Thursday, October 4, 2012

NPR Puzzle 9/30/12 - Poetry Is To Prose As Dancing Is To Walking

Here's this week's NPR Puzzle:
Think of a word in which the second letter is R. Change the R to an M, and rearrange the result. You'll get the opposite of the original word. What is it? (Hint: The two words start with the same letter.)
Here's what I said on Sunday:
Hah! I solved it before Ross did. Bragging rights ALL DAY! Oh, wait, there's a flag on the play. Ross is claiming my answer isn't the right answer. Whatever.
Based on the comments we got to Sunday's post, I'm not sure we ever had the right answer. Nonetheless, I'll tell you what we've got.

Ross used a computer to crunch the permutations and ended up with DREARY and DREAMY. Not precisely opposites; also, no anagraming was required. I looked at word lists and came up with PROSE and POEMS, which at least are mutually exclusive (although, yes, the line between "prose" and a "prose poem" can be pretty thin indeed).

Did we get the right answer? I don't know. Feel free to complain or compliment in the comments.

Oh, that reminds me. I owe Mendo Jim (our resident curmudgeon) an apology. No, MJ, you've never hinted at the answer, at least not so I've noticed. And we love your rants, so please don't stop.

For the photo section, I started with the idea of poetry, swiftly got to Robert Frost, who took me--in my mind at least--to Bennington, Vermont. Behold, then, some places in New England associated with Robert Frost, or (in the case of the Bridge of Flowers), just kinda close to places in New England associated with Robert Frost. Click on each photo for more information.

Time for
Here are this week's picks:

Fewer than 50
 51 - 100
101 - 150
151 - 200
201 - 250
251 - 300 -- Ross
301 - 350 -- skydiveboy
351 - 400 -- Curtis
401 - 450 -- Marie
451 - 500 -- Magdalen
501 - 550 -- EKW
551 - 600
601 - 650
651 - 700
701 - 750
751 - 800
801 - 850
851 - 900 -- KDW
901 - 950
951 - 1,000
1,001 - 1,050 -- David
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 + 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 still just like having fine print). 


skydiveboy said...

I came up with Dreary and Dreamy just by thinking about it, but now suspect Prose and Poems are the intended answer, but both work. I think this is a very dreary puzzle and a time-waster at best. Tedious! No joy in working it at all.

KDW said...

I submitted PROSE/POEMS and feel sure it is the intended answer.

Mendo Jim said...

After a lot (a lot!) of years reading and writing prose and poetry, I find myself relying more on my personal lexicon and less on my old dictionary.
In the sense that one might say "I write prose, not poems," then the words are antonyms, but to my mind imperfect ones.
So I said in my Monday post that they were not equivalent. "Prose" and "poetry" are.

But I have to say to Ross, SDB and others at Blaine's that in the personal lexicon I mentioned, "dreary" and "dreamy" miss by miles more.

Curtis said...

MJ, to further your point, this puzzle is imperfect. Hence the plethora answers posted on that other blog. That deafening roar you'll hear on Sunday morning will come from the collective groan emanating from the all the NPR listeners as the "true" answer gets revealed. My answer, PREPARED & PAMPERED (a pampered person is unlikely to be prepared), is unlikely to be the same as Will's.

KDW said...

I don't see how DREARY/DREAMY even fits the puzzle's stipulations: the second letter of the original word is R; change that R to an M and anagram the result. To change DREARY to DREAMY means changing the SECOND-TO-LAST letter to M, not changing the SECOND letter, period; plus, no anagramming is involved. I'm surprised that Ross's computer didn't pick up on this.

Seth said...

Kdw, anagramming is required. Start with DREARY and change the second letter to an M and you get DMEARY. If you anagram this, which just amounts to changing the positions of the R and the M, you get DREAMY.

Mendo Jim said...

For the first time in months, I looked for the Puzzle on Saturday and there it was.
Will drags out yet another iteration of the boring "how many triangles" ilk for next week.
Maybe somebody can match their answer to their range guess.
The only reason to tune in is to see if they pronounce Lompoc right.