The solution to the Riddle Apr 1, 2019 9:02:36 GMT -5
Post by ralph on Apr 1, 2019 9:02:36 GMT -5
A GOLDEN HARPY PREENS
NOW A LARK FORGIVES ME IN KIND
PRAY PROOF IF SENT
I MAY LOOK BAD
WE SPY A PINK POSY
The derivation of the riddle from the book is described in the thread "Detailed solution for finding the Riddle."
The solution to the riddle follows a 3 + 1 = 4 format. Three initial steps, each of which flows in a fairly straightforward manner from the riddle itself, are followed by a fourth step that is somewhat more concealed. The images and text contain numerous hints and/or confirmers for all four.
The initial three are:
1. THE KEY IS HIDDEN IN A BAR
2. GO TO LEARY’S LANDING (an Irish pub)
3. FIND THE PINK POSY
The fourth is:
4. CHECK THE PICTURE FRAME
1. THE KEY IS HIDDEN IN A BAR
In the first three lines of the riddle there are four distinct references to alcoholic drinks:
A GOLDEN HARP: the logo for Guinness Beer
HARP: an Irish lager beer manufactured by Guinness
LARK: a craft beer brewed in Iowa
PROOF: an index of alcohol content
The upper border letters on page 30 anagram to:
POOR ETOH DEN.
(EtOH is the chemical abbreviation for ethyl alcohol, the type that is contained in alcoholic beverages.)
Note that the only image of an alcohol-containing item in the book, the wine bottle on page 30, is directly under this clue. This clue is also flagged by one of the pi symbols in the border.
A very strong confirmer that we are searching for something Irish is found on page 30. Recall that we were directed to the red and yellow books from page 44, and many of you subsequently proposed looking at the solitary orange (red + yellow) book in the picture. In the first place, its author is Tim O’Brien. Secondly, there is only one green book in the picture as well. Between them is a white book. Together the three comprise the Irish Tricolour.
On the treasure chest in the lower left corner on page 7 we see the numbers 1653. Recalling the ACADIA hint from the license plate on page 44, this corresponds to AFEC. We can get two words from these four letters: FACE and CAFÉ. A pub is a type of café. Rearranging AFEC to CAFÉ, which entails removing the C from the end and putting it at the beginning, is another example of the 3 + 1 = 4 format.
(If you are already wondering whether this contradicts the language in the Official Rules indicating that the key is not hidden on private property, where you ordinarily cannot enter freely, it does not. While, strictly speaking, a bar may be privately owned, it is legally considered a space that is open to the public.)
2. GO TO LEARY’S LANDING
Take the first and last letters of each of the five lines of the riddle.
They are: A S N D P T I D W Y
They anagram to PADDY’S TWIN
We already know that we are searching for a bar. Paddy’s is a very common name for an Irish pub. A minute or two on Google will reveal that there are two bars on Mount Desert Island clearly self-identified as Irish pubs.
One of them is Paddy’s.
The other one is Leary’s Landing, established in 2007, which just happens to be the same year in which Fandango was published.
Several clues scattered throughout the puzzle suggest collecting, and then rearranging, letters at the beginning and/or at the end of sentences or phrases. (Recall that in Masquerade, a key clue to the location of the treasure was obtained by reading off the first letters of the separate clues.)
The most straightforward:
As described in other posts, the LAST IN LINE clue involves collecting the last letters of the border phrases on all panels with olive green outer borders and then using them to spell out a hint.
On page 17, the croquet stick is pointing at the rose in the vase by the old man's side (use a ruler). On page 30, by collecting the first and last letters of the top and bottom border phrases, we get ROSE.
Finally, the lower border words on page 19 (NoW SmilE) contain the cardinal compass directions at the beginnings and ends of the two words.
Also note that the somewhat unusual word “entwined” is used exactly twice in the book, on page 27 and again on page 53. The outer and inner letters respectively anagram to NEED TWIN.
Paddy may also be another nod to Maranatha, which was dedicated to “Father Paddy.”
3. FIND A PINK POSY
For now, simply treat the fifth line of the riddle as plaintext.
It’s unlikely that we should be looking for fresh flowers; after all, the puzzle was designed to last for up to 13 years. So we should probably look for some kind of picture.
The rose described above, the red flowers in the lower left hand corner of page 26, and the bright red flowers on page 40.
4. CHECK THE FRAME
There are several additional clues that steer us towards checking the frame of the relevant picture, but they require some digging to uncover.
Line 2 of the riddle (minus the already used first and last letters), anagrams to:
LOOK IN A FRAME (WINK GIVERS)
Then there is strikingly odd language at the end of page 18:
OUT of the FRAME, before my FRAME was RIPPED.”
Next, the top border of pages 34/35 anagrams to:
AS FOX LED: PEL’S FRAME
Finally, the odd clue I described in my thread about the Pi Clue yielded PI FRAME. Now it’s meaning may be clear. We have a total of four clues, three straightforward, and one tricky. The tricky one is FRAME.
The idea of hiding a deposit box key leading to a treasure in the back of a picture frame is very reminiscent of a scene in the puzzle-laden The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown. Early in the story, Robert Langdon, after solving the anagram of:
SO DARK THE CON OF MAN >>> MADONNA OF THE ROCKS
goes to that da Vinci painting at the Louvre, pulls the painting away from the wall, and out pops the key to the bank lockbox holding the Cryptex.
By now, the key role that anagrams play in solving the riddle should be apparent. The borders are laden with them and I’ll let you enjoy looking for the rest of them on your own. They uniformly serve as confirmers and none are central to the main solve.
But going back to the riddle, lines 3 and 4 (again, minus the first and last letters) together anagram to:
PAYOFF IN LEARY’S BAROOM OK?
THE COORDINATE/MAP CLUES
For those of you who have searched for map coordinates, your instincts about the DMS on page 19 standing for Degrees, Minutes, Seconds were correct, although, by itself, the solution to this clue will only get you within about a mile of the key.
Look at page 19. The characters of the license plate can be rearranged to yield: 68 degrees 12 minutes.
Doing the subtraction (62-18) and adding the 2-3 from the border (as instructed) yields 44 degrees 23 minutes.
This degree of resolution puts you in a box roughly a mile on a side that nicely overlies downtown Bar Harbor.
There are a few more map-related clues.
Until the spring of 2018, Leary’s Landing was located at 2 Mount Desert Street.
Recall that the Roman numerals on pages 34/35 are mysteriously grouped 2-3-3. Route 233 runs directly into Mount Desert Street. Also, the sign on page 44 that reads Bar Harbor displays the number 3. Mount Desert Street is also part of Route 3 in Maine. Finally, DMS is a reordered MDS.
Have you ever wondered why the Stockwells bothered to include the map of Mount Desert Island at the end of the book when you can find one online in seconds?
Buried within the Official Rules near the beginning are the two words “Golden Key.”
Draw a tight rectangular box around them. Fold the page over so that it overlies the map. (Such a folding step is hinted at twice by the phrase FOREVER HELD. The outer two letters spell “FOLD” and in the inner pairs spell “HERE.” (This will remind the elderly among you of the “fold-in” at the end of every Mad Magazine). Draw a corresponding rectangle on the map that matches up with the first one when you turn the rules page onto the map. You will need a ruler and some patience to be accurate. You have now identified a small area of downtown Bar Harbor that largely overlaps the one identified by the coordinates described above.
Finally, Morpheus221 recently pointed out that two of the border phrases on page 11 are a coded reference for Bar Harbor:
A MEASURE OF GOLD = BAR
HIDDEN AWAY = HARBOR
These last few clues are just fun confirmers and are NO SUBSTITUTE for the detailed solution, but together they do mark off a fairly small rectangle with the Bar Harbor village green right in the middle as well as Mount Desert Street in particular. Leary’s Landing is currently across the street of the green to the east. Leary’s moved last year, but was previously just around the corner and across the street from the green to the south. It is still within both boxes but is now on Main Street.
THE DOUBLE Ls
One final set of confirmers points to Leary’s Landing.
Go to the bottom of page 16 and ALL IN A NAME.
Let’s start with the name STOCKWELL. We can anagram this to WE STOCK LL.
There are a total of 7 LLs in the border words in the puzzle. In each case the LL is flagged one way or another.
Page 5 Fandango is looking directly at the LL.
Page 17 A LL IN A NAME The mysterious pull-string cannon is blasting at the A LL. Another border pi is here as well.
Page 26 There are two. Celestia’s wings flag one pair and her gaze the other.
Page 34 A LL is flagged by the ringing bell, and, of course, BELL is BE LL.
Page 45. This one is a little tricky. If you subtract the previously used clue pi (314 = CAD) from the beginning of CADILLAC you are left with I C A LL (I see a LL).
Page 51. There are two. The dolphin is pointing at A LL. TAIL is misspelled purposely. The tail of TELL is LL. Likewise, looking at the right border, its END.
A few more LL references:
One of the arrows on page 44 reads ELLSWORTH. One could play “Use that in a sentence” and come up with “What are your ELLSWORTH?”
On page 52, “What else have you got” can be read as “What Ls have you got” and this is quickly followed by four Is, which, of course, can be assembled into 2 Ls.
In short, the borders and the text are raining alliterative confirmers that Leary’s Landing is indeed our target.
PAYING THEIR RESPECTS
As I wrote in my earlier long post, the Stockwells were clearly influenced by some of the well-known treasure hunts that preceded Fandango, including Masquerade by Kit Williams, A Treasure’s Trove by Michael Stadther, the puzzle imbedded in David Blaine’s Mysterious Stranger (designed by Cliff Johnson), Maranatha, and even the movie It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World.
The authors do appear to have paid a special tribute to Cliff, a game-designing legend, and a personal hero of mine, who years ago assigned to himself the nickname The Fool.
If you look at the riddle and focus on the middle three letters of lines 3 and 4 (within the words PROOF and LOOK), you can trace out the letters FOOL in two different ways depending on whether you travel clockwise or counterclockwise:
A GOLDEN HARPY PREENS
NOW A LARK FORGIVES ME IN KIND
PRAY PR OOF IF SENT
I MAY LOO K BAD
WE SPY A PINK POSY
A well deserved Easter egg for a master of the perfectly hidden clue!
I went to Leary’s Landing with my wife last spring. At the entrance you quickly notice the first of many Golden Harps as well as a familiar looking compass rose. (see attached photos)
We ordered lunch (delicious, by the way). Naturally, I had a Guinness to go with my sandwich.
The servers all denied, with straight faces, ever having even heard of Fandango.
We quickly found the pink posy. If you go to the Leary’s Landing website and scroll the overlying ads up and down, you can easily see it on the brick wall beneath the large HARP sign.
It was securely bolted to the wall.
I asked if I could speak to the owner. As it turned out, he was working nearby, and we tracked him down. His name was Cody, and while he was quite gracious, he denied any knowledge of the puzzle. We asked if we could peak behind the pictures and brought up the fact that the one we were most interested in was bolted to the wall. He smiled and responded, “You can look around, but you can’t tear the place apart.” It was quite clear that nothing was about to get unbolted.
I promptly emailed Pel, asking for guidance.
I received an automated reply back from his office that he was out of town. I have not heard from him since.
This is exactly what I would have expected if something in my solution to the riddle were missing or incorrect. I have given up on determining what that is, but I am posting all of this in the hope that someone else might have more luck.
If you do ever decide to visit Leary’s Landing, PLEASE:
1. Be nice.
2. At least order something to eat or drink.
3. Don’t try to move anything bolted to a wall.
4. Give my regards to Cody for me if you run into him.
Golden Harp.pdf (348.29 KB)
Learys.pdf (425.86 KB)