Regardless Of The Answer, Stay Staid
On-air challenge: Each answer is a two-word phrase consisting of two homophones starting with the letter S. For example, given the clue "remained dignified," the answer would be, "stayed staid."
Last week's challenge: Name a brand of beer. Rearrange the letters to name an activity often associated with beer.
Answer: Tsingtao, toasting
Winner: Jacob Taber of New York, N.Y.
Next week's challenge from the Emmy-winning TV comedy writer Mike Reiss: A famous actress and a famous director share the same last name, although they are unrelated. The first name of one of these is a classic musical. The first name of the other is an anagram of a classic musical. Who are they?
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 Thursday at 3 p.m. Eastern.
RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin. Get your game face on, folks, because it's time for the puzzle.
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MARTIN: Joining me now from member station WFYI in Indianapolis, Ind., is Will Shortz. He is, of course, the puzzle editor of the New York Times, and WEEKEND EDITION's puzzle-master. Good morning, Will.
WILL SHORTZ, BYLINE: Good morning, Rachel.
MARTIN: So what brings you to the great American Midwest?
SHORTZ: I am speaking this afternoon at Clowe's Hall here in Indianapolis, and I speak for a few minutes, I do a Q&A, and then I have lots of audience-participation word games.
MARTIN: Very cool. OK. So refresh our memories, what was last week's challenge?
SHORTZ: Yeah. Last week's challenge was short and sweet. I said: Name a brand of beer, rearrange the letters to name an activity often associated with beer. And the answer was Tsingtao, which is T-S-I-N-G-T-A-O. Rearrange the letters, you get toasting, which is something you often do with beer. That was our intended answer. There were a few solvers who thought of an alternative: Flying Fish. Do you know Flying Fish beer?
MARTIN: I do not.
SHORTZ: It was new to me, and you can rearrange that slightly to get fly fishing, which is something you might do while you're drinking beer.
MARTIN: OK. So we got about 200 correct answers. And our randomly selected winner this week is Jacob Taber of New York, N.Y. He is on the line now. Hey, Jacob. Congratulations.
JACOB TABER: Thanks so much. It's great to be here.
MARTIN: So did this come pretty quickly to you? How did you figure it out?
TABER: So, I listen to the puzzle every week while doing the dishes on Sunday morning. And it didn't come to me right away. I spent some time thinking about it. But on Tuesday night, when I was again washing some dishes, I sort of zoned out and there it just popped into my head.
MARTIN: Had you had a Tsingtao recently?
TABER: I've actually never tried it. I drink a lot of domestic microbrews and I hadn't had the pleasure of trying Tsingtao, but I guess now I'll have to.
MARTIN: I feel like maybe now you're obliged to go try it. And what do you do for a living in New York?
TABER: I am a law student. I'm in my third year at NYU School of Law.
MARTIN: So, you are a busy man.
TABER: Very busy, but I make time for the important things, like puzzles.
MARTIN: Of course. That's what we like to hear. And I understand you recently had a birthday.
TABER: My birthday was on Thursday, when I got the call inviting me to be on the puzzle. And this is actually - and I'm sorry to say this to everyone at home - my very first time submitting an answer.
MARTIN: Oh, man. Beginner's birthday luck. OK. With that, Jacob, are you ready to play the puzzle?
TABER: I am ready.
MARTIN: All right, Will, let's do it.
SHORTZ: All right, Jacob and Rachel. Each answer today is a two-word phrase consisting of two homophones, starting with the letter S. For example, if I gave you the clue: remain dignified, you would say stayed staid.
MARTIN: OK. You have it, Jacob?
TABER: I've got it.
MARTIN: All right. Let's try.
SHORTZ: Number one: observes oceans.
TABER: Sees seas.
SHORTZ: That's it. Number two: event at which jibs and spinnakers are reduced in price.
TABER: A sail sale.
SHORTZ: Sail sale is right. Take a large Indian tribe to court.
TABER: Sue the Sioux.
SHORTZ: There you go: sue Sioux. Tries to find a religious group in India.
TABER: Seeks Sikhs.
SHORTZ: Excellent. Stitch in such a manner.
TABER: Sew so.
SHORTZ: That's it. Very nice set of connected rooms. And think of connected rooms, say, in a hotel or an office.
TABER: Oh, a sweet suite.
SHORTZ: Sweet suite is it. Illegally take some manufacturing metal.
TABER: Steals steel.
SHORTZ: Steal steel is it. Barely noticeable trick with the hand.
TABER: Slight sleight.
SHORTZ: Slight sleight is it. Now, the following answers have two syllables, and your first one of these is a sad-looking Indian dress.
TABER: Oh, a sorry sari.
SHORTZ: Sorry sari. Shoplifted German pastry.
TABER: Stolen stollen.
SHORTZ: Stolen stollen is it. Ice cream treat after church, say.
TABER: A Sunday sundae.
SHORTZ: That's it. And now for a three-syllable answer: recap that has a July, August feel to it.
TABER: Summery summary.
SHORTZ: That's it. And your last one has four syllables: writing paper that doesn't move.
TABER: Stationery stationary.
SHORTZ: There you go. 100 percent.
MARTIN: A-plus. Jacob, that was excellent. Are you that good on your law school exams?
TABER: Now and then.
MARTIN: Now and then.
TABER: Now and then.
MARTIN: For playing the puzzle today, you'll get a WEEKEND EDITION lapel pin, puzzle books and games. You can read all about it at npr.org/Puzzle. And before we let you go, Jacob, what is your public radio station?
TABER: WNYC, although I grew up with WITF, Harrisburg, and that's what turned me on to NPR.
MARTIN: Great. And WNYC of course in New York, New York. Jacob Taber of New York City. Thanks so much for playing the puzzle. Jacob, it was fun.
TABER: Thank you for having me.
MARTIN: OK, Will. What is the challenge for next week?
SHORTZ: Yes, it comes from the Emmy-winning TV comedy writer Mike Reiss. A famous actress and a famous director share the same last name, although they are unrelated. The first name of one of these is a classic musical. And the first name of the other is an anagram of a classic musical. Who are they?
So again: a famous actress, famous director, they share the same last name but they're unrelated. First name of one of these is a classic musical. And the first name of the other is an anagram of a classic musical. Who are these people and what are the musicals?
MARTIN: You know what to do. When you've got 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 7th at 3 P.M. Eastern Time.
Please include a phone number where we can reach you at about that time, because if you're the winner we'll give you a call. And you will get to play on the air with the puzzle editor of The New York Times. And he is, of course, WEEKEND EDITION's puzzle-master, Mr. Will Shortz.
Thanks so much, Will.
SHORTZ: Thanks, Rachel.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.