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My paycheck from Hugh Hefner

GROUPS:

Back in the late 1970's, my favorite magazine was GAMES magazine, which happened to be owned by Playboy corporation. I had an idea for a puzzle which would be based on converting letters to the phone number equivalent. ABC-> 2, DEF->3, and so on. Pretty easy to make the wordlist now.

wl = Select[WordList[IncludeInflections -> True], Length[Intersection[Characters[#], {"q", "z"}]] == 0 &]; 
phone = {StringReplace[#, Thread[Characters["abcdefghijklmnoprstuvwxy"] -> Flatten[{#, #, #} & /@ Characters["23456789"]]]], #} & /@ wl;  

My puzzle was published, and as a young boy I was able to go to the bank to cash a check signed by Hugh Hefner, with a rainbow playboy bunny stamped next to it. My first paycheck. I wish I'd kept it now.

One question -- what words with the same number have a large distance between them?

Take[SortBy[Select[SplitBy[Sort[phone], First], Length[#] > 1 &], -EditDistance[#[[1, 2]], #[[2, 2]]] &], 200] 

2787433 gives BRUSHED ASTRIDE. 4682337 gives HOTBEDS INVADER. 72672437 gives SCORCHER RAMPAGES. All of these word pairs are somewhat suggestive. Adorns-censor, contour-amounts, cougar-antics, daughter-fatigues, gorged-inside, scolds-ranker, ramrods-scorner, shrunk-pistol, stocker-rumbles, swinger-pygmies.

Thanks for that first paycheck, Hef.

POSTED BY: Ed Pegg
Answer
24 days ago

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