LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:
Thanksgiving is just days away. And there's a lot of shopping and dusting and defrosting to be done before the rest of the family come over for the big feast - so much on the to-do list. But let's just pause for a moment, take a breather and, of course, play The Puzzle.
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GARCIA-NAVARRO: Joining me as always is Will Shortz. He's puzzle editor of The New York Times and WEEKEND EDITION's puzzle master. Will, good morning.
WILL SHORTZ, BYLINE: Good morning, Lulu.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: So remind us of last week's challenge.
SHORTZ: Yes, it came from listener Steve Baggish of Arlington, Mass. I said take the name of a U.S. state capital. Immediately to the right of it, write the name of a world capital. And if you have the right ones, the name of a U.S. state will be embedded in consecutive letters within that letter string. What three places are these? Well, the answer can start either Dover or Denver. Either one is a state capital. You add Montevideo from Uruguay. And right in the middle there is Vermont.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: We received over 1,700 correct responses. And our randomly selected winner is John Veal of Kansas City, Mo., or Missour-a depending on where you're from. Congratulations.
JOHN VEAL: Thank you.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: How do you say it? - Missouri or Missour-a?
VEAL: I say Missouri.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: OK. I'm with you on that. I vote Missouri. How did you figure out the answer?
VEAL: I looked for state capitals with the last syllable or two that could possibly start a state name. And as soon as I hit Denver, I looked for a -mont to go with it.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: All right. Are you ready to play The Puzzle.
VEAL: I'm ready.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: OK. Take it away, Will.
SHORTZ: Sounds tentative - well, John, today's theme is the World Boxing Association, the WBA. Every answer is a compound word or familiar two-word phrase in which the first word starts with W and the second word starts BA. For example, if I said long ago, you might say way back.
SHORTZ: So here's No. 1 - a small cart with handles that a gardener pushes.
SHORTZ: That's correct. No. 2 - top of a pair of pants that might be elasticized.
SHORTZ: Uh-huh - a round, white toy with holes that you hit with a bat.
VEAL: Wiffle ball.
SHORTZ: Uh-huh - a missile in a summer fight that lands with a splat.
VEAL: A missile in a summer fight...
SHORTZ: It lands with...
VEAL: ...Oh, water balloon.
SHORTZ: Water balloon is it. A person who talks, talks, talks.
SHORTZ: Not a wet - a person who just goes on and on and on.
VEAL: Another blank.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: I will give you a sound effect. The first word is (blowing). (Laughter).
SHORTZ: What makes that sound, John? What is it that blows during a storm?
VEAL: Oh, windbag.
SHORTZ: Windbag is it. OK. You got audio clues for that one.
SHORTZ: All right. Here's your next one - a container for indoor trash.
SHORTZ: That's it - a sport for the New York Liberty and Los Angeles Sparks.
VEAL: Oh, boy. I'm not good at sports.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: You don't have to be good at sports to know this actually.
SHORTZ: Well, first of all, what's a game where you dribble?
SHORTZ: That's it. And what goes W in front of it? - the New York Liberty or Los Angeles Sparks?
GARCIA-NAVARRO: You got W. What could it possibly be? - basketball with a W in front of it?
VEAL: (Laughter) I'm not following.
SHORTZ: Oh, I'll tell you. But go ahead, Lulu.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Like the W outside of a washroom.
VEAL: Oh, women's - women's basketball.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Good job. You were really good. How'd you feel?
VEAL: A little nervous on a couple of them - but it was fun.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Good - 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. John, what member station do you listen to?
VEAL: KCUR in Kansas City.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: John Veal of Kansas City, Mo., thank you for playing The Puzzle.
VEAL: Thank you.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Will, what is next week's challenge?
SHORTZ: Yeah. Take these six words. First is adieu - A-D-I-E-U as in French for goodbye - amazed, bureaus - B-U-R-E-A-U-S - elates, head-on and Siennas - S-I-E-N-N-A-S. Besides the fact that each word contains the letter E, what highly unusual property do they share? So that's it - six words - adieu - A-D-I-E-U - amazed, bureaus, elates, head-on and Siennas. Besides the fact that each word contains the letter E, what highly unusual property do they share?
GARCIA-NAVARRO: When you have the answer go to our website, npr.org/puzzle, and click on the Submit Your Answer link. Just one entry per person, please. Our deadline for entries is Thursday, November 23 at 3 p.m. ET. And we all know what day that is, so that might be right when your Thanksgiving turkey is making it to the table. So don't forget. 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 puzzle master Will Shortz. Will, thank you so much.
SHORTZ: Thank you, Lulu.
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