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It’s ScuttleButton Time!

Filed by KOSU News in Politics.
February 22, 2012

When it comes to picking winners for ScuttleButton, I have always operated on the notion that spelling doesn’t count. So, back in October, when the answer I was looking for was the former dictator from Libya, I didn’t care if you spelled it Khadaffi, Gadaffi, Qadaffi, or just plain Daffy. Misspellings won’t disqualify you.

But there are two things that will. One is forgetting to include your name and city/state. That’s not good. People continue to submit answers without including that information. You can’t win that way. The other is, you need to understand certain rules. Such as: if there are two buttons lined up next to each other horizontally, that means that the word/concept I am looking for is PLURAL. One Clinton button, for example, could mean I’m looking for “bill,” but two Clinton buttons should get you “bills.” That came into play with last week’s puzzle, as you’ll see below.

The rest of the rules are simple, with no change. Every Monday on this site (this week it was Wednesday) I put up a vertical display of buttons. Your job is to simply take one word (or concept) per button, add ‘em up, and, hopefully, you will arrive at a famous name or a familiar expression. (And seriously, by familiar, I mean it’s something that more than one person on Earth would recognize.)

For years, a correct answer chosen at random would get his or her name posted in this column, an incredible honor in itself. Now the stakes are even higher. Thanks to the efforts of the folks at Talk of the Nation, that person also hears their name mentioned on the Wednesday show (by me) and receives a Political Junkie t-shirt in the bargain. Is this a great country or what?

You can’t use the comments box at the bottom of the page for your answer. Send submission (plus your name and city/state — you won’t win without that) to

And, by adding your name to the Political Junkie mailing list, you will be among the first on your block to receive notice about the column and the puzzle. Sign up at Or you can make sure to get an automatic RSS feed whenever a new Junkie post goes up by clicking here.

Good luck!

By the way, I announce the winner on Wednesday’s Junkie segment on TOTN. But with a new puzzle up every Monday afternoon (or, like this week, Tuesday), you should get your answer in as soon as possible.

Here’s the answer to last week’s puzzle, where you’ll see what I was talking about regarding buttons in a horizontal line:

Gramm President — Sen. Phil Gramm of Texas sought the Republican presidential nomination in 1996.

MIA ? Missing Or Prisoner — This late 1960s-era button focused on those “Missing In Action” American soldiers who didn’t return home from Southeast Asia.

Re-elect Ward Democratic District Leader AND Frank Ward Senate buttons — I believe the first Ward button is from Queens, N.Y., perhaps the 1960s. Don’t know who Frank Ward is.

So, when you combine Gramm + Mia + Wards, you just very well may get …

Grammy Awards. The entertainment ceremony broadcast from Los Angeles last week where Adele was celebrated and Whitney Houston was remembered.

And now you see why I couldn’t accept “Grammy Award” as a correct answer. Dozens of people, unfortunately, gave that as the solution.

But not Russ Wyllie of Mountain View, Calif. And that’s why Russ, the randomly selected winner, gets a TOTN t-shirt. [Copyright 2012 National Public Radio]

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