State the Answer The on-air puzzle for this week is a two-person puzzle. Given two three-letter words, the first word can be found in consecutive letters in the name of a U.S. state capital. And the second word can be found in consecutive letters of that capital's state. For example, given "son" and "our," the answer would be Jefferson, Missouri.
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State the Answer

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State the Answer

State the Answer

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From NPR News, this is WEEKEND EDITION. I'm Liane Hansen, and joining us is puzzle master Will Shortz.

Mr. WILL SHORTZ (Crossword Editor, New York Times): Hi, Liane.

HANSEN: It's March. This is a big month for you every year. Explain.

Mr. SHORTZ: Yeah, it's the 30th Annual American Crossword Puzzle Tournament. As always, it's in Stamford, Connecticut. Registration stays open till the day of the event. Some of the special events this year: we're going to have outtakes from "Wordplay," the documentary last year about crosswords, and the film's director, Patrick Creadon, is putting this together, and we'll talk about the movie at the tournament.

We have the leading crossword editor from Norway, who will speak about crosswords in her country. Your husband, Neal Conan, will do the play-by-play commentary in the playoff round, Sunday, and Richard Maltby, Jr., the Broadway composer and lyricist, will present the prizes. And if anyone wants more information, they can go to

HANSEN: There you go, advanced notice of the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament and all the things that are going to be happening at the end of this month. But meanwhile, working on that challenge you gave us last week. What was it?

Mr. SHORTZ: It came from listener Ed Peg, Jr., of Champaign, Illinois. I said take the 13-letter word melancholiacs, add the letter R, then re-arrange all the letters to name a famous actress, first and last names. Who is it?

HANSEN: Who is it?

Mr. SHORTZ: This was an Oscar challenge because she won an Oscar years ago: Cloris Leachman.

HANSEN: All right, I think "The Last Picture Show" was the Oscar that she won.

Mr. SHORTZ: That's it.

HANSEN: We had over 800 entries from people who tried to solve the puzzle, and our randomly selected winner is Jeffrey Vieira from Brooklyn, New York. Hi, Jeffrey.

Mr. JEFFREY VIEIRA (Puzzle Winner): Hi, how are you?

HANSEN: I'm well. How long did it take you to solve this?

Dr. VIEIRA: About five minutes. The name just, Cloris at least, jumped right off the page at me.

HANSEN: Ah, and then it was just a matter of extrapolation.

Dr. VIEIRA: That's right.

HANSEN: What do you do in New York?

Dr. VIEIRA: I'm an internist and infectious disease physician, and I direct a program of medical residents at a local hospital, Long Island College Hospital.

HANSEN: So how do you have time to do the puzzle?

Dr. VIEIRA: That's the five minutes they give me on Sunday morning.

(Soundbite of laughter)

HANSEN: How long have you been doing that?

Dr. VIEIRA: At least for 10 years I've been doing the puzzle.

HANSEN: Will, meet Jeffrey. What do we have today?

Mr. SHORTZ: All right, Jeffrey and Liane, this is a good two-person puzzle. I'm going to give you two three-letter words. The first word can be found reading in consecutive letters in the name of a U.S. state capital, and the second word can be found reading in consecutive letters of that capital's state.

For example, if I said son, S-O-N, and our, O-U-R, you would say Jefferson City, Missouri.

Dr. VIEIRA: Oh I would, would I?

Mr. SHORTZ: Yeah.

(Soundbite of laughter)

HANSEN: And so would I, Jeffrey, really.

Mr. SHORTZ: Here's number one. Ton, T-O-N, and set, S-E-T. Ton and set, I'll give you a hint, it's in New England.

Dr. VIEIRA: Boston, Massachusetts.

Mr. SHORTZ: That is correct. Number two is has, H-A-S, and rid, R-I-D, and think South for this.

Dr. VIEIRA: Florida, Tallahassee, Florida.

Mr. SHORTZ: Excellent. Ram, R-A-M, and for, F-O-R. And this one, you want to go to the far West.

Dr. VIEIRA: California, Sacramento.

Mr. SHORTZ: That's it. Sin, S-I-N, and Chi, C-H-I. Here you want to think about...

Dr. VIEIRA: Michigan...

Mr. SHORTZ: Yes.

Dr. VIEIRA: Come on, Liane.

HANSEN: No, I didn't hear the first one. What was it?

Dr. VIEIRA: Michigan.

HANSEN: Oh, Michigan.

Mr. SHORTZ: Capitol of Michigan is...


Mr. SHORTZ: Oh no.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Mr. SHORTZ: Starts with an L.

Dr. VIEIRA: Lansing.


Mr. SHORTZ: Lansing, Michigan is it.

HANSEN: Oh, I'm so embarrassed.

Mr. SHORTZ: Try this one. Inc, I-N-C, and bra, B-R-A.

Dr. VIEIRA: Lincoln, Nebraska.

Mr. SHORTZ: Oh, that was fast. Ale, A-L-E, and ego, E-G-O. Think far West again.

Dr. VIEIRA: Oregon.

Mr. SHORTZ: Yes.

HANSEN: Salem.

Dr. VIEIRA: Salem.

Mr. SHORTZ: Salem, Oregon. Good job. Err, E-R-R, and out, O-U-T. And for this you want to think upper plains. Do you know this one, Liane?

HANSEN: Is it South Dakota?

Mr. SHORTZ: Yes.

Dr. VIEIRA: Pierre.

Mr. SHORTZ: Yeah.

HANSEN: Pierre, yeah.

Mr. SHORTZ: Pierre, South Dakota. Good job. Nap, N-A-P, and Ian, I-A-N.

Dr. VIEIRA: In...

HANSEN: Indiana, right?

Mr. SHORTZ: Indiana is right.

Dr. VIEIRA: Indianapolis.

Mr. SHORTZ: Indianapolis, uh-huh. Len, L-E-N, and tan, T-A-N. And here you want to think of mountain states.

HANSEN: Oh, so Montana?

Mr. SHORTZ: Montana, and the capital is?

(Soundbite of laughter)

HANSEN: Here we go again.

Mr. SHORTZ: Nothing like being on the spot, you know. It's a woman's name that starts with H.

HANSEN: Oh, Helena.

Mr. SHORTZ: Helena is right, and here's your last one. Bur, B-U-R, and...

HANSEN: We're a good team, Jeffrey.

Mr. SHORTZ: You're a good team. And the state has van, V-A-N.


Mr. SHORTZ: And this is an Eastern state, mid-Atlantic. The state has 12 letters in its name.

HANSEN: Pennsylvania.

Mr. SHORTZ: Yes, and the capital is?

Dr. VIEIRA: Philadelphia.


Dr. VIEIRA: Harrisburg.

Mr. SHORTZ: Harrisburg, good job. That's not bad.

HANSEN: Hey Jeffrey, for a not-easy puzzle today, I think we made a really good team.

Dr. VIEIRA: Thankfully we know which part of the country these different states are located in.

HANSEN: The hints were very helpful.

Dr. VIEIRA: The hints were necessary.

HANSEN: All right, well, Jeffrey, for playing our puzzle today so well, you'll get a WEEKEND EDITION lapel pin; the 11th Edition of Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary and Thesaurus; the Scrabble Deluxe Edition from Parker Brothers; "The Puzzle Master Presents" from Random House, Volume 2; a set of Sudoku puzzle books presented by Will Shortz from St. Martin's Press; and one of Will Shortz's Puzzle Master Decks of Riddles and Challenges from Chronicle Books. Plenty of stuff to do on those few moments you get when you don't have to heal people, Jeffrey. What's your member station?

Dr. VIEIRA: I have three of them I listen to on the radio and online: WFUZ, Fordham University; WNYC in New York, and WAMC, Northeast Public Radio.

HANSEN: All right. Well, Dr. Jeffrey Vieira from Brooklyn, New York, thanks a lot for taking your valuable time to play the puzzle with us.

Dr. VIEIRA: Thank you very much.

HANSEN: All right. Will, a challenge for everyone this week?

Mr. SHORTZ: Yes, name something to eat in two words, seven letters in each word. All the letters in the first word are in the first half of the alphabet, A to M, and all the letters in the second word are in the second half of the alphabet, N to Z. It's something good to eat, and the answer is plural, and here's a hint: the initials of the two words are A.S.

So again, something good to eat in two words, seven letters in each word. All the letters in the first word are in the first half of the alphabet, and all the letters in the second word are in the second half of the alphabet. The initials of the two words are A.S. What food is this?

HANSEN: All right, well, when you have the answer, go to our Web site,, and click on the Submit Your Answer link on the Sunday Puzzle page. Only one entry per person, please. Our deadline this week is Thursday, 3:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Please include a phone number where we can reach you at about that time because we're going to call if you are 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 puzzle master, Will Shortz. Will, thanks a lot.

Mr. SHORTZ: Thanks, Liane.

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