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It's time once again for the weekly Daily Kos puzzle party!

On tap tonight:

   * a new JulieCrostic
   * a new Crypto-Gremlin
   * and a slightly-used One-Off puzzle, returning for its third week

If you'd like to test your wits on these puzzles, or if you'd like to come down to watch and cheer as the solving team tackles them, come on down...

Let's count down, starting with...

Puzzle # 3: old One-Off puzzle

I've taken something familiar and changed one letter in each line. Then I've written a paraphrase of the altered line, taking care not to use any words from the original or altered lines in the paraphrase. The result is the shopping list you see below.

The change might be the addition of a letter (bead becomes bread), the subtraction of a letter (bead becomes bad) or the substitution of a letter (bead becomes read).

The number in parentheses at the end of each line tells how many words were in the line originally.

1: impressionist painting costs a dollar (4)
2: food to eat costs twice that (4)
3: cost of having manuscript evaluated is as much as cost of painting and meal combined (4)
4: plus, give Republicans enough for two of the lowest-priced whores (4)

Since this puzzle has gone unsolved for two weeks running, here's some additional help.

Hint # 1: These are four related sequential lines (i.e. lines from a song, lines from a poem, something like that).

Hint # 2: Most of you should be familiar with these four lines, at least with some version. They are very well known.

Hint # 3: If you're having trouble figuring this out, do the arithmetic.

Puzzle Party / SUNDAY PUZZLE / Puzzle Party / SUNDAY PUZZLE / Puzzle Party /

Puzzle # 2: new Crypto-Gremlin

Here's a puzzle about a puzzle!

And it's a double puzzle:

   * Puzzle part one: decipher the coded message.
   * Puzzle part two: figure out where the message comes from and post a link to the source.

(For major extra credit points, solve the puzzle in the coded message!)

Nottognaw: Umd pwbrigud crho twscr bwuudsi, umd uruwex bwaaw zogd loui, zoad biymo ewsndsr loui vwffdwsax umwgw umd pwbrigud crho bwaaw zogd jrstogwsx bwuudsi. Ar umwu'ax vw mind filled.

Mwssoax: Loui bwx uwcd vw jmoed ur hogti brsd yeidar fwkriuw umwux ywgtr mrumdsw filledad.

NOTE: Crypto-Gremlins are a special kind of cryptogram. They can't be solved by online code-breaking programs, but they can be solved through the use of human wits. If you aren't familiar with Crypto-Gremlins you can find a full explanation of how they work here. (And you can find a very useful tool to assist you in making letter substitutions here.)

Puzzle Party / SUNDAY PUZZLE / Puzzle Party / SUNDAY PUZZLE / Puzzle Party /

Puzzle # 1: tonight's JulieCrostic.

Well, this is embarrassing. I had a nice simple JulieCrostic planned for tonight. Nothing fancy, just a straightforward puzzle with a phrase spelled out in a pair of vertical columns. But then the gremlins took over...

The gremlins noticed an interesting pattern to the words in the phrase. So they broke the phrase into pieces and made separate JulieCrostics out of these -- which they then lumped all together, so it's hard to tell where one ends and the next one begins. Aargh!

Also: they arranged the JulieCrostic pieces in what they insist is a logical order. Well, it is a logical order, I agreed; It just doesn't read as easily as it did in my version of the puzzle. They failed to see why that should be a consideration.

Oh, and the worst part: they added a JulieCrostic of their own to the thing! (Naturally,  it's the very first one -- so at least you'll be able to tell which is theirs. I take no responsibility for it!)

But it's not all bad news. As usual the gremlins arranged all the clues in tidy bundles of three (regardless of how many answers are in a row). And as usual they removed all the capital letters from the clues. But since they had already done so much gremlinning to the puzzle I asked if they could refrain from fiddling with the punctuation in the clues -- and they giggled in their gremlinny way and indicated they'd only make one tiny little change in clue punctuation...

... And it looks like they kept their word. There's only one place where they changed a clue's punctuation -- substituting one punctuation mark for a different one which is so similar to it that you barely notice the difference.

(But when  I praised them for their restraint regarding punctuation they laughed uproariously. So I think they must have slipped something over on me somewhere. Just something you might keep in mind.)

Anyway, here's some major help. The gremlins were so pleased with themselves that they began boasting, and they let it slip that no two of the JulieCrostic pieces in tonight's puzzle have the same number of columns. Not only that, but also the last word in each row is the same length in all the JulieCrostic pieces. (Well, in all of the pieces they made out of my puzzle. They just laughed uproariously when I asked about the word lengths for the answers to their JulieCrostic piece.)

Three of the clues in tonight's puzzle have 2-word answers. And one puzzle answer is a hyphenated word not found yet in dictionaries (but it made sense to the gremlins and should be easily deducible once you have its letters). All the other answer words should be familiar.

If I discover any more tricks the gremlins pulled I'll let you know in comments.

1. often the last answer to one of these
2. this is used to indicate intensity
3. sure
4. genesis
5. have sex outside of marriage
6. car, mountain, mackerel or club
7. lingers
8. having fewer redeeming qualities
9. unscheduled environmental photograph -- most influential ever, it's been said
10. bent over in England
11. involve
12. final part of something, or main part of rush
13. this is often found below title and author of story
14. estranged
15. shirts
16. encounters
17. online gaming partners
18. a vessel which can be found either at sea or in the kitchen
19. burns up
20. competitive sequels
21. kind of squirrel
22. after this is in the bone, it's firmly entrenched
23. have sex, produce offspring and raise them
24. made coffee
25. tiny poet
26. sketched pooh
27. something which finds stuff you might want to read and aggregates it for you
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