We Have A ScuttleButton Winner!

So Mark Sanford calls his girlfriend his soul mate?

I thought she was from Argentina, not South Korea.

The point being, had he focused on solving the latest ScuttleButton puzzle, instead of opening up his heart to the Associated Press, he might have had a chance of political survival.

But he didn't. And he doesn't. And, as a consequence, someone else is this week's ScuttleButton winner.

It's really not that difficult to be eligible. All you have to do is check out our button puzzle/rebus each Friday — this week it's today because of the holiday — take one word or one concept per button, add 'em up, and arrive at a familiar saying or a name. (Seriously: a saying that people might be remotely familiar with.) Submit your answer and hope you're the person chosen at random. That's it!

Oh wait. You MUST include your name and city/state to be eligible.

And also remember, the answer does not necessarily have to be political. For instance, the answer to a puzzle a while back was "Minnesota Twins" — not political at all, unless you're thinking Mondale and Humphrey instead of Killebrew and Oliva.

Last week's buttons, in case you forgot:

John Tower / He stands for Texas — Tower, the state's first Republican senator since Reconstruction, served from 1961-84.

Ann Richards for Governor of Texas — Obviously, a Texas theme here. (Or maybe a distraction to throw you off the trail!) Richards, a Democrat, was elected in 1990 but lost four years later to George W. Bush.

Cate — Cathy "Cate" Zeuske, then the state treasurer of Wisconsin, unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for the Senate in 1994.

Nixon + Spiro = Zero — Sentiments not especially positive about the 1968 Republican ticket of Richard Nixon and Spiro Agnew.

8 Years is Enough — A button distributed by supporters of 1940 GOP presidential candidate Wendell Willkie, saying that President Franklin Roosevelt should not have a third term.

So, when you add John + Ann + Cate + "+" + 8, you kind of get ...

Jon and Kate Plus Eight — the name of that reality program, or whatever you want to call it, on the TLC network, about a couple with twins and sextuplets who do things that people are allegedly interested in, though for what reason I am not sure.

And yet, we received more entries for last week's contest than ever before, including submissions from — honest to God — Baghdad, Afghanistan, London, Prague, and Osaka, Japan!

Anyway, the winner, selected at random among the correct responders, is (drum roll) ... Bruce Johnnson, from the somewhat less interesting city of Tucson, Ariz.

Meanwhile, yikes: the response to me choosing "Jon & Kate + 8" didn't go over with many participants.

"You had to go there? I'm so disappointed," writes Melyssa Fratkin of Austin, Texas.

A "wincing" Becky Page of Rockford, Mich., was so disappointed that she "briefly considered abtaining" from participating in the contest.

Similarly, Allison Thomas of Prescott Valley, Ariz., "almost don't want to reply today, for fear of giving these two yahoos any more publicity."

Teresa Henderson of Tallahassee, Fla., was hoping that "ScuttleButton was the one place I could avoid hearing anything about this."

"You succumbed to the popular news," writes Kathryn Nulk of Eau Claire, Wis.

"A terrible, terrible show," writes Payton Bradford of Rome, Ga.

Debbie Greenberg of North Potomac, Md., laments the fact that they were on three of the last four People magazine covers.

Danny Donahue of Charlotte, N.C.: "C'mon Ken, don't follow the media frenzy!"

"For shame," writes Will Painter of Arlington, Va.

It's a "phrase I really didn't want to see on NPR," moans Kate Harvey of Colorado Springs, Colo.

Noel Walker of Euless, Texas feels "a little sad" knowing the answer.

Jim Garrison of St. Louis moans, "Isn't their 15 minutes WAY over?"

"Good grief," says Lindsey Taylor of Arlington, Texas.

Tyra Barrett of Knoxville, Tenn., was more succinct: "Uuuggggggghhhhh!"

Dayne Zachrison of Watertown, S.D., only wishes that the problems of the U.S. health care system could get as much coverage of this TV show.

John Stoner of Richmond, Va., came to my defense, kind of: "No one ever said that the answer to the ScuttleButton puzzle had to be meaningful."

Dennis McCulloch of Kansas City, Mo., seems to understand me better than anyone. He wrote, "You shameless exploitative man — in other words, good one!"

Michael White of San Mateo, on the other hand, doesn't understand me at all: "Come on. Seriously. You're better than that."

Wanna be alerted the moment a new ScuttleButton puzzle goes up on the site? (How can you NOT???) Sign up on our mailing list at politicaljunkie@npr.org.

And because tomorrow is a holiday, the new ScuttleButton puzzle will be up later this afternoon!

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