On-air challenge: Every answer today is a made-up two-word phrase, in which the two words rhyme. The initials of the two words will be provided, along with a one-word clue. Example: C S, Tennis ---> Court Sport
1. N L, Moon
2. B R, Semitrailer
3. P T, Cuestick
4. H C, Electrocardiogram
5. N H, Cold
6. T V, Haiku
7. H S, Bowwow
8. R P, Speedway
9. L N, Slipknot
10. D S, Coma
11. P T, Hookah
12. G W, Obesity
13. M W, Bull
14. S O, Exclaim
15. P D, Pepto Bismol
Last week's challenge: A simple challenge: Think of a 5-letter word that can precede "chicken" to complete a common two-word phrase. Change the middle letter to get a new word that can follow "chicken" to complete a common two-word phrase. What phrases are these?
Answer: ROAST chicken, chicken ROOST
Winner: Jim Francis of Bellevue, Wash.
Next week's challenge: This week's challenge comes from listener David Rosen, of Bethesda, Md. Name a famous person in Washington, D.C. — 7 letters in the first name, 5 letters in the last. Drop the last sound in the last name. The result — phonetically — will be the first and last name of a famous living entertainer. Who is it?
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:
Cleats, cones, jerseys, nets - if you're following the women's World Cup, you know that the beautiful game needs a bit of equipment to bring a stadium to its feet. But for the sport of choice here at WEEKEND EDITION, you will need only two things - pen and paper. It's time for the puzzle. Joining me now is Will Shortz, puzzle editor of The New York Times and WEEKEND EDITION's puzzle master. Good morning, Will.
WILL SHORTZ, BYLINE: Good morning, Rachel.
MARTIN: Remind us of last week's challenge.
SHORTZ: Yeah. It was a simple one I think. I said think of a five-letter word that can precede chicken to complete a common two-word phrase. I said change the middle letter to get a new word that can follow chicken to complete another common two-word phrase. What phrases are these? Well, the words are roast and roost, roast chicken and chicken roost.
MARTIN: Over 910 of you got the answer right. And this week's randomly chosen winner is Jim Francis of Bellevue, Wash. He joins us on the line now. Hey, Jim, congratulations.
JIM FRANCIS: Thank you so much.
MARTIN: How did this come to you?
FRANCIS: Well, I actually heard it twice. My local NPR station broadcast the puzzle at 7:40 and 9:40.
FRANCIS: And I had gotten up early and listened to the puzzle as I was grading some math papers. And it was on the second hearing in the car that I was able to put it together.
MARTIN: And you mentioned that you were grading papers. So you're a teacher?
FRANCIS: I am. I'm a math teacher at Lake Washington Institute of Technology.
MARTIN: Well, as Will knows, people who are good at math are generally pretty good at the puzzle.
SHORTZ: That is true.
MARTIN: (Laughter) And Will is on the line. Jim, do you happen to have a question for Will Shortz?
FRANCIS: I do. I know that you went to Indiana University, and I believe you designed your own major in enigmatology there?
SHORTZ: That's right.
FRANCIS: And in this season of graduations, I thought maybe you might have some words of wisdom or advice for students of any age who might be seeking to fulfill their dreams however unorthodox.
SHORTZ: Well, as you might guess, I'm a firm believer in following your dream. I wanted a career in puzzles ever since I was a kid, never thought it was possible. But, you know, not everyone can have a cool job like being a crossword editor or a puzzle maker. But if there is something that you are crazy about, and you're good at it, and you are persistent, find a way to make it happen.
MARTIN: All right. Jim, with that, are you ready to play the puzzle?
FRANCIS: I'll give it a go.
MARTIN: OK, Will, let's play.
SHORTZ: All right, Jim and Rachel, every answer today is a made-up two-word phrase in which the two words rhyme. I'm going to give you the initials of the two words and a one-word clue. You tell me the phrase. For example, if I said C, S and the clue tennis, you would say court sport.
MARTIN: Oh, yeah. They rhyme.
MARTIN: OK, we got it.
SHORTZ: Number one, the letters are N, L, as in new look, and your clue is moon.
FRANCIS: New moon?
SHORTZ: No, so the clue is moon. And your initials you're working with are N, L.
FRANCIS: N, L, OK, nightlight.
SHORTZ: Nightlight is it. B, R, as in bedroom, and your clue is semi-trailer.
MARTIN: They're short words.
SHORTZ: They're both three-letter words.
FRANCIS: Big rig.
SHORTZ: Big rig, yes. N, H, as in New Hampshire, and your clue is cold.
FRANCIS: Not hot.
SHORTZ: Yes. T, V, as an television, and your clue is haiku.
FRANCIS: Terse verse.
SHORTZ: Terse verse is it. H, S, as in high school, and your clue is bow wow.
FRANCIS: Bow wow as in dog?
MARTIN: Bow wow.
SHORTZ: What do you call a big dog?
FRANCIS: Hound sound.
MARTIN: Oh, good.
SHORTZ: That's a hound sound. R, P, as in red pepper, and your clue is speedway.
FRANCIS: I'm thinking road.
SHORTZ: No, think where the Indy 500 takes place for example - speedway.
FRANCIS: A race...
SHORTZ: That's a race place. S, O, and your clue is exclaim.
FRANCIS: Shout out.
SHORTZ: That's it. And your last one is P, D, as in Police Department, and your clue is Pepto-Bismol.
FRANCIS: Pink drink.
SHORTZ: Pink drink. Nice job.
MARTIN: Jim, that was excellent. For playing the puzzle today, you get a WEEKEND EDITION lapel pin, puzzle books and games. You can go to npr.org/puzzle and read all about your prizes. Before we let you go, what's your public radio station, Jim?
FRANCIS: I mostly listen to KUOW, but occasionally also KPLU.
MARTIN: KUOW in Seattle and KPLU in Tacoma, Wash. Jim Francis of Bellevue, Wash. Thanks so much for playing the puzzle, Jim.
FRANCIS: Thank you so much.
MARTIN: All right, Will, what's up for next week?
SHORTZ: Yes. It comes from listener David Rosen of Bethesda, Md. Name a famous person in Washington, D.C., seven letters in the first name, five letters in the last. Drop the last sound in the last name, and the result phonetically will be the first and last name of a famous living entertainer. Who is it? So again, a famous person in Washington right now, seven, five, drop the last sound in the last name, and the result phonetically will be the first and last name of a famous living entertainer. Who are these people?
MARTIN: You know what to do. When you've got the answer, go to npr.org/puzzle. Find that submit your answer link and click on it. Just one entry per person please. And our deadline for those entries is Thursday, June 11, at 3 p.m. Eastern time. Please 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 then you get to play on the air with the puzzle editor of The New York Times and WEEKEND EDITION's puzzle master, Will Shortz. Thanks so much, Will.
SHORTZ: Thanks, Rachel. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.