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MIT student blogger Bryan O. '07

Puzzled Solution by Bryan

i think the lack of comments on my last entry might mean my puzzle stinks.

If you continue reading this entry, you’ll get the puzzle solution.

Let me know what you think of the puzzle. Too hard, too easy, too short, too long?

And later tonight, get the exciting story of how I braved Mass. Ave on Saturday against oncoming traffic as the clock struck midnight.

Dissecting the puzzle:

Title: Come and Ride It
Discussion: Nothing too helpful here immediately, but the title might make more sense after you solve the puzzle.

Flavor Text: Lost in the jungle, Joe is befriended by a group of warrior women with a quiver of arrows. They give Joe this series of directions to follow to find the train home.
Discussion: Sometimes the text included with the puzzle gives you hints as to how to solve the puzzle. Reading this passage closely would clue you into the story of the Amazon women. Hmm… amazon.com maybe?

MAP:
START HERE (at the X)

X 0 5 2 9 6 3 1 2 6 2
0 8 8 7 3 1 2 5 4 5 7
7 5 0 4 2 3 6 5 4 8 6
9 8 2 1 4 5 3 6 4 7 5

Discussion: This is just a map, can’t do too much with it unless you know how to traverse it.

CLUES:
A few of these items might help you as well.

Fourth in Malibu Sands Summer
Sixth in Raven Symone’s 1st
Third in Greek A + Roman V
Thirteenth in Mr Tumnus
Eighth in Ugachaka Law Case
Tenth in Popcorn Christmas Tree Decorations
Second in Mr. Feeny’s Dashboard Dilemma
Seventeenth in the Case of the Sleeping Dog
Tenth in the Mirror of Erised
Seventh in a Series of Unfortunate Events

“Follow these directions and you’ll find your way.”

Discussion: Basically, each clue refers to either a book or television series somehow.

Malibu Sands Summer -> Saved by the Bell
Raven Symone’s First -> The Cosby Show
Greek A + Roman V (Alpha 5) -> Power Rangers
Mr. Tumnus -> The Chronicles of Narnia
Ugachaka Law Case -> Ally McBeal
Popcorn Christmas Tree Decorations -> Amelia Bedelia
Mr. Feeny’s Dashboard Dilemma -> Knight Rider
Case of the Sleeping Dog -> Encyclopedia Brown
Mirror of Erised -> Harry Potter
Series of Unfortunate Events -> Lemony Snicket’s Series of Unfortunate Events

Next (puzzles aren’t normally short) if you take the index of each of the clue answers, you get ESWSEENNES which are cardinal directions, and if you go back to the map, you get 0807508527 which is the length of the ISBN number for this book, The Boxcar Children.

boxcar_children.jpg

I was feeling a little nostalgic about 2nd grade on the way to work that day.

Now does the title make a little more sense?

8 responses to “Puzzled Solution”

  1. Sam says:

    I’ve actually been working on it in my spare time because I just can’t resist a puzzle that references Mr. Tumnus. I guess I’ll give myself another day or two before checking out this entry in full.

  2. Bryan says:

    Sam, you should join our mystery hunt team. Let me know if you’re interested.

  3. Jessie says:

    I’d gotten as far as figuring out that it probably translated to cardinal directions, as I had a bunch of N/E/S/Ws, but I didn’t have all the references so I didn’t know all the directions. And I doubt I would have figured out the ISBN number thing.

    A lot of puzzles, you don’t need to have solved all the clues to solve them; this one you do because you need all the directions. Not sure if that’s good or bad.

  4. Mitra says:

    I’m upset that there are no reality television shows in that list. And no, “Saved by the Bell” does not count.

  5. Fiona says:

    I figured out some of the ‘series’ clues, but not enough to get to the directions…but I don’t think I ever would have gotten to the ISBN number thing. I really liked this puzzle, and I think now that we’ve seen the solution to this one we’ll have more of an idea of how to go about solving the next one.

  6. DAMN. So close.

    I had the ISBN number but didn’t realize it was an ISBN. I didn’t know if it was the answer or what I was supposed to do with it. Sheesh.

    Post more =D

    Later,

    Mike.

  7. Avi says:

    please send more?