Sunday Puzzle: Made-Up Phrases

Nov 24, 2019

On-air challenge: Every answer is a made-up two-word phrase in which the first word starts with the letter C, and the second word is the same as the first but without the C.

Ex. A painting of a golfer's vehicle --> CART ART

1. A Scottish boy wearing clothing

2. Pile that doesn't cost much

3. Security device for a timepiece

4. Where a group of witches bakes a cake

5. One who assesses the quality of a feature of the lunar surface

6. Black bird that is cowardly

7. Wifey's mate who's a little overweight

8. A two-point score in horseshoes that is more obvious

9. One jumping on a helicopter, informally

10. One abandoning a butcher's knife

11. One running his tongue over an answering device on "Jeopardy!"

12. One who wakes up a reveler

Last week's challenge: This challenge came from Janet McDonald of Baton Rouge, La. The city of Mobile, Ala., has the interesting property that the name of the city has exactly the same consonants as its state (M, B and L), albeit in a different order. What is the next-largest U.S. city for which this is true?

Challenge answer: Charleston, S.C.

Winner: Brendan Shera of Queens, New York

This week's challenge: This week's challenge comes from listener Jon Siegel of Chevy Chase, Md. The words WON and SUN rhyme, even though their vowels are different. Can you name four common, uncapitalized 4-letter words, each of which has exactly one vowel, and all of which rhyme, even though all four vowels are different?

Submit Your Answer

If you know the answer to next week's challenge, submit it here. Listeners who submit correct answers win a chance to play the on-air puzzle. Important: Include a phone number where we can reach you by Wednesday, Nov. 27 at 3 p.m. ET.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

And it's time to play The Puzzle.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Joining us is Will Shortz. He's puzzle editor of The New York Times and WEEKEND EDITION's puzzlemaster.

Hi, Will.

WILL SHORTZ, BYLINE: Good morning, Lulu.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: All right. What was last week's challenge?

SHORTZ: Yeah. It came from Janet McDonald of Baton Rouge, La. And we said Mobile, Ala., has the interesting property that the name of the city has exactly the same consonants as its state - M, B and L - albeit in a different order. And I asked, what is the next-largest U.S. city for which this is true? And the answer surprisingly is Charleston, S.C., 'cause there are seven consonants in each of those, exactly the same.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: We received over 1,200 correct responses, and the winner this week is Brendan Shera of Queens, N.Y.

Congratulations.

BRENDAN SHERA: Thank you.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: So how long have you been playing The Puzzle?

SHERA: About nine years.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Wow. And what keeps you coming back for more?

SHERA: Well, it's my morning tradition on Sundays - doing the dishes and listening to WEEKEND EDITION probably about two hours after it aired, but...

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Hey, we'll take it. As long as you're listening, it's good. And what do you do?

SHERA: I'm a city planner.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Oh, how wonderful. All right. Are you ready to play The Puzzle?

SHERA: I am.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Take it away, Will.

SHORTZ: All right, Brendan. Every answer today is a made-up two-word phrase in which the first word starts with the letter C, and the second word is the same as the first but without the C. For example, if I said a painting of a golfer's vehicle, you would say cart art. Here's number one - a Scottish boy wearing clothing.

SHERA: A Scottish boy wearing clothing.

SHORTZ: What's a Scottish boy in three letters?

SHERA: I don't think I know that one.

SHORTZ: Or an Irish boy.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Not a lassie but a...

SHORTZ: Lulu gave you a good hint.

SHERA: Yeah, I'm really embarrassed here.

SHORTZ: (Laughter) Yeah. Well, what would you call any boy? Forget the Scottish. What's a - any boy in three letters?

SHERA: Oh, I'm sorry. A lad, sorry.

SHORTZ: OK. So now you put a C in front of it.

SHERA: A clad lad. Yes, there we go.

SHORTZ: Clad lad is it. Good. Number two, a pile that doesn't cost much.

SHERA: A pile that doesn't cost much - a cheap heap.

SHORTZ: That's it. A security device for a timepiece.

SHERA: A clock lock.

SHORTZ: Clock lock is it. Where a group of witches bakes a cake.

SHERA: A coven oven.

SHORTZ: That's it. One who assesses the quality of a feature of the lunar surface.

SHERA: That would be a crater rater.

SHORTZ: A blackbird that is cowardly.

SHERA: A craven raven.

SHORTZ: Nice. Wifey's mate who's a little overweight.

SHERA: Chubby hubby.

SHORTZ: That's it. A two-point score in horseshoes that is more obvious.

SHERA: Two-point score in horseshoes.

SHORTZ: Yeah. It's not a ringer, but it's the next-best thing.

SHERA: It's been a lot longer since I've played horseshoes.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: I was about to say I haven't played horseshoes in a while.

SHORTZ: And so - you can score if you have the nearest horseshoe or, of course - and you get one point for that - or three points if you get a ringer. What do you get two points for?

SHERA: Yeah, I'm really drawing a blank on this one.

SHORTZ: All right. I'm just going to tell you. It's a cleaner leaner.

SHERA: Oh, yeah.

SHORTZ: In some versions of horseshoes, you get two points for a leaner. All right. Try this one - one jumping on a helicopter informally.

SHERA: A chopper hopper.

SHORTZ: That's it. One abandoning a butcher's knife.

SHERA: A cleaver leaver.

SHORTZ: Nice. One running his tongue over an answering device on "Jeopardy."

SHERA: It's not a buzzer.

SHORTZ: It's not electronic.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: It's what I call - it's actually what I call the thing to change the channel at home (laughter).

SHERA: Oh, a clicker licker (laughter).

SHORTZ: A clicker licker is right. And your last one - one who wakes up a reveler. And you think of an eight-letter word for a reveler starting with C. If you think of it as a verb, if you wake somebody up starting with an A, what do you do to them?

SHERA: Awake.

SHORTZ: Yeah. Oh, that's true - but another one.

SHERA: Oh (laughter) - arouse.

SHORTZ: Yes.

SHERA: Oh, carouser arouser.

SHORTZ: A carouser arouser is it.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Good job, ending strong. How do you feel?

SHERA: It is a lot easier to scream at my phone while I'm doing the dishes but...

GARCIA-NAVARRO: (Laughter) For playing our puzzle today, you'll get a WEEKEND EDITION lapel pin, as well as puzzle books and games. You can read all about it at npr.org/puzzle.

And Brendan, which member station do you listen to?

SHERA: WNYC.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Yay. That's Brendan Shera of Queens, N.Y.

Thanks so much for playing The Puzzle.

SHERA: Thank you.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: What's next week's challenge, Will?

SHORTZ: Yeah, it comes from listener Jon Siegel of Chevy Chase, Md. The words won - W-O-N - and sun - S-U-N - rhyme even though their vowels are different. Can you name four common uncapitalized four-letter words, each of which has exactly one vowel and all of which rhyme, even though all four vowels are different? So again, name four common uncapitalized four-letter words, each of which has exactly one vowel and all of which rhyme, even though all four vowels are different. Can you do it?

GARCIA-NAVARRO: When you have the answer, go to our website npr.org/puzzle and click on the submit your answer link. Remember, just one entry per person, please. Our deadline for entries is early - Wednesday, November 27, at 3 p.m. Eastern - because of Thanksgiving. Include a phone number where we can reach you at about that time. And if you're the winner, we'll give you a call, and you'll get to play on the air with the puzzle editor of The New York Times and WEEKEND EDITION's very own puzzlemaster Will Shortz.

Thanks so much, Will. And happy Thanksgiving.

SHORTZ: Thanks, Lulu. Happy Thanksgiving to you.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.