Anyone can pick a Supreme Court justice. You simply take into account ethnicity, ideology, age, geography, temperament, paper trail, writing, gender. I don't know what the big deal is.
... whereas choosing a ScuttleButton puzzle winner each week is no mean feat. A thousand submissions. And I can only pick one. To make it even more difficult, they are chosen at random. Believe me, it's not easy.
One thing both have in common: in order to be selected, they need to know what they are doing.
Take ScuttleButton, for example. Just check out my button puzzle found on this blog each Friday. It's a rebus: 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 from Earth 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.
Also, the answer does not necessarily have to be political. For instance, the answer to a puzzle awhile back was "Minnesota Twins" — not political at all, unless you're thinking Mondale and Humphrey instead of Killebrew and Oliva.
Here are last week's buttons, in case you forgot:
Vote No Questions 1 & 2 — From New York City's vote on the Civilian Review Board, in 1966, that would create an independent board monitoring police behavior. A "no" vote was to keep the board. Most people voted "yes."
IFS — Stands for "I'm for Stoner," a/k/a Tom Stoner, who sought the GOP Senate nomination from Iowa in 1980 but lost in the primary 2-to-1 to then-Rep. Charles Grassley.
two buttons saying Re-elect Ms. Gov. (w/a photo of Texas Gov. Ann Richards) — She lost to George W. Bush in 1994 after one term in office. (Remember: two buttons on the same horizontal line mean I'm looking for a plural answer.)
Bob Orr — An Indiana Republican, he was elected governor in 1980.
Earl Butz for Governor — Another Indiana Republican, he unsuccessfully sought his party's nomination in 1968.
So, when you add No + Ifs + Anns + Orr + Butz, you might end up with ...
No Ifs, Ands Or Buts. Here's the entry from the Cambridge Dictionary of American Idioms: "without excuses or doubts; 'If they catch you stealing, you're fired on the spot — no ifs, ands, or buts about it.'"
This week's winner — remember, chosen completely at random, unlike those Supreme Court folks, is (drum roll) ... Stephen Rockower of Bethesda, Md.
Stephen wanted to know if he could "get a sense of how many submissions you get, and how many are right? Am I 1 out of 10 or 1 out of 100,000???"
The number of submissions are closer to 1,000 than 100,000. And this week, for the first time in history, there was not an incorrect submission to be found.
Wanna be alerted the moment a new ScuttleButton puzzle goes up on the site? (How can you NOT???) Sign up for our mailing list at firstname.lastname@example.org.
UPDATE: Stephen, who is a doctor, wrote the following when he learned he won this week's contest: "This is better than the Medicare SGR fix!!!