GeekDad Puzzle of the Week Solution — Falling Letters

Reading Time: 2 minutes

This past week’s puzzle, as previously posted:

Sometimes, especially during spelling bees, I have been known to drop a letter — either lose an important one, or drop an unexpected one into an unsuspecting word. This week’s puzzle is all about dropping letters into or out of words.

fallingLettersBelow, please find a list of 20 phrases that identify word pairs that vary by just a single letter being dropped onto or off of either end of the word. For each pair, I have identified the letter dropped, as well as the direction of droppage.

Example: “A solid piece of furniture” is a STABLE TABLE (-S).


  1. Up and coming acetylsalicylic acid (-G)
  2. Absolute churned cream (+B)
  3. De-knots female relatives (+A)
  4. Nightlight craziness (-P)
  5. Older solderer (+W)
  6. Arrived spiritually balanced (+C)
  7. Regular Babylonian writing (+C)
  8. Available marten fur (-U)
  9. Less high fan (+B)
  10. Coffin hole dance party (-G)
  11. Payment to retrieve a kidnapped architectural beam (-T)
  12. Texas A&M sandwich containers (+B)
  13. A cooler whisk (+W)
  14. Fat male spouse (-C)
  15. Spacedust arriveth (+H)
  16. Zombie platoon (-E)
  17. New Mexico’s stuff (+E)
  18. Getting rid of sending documents via phone (+F)
  19. Cellar-dwellers on 1st and 2nd (-T)
  20. Complete lack of Class M planets (+D)

Here are the clues again, this time with their target phrases:

  1. Up and coming acetylsalicylic acid (-G) – ASPIRING ASPIRIN
  2. Absolute churned cream (+B) – UTTER BUTTER
  3. De-knots female relatives (+A) – UNTIES AUNTIES
  4. Nightlight craziness (-P) – BEDLAMP BEDLAM
  5. Older solderer (+W) – ELDER WELDER
  6. Arrived spiritually balanced (+C) – ENTERED CENTERED
  7. Regular Babylonian writing (+C) – UNIFORM CUNIFORM
  8. Available marten fur (-U) – USABLE SABLE
  9. Less high fan (+B) – LOWER BLOWER
  10. Coffin hole dance party (-G) – GRAVE RAVE
  11. Payment to retrieve a kidnapped architectural beam (-T) – TRANSOM RANSOM
  12. Texas A&M sandwich containers (+B) – AGGIES BAGGIES
  13. A cooler whisk (+W) – HIPPER WHIPPER
  14. Fat male spouse (-C) – CHUBBY HUBBY
  15. Spacedust arriveth (+H) – COMET COMETH
  16. Zombie platoon (-E) – CORPSE CORPS
  17. New Mexico’s stuff (+E) – STATE ESTATE
  18. Getting rid of sending documents via phone (+F) – AXING FAXING
  19. Cellar-dwellers on 1st and 2nd (-T) – BASEMENT BASEMEN
  20. Complete lack of Class M planets (+D) – EARTH DEARTH

Congratulations to Brad Rochford for sending in a reasonably well-reasoned solution and being drawn at random from all solutions submitted. A $50 Gift Certificate from the team over at ThinkGeek will be on its way shortly.

Thanks to everyone that submitted a solution, for reading GeekDad, and for shopping at ThinkGeek. Happy puzzling!

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