On-air challenge: "Yes" is supposed to be the most pleasing word in the English language. And if that's true, today's puzzle will be very pleasing indeed. Every answer is an anagram of "yes" plus two or three other letters.
Last week's challenge: Take a familiar phrase in the form "[blank] and [blank]." Put the second word in front of the first, and you'll name a common part of a large company. What is it?
Answer: "Room and board," boardroom
Winner: Vince Joy of Jamestown, New York
Next week's challenge: The challenge came from Ed Pegg Jr., who runs the website mathpuzzle.com. "Parables of Jesus" is an old collection of stories. Remove three of the 15 letters in this phrase and rearrange the 12 letters that remain to get another old collection of stories. What 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:
This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin. "Star Wars" is getting its first spinoff movie. Disney announced there will be a "Frozen 2." But around here, we won't make you wait for more of what you really want because it's time for the puzzle. Joining me now is Will Shortz. He is the puzzle editor of The New York Times. He is also WEEKEND EDITION's puzzle master. Hey there, Will.
WILL SHORTZ, BYLINE: Good morning, Rachel.
MARTIN: So I want to acknowledge. You are a pretty big deal in the world of puzzling and beyond really. And you're often featured in news articles, but I understand this past week you were featured in a pretty big publication not for puzzling.
SHORTZ: Yeah. Did you see this? It was the March 9 issue of Sports Illustrated - the back page.
MARTIN: That's amazing.
SHORTZ: (Laughter) If I listed, you know, 10 magazines that might profile me, you would probably not guess Sports Illustrated.
MARTIN: (Laughter) I mean, puzzling can be - it is a sport. It can be very physical. But you were in Sports Illustrated because you are, of course, also a famed table tennis player, right?
SHORTZ: Table tennis. Yes. And the writer did a great job.
MARTIN: That's very cool. Remind us about the puzzle - the challenge from last week. What was it?
SHORTZ: Yes, I said take a familiar phrase in the form blank and blank, put the second word in front of the first one, and you'll name a come part of a large company. What is it? Well, the answer was room and board, and you make that switch, you get boardroom.
MARTIN: Around 750 of you submitted the right answer, but there can be only one winner. And the winner is Vince Joy of Jamestown, N.Y., who joins is now on the line. Hey, Vince. Congratulations.
VINCE JOY: Thanks, Rachel. Hi, Will.
SHORTZ: Hey there.
MARTIN: So did this come pretty quickly to you? Did you have to sit on it for a few days?
JOY: Yeah. It was funny. I was mulling it over, and my phone rang. And it was one of my cohorts from work calling me about a meeting. And I asked if I was going to meet in her office. And she said no, we're going to meet in the boardroom.
SHORTZ: Oh, for God's sake.
JOY: And I said boardroom. Oh, boardroom, room and board. That's it.
MARTIN: Really? I understand that - this has happened a couple weeks in a row - you are not the first person in your family to win.
JOY: No, actually about five years ago, my mom had sent in like two puzzles and got called.
MARTIN: Oh, that's cool.
JOY: And unfortunately, she passed away last year.
MARTIN: Oh, I'm sorry.
JOY: I was going through some of her old stuff, and I found her old WEEKEND EDITION lapel pin.
MARTIN: No way. Ah, that's cool.
JOY: And then two days later you called.
MARTIN: And we will send you another lapel pin to match.
JOY: Looking forward to it.
MARTIN: OK, Vince, are you ready to do this? You want to give it a shot?
JOY: I am ready.
MARTIN: All right, Will, we're ready. Let's do it.
SHORTZ: All right, Vince and Rachel, you know, yes is supposed to be the most pleasing word in the English language. And if that's true, today's puzzle will be very pleasing indeed. Every answer is an anagram of yes plus two or three other letters. For example, if I said yes plus A-S. You would say essay.
MARTIN: OK. All right.
SHORTZ: Number one is yes plus L-T.
JOY: Yes plus L-T.
MARTIN: Is there a category to these? Or is it just anything?
SHORTZ: Just anything.
MARTIN: Just anything.
SHORTZ: Style is it. That's what you have. Number two is yes plus K-P. P as in Peter.
JOY: Oh, wow, pesky.
SHORTZ: Pesky. I also would have accepted Skype. OK. Yes plus A-Q-U.
JOY: (Laughter) Queasy.
SHORTZ: That's it. Yes plus F-I-T. F as in Frank. T as in Thomas.
JOY: Oh, feisty.
SHORTZ: You're getting good at these. Yes plus C-H-P. C as in Charles. P as in Peter.
JOY: Oh, let's see.
SHORTZ: Oh, Rachel, I'm impressed. You got this 'cause it...
SHORTZ: Psyche. I'm impressed. Nice going. Yes plus E-J-R.
JOY: E-J-R. How about New Jersey?
MARTIN: Love it.
JOY: I'm just shouting out to my New Jersey friends.
SHORTZ: Yes plus O-P-R, and the middle letter is P as in Peter.
MARTIN: I think it's a bird.
SHORTZ: Oh, nice going, Rachel.
JOY: Oh, like an Osprey?
JOY: Thank you, Rachel.
MARTIN: You bet, Vince. I feel like we've got a good thing going right now, Vince. Good team.
SHORTZ: There you go. And here's your last one. Yes plus I-L-M. M as in Mary.
SHORTZ: There you go. Smiley.
MARTIN: Yes. Smiley.
JOY: I was afraid you were going to give me one with like 15 letters afterwards.
MARTIN: I know it's always dangerous when he's like yes plus a few letters.
MARTIN: But you did fabulously, Vince. And for planning the puzzle today, you will get a WEEKEND EDITION lapel pin and all kinds of puzzle books and games. If you're curious, go to our website, npr.org/puzzle. And you can read all about your prizes there. And before we let you go, what's your public radio station, Vince?
JOY: I listen to WBFO in Buffalo. I listen on the WUBJ repeater down in Jamestown.
MARTIN: Love to hear it. Vince Joy of Jamestown, N.Y. Thanks so much for playing the puzzle, Vince.
JOY: Thanks, Rachel. Thanks, Will.
MARTIN: OK, Will, what's up for next week?
SHORTZ: Yeah. It comes from Ed Pegg Jr., who runs the website mathpuzzle.com. "Parables Of Jesus" is an old collection of stories. Remove three of the 15 letters in this phrase, and rearrange the 12 letters that remain to get another old collection of stories. What is it? So again, "Parables Of Jesus," drop three of the letters, rearrange the 12 letters that remain to get another old collection of stories. What collection is it?
MARTIN: When you've got the answer, go to npr.org/puzzle. Click on that submit your answer link. And just give us one entry per person, please. Our deadline for those entries is Thursday, March 19 at 3 p.m. Eastern time. Don't forget to include a phone number where we can reach you at about that time. And if you're the winner, then we give you a call. And you get to play on the air with the puzzle editor of The New York Times. And he is WEEKEND EDITION's puzzle master, Mr. Will Shortz. Thanks so much, Will.
SHORTZ: Thanks, Rachel. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.