18
$\begingroup$

You ask me where I used to work before I was retired?
Perhaps you’ll know if I tell tales of workers that I’ve fired...

The first who came and worked with me was fresh from Ivy League,
But at twenty-two her labours brought her burn-out and fatigue.
The second one could rival her, just as strong and smart,
But one day pushed herself too hard and sadly fell apart.
All five of them were brilliant, but the third achieved the most;
Truly ‘quite the find’ when we first advertised her post.
Yet she never clicked with Number Four – they just did not get on;
Though Four was still a legend, making sure the work got done.
And Number Five – what can I say? She always tried her best;
Enterprising, striving hard – I always was impressed.
In fact, we had eight happy years with only Five, Four, Three;
But in the end the project closed, they took redundancy.

So hopefully my little rhyme resolves your question – does it?
I had a job for thirty years, so tell me now: Where was it?

$\endgroup$
  • $\begingroup$ does word tag apply? $\endgroup$ – Omega Krypton Oct 25 at 11:24
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ i tried to make rot13 (fcnpr fuhggyrf jbex. ohg gurl whfg qba'g dhvgr svg.) $\endgroup$ – SteveV Oct 25 at 11:38
  • $\begingroup$ @OmegaKrypton No, but wordplay does, so have added that and history. Thanks :) $\endgroup$ – Stiv Oct 25 at 12:42
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I appreciated the joke, very funny :) $\endgroup$ – Avi Oct 25 at 13:48
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @SteveV: Well, there were six, but "Number Zero" is often not counted because rot13(vg arire jrag gb fcnpr). $\endgroup$ – dan04 Oct 26 at 18:58
13
$\begingroup$

So, going in the thread of @AndrewSmith's answer, I'm going to fully answer the question here:

You worked at:

NASA

The first who came and worked with me was fresh from Ivy League,
But at twenty-two her labours brought her burn-out and fatigue.

Columbia is an Ivy League university. The space shuttle Columbia served 22 years before disintegration during re-entry.

The second one could rival her, just as strong and smart,
But one day pushed herself too hard and sadly fell apart.

If you challenge yourself, you push yourself to your limits. Challenger was destroyed in a mission accident in 1986.

All five of them were brilliant, but the third achieved the most;
Truly ‘quite the find’ when we first advertised her post.

If you find something nice, you could say that you made a great Discovery. Of all the Space Shuttles, Discovery made the most flights at 39 flights total.

Yet she never clicked with Number Four – they just did not get on;
Though Four was still a legend, making sure the work got done.

Atlantis is a legendary sunken island. Edit: just got the joke! Atlantis never got on with Discovery, because we never actually discovered Atlantis (the island)!

And Number Five – what can I say? She always tried her best;
Enterprising, striving hard – I always was impressed.

This could either be Enterprise, the test shuttle (for a literal meaning of "enterprising"), or Endeavor, which is closer to the overall meaning of "striving hard" and being resourceful. I'm opting for the second of the two, Endeavor.

In fact, we had eight happy years with only Five, Four, Three;
But in the end the project closed, they took redundancy.

From 2004 to 2011, the last 3 space shuttles were the only ones operational. After that, the Space Shuttle program came to a close.

Title:
Enjoying a rest from the long commute!

Going to space and back is a very long commute.

$\endgroup$
  • $\begingroup$ Well done Avi :) You managed to round up almost all of the clues there! Rot13(Lbh'er evtug nobhg 'Raqrnibhe' - 'gel bar'f orfg', 'ragrecevfr' naq 'fgevir' ner nyy nygreangvir flabalzf. N pbhcyr lbh zvffrq gubhtu: 'Eviny' naq 'Punyyratre' ner flabalzf, naq 'sverq' pbhyq nyfb zrna 'ynhapurq'.) There are a couple of more obscure allusions in there too but I'm glad you managed to spot the history facts as well as the wordplay - the checkmark is yours! $\endgroup$ – Stiv Oct 25 at 18:05
8
$\begingroup$

Are you working at:

Nasa? and they are the five Space Shuttles.
First Launched 1981 and last in 2011. Columbia burnup in 2003.

$\endgroup$
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Welcome to the puzzling forum. Please, please, please mark your answers with spoiler tags (beginning with >! on each line) so other puzzlers may not be spoiled when attempting to solve for themselves. $\endgroup$ – CGreen Oct 25 at 12:12
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Hi Andrew, welcome to Puzzling. I have added spoiler tags to your answer so that other puzzlers can have their own guess before seeing others' answers. A suggestion: Since there are many lines to this riddle, it would be usual to try and explain the details within each one of them... That way you would increase the chances of your answer being marked as a complete correct answer, and also be able to confirm or disprove your idea. Click 'Edit' below your answer to make modifications. Thanks. Happy Puzzling! :) $\endgroup$ – Stiv Oct 25 at 12:46

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.