Sunday Puzzle: 5 To 7 Brian Jones of Jacksonville, Fla., plays this week's puzzle with puzzlemaster Will Shortz and NPR's Lulu Garcia-Navarro.
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Sunday Puzzle: 5 To 7

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Sunday Puzzle: 5 To 7

Sunday Puzzle: 5 To 7

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  • <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
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It's time to play The Puzzle.


GARCIA-NAVARRO: Joining us is Will Shortz. He's puzzle editor of The New York Times and WEEKEND EDITION's puzzlemaster. Hi, Will.


GARCIA-NAVARRO: So what was last week's challenge?

SHORTZ: Yes. It came from listener Dorothy Baker of Dallas. I said, think of a word that has five vowels - two E's, an I, an O and a U. And I said that every vowel except the I is pronounced like a short I. And the I in the word is not pronounced at all. What word is it? Well, the answer is businesswomen. Some people wrote that the E of business is a short E or a schwa. But I pronounce it like a short I, and I think a lot of people do. Most people do. Anyway, it's an amazing word.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: We received 251 correct responses. And the winner this week is Brian Jones of Jacksonville, Fla., my home state.

Congratulations, and welcome to the program.

BRIAN JONES: Thank you. It's a pleasure. This is off my bucket list now.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: (Laughter) Was this on your bucket list?

JONES: It was, seriously, because I've been playing for - in my head - for the past few years as I travel to church. I said, well, I'm going to try and solve it once I get a chance to sit down and think about it. And I did it this time. And I said, well, nobody's going to call me.


GARCIA-NAVARRO: How did you solve it this week?

JONES: I only knew of a few words that had a U sound that sounded like a short I. So I thought about it. And I said, yeah, business works. And then since the I isn't pronounced at all, that took care of the I. And then I thought about, well, maybe I need to do something afterwards. And then I thought of woman. And then woman became women. And I was like, yeah, all of those have short I's. So that's how I thought. It took about a half hour.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: Are you ready to play The Puzzle?

JONES: I am.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: All right. Take it away, Will.

SHORTZ: All right. Brian, I'm going to give you some five-letter words. For each one, add two letters at the end to complete a common, uncapitalized seven-letter word that is unrelated in meaning to the first one. For example, if I said troll, T-R-O-L-L, you would add EY to make trolley.


SHORTZ: Here's number one - belie, B-E-L-I-E.

JONES: Believe.

SHORTZ: Believe is it. Good. Number two is sever, S-E-V-E-R.

JONES: Sever. Oh, I was thinking severe, but that's only six. S-E-V-E-R?

SHORTZ: Right. And think of a word that means more than one.

JONES: Several.

SHORTZ: Several is it. Trick, T-R-I-C-K.

JONES: Trickle.

SHORTZ: Nice. Hatch, H-A-T-C-H.

JONES: Hatch, hatch, hatch. Oh, goodness. Let's see. I wanted to say hatchling, but that's too long. Hatched - E-D.

SHORTZ: Yeah, it can't relate in meaning, though. So that's just the past tense. Think of a tool.

JONES: Hatchet.

SHORTZ: Hatchet is it. Prude, P-R-U-D-E.

JONES: Prude - prudent.

SHORTZ: That's nice. Scour, S-C-O-U-R.

JONES: Scour - scourge.

SHORTZ: That's it. Opera, O-P-E-R-A.

JONES: Opera - operate.

SHORTZ: That's it. Scalp, S-C-A-L-P.

JONES: Scalp - scalpel.

SHORTZ: That's it. Masse, M-A-S-S-E - it's like a billiard shot.

JONES: Yeah. I'm trying to think of two words that would go with that. Masse, masse - oh, goodness. Massage? No, it's not massage.

SHORTZ: You're close. Yeah. What's the person who gives that?

JONES: Masseuse.

SHORTZ: Yeah. But that's a female. What's the male called?

JONES: Masseur, I guess.

SHORTZ: Masseur. Good job. Shmoo, S-H-M-O-O.

JONES: S-H-M-O-O - would that be shmooze?

SHORTZ: Shmooze is it. Good. Again, A-G-A-I-N.

JONES: Against.

SHORTZ: Nice. And here's your last one - colon, C-O-L-O-N.

JONES: Oh, OK. C-O-L-O-N - no, that - colonic wouldn't work because that's basically the same.

SHORTZ: That's right. Good. Here's your hint. The L is pronounced like an R.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: It has to do with both the military and chicken.

JONES: Colonel.

SHORTZ: Colonel.


SHORTZ: Good going.

JONES: Thank you for the chicken reference.


GARCIA-NAVARRO: You did a great job.

JONES: Thank you.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: 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 And Brian, which member station do you listen to?

JONES: I listen to WJCT in Jacksonville, where my wife is a sustaining member.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: That's good to know. Brian Jones of Jacksonville, Fla., thank you so much for playing The Puzzle.

JONES: It's been a pleasure. Thank you, guys.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: All right, Will. Next week's challenge - what is it?

SHORTZ: Yeah. There are two answers to this one, and you have to get them both. Name two tasty things to eat, each in eight letters, in which the only consonants are L and P. That's L as in Lulu and P as in puzzle. So again, name two tasty things to eat, each in eight letters, in which the only consonants are L and P.

GARCIA-NAVARRO: When you have the answer, go to our website and click on the Submit Your Answer link. Remember, just one entry per person, please. Our deadline for entries is Thursday, October 10, at 3 p.m. Eastern. Include a phone number where we can reach you at about that time. And 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 very own puzzlemaster, Will Shortz. Thanks so much, Will.

SHORTZ: Thanks, Lulu.


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