In 1972, Addison-Wesley published an ad for three textbooks on the back of The American Statistician magazine. The ad began with this line:

Y LUAEB H O DTYO AOOSGL

In Word Ways, David Silverman wrote, “Care to try and figure out the hidden message? Although the slogan doesn’t have the pizzazz of (say) ‘Let Esso put a tiger in your tank’, it does have the advantage of universality; it can equally well be applied to the sale of shoes, ships or sealing wax (or, for that matter, floor wax).”

# Dinner Wit

It’s said that when Frederick the Great hosted Voltaire at Sanssouci Palace, he sent him this puzzling note:

It’s a rebus in French: deux mains sous Pé à cent sous scie? (“two hands under ‘p’ at hundred under saw”) means demain souper à Sanssouci? (“supper tomorrow at Sanssouci?”).

Voltaire replied “Ga!”: Gé grand, A petit! (“big ‘G’, small ‘a’!”) means j’ai grand appétit!, or “I am very hungry!”

# Town and Country

More chess masters reside in New York City than in the rest of the United States combined. We’re planning a chess tournament that all American masters are expected to attend, and we want to minimize the total intercity traveling done by the players. The New York players argue that, by this criterion, the tournament should be held in their city. The West Coast players argue that a city should be chosen near the center of the gravity of the players. Where should we hold the tournament?

# Black and White

By Orest Jewetzky. White to mate in two moves.

# Mass Transit

A city has 10 bus routes. Is it possible to arrange the routes and bus stops so that if one route is closed it’s still possible to get from any one stop to any other (possibly changing buses along the way), but if any two routes are closed, there will be at least two stops that become inaccessible to one another?

# Black and White

A backward chess puzzle by Karl Fabel. What moves must White play to avoid winning?

# Pip Squeak

A fair die bearing the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 is repeatedly thrown until the running total first exceeds 12. What’s the most likely total that will be obtained?