I went to visit a friend the other day, and was invited inside. When I entered, I spied an arrangement of various dominos, upon the table. They were not arranged, standing up, as if she had been meaning to do anything spectacular with them, but the arrangement did seem to be important to her. I inquired, of her, as to their meaning, but she simply smiled, and kept about her business. Eventually, I let it go -- but I keep finding myself drawn to the sequence, as if it means something.

Do you think you could help me figure it out?

It looked like this:

# 1

One time, upon the sea
I ordered a toody fruity
meal or three-ee

# 2

I could add another tag to this question, but it would give it away.

# 3

Something I should note. This riddle is not nearly as complex as it seems. A small group of children could possibly solve it.

# 4

The number 14 has very little to do with this puzzle despite this sentence.

# 5

My friend's first name is Ella.

# WARNING - SOLUTION BELOW

For anyone still trying to figure out how everything connects together, look at this.

• Is the answer only true for the time frame in which this puzzle was posted? Mar 11, 2016 at 17:03
• @Varon I noticed that, too. You'd think that it would have made it easier to find domino images. After a while I gave up, and made my own, in MS paint. LoL Mar 11, 2016 at 19:12
• @Khale_Kitha Again a 14 words-hint. I think you want to tease me :D Mar 12, 2016 at 19:34
• snicker Hahah, sorry =D Mar 14, 2016 at 15:00
• Oh, that hint throws out the line of reasoning I was using Mar 14, 2016 at 15:07

So I think it's

Some reasoning.

Thanks to the partial answer by Zander, I found that the tune was in fact A-Tisket, A-Tasket, which was indeed covered by Ella Fitzgerald. It's also a nursery rhyme, thus the hint about a group of children. Tisket was also her propellent to national fame, which is why she smiled at in while you were there. For too long, I got hung up on the Fats Domino idea, and the only song she covered by him was I'm Walkin', which sadly has no relationship with the tune outlined in the dominoes.

• her propellent to national fame - Nice job. Mar 16, 2016 at 17:24
• It was also an arrangement, done by her, which is why I mentioned that the dominos were in an arrangement. I'll add an image, to the bottom of the puzzle, now, that explains it for anyone still having trouble. Mar 16, 2016 at 17:36

The first clue indicates

a relationship between 1 and C ("one... sea"), 2 and D ("toody"), and 3 and E ("three-ee"). Given this, it seems likely that the numbers correspond to letters in the same order in the alphabet. A Caesar cipher doesn't produce a legible result, but there's another sequence of letters starting with C: a musical scale, with 1 being C and 6 being A (possibly 0 would be B, but it doesn't appear).

Using this, we can convert the dominoes to

a sequence of notes: GGEFGEFGGEAGEEFFDEFFDDGFEDEC. Given the "first lady" in the title and the later hint about Ella, this is likely part of one of the songs of Ella Fitzgerald, as suggested by Gamow (possibly one of her collaborations with Fats Domino). Unfortunately, I don't recognise the tune when I hum it and I can't listen to her songs at the moment to check.

• I love that someone got that clue. :) @Zandar Mar 15, 2016 at 20:45

# This is not the solution!!!

I staring hours to this and did heavy calculations and associations, but I got nothing. Here are some of my impressions:

Positions
I'm not sure if the position of the bottom elements 3 | 2, 3 | 1 is important. (If it is a sequence, why they are not left aligned?)

Math and Tables

Decimal: 55, 34, 53, 45, 53, 65, 33, 44, 23, 44, 22, 54, 32, 31

HEX+DEC: E5, C4, E3, D5, E3, F5, C3, D4, B3, D4, B2, E4, C2, C1
asDec: 229, 196, 227, 213, 227, 245, 195, 212, 179, 212, 178, 228, 194, 193

DEC+HEX: 5E, 3D, 5C, 4E, 5C, 6E, 3C, 4D, 2C, 4D, 2B, 5D, 3B, 3A
asDec: 94, 61, 92, 78, 92, 110, 60, 77, 44, 77, 43, 93, 59, 58

HEX+HEX: EE, CD, EC, DE, EC, FE, CC, DD, BC, DD, BB, ED, CB, CA
asDec: 238, 205, 236, 222, 236, 254, 204, 221, 188, 221, 187, 237, 203, 202


abs(d(x) - d(x+1)) 21, 19, 8, 8, 12, 32, 11, 21, 21, 22, 32, 22, 1
If 32 is a space it could be a text Other combinations I tried as well, but it ends up in a mess.

Pure Number association
I tried submarine numbers, president birthdays, game(i.e. soccer) scores, and so on

Hints
Both hints have 14 "words" like the number of tiles. Maybe it's only coincidence. But therefore it's to conspicuous to add -ee to the first hint.

Hint 2:
"I could add a not-her tag to this question, but it would give it a way" Then it is not the First Lady but the president. (Obama?)

Hint 1:
"One time, up". - Is there something we have to set "up"-side?
"ordered" like "to sort"?

Tags
A "visual rebus" means no or not directly math. Perhaps I miss combinatoric. I don't know.

• I was looking at the -ee the other day and thought the sentence might be an anagram and that was to signify dropping the ee. Because the typical spelling is tooty fruity. Mar 12, 2016 at 17:33
• Might also mean there are three sets of double e's in the answer. Mar 12, 2016 at 17:35
• @Varon You're giving me far too much credit. Haha Mar 12, 2016 at 18:57