7
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Tearing from fearing,
Thumbs nervously interlocking because of the robbing,
Since the cheating done in that meeting,
So in the center of a dark alley I hide,
Like a rudiment the heart pounds at my side!

If each of these lines you truly understand,
Then you would know exactly what I am!
(6)

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9
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ Re: your comment on the bounty: puzzling.stackexchange.com/a/5887/21369 $\endgroup$
    – SQLnoob
    Mar 30 at 20:46
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Very true. I think I have severely underestimated its difficulty I thought it was easy and would be solved within a few hours. $\endgroup$
    – PDT
    Mar 31 at 18:28
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ Decisive? Utterly not. $\endgroup$ Apr 3 at 13:41
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Assuming Stiv's posted solution is correct, I would probably never have gotten it and still find most of the hints uninformative at best and slightly misleading if I'm being honest (e.g. still have no idea what the "common phrase" is in the first hint). But perhaps this one was less inscrutable for someone British? $\endgroup$
    – SQLnoob
    Apr 3 at 18:13
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Be cautious of thinking of downvotes as 'hateful' - people are free to express their (dis)satisfaction with questions on this site and downvoters aren't necessarily motivated by spite. In my experience, just because you think your own question is great or well-formed or unambiguous doesn't mean everyone else feels the same way! :) $\endgroup$
    – Stiv
    Apr 4 at 7:53

1 Answer 1

10
+50
$\begingroup$

Here's my suspicion... You are...

a RIDDLE (bear with me - this isn't some tongue-in-cheek uninformed guess, I have explanations to back this up...).

Each of the lines which together seem to be describing a thief or bandit lurking nervously in the shadows actually lead us to...

...definitions of 6-letter 2-syllable words which end in '-IDDLE'.

Tearing from fearing,

PIDDLE: This describes a person 'making liquid' when scared, i.e. wetting oneself (leaking urine). Think 'tearing up' (crying), but not from the eyes...

Thumbs nervously interlocking because of the robbing,

TWIDDLE: The action of interlocking one's thumbs, often nervously.

Since the cheating done in that meeting,

Cheating in a way to obtain gain is a definition of FIDDLE

So in the center of a dark alley I hide,

MIDDLE (centre)

Like a rudiment the heart pounds at my side!

DIDDLE: A pattern of drum beats (i.e. a 'rudiment'), much like a heartbeat.

If each of these lines you truly understand,
Then you would know exactly what I am! (6)

We're looking for an appropriate 6-letter word to describe this puzzle which has two syllables and ends in -IDDLE in order to follow the same pattern as the other words we have found... Well, there's a very obvious answer hidden in plain sight - look at the question tags! It's a RIDDLE!

(NB The 'scheme' being referenced throughout the hints is a rhyme scheme!)

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4
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I came to the exact same conclusion as you, but from the hints it seemed like something else was going on. Why would line 5 be easier than the rest, and what is in line 4 that reveals the answer? So, if this is really the actual answer, I'd be a little disappointed. Also, "I am obviously not a thief" is a bit of a strange title too, but it sort of fits? $\endgroup$
    – JS1
    Apr 3 at 17:53
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    $\begingroup$ So here's what made it hard for me. Tearing can be pronounced two ways - ripping and crying. The "from fearing" made me think that internal rhymes in the clues were important (see also meeting and cheating). Same with "because of the robbing" which just had nothing to do with anything. Red herrings are needed, of course, but this one just had too much going on to lead me anywhere near these somewhat obscure words. I will admit that if I hadn't been too proud to look up rudiment I might have been led in the right direction. $\endgroup$ Apr 3 at 18:01
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @JS1 I think the title is purely to divert solvers away from the overall reading of the passage - it's a short poem that sounds like it's about a thief, but that isn't the answer the OP is after because they've hidden something else within the words. Kate: I had the same problem with line 1 for a long time, which is why it's taken me so long to post (I don't like to post an answer to a riddle until I can explain all of it, ideally). I didn't even know what a 'rudiment' was until today! :) $\endgroup$
    – Stiv
    Apr 3 at 20:38
  • $\begingroup$ Fantastic as always Stiv! I apologize to the non-British folks for not making this more accessible to you! $\endgroup$
    – PDT
    Apr 4 at 8:46

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