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A Port Of Call

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A Port Of Call

A Port Of Call

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LIANE HANSEN, host:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Liane Hansen.

And joining us is puzzle master Will Shortz. Hi, Will.

WILL SHORTZ: Hi, Liane.

HANSEN: How are you doing?

SHORTZ: I'm doing great. How about you?

HANSEN: Well, you're coming to Washington next week to address the American Librarian Association?

SHORTZ: That's right, giving the keynote address. I, of course, will be doing audience-participation puzzles there.

HANSEN: I would expect nothing less from you. You're always doing puzzles. Remind us of the challenge you gave us last week.

SHORTZ: Yes. I said write down these five names: Christian Dior, Anne Boleyn, Edna Ferber, Indiana Jones and Richard Simmons. And I said the first four names have something very unusual in common, which the fifth name does not. And I asked what property is it. And to show that you have the right answer, think of another name that shares the same property.

HANSEN: Okay. What's your answer?

SHORTZ: Well, the answer is if you take the first two letters of the first name, shift them one space later in the alphabet, you'll get the first two letters of the last name. And there's not many familiar names that have this property. The most common answer we got as a new name, is Charles Dickens. Some other popular ones were Stanley Tucci, the actor, Andrea Bocelli, the Italian tenor, and my favorite was Ingmar Johansen, the boxer who's former heavyweight champion of the world.

And if you take the first three letters of his first name and shift them later in the alphabet, you'll get the first three letters of his last name. That was very pretty.

HANSEN: Oh yeah. I bet that shows up in another puzzle some time. We'll keep it in mind. We received more than 2,300 entries this week, but many people didn't actually follow your directions. They wrote in a lot of names with the first and last names beginning alphabetically but not the second letters alphabetically as well.

But our winner played it correctly. His name is Rick Lubens from Dedham, Massachusetts. Hi, Rick.

Mr. RICK LUBENS: Hi.

HANSEN: I understand this was a collaborative effort with your son. You want to give him a shoutout?

Mr. LUBENS: Absolutely. My son, Daniel, really he came up with the Charles Dickens. We were coming home from breakfast - we go out on Sunday mornings -and we together sort of solved the puzzle. But I ran into the store to do an errand and when I came out he said Charles Dickens.

HANSEN: How old is he?

Mr. LUBENS: He's 17.

HANSEN: Good for him. What do...

Mr. LUBENS: And just finished his third year in high school.

HANSEN: Good for him. Oh, you've got another year to go. Senioritis, huh?

Mr. LUBENS: Something like that.

HANSEN: What do you do in Dedham?

Mr. LUBENS: Well, I'm a physician.

HANSEN: All right. How long have you been playing our puzzle?

Mr. LUBENS: For a long time, but this is the first time that I've actually ever entered.

HANSEN: Ooh. There's a lot of long-time players who are going, why didn't you pick me? Are you ready to play though? You sound as if you are.

Mr. LUBENS: Any time.

HANSEN: All right. Rick, meet Will; Will, meet Rick. Let's play.

SHORTZ: All right, Rick. Today's puzzle is very straightforward. Every answer is a word or a name that contains the syllable port. For example, if I gave you the clue consequential, you would say important. All right. Number one is a newspaper employee.

Mr. LUBENS: Reporter.

SHORTZ: That's right. How about a sofa?

HANSEN: Oh man, this is an old-fashioned word.

Mr. LUBENS: Sofa?

HANSEN: Yeah.

SHORTZ: And this one ends in port.

Mr. LUBENS: Davenport.

HANSEN: Yeah.

SHORTZ: Davenport is it. Travel device on "Star Trek."

Mr. LUBENS: Transporter.

SHORTZ: That's it. Language of Brazil.

Mr. LUBENS: Portuguese.

SHORTZ: Um-hum. Home of the Trailblazers.

Mr. LUBENS: Portland.

SHORTZ: That's it. What a political candidate needs.

Mr. LUBENS: Courage. What a political candidate needs.

HANSEN: Well, I'm going to go...

SHORTZ: Go ahead, Liane.

HANSEN: ...I'm going to go with support or supporter.

SHORTZ: That's it. Support, supporters, either way. Good job. How about a window on a ship?

Mr. LUBENS: A porthole.

HANSEN: Yeah.

SHORTZ: Um-hum. All right. How about this: Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa for one? Or it's a picture of any person.

Mr. LUBENS: Portrait.

SHORTZ: Portrait is it. A travel document.

Mr. LUBENS: Passport.

SHORTZ: Um-hum. Company that makes goods and sells them overseas.

Mr. LUBENS: Import-export.

SHORTZ: Right. Exporter. How about a variety of mushroom.

Mr. LUBENS: Portobello.

SHORTZ: Um-hum. Variety of steak.

Mr. LUBENS: Porterhouse.

SHORTZ: That's good. An artist's showcase. Something an artist carries around in order to show his or her work.

Mr. LUBENS: A portfolio.

SHORTZ: That's it. And your last one is a word like brunch, which is a blending of breakfast and lunch. Uh-oh, it sounds like a stuck you on the last one.

HANSEN: No. Rick, how are you doing?

Mr. LUBENS: Not good.

HANSEN: No, me either.

SHORTZ: Oh, I stuck you on the last one. It's a portmanteau.

HANSEN: Really?

SHORTZ: A portmanteau word.

HANSEN: Oh Lord. Hey, Rick, I'm glad you were there.

Mr. LUBENS: Well, it was my pleasure.

HANSEN: Rick, to tell you what you'll get for playing the puzzle today, we actually have a blast from the past.

(Soundbite of song, "When I Fall In Love")

THE LETTERMEN (Pop trio): (Singing) Ooh, ooh-ooh-ooh. When I fall in love...

Hi, we're The Lettermen.

Mr. TONY BUTALA: Tony.

Mr. MARK PRESTON: Mark.

Mr. DONOVAN TEA: And I'm Donovan.

Mr. BUTALA: For playing our puzzle today, you'll get a WEEKEND EDITION lapel pin...

Mr. PRESTON: ...the "Scrabble Deluxe Edition" from Parker Brothers...

Mr. TEA: ...the book series, "Will Shortz Present KenKen," Volumes 1 and 2 and 3 from St. Martin's Press...

Mr. PRESTON: ...one of Will Shortz's "Puzzlemaster Decks of Riddles and Challenges...

THE LETTERMEN ...from Chronicle Books.

Mr. PRESTON: And a CD compilation of NPR's Sunday Puzzles.

THE LETTERMEN: (Singing) Love has ended before it's begun. And a...

HANSEN: The Lettermen will appear on the show next month. Rick, what do you think?

Mr. LUBENS: Excellent.

HANSEN: Yeah, they are. I mean just to hear them harmonize is terrific, so have that to look forward to. Before we let you go, tell us what member station you listen to?

Mr. LUBENS: BUR.

HANSEN: WBUR in Boston.

Mr. LUBENS: Mm-hmm.

HANSEN: Rick Lubens from Dedham, Massachusetts, hey, thanks for playing the puzzle with us today.

Mr. LUBENS: Oh, thank you very much. I enjoyed it.

HANSEN: I did, too. Will, you have a challenge for next week.

SHORTZ: Yes. It comes from listener Pete Collins of Anne Arbor, Michigan. Think of a product you might buy at a hardware store. It's a generic name in two words. Replace the first letter of the first word with an S, as in Sam, and replace the first two letters of the second word with an S. The result will be two new words that are opposites. What are they?

So again, something you might buy at a hardware store - two words. Replace the first letter of the first word with an S, and replace the first two letters of the second word with an S. The result will be two new words that are opposites. What words are these?

HANSEN: When you have the answer, go to our website, Npr.org/puzzle and click on the Submit Your Answer link. Only one entry per person, please. Our deadline is Thursday, 3 P.M. Eastern Time. Please include a phone number where we can reach you at about that time. We'll call you if youre the winner and you'll get to play puzzle on the air with the puzzle editor of The New York Times and WEEKEND EDITION's puzzlemaster, Will Shortz.

And, Will, I'm about to go one a two week vacation to the beach. So next week, you'll be playing the puzzle with Audie Cornish. But I'll be listening. Thanks a lot.

SHORTZ: Great. Have a great time, Liane and thanks a lot.

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