37
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The English dictionary, as you may know, is a highly mutable entity.

While removing words such as irregardless might be considered a good thing, others, such as
snollygoster (n.): a shrewd, unprincipled person
are considered obsolete and will be missed, at least by me.

Other words have actually changed due to constant misuse. The one that disappoints me most is the fact that "literally" does not necessarily have to relate to its primary root definition:
literal (adj.) in accordance with, involving, or being the primary or strict meaning of the word or words; not figurative or metaphorical
It used to be fun to ask someone "Did you literally or metaphorically have your head in the toilet 'all night?'" Now, the correct answer might be "Both."

With this time-tested tradition of inventing new words and changing existing words "willy nilly," I propose the following twelve new definitions of existing words.

Your goal is to

  • determine the words being defined, and

  • discover the word that literally (I swear!) presents itself as a moniker for this type of word (the name of this puzzle).



  1. Uninspired mobile phone photograph (6)
    _ _ _ _ _ _

  2. Background checks on the key people in a company (8)
    _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

  3. Adorable (condescending?) term for an inexperienced user of the World Wide Web (8)
    _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

  4. An athletic protective cup (8)
    _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

  5. Blog about electric, wrought, and farm items (9)
    _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

  6. Spasmodic contraction caused by imprecise puzzle postings(8)
    _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

  7. Marijuana prescribed for an STD* (9)
    _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

  8. A Preggo's painful ped part (9)
    _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

  9. Donation by a celebrity look-a-like "baby daddy" (9)
    _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

  10. A trail to avoid in NYC's Central Park (10)
    _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

  11. What I'm doing when someone throws poop at me** (9)
    _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

  12. Discounted feminine product for everyone. (7)
    _ _ _ _ _ _ _

*Possibly not technically an STD
**Happens more often than you'd think
☑ indicates a correct answer has been found

Note: Please create a chatroom and offer invitations if you want to discuss the concept, as opposed to discussing the solution to the puzzle.

***Hint Regarding Title:

substr(0, 1) || substr(-1, 1)

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  • 4
    $\begingroup$ Sniglet? $\endgroup$ – Phylyp May 8 '18 at 14:07
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ @Phylyp I haven't thought about sniglets in a long time, but those aren't actual words... these are, just with new definitions. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 8 '18 at 15:06
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ This puzzle seems cromulent. $\endgroup$ – Ian MacDonald May 8 '18 at 16:57
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ Obligatory clip regarding "literally" $\endgroup$ – MichaelK May 9 '18 at 7:42
  • 4
    $\begingroup$ @MichaelK - Giving a YouTube reference before the obligatory XKCD one? Tut, tut 🙂 $\endgroup$ – Phylyp May 9 '18 at 8:08

17 Answers 17

4
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So, all the words have been discovered. Another answer already lists them all, so I won't repeat them. What is missing is the name of the puzzle. We have this clue:

substr(0, 1) || substr(-1, 1)

which refers to a function used in some programming languages. Translated in English, it means:

Take either the first character, or the last one.

So, what it means for us is that we have to take the list of all the answers and

Choose, from each word, whether to take the first or the last letter (nitpicking: it could also mean that we have to take both, but it turns out that it is not the case).

We also know, from a comment that the OP left, that

The Questions are in random order.

So, this is the list that we have to work on:

M C
C E
N G
T D
F T
P C
C S
A Y
S E
P H
T N
G N

Now... I tried to figure it out, and some partial words that do fit are:

mend, amend, def

Which I would combine into:

Amendef (=Amend definition)

Which I find fitting, because it is formed in the way that this game works, and it even describes what it does! Unfortunately, this word doesn't exist. So, please bear with me if I say "amen" to that! ;-)

But this can't be the solution, because it doesn't use all the answers. So, I've written a program to try a brute-force with all the 12-letters words that I've found, and the result is...

Enchantments

For completeness, here is how it can be formed (there are actually 24 different ways to form it, assuming my program has no bugs, but I'll show just this one):

Letter 'e' taken from pair 1 (ce)
Letter 'n' taken from pair 2 (ng)
Letter 'c' taken from pair 5 (pc)
Letter 'h' taken from pair 9 (ph)
Letter 'a' taken from pair 7 (ay)
Letter 'n' taken from pair 10 (tn)
Letter 't' taken from pair 3 (td)
Letter 'm' taken from pair 0 (mc)
Letter 'e' taken from pair 8 (se)
Letter 'n' taken from pair 11 (gn)
Letter 't' taken from pair 4 (ft)
Letter 's' taken from pair 6 (cs)

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  • $\begingroup$ Well done and +1! $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 16 '18 at 11:25
  • $\begingroup$ So you wrote a program that checked the letters against all of the words on that page? Kudos! Searching for a title, I put the 24 letters here in hopes of finding some set of words that could possibly be related and strung together. The one you found comes up first, right at the top, the only 12 letter word. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 16 '18 at 11:37
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @Chowzen To be honest I was looking for some small program that I could write as exercise. So my main goal wasn't really solving your puzzle, but rather practicing some programming techniques. When I saw that, with all the clues, this puzzle could be solved with some coding, I decided to try it. And I'm glad I did! $\endgroup$ – Fabio says Reinstate Monica May 16 '18 at 19:55
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I create and solve puzzles often as an exercise writing code and/or using RegEx, so my "Kudos" was certainly sincere. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 16 '18 at 20:53
14
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  1. An athletic protective cup (8)

Nutshell
nuts = testicles; shell = hard external covering
(Alternate definition, with a different split point: how it feels to get hit with a baseball while not wearing a cup >.<)

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ #4 LOL on both, but not what I was looking for... $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 8 '18 at 21:32
9
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Correct Guesses:

7: Marijuana prescribed for an STD* (9)

Crabgrass
crabs (slang for an STD) + grass (slang for marijuana)

1: Uninspired mobile phone photograph (6)

Myopic
'myopic' meaning shortsighted / with poor vision + 'pic'


Wrong guesses:

8: A Preggo's painful ped part: Cornbread

2: Background checks on the key people in a company: Big-screen



New Guesses:

3: Adorable (condescending?) term for an inexperienced user of the World Wide Web (8)

Internet
'intern' for 'non-professional user' + '-et' as a diminutive suffix

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ #7 works for me. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 8 '18 at 18:20
  • $\begingroup$ Great! Added another guess $\endgroup$ – TwoBitOperation May 8 '18 at 18:30
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ More explanations would be great for non native English speakers $\endgroup$ – fffred May 8 '18 at 18:52
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ rot13(V pbafvqrerq obgu nf jryy. V'z gnxvat zlbcvp gb zrna 'fubeg-fvtugrq' naq 'jvgu cbbe ivfvba' gb trg gb 'Havafcverq') I'll add some explanation $\endgroup$ – TwoBitOperation May 9 '18 at 13:22
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Yes, sorry, #2 is currently not right. (☑ in original question shows that correct answer has been given) $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 9 '18 at 14:32
9
$\begingroup$
  1. Uninspired mobile phone photograph (6)

    myopic     [from TwoBitOperation]
             (though I still think unepic fits 'uninspired' a little better hehe)

  2. Background checks on the key people in a company (8)

    corvette     [from ManyPinkHats]

  3. Adorable (condescending?) term for an inexperienced user of the World Wide Web (8)

    Why is this not just aDorable for Dora the (Internet) Explorer?

  4. An athletic protective cup (8)

    nuthouse — or maybe nuthatch.

  5. Blog about electric, wrought, and farm items (9)

    fencepost     [from hagfy]

  6. Spasmodic contraction caused by imprecise puzzle postings(8)

    pedantic     [from qwr]

  7. Marijuana prescribed for an STD (9)

    crabgrass     [from TwoBitOperation]

  8. A Preggo's painful ped part (9)

    archenemy — pregnant women often have aching arches from carrying Baby's weight

  9. Donation by a celebrity look-a-like "baby daddy" (9)

  10. A trail to avoid in NYC's Central Park (10)

    psychopath     [from Squid1361]

  11. What I'm doing when someone throws poop at me (9)

    turducken — ducken (ducking) the turd (poop)

  12. Discounted feminine product for everyone. (7)

    miniPad — "min" (discounted) + "iPad" (for everyone) = mini-pad, a feminine product

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ #8 Correct! --- #11 Correct! --- #1 not $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 9 '18 at 10:33
  • $\begingroup$ #3 Well, that would have been very sneaky of me, huh? NO :) ... #4 and #12: nice ones (ballgown!), but no. Methinks the prefix "ball" has struck out... $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 9 '18 at 20:22
  • $\begingroup$ No house, no hatch, no nuts. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 9 '18 at 21:57
  • $\begingroup$ @Chowzen I protest. #4 and #12 are perfectly reasonable answers :) This is hurting my brain trying to think of anything better! $\endgroup$ – Rubio May 9 '18 at 22:20
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ You're right, they are perfectly reasonable. Tell you what: I'll make a new puzzle just for you soon. :) $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 9 '18 at 22:37
5
$\begingroup$

6

Pedantic (imprecise -> pedantic + "tic") **OP Edit: Pedant -> one irritated by imprecision

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ #6 gets the "tick." (correct) $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 8 '18 at 19:55
5
$\begingroup$

Correct -

5 - Blog about electric, wrought, and farm items (9):

Fencepost
Blog post + electric, wrought, and farm fences


Additional guesses -

I got nothing...


Wrong:

2 - PRESSUPS

4 - BALLROOM,PITCHPOT

10 - SCREWDRIVE

11 - TWOTIMING (poop = #2, and you're timing the throw so you know when to duck)

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  • $\begingroup$ Yes on #5! Good job. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 8 '18 at 16:48
  • $\begingroup$ #11 and #4 - Not what I had in mind, but LOL! $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 9 '18 at 0:26
  • $\begingroup$ Well poo...I really liked 11. $\endgroup$ – hagfy May 9 '18 at 0:30
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Keep trying... Concentrate!!! You'll like it when it comes out (sry 4 the bad punning). $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 9 '18 at 0:32
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @hagfy Your suffix for #8 might be a prefix in my word... and your suffix for #1 is the suffix for #1. Your 'definitely wrong' #11 explanation has touched upon its 'infix.' (funny: infix is a real word, yet Riley has given it a 'new' definition, just like the entire concept of this puzzle.) $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 9 '18 at 3:01
5
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  1. Adorable (condescending?) term for an inexperienced user of the World Wide Web (8)

Tatertot:
Tater - potato computer (old or slow PC)
Tot - small child

  1. A trail to avoid in NYC's Central Park (10)

Psychopath:
Psycho - West side includes Metropolitan Center For Mental Health
Path - trail

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  • $\begingroup$ Cool, I was about to start hinting on this. Correct! $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 9 '18 at 20:29
  • $\begingroup$ No potatoes :) $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 9 '18 at 21:59
4
$\begingroup$

Guess for 2.

CORVETTE = core (key people, possibly company=corp) + vet (background check)

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  • $\begingroup$ That's it! #2 is solved. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 9 '18 at 14:54
4
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12.

Groupon : Group (for everyone) Tampon (feminine product)

New Guesses

4.

thimbled Thimble (a protective cup for fingers when sewing) Fumbled (losing the ball in the athletic game of American Football)

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  • 1
    $\begingroup$ #12 is another winner! Correct. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 10 '18 at 13:43
  • $\begingroup$ #4 is not what was intended. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 10 '18 at 17:27
4
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Summary of correct answers, to help solve the naming meta-puzzle.

I've listed each correct answer, the meaning of the word, and why the pun works:

  1. Uninspired mobile phone photograph (6)

myopic - shortsighted
shortsighted / with poor vision + 'pic' [TwoBitOperation]

  1. Background checks on the key people in a company (8)

Corvette - sports car named after a small warship
core (key people, possibly company=corp) + vet (background check) [ManyPinkHats]

  1. Adorable (condescending?) term for an inexperienced user of the World Wide Web (8)

Nettling - causing annoyance
"net" (short for internet) + "-ling" or "-ler" (diminutive suffixes sometimes used to denote something small or cute) [Jason Horner]

  1. An athletic protective cup (8)

Toolshed - An outdoor shed for storing tools and other equipment
tool = appendage, shed = place to keep it [jsm]

  1. Blog about electric, wrought, and farm items (9)

Fencepost - A post which helps hold up a fence
Blog post + electric, wrought, and farm fences [hagfy]

  1. Spasmodic contraction caused by imprecise puzzle postings(8)

Pedantic - overly concerned with trivial points
Pedant = one irritated by imprecision + "tic" [qwr]

  1. Marijuana prescribed for an STD (9)

Crabgrass - invasive tropical grass
crabs (slang for an STD) + grass (slang for marijuana) [TwoBitOperation]

  1. A Preggo's painful ped part (9)

Archenemy - a supreme and most powerful enemy
pregnant women often have aching arches from carrying Baby's weight [Rubio♦]

  1. Donation by a celebrity look-a-like "baby daddy" (9)

Supercede - to replace
supercede - celebrity = superstar -> super
baby daddy = 'seed', which is a 'look-a-like' for cede = transfer, bequeath, or grant, hence it puns on 'donation'.
the 'seed' could also be a different type of 'donation' [jsm]

  1. A trail to avoid in NYC's Central Park (10)

Psychopath - a person with no moral conscience
Psycho - West side includes Metropolitan Center For Mental Health Path - trail

  1. What I'm doing when someone throws poop at me (9)

Turducken - a concoction of chicken, duck, turkey
ducken (ducking) the turd (poop) [Rubio♦]

  1. Discounted feminine product for everyone. (7)

Groupon - group-buying website
Group (for everyone) Tampon (feminine product) [Kyle]

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  • $\begingroup$ @ Chowzen - I've edited my to include every explanation you've endorsed as correct. But to my eye, the pattern isn't consistent. Can you confirm the explanations are correct? $\endgroup$ – jsm May 11 '18 at 21:13
  • $\begingroup$ I appreciate the inclusion of the explanations of how the clues fit the answers, but it is the answers themselves (or part(s) thereof) that are important. I was trying to come up with a title for the puzzle, did something using the answers (e.g. turducken), and immediately a word jumped out at me. I was so surprised that I decided to make it part of the puzzle. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 11 '18 at 21:24
3
$\begingroup$

Is the answer to #3

nettling or nettlers? "net" (short for internet) + "-ling" or "-ler" (diminutive suffixes sometimes used to denote something small or cute)

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  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Welcome to Puzzling SE! If you don't mind, please take the puzzling.stackexchange.com/tour ! You'll also earn a badge. Would you mind explaining your answer? $\endgroup$ – North May 10 '18 at 13:13
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ #3 is correct! (rot13(qhpxyvatf, tbfyvatf, naq rttyvatf) are adorable!, Good show! $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 10 '18 at 13:42
  • $\begingroup$ Note: I edited out the plural "s" to conform to the eight letter constraint. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 10 '18 at 13:47
3
$\begingroup$
  1. An athletic protective cup is a:

toolshed
(being a place to keep an appendage)

Alternative suggestions that turned out to be wrong:

  • trackpad

being a protective thing that would be used on a track?

  • tentacle

tent referring to a covering, and tackle referring to both a sporting activity and the male appendage

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  • $\begingroup$ Tent:no. Tackle:no. Appendage?Yes. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 10 '18 at 16:55
  • $\begingroup$ ... And I was about to answer "tacklebox" $\endgroup$ – TwoBitOperation May 10 '18 at 17:09
  • $\begingroup$ I've edited to add a few more possibilities... but frankly, I still think DLosc's answer is so good, you should accept it as correct! $\endgroup$ – jsm May 10 '18 at 17:58
  • $\begingroup$ You got it! for disambiguation purposes, it was your answer that starts with T, has eight letters and could mean "An athletic protective cup." $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 10 '18 at 19:58
  • $\begingroup$ :) rot13(gbbyfurq) $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 10 '18 at 20:00
2
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12.

Bicycle
"discount = bi, feminine = cycle, for everyone because everybody can bike?

edit: thanks for the response! Been lurking for a little while, thought I finally had an answer to a riddle - looks like better luck next time.

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  • $\begingroup$ Welcome to puzzling! That's not the intended answer, but it's a good try. Why not take the tour? You get a badge for just looking. :) $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 9 '18 at 0:24
2
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9: Donation by a celebrity look-a-like "baby daddy" (9)

supercede

celebrity = superstar -> super
baby daddy = 'seed', which is a 'look-a-like' for cede
cede also means transfer, bequeath, or grant, hence it puns on 'donation'.
the 'seed' could also be a different type of 'donation'

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  • $\begingroup$ ...maybe a little explanation might help... $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 10 '18 at 15:19
  • $\begingroup$ I've edited the answer with an explanation $\endgroup$ – jsm May 10 '18 at 15:28
  • $\begingroup$ #9 is correct. Thanks for expanding the answer for clarification to others. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 10 '18 at 15:42
1
$\begingroup$

Partial:

3.

webbings (or websters or maybe even webworms)

4.

hardball (or ballyrag) <--- Original
ballstop <--- New

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  • $\begingroup$ #4 is incorrect because it's not funny enough. :) (Not that all of these answers are funny...) $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 8 '18 at 18:27
  • $\begingroup$ Sorry, 3 and 4 are "out the door." (not right) $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 8 '18 at 19:55
0
$\begingroup$

Partial list:

1.

Selfie

5.

Metallica

6.

Downvote

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  • $\begingroup$ Your answer to #1 may be uninspired usually, but the intended answer is certainly uninspired. #2 doesn't really work, because it is the normal, accepted word with that definition. The intended answer will "normally" mean something completely different. #6 see my comment on #2, plus, it's not really spasmodic. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 8 '18 at 15:10
  • $\begingroup$ I imagine that once some correct answers are found, the spirit of the intended answers will be better understood. $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 8 '18 at 15:11
  • $\begingroup$ I think 1 is (rot 13)pnzren $\endgroup$ – Sid May 8 '18 at 15:24
0
$\begingroup$
  1. An athletic protective cup (8)

Wrong guesses, but still want to include them:

Frankenstein
Frank -> weiner, another name for male genitalia
enstein -> in stein, or in a cup

and

Trophycase
Trophy -> an athletic cup
case -> a way to protect it

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  • $\begingroup$ You are CORRECT! These are not conceivable as answers! (8 letters) Kinda funny, tho. :) $\endgroup$ – Chowzen May 10 '18 at 17:50

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