Two Clues with Double the Fun This week's on-air puzzle involves two clues that will yield a solution using a seven-letter word and the middle five letters of that very same word. For example, if the first clue is "heavy" and the second ins "a figure that a skater might make," the answeres would be "weighty" and "eight."
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Two Clues with Double the Fun

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Two Clues with Double the Fun

Two Clues with Double the Fun

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  • <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
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From NPR News, this is WEEKEND EDITION. I'm Liane Hansen, and joining us is puzzle master Will Shortz. Hi, Will.


HANSEN: Busy weekend.

SHORTZ: Yeah, this is the crossword championship weekend.

HANSEN: Such fun.

SHORTZ: Yeah, and I have a challenge puzzle coming up in a moment from Merl Reagle, something he thought of when he walked in the hotel lobby the other day.

HANSEN: That man cannot be stopped, can he?


(Soundbite of laughter)

HANSEN: No. Well, remind us of the challenge you gave us last week.

SHORTZ: Yes. I said think of a well-known two-word motto. Say it quickly, and it will sound like a different two-word phrase for the result of some auto garage work. What is it?

HANSEN: What is it?

SHORTZ: The answer is be prepared, as in the Boy Scout motto. And say it quickly, it sounds like beep repaired.

HANSEN: That's funny. We had over 700 entries from people who solved the puzzle, and our randomly selected winner is Sue Grigsby from Everett, Washington. Hi, Sue.

Ms. SUE GRIGSBY (Puzzle Winner): Hi.

HANSEN: How are you?

Ms. GRIGSBY: I'm doing just fine, thank you very much.

HANSEN: So what do you do in Everett?

Ms. GRIGSBY: I teach PE and health at Everett Community College.

HANSEN: Wow, now you exercise muscles. Have you been playing a long time, exercising your brain?

Ms. GRIGSBY: I've been exercising a long time with my brain, and usually I work on them when I'm out for my daily walk.

HANSEN: Good for you. You sound like you're ready to play.

Ms. GRIGSBY: I am very ready to play.

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

SHORTZ: All right, Sue, I'm going to give you clues for two words. The first word has seven letters. Remove the first and last letters, and you'll get a five-letter word that answers the second clue. For example, if I said heavy, and your second clue is a figure that a figure skater might make, you would say weighty and eight.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Okay.

SHORTZ: All right, number one is an industrial plant, and a person in a play.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Factory and actor.

SHORTZ: Good job. Number two is a saying and a vagabond.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Saying and vagabond.

SHORTZ: Saying, like a...

Ms. GRIGSBY: Adage comes to mind.

SHORTZ: Right, a synonym of that, like a stitch in time saves nine is what?

Ms. GRIGSBY: Proverb.

SHORTZ: Uh-huh, and a vagabond?

Ms. GRIGSBY: And rover.

SHORTZ: Is a rover. To supervise, and a poem.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Oversee and verse.

SHORTZ: Good job. A grand speech and proportion.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Oration and ratio.

SHORTZ: That's fast. Gas that may build up in a mine and a famous Allen.

Ms. GRIGSBY: A famous Allen?

SHORTZ: Uh-huh, A-L-L-E-N.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Gas that comes up in a mine.

SHORTZ: Yeah, that may build up in a mine.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Methane and Ethan.

SHORTZ: Ethan Allen is right. Neighbored, and your second clue is a city in Montana.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Neighbored?

SHORTZ: Neighbored with an N...

Ms. GRIGSBY: Okay.

SHORTZ: As in touched.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Okay. City in Montana. Ooh, I need help.

HANSEN: This one - is the city Butte?


HANSEN: And...

Ms. GRIGSBY: Abutted.


SHORTZ: Abutted is right. How about a Greek letter and very, very small.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Oh, I'm not good with Greek.

HANSEN: Right, I have to go through my alphabet, and then you have to find the ones that have seven letters.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Ms. GRIGSBY: Yeah, that's epsilon?

HANSEN: That's my first one, but I don't think it's going to solve our...

Ms. GRIGSBY: I forgot what the second half was.

HANSEN: Will, what was the second half of the clue?

SHORTZ: Very, very small. I'll give you a hint on the Greek letter: think of the letter after Xi, the letter after Xi.

Ms. GRIGSBY: And that doesn't help much for those...

SHORTZ: That's no help at all. How about the Greek O. What's the Greek O?

Ms. GRIGSBY: Omicron and micro.

HANSEN: Oh, there you go.

SHORTZ: That's it.

HANSEN: Very good.

SHORTZ: All right, here's your next one. Exercised too much and composer of "La Traviata."

Ms. GRIGSBY: Overdid and Verdi.

SHORTZ: That's right. Like 1.3 billion of the world's people, and your second clue is dancer Gregory.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Chinese and Hine - Hines.

SHORTZ: That's right, that's it. To overshadow, and your second clue is office fasteners.

HANSEN: Five-letter word. I have staple, but that's a six-letter word, right.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Staple...

SHORTZ: And before staples, what did you use?

Ms. GRIGSBY: Clips - eclipse.

SHORTZ: Eclipse is it. Try this one: Severe punishment and like some kitchens.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Oh, beating and eat-in.

SHORTZ: Oh, good job. This one you should get easily. Your first clue is teach, and your second clue is a former gold coin of Europe.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Instruct? No.

SHORTZ: Nah, that - it's a synonym of that.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Oh, I should know this.

HANSEN: How about educate?


Ms. GRIGSBY: Educate and ducat.

SHORTZ: That's it. And here's your last one: To desert and one of the railroads in Monopoly.


HANSEN: Here we go.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Ms. GRIGSBY: It's not Short Line, and it's not B&O.

Mr. SHORTZ: Oh, yes it is.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Oh, B and O - to desert. Abandon.

HANSEN: Abandon.

Mr. SHORTZ: Abandon and B and O. Nice job.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Whoo. We did it.

HANSEN: Hey Sue, we did, huh? Nice teamwork.

Ms. GRIGSBY: That was fun.

HANSEN: It was fun, actually, it was a lot of fun. And for playing our puzzle today, in addition to the fun you just had, 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' Puzzle Master Decks of Riddles and Challenges from Chronicle Books.

Sue, what member station do you listen to?

Ms. GRIGSBY: I listen to KPLU in the Seattle-Tacoma area.

HANSEN: Okay. Sue Grigsby from Everett, Washington, thanks a lot for playing the puzzle with us.

Ms. GRIGSBY: Thank you so much. It was wonderful.

HANSEN: It was a lot of fun. All right, Will, I'm afraid whenever you attend these kinds of tournaments, you always come up with something interesting, and you already said it's going to be from Merl Reagle. What's the challenge you have for next week?

Mr. SHORTZ: So as you know, the Crossword Championship is being held at the Stamford Marriot Hotel, and a sign just inside the front door says rejuvenate. Well, our old pal Merl Reagle walked into the lobby, saw that word, added two S's and rearranged the resulting 12 letters to name a famous person, first and last names. Who is it?

So again, the word is rejuvenate. Add two S's. Rearrange the resulting 12 letters to name a famous person, first and last names. Who is it?

HANSEN: 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. We'll call you if you're 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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