PUZZLERIA! SLICES: OVER e5 SERVED
Welcome to Joseph Young’s Puzzleria!
Well, completing one year of Puzzleria! has certainly been enjoyable for us, its purveyors. We hope it has been enjoyable also for you, its consumers and contributors. From our perspective, we like to think we all enjoy a symbiotic relationship. Kum Bah Humbug! Kum Bah Yah Sure!
Thank you all for following us, for making wonderfully astute, clever and witty comments, and for spreading the word about this puzzle blog.
For the record, we have had 29,815 “hits” (followers who have accessed our blog site) over the past year. That’s about 573 a week. The quantity of our comments is fine; but the quality of our comments is off the chart! We would love to have more different people commenting. Not sure how to do that though.
Our second year of serving up original puzzle slices begins with this week’s edition, our 53rd.
Incidentally, 53rd was the number of the police precinct in a sitcom that included two actors who later appeared together in a more popular and well-known sitcom. What are the sitcoms and who are the actors? Hint: the word “Khrushchev” appears in the earlier sitcom’s theme song. The word “ooky” does not appear in the subsequent sitcom’s theme song.
I was blessed with wonderful parents. They are in heaven now, on the St. Francis Wing, tending to tabby cat Noosie and other dear pets they adopted. Whenever Fathers Day or Mothers Day rolls around I get a tad misty-eyed and wistful, missing my parents.
I tried to create a timely Mothers Day puzzle slice this week but came up dry. I did however pen the following irreverent fable/puzzle. It is not meant to offend, only to entertain.
The Princess and the Peeved Prince
(A Fractured Mothers Day Fable)
The princess of “The Princess and thePea” fame married her prince. The regal newlyweds took up residence in the castle with the king and queen, biding their time until they would ascend to the throne.
Not all was untroubled in this palatial paradise, however.
The princess had borne a grudge against her mother-in-law ever since she tested the princess’s royal worthiness with that lame pea-under-multiple-mattress ploy. The princess harbored bitter memories of suffering a fitfully sleepless night, tossing and turning like a fish that has jumped into a longship.
And so, to exact some measure of vengeance, the princess cast a spell on the queen causing her to feel as if an imaginary pea were permanently lodged in the middle of her mattress, prompting the queen too to toss and turn all night.
Alas, the queen’s spellbound predicament also prompted an annoying nocturnal ritual. Several times every night the queen sought relief by summoning her son into her bedchamber, imploring him to flip her mattress on its other side.
Every morning when the king visited the queen in her bedchamber, she invariably groused about her nocturnal tossing-and-turning. Meanwhile, in the princess’s bedchamber, the prince bellyached about having his sleep interrupted by the queen’s nocturnal summoning.
One morning, after a year of this mysterious insomnia and incessant summoning, the king as was his wont entered the queen’s bedchamber, approached her four-poster canopied bed and pulled back her bed covers. He was greeted, alas, not with their customary good-morning smooch, but with an odd conundrum: No queen. No mattress. Just a box spring!The king was mystified. The box spring would not be invented until the late 19th Century. Had he somehow stumbled into a time machine and traveled into the future?...
No, no, just kidding, that’s not why the king was mystified. The real mystery was the whereabouts of his wife. So he summoned his son to see if he could shed some light.
The king said to his son, “I come in here this morning and your mother is missing, her mattress is missing. Can you tell me what happened?”
“Well, mother could never decide on which was the comfortable mattress side,” the prince explained. “I could stand it no longer so I decided to mattress-hide.”
“Well, I guess that explains what happened the queen’s mattress,” the king said. “But it does not explain what happened to the queen. So, what did happen to the queen?”
The prince shuffled his feet, fidgeted with his digits, cast his gaze downward, and replied, simply, “_________.”
(Fill in the blank, nine letters.)
The first puzzle slice in our menu (see below) this week is the Darkened Digital Segment Slice (DDSS). It involves my friend Yvette, a volunteer vet at a homeless animal shelter, who recently purchased a white 1988 Corvette.
The new-to-Yvette Vette has a dashboard with digital readouts displaying numerals made up of between two and seven segments. (1 consists of two segments; 2, of six; 3, of five, etc.; see illustration)
But Yvette, who as a veterinarian has a solid mathematics background, tells me she can tell exactly how fast she is going, no matter the speed.
Now, I realize the sight of these segmented digits may provoke in some Puzzlerians! pangs of dread and unpleasant flashbacks of upside-down digital clocks!
Yes, it is true that there is a digital clock on the dashboard of Yvette’s Vette, but it should remain upside-up unless Yvette somehow manages to overturn her new vehicle. And Corvettes are not that easy to roll over.
So, let us begin year #2, shall we, with these two new puzzle slices:
Deduction by the dashboard light
The dashboard of Yvette’s 1988 Corvette features seven-segment digital displays that display the digits from 0 to 9 with illuminated segments. Alas, some of the segments no longer function and have gone dark in her miles-per-hour speed readout.
In order for Yvette to infer her exact speed without ambiguity, what is the minimum number of segments that must be functional, and where must they be positioned?
(Note: the two segments that make up the numeral 1 appear on the “east” side of the seven-segment display, not the “west” side)
Wolf And Lamb Together Slice:
A love-hate creationship
Name a small object, in one word. In describing the object one might use the perfect number six. Remove the object’s middle letter along with the space created by that removal.
From this string of letters remove a number of consecutive letters that spell out the name of one of God’s creatures. Push together the remaining letters to form the name of another of God’s creatures.
These two creatures have a predatory relationship but sometimes have a symbiotic relationship also.
What is the object and what are the creatures?
At the intersection of four states – Colorado, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico – lies the Four Corners Monument, where one can stand on a spot and exclaim, “I am standing in four states simultaneously!” This “four-corner” distinction is unique in the U.S., but there are numerous spots where one can stand on a spot and be in three states simultaneously, and of course, every time on stands on a border she/he is in two states simultaneously.
Let us assign a number to each state. We shall call it the CSI (Corner Standing Index). It represents the sum of all states one can stand in by traversing the perimeter of a given state. (In calculating a state’s CSI, some states may be counted more than once, including, necessarily, the state for which the CSI is being calculated. For the purposes of this puzzle, let us pretend the the rivers that form the borders between states are miraculously somehow waterless, Red-Sea-parting-style, and that we could therefore stand in them without drowning!)
For example, to figure Arizona’s CSI one might begin at the four corners monument (4 states) and head west and stand on the junction of UT, NV and AZ (3), go south and hit the NV-CA-AZ junction (3), and complete this counterclockwise trek by traversing thr CA-AZ junction (2) and the AZ-NM junction (2). Arizona’s CSI is the sum of those junctions, 4 + 3 + 3 + 2 + 2 = 14. Not bad.
Other examples: North Dakota’s CSI is 10 (2 + 3 + 3 + 2); Idaho’s is 19 (3 + 3 + 3 + 3 + 2 + 2 + 3); Texas’s is 13 (2 + 3 + 3 + 3 + 2); Hawaii’s and Alaska’s CSIs are both 0. (Only junctions of states are considered in computing a state’s CSI, not bordering countries or bodies of water. By the way, I’m not sure how Michigan’s Upper Peninsula affects the CSIs of Michigan and Wisconsin.)
What state has the greatest CSI? What is it? What state has the smallest CSI? What is it?
Every Friday at Joseph Young’s Puzzle -ria! we publish a new menu of fresh word puzzles, number puzzles, logic puzzles, puzzles of all varieties and flavors. We cater to cravers of scrumptious puzzles!
Our master chef, Grecian gourmet puzzle-creator Lego Lambda, blends and bakes up mysterious (and sometimes questionable) toppings and spices (such as alphabet soup, Mobius bacon strips, diced snake eyes, cubed radishes, “hominym” grits, anagraham crackers, rhyme thyme and sage sprinklings.)
Please post your comments below. Feel free also to post clever and subtle hints that do not give the puzzle answers away. Please wait until after 3 p.m. Eastern Time on Tuesdays to post your answers and explain your hints about the puzzles. We serve up at least one fresh puzzle every Friday.
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Here is how the ten digits, from zero through nine, would appear on Yvette's Corvette dashboard if the two segments forming the southeast corner stopped functioning. (See the Darkened Digital Segments Slice, above.) Note that each of the ten readouts remains unique.