A Long Word--With a Curious Property

The Puzzler

RAY: This wasn't so easy to solve necessarily. I came up with five nine-letter words: Splitting, stringier, restarted, and strapping.

TOM: Umm. And all simple words.

RAY: And then somebody emailed us an answer that said restarting could work, and restarting could become restating, estating, stating, sating, sting, sing, sin, in and I.

TOM: Sure.

RAY: So we thought that that ten-letter word was the winner, I mean the nine, I thought the nine was the winner, then we got these emails from all the Scrabble nuts out there --

TOM: Yeah.

RAY: We got this 11-letter word. I never would have come up with this word on my own, and some of them are very archaic words. The word is complecting, C-O-M-P-L-E-C-T-I-N-G.

TOM: That's a word?

RAY: Well, it means joining by weaving. So I'm complecting a garment. I'm a complecting the sleeve onto my jacket. It's not commonly used, and it becomes completing, competing, compting which I guess is a word.

TOM: Ahh.

RAY: So these are all legitimate Scrabble words, and then it goes on, compting, comping, coping, oping, which I did hear of before, ping, pig, pi, and I. We're accepting it and to that end we have determined that we have a winner.

TOM: We do. The winner is Thomas Barr from Harvey Mudd College out in California somewhere. And for having his answer selected at random from among all the correct answers that we got, Thomas is going to get a 26-dollar gift certificate to the Shameless Commerce Division at Cartalk.com, with which he can get a pair of our Dipstick Coffee Mugs. These are yellow ceramic mugs that appear from the outside to be one third filled with oil.

RAY: And you know where we got the idea for that mug, don't you?

TOM: Yeah. The holiday party when we filled the decaf decanter with Castrol 20W50.

[ Car Talk Puzzler ]

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