On-air challenge: I'm going to give you two four-letter words. Anagram each of them to get two new words that rhyme.
Example: Inch, Ring --> Chin, Grin
1. Lure, Polo
2. Opus, Polo
3. Knee, Neal
4. Dais, Dear
5. Busy, Sire
6. Race, Hire
7. Rage, Ripe
8. Dome, Dora
9. Reef, Leaf
10. Luge, Hose
11. Flue, Laud
Last week's challenge: This challenge came from listener Neville Fogarty of Newport News, Va. Think of a familiar three-word phrase that has the following property: The first word is a number. Let x be that number. Then the last x letters of the second word form, in order, a common abbreviation for the third word.
Challenge Answer: Two left feet
Winner: Theodore Kharpertian of Landrum, S.C.
This week's challenge: This week's challenge comes from listener Tyler Lipscomb of Hamden, Conn. Name something everyone has, starting with H. Add an E, and rearrange the letters. You'll name two things that every person must do to stay alive.
If you know the answer to next week's challenge, submit it here. Listeners who submit correct answers win a chance to play the on-air puzzle. Important: Include a phone number where we can reach you by Thursday, Jan. 23, at 3 p.m. ET.
LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:
And 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.
WILL SHORTZ, BYLINE: Hey there, Lulu.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: All right. What was last week's challenge?
SHORTZ: Yes, it came from listener Neville Fogarty of Newport News, Va. I said think of a familiar three-word phrase that has the following property. The first word is a number. Let X be that number. Then the last X letters of the second word form in order a common abbreviation for the third word. And the phrase is two left feet. The last two letters of left are F-T. And that's an abbreviation for feet.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: We received just a hundred correct responses. And the winner this week is Ted Kharpertian of Landrum, S.C. Congratulations.
TED KHARPERTIAN: Thank you.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: So I heard you had a hard time believing you won.
KHARPERTIAN: Well, you know, it's been a while. You know, I've been playing for 30 years. And I'd probably go back to postcard, Pony Express and maybe even...
KHARPERTIAN: ...Couriers and carrier pigeons.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: So what was it like when you got the call?
KHARPERTIAN: I was stunned. I was frankly speechless. And I thought this, can't be happening. But it was.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Indeed. Here you are.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: I should note that you were listening almost since the show's beginning. And it was 33 years ago this weekend that Will debuted on WEEKEND EDITION SUNDAY. So, Will, congratulations to you.
SHORTZ: Thank you. That's a lot of years.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: That's a lot of years. All right. Are you ready to play The Puzzle?
KHARPERTIAN: I am.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: All right. Take it away, Will.
SHORTZ: All right, Ted. I'm going to give you two four-letter words. Anagram each of them to get two new words that rhyme. For example, if I said inch and ring, you would anagram them to make chin and grin. Here's number one - lure, L-U-R-E, and polo, P-O-L-O.
KHARPERTIAN: Rule and loop. No, that can't be right. Rule and pool - yes.
SHORTZ: Rule and pool is correct. Number two is opus, O-P-U-S and polo, P-O-L-O.
KHARPERTIAN: Soup and loop (laughter).
SHORTZ: That's it. There's your loop.
SHORTZ: Your next one is knee, K-N-E-E, and Neal, N-E-A-L.
KHARPERTIAN: The name Neal - knee - keen and lean.
SHORTZ: That's it - busy, B-U-S-Y - sire, S-I-R-E.
KHARPERTIAN: Busy - B-U-S-Y - well, rise...
KHARPERTIAN: And - why am I having trouble with busy?
SHORTZ: You got the rhyme.
KHARPERTIAN: I'm drawing a blank on this one.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Something you do when you go to the store.
KHARPERTIAN: Oh, buys - yes, of course.
SHORTZ: Buys is it.
SHORTZ: Race, R-A-C-E - hire - H-I-R-E.
KHARPERTIAN: So care and - I'm drawing another blank here.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: To the throne.
KHARPERTIAN: Oh, heir - of course.
SHORTZ: There you go. Heir and care is right - rage, R-A-G-E - ripe, R-I-P-E.
KHARPERTIAN: OK - gear and pier.
SHORTZ: That's it. How about luge - L-U-G-E - hose - H-O-S-E.
KHARPERTIAN: Oh, that's glue and shoe.
SHORTZ: That's it. And your last one is flue, F-L-U-E, and laud, L-A-U-D.
KHARPERTIAN: Well, the second is dual.
KHARPERTIAN: And the first is fuel.
SHORTZ: Fuel and dual - nice job.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Great job - how do you feel?
KHARPERTIAN: It's over.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Was it harder or easier than you thought it was going to be after waiting all that time?
KHARPERTIAN: It was about what I expected.
KHARPERTIAN: Yes - a great deal of fun. It's been wonderful.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: All right. For playing The 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. And, Ted, which member station do you listen to?
KHARPERTIAN: Well, we recently moved from New Jersey. But we remain members of and listen to WNYC on the web. But we also listen to South Carolina Public Radio, particularly WNSC in Rock Hill and WEPR in Greenville.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Let's name check them all.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: That's Ted Kharpertian of Landrum, S.C. Thank you so much for playing The Puzzle.
KHARPERTIAN: Thank you very much.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: All right, Will. What's next week's challenge?
SHORTZ: Yes. It's a little easier than last week's challenge. It comes from listener Tyler Lipscomb of Hamden, Conn. Name something everyone has starting with H. Add an E, and rearrange the letters. You'll name two things that every person must do to stay alive. So again, something everyone has starting with H - add an E. Rearrange the letters, and you'll name two things that every person must do to stay alive. What are they?
GARCIA-NAVARRO: When you have the answer, go to our website npr.org/puzzle and click on the Submit Your Answer link. Remember, just one entry per person, please. Our deadline for entries is Thursday, January 23 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 will 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 puzzlemaster for 33 years strong, Will Shortz. Thanks so much, Will.
SHORTZ: Thanks, Lulu. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.