up on everyone else this week by solving the puzzle on Saturday night, but the puzzle was incorrectly posted. 1,101 to 1,150, please.

Mendo Jim said...

Bull baiting? Bull fighting? Cock fighting? Pit fighting?
Oh, I have it.

Mendo Jim said...

SDB: Are you working on Elmer Morgan? I'm itching to give you a Wiki link.

skydiveboy said...

Mendo Jim:
I have better things to do than suffer fools gladly. Can't you even take a hint?

Mendo Jim said...

I guess I missed the hint.
And the town is so near to you!

Marie said...

Quick to solve, slow to post,1601 please.

David said...

1001 to 1050, please.

KDW said...

Well, I've learned that sometimes I should wait a couple of days before submitting my answer to NPR! I dashed off the 4-5/6 answer on Sunday (thinking, as probably Will will also think, that it was a bit contrived; but he HAD recently turned vin into wine in a somewhat contrived way...). Didn't get the 9/6 answer till Monday.

May I have 851-900, please?