Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Rear Ended!

Here's a hard one: What does this message say?


We're supposed to hear this week if the skeleton uncovered under a parking lot in Leicester, England, belongs to England's maligned King Richard III. The photo I'm attaching to this blog entry shows me in front of a chalk portrait of the King, a copy of a period portrait I had specially ordered from a Milwaukee artist back in the late 1960s. It depicts him fingering a ring, a pose that might have been habitual. The hat I'm wearing is blue velvet and the ornament curving around onto my face is made of very narrow feathers. The hat was a gift from a friend who was herself given the hat by another woman, now deceased. Apart from that, I don't know its history; how old it is, for example.

Word puzzle hint: Try splitting the letters up into equal-sized groups.

We were going to a pot luck family dinner last night, coming up 394 into Minneapolis, when the car two cars ahead of us braked suddenly, causing the car in front of us, already slowing, to brake harder, causing us to brake hard, but the car in back of us was slow to brake and ran into us, causing us to leap ahead into the car ahead of us. The three of us met in a nearby parking lot to be interviewed by a patient and polite State Trooper.  He took statements from each of us and inspected our cars.  The computer in his patrol car is capable of making printouts of his typed report, very nifty. The car that ran into us was a brand new SUV and has a damaged front end. It kept beeping in a steady beep-beep-beep, pause, beep-beep-beep, until we all were heartily tired of it, when it suddenly quit. I thought we were both reacting calmly, but looking back, I can see we were badly rattled. Our car, an old Saturn, suffered a crumpled hood and broken driver's side headlight, a pushed-in back license plate, a driver's side seat that won't stay upright, and an electrical system gone screwjee. The flashers work, and so do the headlights, but not the rear tail lights and the instrument panel blinks in rhythm with the emergency flashers but otherwise sits dark. A tow truck brought us home, the car will go to see if it can be repaired this morning. I came home with a headache which is gone this morning. And a really enormous salad, a wonderful thing made of five kinds of lettuce, cherry tomatoes, purple onion, black olives, sweet yellow pepper and crumbled feta cheese. It was meant for eight of us at the family gathering. Fortunately, I had covered it with that plastic wrap that clings tightly to the edge of containers, and while it ended up on the floor of the back seat, somewhat more tossed, the wrap contained it. We supped on a fraction of it, and will lunch and sup on it some more today.

Solution: “Great Job You Got It”
This type of code is known as a Caesar Box because Julius Caesar was the first to write codes this way. To decipher the message, divide the code into four groups of four (you can also divide any message into groups such as 5 groups of 5 or 6 groups of 6 depending on the number of letters in the phrase), and rearrange them vertically like this:

Then you read it vertically, column by column, left to right.


Linda O. Johnston said...

I like your puzzles, as always, Monica. And I'm really glad that, although your Saturn's fate isn't clear, you came out of that nasty situation without being badly hurt.

Betty Hechtman said...

I am glad you are okay and that the salad made it through intact. Any kind of car accident is unnerving.