On-air challenge: In honor of Mother's Day, every answer today is a word that ends in the letters "MA." I'll give you an anagram of the letters that precede MA. You tell me the words.
Ex. GOD --> Dogma
Last week's challenge: This challenge came from listener Mark Halpin of Cold Spring, Ky. Think of two common phrases in the form "___ and ___," in which the blanks stand for four-letter words. All four words in those two phrases have different first letters, but the last three letters in the words are the same. What are the phrases?
Challenge answer: Near and dear, wear and tear
Winner: Matt Henning from Chapel Hill, N.C.
This week's challenge: This week's challenge comes from listener Jerry Heckler of Chardon, Ohio. Name the make and model of a popular car. Change the first and last letters of the make to name an animal. Change the first and fourth letters of the model to name another animal. What car is this?
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, May 14, at 3 p.m. ET.
LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:
And it is time to play The Puzzle.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Joining us is Will Shortz. He is puzzle editor of The New York Times and WEEKEND EDITION's puzzlemaster. Hi, Will.
WILL SHORTZ, BYLINE: Hey, Lulu. Happy Mother's Day.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Thank you so much, Will. That's greatly appreciated. Remind us of last week's challenge.
SHORTZ: Yes, it came from listener Mark Halpin of Cold Spring, Ky. I said think of two common phrases in the form blank and blank in which the blanks stand for four letter words. All four words in these two phrases have different first letters, but the last three letters in the words are the same. What are the phrases? And the answer is near and dear and wear and tear.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: We received over a thousand correct responses, and the winner is Matt Henning from Chapel Hill, N.C. Congratulations.
MATT HENNING: Thanks, Lulu.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: How did you figure it out?
HENNING: My partner and I were driving and just kind of trying to work it out. And she said wear and tear. And it just sounded right to me. And I just went through the other 24 impossible words...
HENNING: And matched it. And that was it.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: I hear you're into a fun hobby.
HENNING: Yes, I am. I actually am a curler. I curl at Triangle Curling Club in Durham, N.C.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: And that is played on ice, right?
HENNING: Yes, it's a game where we slide rocks down a long sheet of ice and try to kind of get it close to a bull's eye, which is called the pin.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Fun. How did you get into that?
HENNING: I just kind of stumbled across it about 7 years ago, and I've been hooked ever since.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: There you go. Well, are you ready to play something else you're hooked on?
HENNING: Yes, absolutely.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: (Laughter) OK, take it away, Will.
SHORTZ: All right, Matt. In honor of Mother's Day, every answer today is a word that ends in the letters M-A. I'll give you an anagram of the letters that precede M-A. You tell me the words. For example, if I said god - G-O-D - you'd say dogma.
SHORTZ: So here's number one. We'll start easy. Number one is ark - A-R-K.
SHORTZ: Is right. Oar - O-A-R.
HENNING: O-A-R. Aroma.
SHORTZ: That's it. Laps - L-A-P-S.
HENNING: I'm struggling with this one.
SHORTZ: Yeah, start with a P.
SHORTZ: That's it. Gist - G-I-S-T.
SHORTZ: That's it. Nice - N-I-C-E.
SHORTZ: Cinema, good. Here's a surprisingly hard one; hats - H-A-T-S. It's a word you definitely know, but it's a hard one to see. H-A-T-S.
SHORTZ: Asthma. Nice. Limed - L-I-M-E-D.
SHORTZ: If you're undecided which option to go to, you are faced with a...
HENNING: A dilemma.
SHORTZ: That's it. Here's an appropriate word, radio - R-A-D-I-O. Something you might see in a natural history museum, specifically a...
SHORTZ: Diorama, good. Chairs - C-H-A-I-R-S. And this is a quality of someone.
SHORTZ: That's it. And here's your last one, the toughest one and the longest one, earldom - E-A-R-L-D-O-M. And I'll tell you it starts with M.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: I like to do this a lot.
SHORTZ: (Laughter) And it's something you don't want a whole lot of around your house. What if I tell you it starts M-E?
HENNING: M-E. Oh, melodrama.
SHORTZ: Melodrama is it. Good job.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Good job. How do you feel?
HENNING: Pretty good.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: You did a great job. Did you have fun?
HENNING: Yes, I had a lot of fun.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Good. 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 npr.org/puzzle. And Matt, which member station do you listen to?
GARCIA-NAVARRO: Matt Henning from Chapel Hill, N.C. Thank you so much for playing The Puzzle.
HENNING: Thank you.
GARCIA-NAVARRO: All right, Will, what's next week's challenge?
SHORTZ: Yes, it comes from listener Jerry Heckler of Chardon, Ohio. Name the make and model of a popular car. Change the first and last letters of the make to name an animal, and change the first and fourth letters of the model to name another animal. What car is it? So, again, the make and model of a popular car, change the first and last letters of the make to name an animal and the first and fourth letters of the model to name another animal. What car is this?
GARCIA-NAVARRO: When you have the answer, go to our website npr.org/puzzle. Click on the Submit Your Answer link. Remember, just one entry per person, please. Our deadline for entries is Thursday, May 14, 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 puzzlemaster, Will Shortz. Thanks so much, Will.
SHORTZ: Thanks, Lulu.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.