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AWADmail Issue 217July 9, 2006
A Weekly Compendium of Feedback on the Words in A.Word.A.Day and Other Interesting Tidbits about Words and Languages
From: Anu Garg (garg AT wordsmith.org)
Last week's challenge was to find out what's common among the five words featured: scintillescent, vetitive, rapparee, bilabial, and froufrou.
You are good. So many of you guessed the theme on the very first day! Of all the puzzles featured so far, this one received most answers, many of them correct.
Last week was a Noah's Ark of words. In all words, each letter appears twice. You could say letters "reappear".
First to send the correct answer was Annette Sabor of New Zealand (annettesATeconz.com) whose reply came within minutes of the first word, scintillescent, being published. She receives an autographed copy of the book Another Word A Day.
If you didn't win the book, you can still find it in a bookstore near you.
Some wrote that the spread of readers in various time zones means that not all see the newsletter at the same time. So we award a second prize to a reader (almost) randomly selected from all correct entries. Jason Nabi of the US (nabiATvirginia.edu) sent the correct answer and described it this way, "Failed palindromes who couldn't quite get their act together!" He gets an autographed copy of the book A Word A Day.
Here's the day-by-day report:
Most common guess:
Most creative guess:
Most convoluted guess:
Most obscure guess:
Put in a most unusual way:
Most unusual way of saying it:
Overall, I was struck by how many people saw only vowels being repeated while others only saw repeated consonants. Also amusing were incorrect answers which one could have verified easily by a quick look at the words. Examples:
Eight-letter words made up of only four letters.
All have French origins.
The second half of the word is an anagram of the first half.
From: Sara Werboff (sfw307ATgmail.com)
It reminds me of a really fun party game called "Through the Green Glass Doors", the premise of which is that you can bring some items through the doors, but not others. For example, you can bring books, but not magazines. You can bring anything that has double letters somewhere in the word (you can bring letters, but not words.) It is always interesting to play the game in a room full of people, and to see who gets the trick and who doesn't.
From: Mark Johnson (cmjohnsonAThrjconsulting.com)
This was a lulu, and my face was turning redder until at an arraigning (for some shanghaiings) of a horseshoer at noon it hit me, by happenchance, like I'd been bitten by a tsetse fly in my intestines - the theme is words made using pairs of letters, each pair of which is only used once.
From: Marty Butler (mbutlerATcqmail.net)
Each word consists exclusively of unrepeated letter-pairs.
scintillescent--7 unrepeated letter-pairs (s, c, i, n, t, l, e)
Given that Tuesday of this week was the Fourth of July, the number pattern, "7-4-4-4-4," is also interesting.
7 4 = July 4th
July 4, 1776 = Independence Day in the United States.
From: Denis Agar (canrocksATgmail.com)
To all Ontarians and most Canadians, this week's theme conjures images of this: images.google.ca.
From: Jen Stosser (jeneratorsAToptusnet.com.au)
Scintillate scintillate globule vivific
From: Ram Venkatraman (ram.venkatramanATbt.com)
In the taxi on the way to work, I heard on the radio that today is National Kissing Day and then I came in to work to see this word, how apt!
No man has a prosperity so high or firm, but that two or three words can dishearten it; and there is no calamity which right words will not begin to redress. -Ralph Waldo Emerson, writer and philosopher (1803-1882)