Tuesday, 9 August 2016

Ep 152: Greg Beers, Rosemary Stafford (August 9, 2016; originally aired March 1, 2011)

Rounds: Here.

Disclaimer: I watched this episode when it first aired, and although I did not recall any of it I cannot rule out memory being a factor.

It's the third night for Greg Beers, and Richard raises the topic of misadventure during Greg's outback adventures.  Greg relates how three years ago he (and others) were driving up the Innamincka track (maybe he was referring to the Strzelecki Track?); they stopped at a camp site, and he jumped into a natural spring there and dislocated his shoulder.  His wife and friends eventually got into contact with the Flying Doctors, who instructed a local to give Greg and injection of morphine.  Said local's qualifications were that he'd previously injected a camel once.  (Richard interjects that Greg probably did not put up as much argument as the camel.)  Anyway, eight hours later Greg was on the plane and into Whyalla hospital, the shoulder was put back in place, and all was well.

Tonight's challenger is Rosemary Stafford, a public servant for the Department of Justice in the Reporting Services Branch.  This branch deals with recording what happens in the courts -- which is done digitally -- then transcribing that into transcript for the judges and lawyers.

Rosemary took the early lead with a good word in round one, but Greg recovered with points in the next two rounds to be ten points ahead going into the first break.  Rosemary did better in round four, round five was shared, but the numbers were again favourable to Greg.  Rosemary kept her hopes alive by getting the better answer in the last letters round, and got close in the final numbers round.  However, Greg was closer, and that sealed the win for him.  He buzzed in on the conundrum with an incorrect answer, but still had the win, 46 to 20.

Round 1: P E A R D E O N T


Greg has found PARDON for six, but Rosemary starts out well with the seven of PREDATE (in the pre-date sense).  David has found OPERATED for eight.

The other eight is PARENTED.  The other sevens are PRETEND, PORTEND, TAPERED, NOTEPAD, OPERANT / PRONATE / PROTEAN ("readily assuming different forms or characters"), OPERATE, ADOPTER, ADOPTEE, APRONED / PANDORE (variant spelling of BANDORE, a musical instrument) / PADRONE ("a master, as of a vessel"), PENTODE ("a radio valve containing five electrodes"), and ERODENT ("eroding; erosive").

Rosemary: PREDATE

Scores: Greg 0, Rosemary 0 (7), me 8

Round 2: E A N G S E I P M

I had SNAG, GENES, EASING, SEEPING, and ENIGMAS / GAMINES.  After time I looked unsuccessfully for an eight, noting some other sevens along the way: MAGPIES, SEAMING, and MÉNAGES (MÉNAGE: "a household; a domestic establishment").

Rosemary has GAMES for five, but Greg has found SEEPING for seven to level the scores.  David could not better it, and has chosen ENIGMAS for his answer.

Seven is the limit; the others are SEEMING, MEANIES, MANÈGES (MANÈGE: "a school for training horses and teaching equestrian skills"), NEMESIA (a type of plant), and EPIGEAN (variant form of EPIGEAL: "of an insect, living near the surface of the ground, as on low herbs or on other surface vegetation").

Rosemary: GAMES

Scores: Greg 7, Rosemary 0 (7), me 15

Round 3: Target 566 from 50 25 9 7 9 3

I was happily well-prepared for this target: I'd followed one of Lily's pieces of advice, of multiplying together small numbers while they go up in the hopes of seeing useful components.  In this case, I had calculated that 9*7*9 = 567, and the target was just one off that!  So I immediately had a solution: 566 = 7*9*9 - (3 - 50/25).  Then I noticed that the standard method was somewhat simpler: 566 = (9 + 3)*50 - 25 - 9.  (Actually, I first tried to apply that as 550 + 9 + 7, but found the better option without too much difficulty.)

Rosemary has not been able to get anywhere with this, but Greg has solved it exactly with the second of the solutions that I found.  That's a good recovery from him after the first round, but it's still early in the match.  Lily has also solved this the same way.

Greg: 566
Rosemary: [no answer]
Me: 566
Lily: 566

Scores: Greg 17, Rosemary 0 (7), me 25

First break: RANG NODS ("One thousandth male child")

The thousand refers to GRAND, and thus GRANDSON.

David's talk follows on from yesterday's talk about acronyms by talking about backronyms.

Round 4: C K A I F H E C B

I had HICK and HACKIE.  What an unpleasant mix!

The contestants were not particularly thrilled by this mix either, with Rosemary finding ACHE for four while Greg went one better with BEACH for five.  David has dug deep to find another six of CHIACK ("to jeer; taunt; deride; tease").

HACKIE and CHIACK are the only sixes.  The other fives are CACHE, CHAFE, CHECK, CHIEF / FICHE (maybe... the entry for FICHE just points to MICROFICHE, which does not mention FICHE as a possibility), CHICK, FAKIE (a skateboarding manoeuvre), HÁČEK (a diacritic that can be seen over the C in the word itself), and HAICK (variant spelling of HAIK: "an oblong cloth used as an outer garment by the Arabs").

Rosemary: ACHE

Scores: Greg 17 (22), Rosemary 0 (7), me 31

Round 5: I E S T G N L I E

I had SITE, INGEST, SINGLET, IGNITES, wondered about TINGLIES (not valid), SLEETING / STEELING, and GENTILES.  After time I noted other eights of LENITIES (plural of LENITY: "a lenient act") and LIGNITES.

It's sevens from the contestants, with Rosemary's LISTING matching Greg's SINGLET.  David notes that TINGLES is an anagram of SINGLET, but has chosen STEELING for his eight.  He also observes that duplicating the G would have given the ten of GELIGNITES.

Incidentally, this is the first time on the show that Greg has found a word of more than six letters.

That's all the eights listed.  The other sevens are GENTILE, LIGNITE, GLISTEN, TENSILE, TILINGS / SILTING, GENTLES, LINIEST, ELEGIST / ELEGITS (ELEGIT: "a writ of execution against a judgement debtor's goods or property held by the judgement creditor until payment of the debt"), and SEELING (SEEL: "Falconry to close (the eyes of a hawk), especially by sewing up the lids, in order to make it responsive to training").

Rosemary: LISTING

Scores: Greg 17 (29), Rosemary 0 (14), me 39

Round 6: Target 899 from 25 50 4 1 10 1

It seemed clear to want to make this as 900 - 1, so I put the one aside and considered the rest.  900 is 18*50, and that worked out: 899 = (25 - 10 + 4 - 1)*50 - 1.  An alternative was 36*25, leading to 899 = (50 - 10 - 4)*25 - 1.

Once again Rosemary has been unable to get anywhere with this, and she's going to be in a lot of trouble if she can't pull back ground in the numbers.  Greg has got to one away with 900 = 25*10*4 - (1 + 1)*50, and that puts him over twenty points ahead -- Rosemary now needs unanswered points in the last letters round to stay in with a chance.

Lily has found another solution: 899 = (10 - 1)*4*25 - 1.

Greg: 900
Rosemary: [no answer]
Me: 899
Lily: 899

Scores: Greg 17 (36), Rosemary 0 (14), me 49

Second break: BALE NUTS ("Home for a wobbly horse")

A horse lives in a stable, but a wobbly horse might thus live in an UNSTABLE.

Round 7: O I A T O S S R C

I had IOTA, IOTAS, ROOSTS, ACROSS, and SCORIA ("the refuse, dross, or slag left after smelting or melting metals").  After time I noted other sixes of RATIOS, ACTORS, and COASTS, but could not find longer.

Greg has CARTS for five, but Rosemary keeps her hopes alive by going one better with RATIOS.  She still needs to outscore Greg in the next numbers round, which on form so far is unlikely, but it is still possible.  David has accurately found a seven here: CASTORS.

The other sevens are RACISTS, SCOTIAS (SCOTIA: "a concave moulding, as at the base of a column or the angle between the wall and the ceiling"), and AORISTS (AORIST: "a tense of the Greek verb expressing past action without implication as to whether the action was momentary, continuous, completed, etc.").

Rosemary: RATIOS

Scores: Greg 17 (36), Rosemary 6 (20), me 55

Round 8: Target 393 from 50 25 1 10 4 8

The target is near 8*50, and I was so focused on tweaking that I took a rather scenic route at first: 393 = 8*(50 + 1) - 25 + 10.  Then I found the simpler 393 = 8*50 - 10 + 4 - 1.

Rosemary gives herself a chance by getting to two away with 395, but Greg puts it all beyond doubt by solving this with the second of the solutions that I found.  That was also Lily's approach.

Greg: 393
Rosemary: 395
Me: 393
Lily: 393

Scores: Greg 27 (46), Rosemary 6 (20), me 65


Oh, I was fortunate here -- this was one word in a recentish challenge on David's blog.  I'd spent a while trying to unravel the words on that list; PETROLEUM was one of the harder ones, so it stuck in my memory.

Greg buzzed in after eight seconds, but that was with the incorrect EMPLOYMENT.  Rosemary got the rest of the time, but was not able to find the answer.

Greg: [invalid -- EMPLOYMENT (8s)]
Rosemary: [no answer]

Scores: Greg 27 (46), Rosemary 6 (20), me 75

Honours were more or less even on the letters front (Rosemary picked up a point on them), but Rosemary's weakness with the numbers proved the difference -- Greg picked up 27 points on those for a definitive win.  It's nice to see a contestant handle the numbers with some facility.

1 comment:

Mike Backhouse said...

7*(50+25+9-3)=567 (1 off)
CROSS then ACROSS but went over