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Wordle Pitfall

I missed a Wordle. I am embarrassed and chagrined. It happened a week or so ago, and I can only now bring myself to write about it. Actually, there were major stories regarding the House chaos in trying to elect a Speaker; and Prince Harry’s book; and the floods in California, so I thought that my Wordle adventures did not amount to a hill of beans.in this crazy world.

Where have I heard that phrase before? If you want to read a really enjoyable book that will take you to another time and place, it is Aljean Harmetz”s “Round Up the Usual Suspects,” all about the making of the film “Casablanca,” She used to write for the Los Angeles Times newspaper, and I always liked her pieces. Then she wrote this book, and one about the making of “The Wizard of Oz” Her research is excellent, and she writes with intelligence and charm.

Well, that helped me to delay writing about my wordle miss for a paragraph. Actually, I have only missed three wordles in about 350 tries, which might sound like I am praising myself while pretending to be critical. No, I absolutely hate to miss getting one of these, and I am a lot better at word games than knowing how to work a computer or any technical device, where I would not even want to tell you about all the difficulties I have. So I had better be able to do well in a some areas.

Okay, the word I missed was “layer.,” on January. 4. It seems like an easy word! But for me, at least, it was very difficult, for two reasons. First, it had the dreaded (for me) – a – e r. The same sequence that caused me to miss “parer.” There are so many word possibilities, from baker to pacer to taper to waver. Second, I made a foolish mistake by not trying a word with an L in my third or fourth guess. My third guess helped me to get the – a – e r order. But an L would have guaranteed that I would have gotten the word, as I am sure that most here did.

So with – a – e r, I had the bright idea to try “carer,” thinking that a repeated letter was a possibility, and so “rarer” would have been a very tricky answer, and “carer” would cover that, and a c in the word. Nope,. no c, and no r in the third posiition.

Then I thought that a w was very possible, with wafer or waver, or even a w as third letter, with pawer. or even cawer. I tried waver to test the w and the v, but neither was a letter in the word.

Suddenly I am looking at one more guess, and I thought k could well be the third letter, as in baker or maker. Baker was a recent word, so I tried maker, and that was wrong, and no little green dancing figures to herald a successful game. Blah.

The L would have easily done it. But even so, you will admit, won’t you????, that – a – e r is a dreadful sequence for a wordle player? I ask you this: If the word were waver or waxer or faxer or vaxer, or faker or laker, would you have gotten it? Yes, laker is apparently a word; the mascot of a college in Grand Rapids, Michigan, I think, shows a drawing of what looks like an 18th or 19th century man of French ancestry, steering a boat on a lake, so that was apparently a term used then; and how that school got its nickname which was also the name of the Minneapolis, later Los Angeles, Lakers. How did I know hat? Because I was looking up some team in a small college playoff game, and their nickname was the Lakers, and I wanted to see what their mascot looked like.

But the word wasn’t laker, or lager or lamer or laxer, it was layer. And I missed it. I battled back with sleek, belie, lemon, opera, pixie. grimy, sedan, human, (well, a couple of them were a bit hard), but it did not make up for missing layer. I do have a little excuse, that I was watching the House voting, and I wasn’t concentrating enough, but a good Wordle player must surmount such things.

At least,I will try to develop a strategy for the next time that Wordle comes up with that darn – a – e r!


18 Responses

  1. That one was a phew for me. Also had the aer, so I tried baker to eliminate 2 more letters. Then went with lager. Then lucked out.

    Laker is indeed a boat, Collins has it as a lake cargo vessel. It’s a word I have played often in Scrabble, so if my Baker had not eliminated the K I would likely have tried it and potentially also had a miss.

    I have added Wordiply from the Guardian to my daily word game list, and am now up to Wordl, Dordle, Octordle, Wordshake and Wordiply in my daily brain workout.

    Three misses out of 350 is pretty darn good. Since my streak of 232 ended I have had a rough spell and am now 564/574.

    • jmac, your record is still very impressive, plus all the other word games you play.

      I had thought that laker referred to someone who steered boats, but it is the boat which travels the lakes itself?

      • Both the person and the boat. Also a fish found in a lake, like a trout.

        • Ah, thank you, Beata! Maybe they will use it next time, and I will be ready. Actually, what I should always keep in mind is that except for rare instances, Wordle does not use a word which people would be upset about because they have never heard of it. But there is always a chance, of course.

        • Yep agreed. The scrabble dictionary has laker as a fresh water fish, but these days I tend to use Collins.

  2. Want a challenge from the Bard of Avon? PRATTLE is a word game from the Folger Shakespeare Library. It’s been around for about a year. All the words are taken from Shakespeare’s texts as found in The Folger Shakespeare online.

    • Not knowing much Shakespeare I had trouble finding words to use as guesses… but I did get today’s word in great fashion.

  3. Argh… another loss today. Had 4 letters after 2 guesses, still had 4 after 3 but all in the right places. I need to stop when I have a game like this and plan better. The right thing to do would have been to look at the available answers of which there must have been at least 5 and guess not for the answer, but to figure out the missing letter. LESSON LEARNED (again).

    • Bummer, jmac. I also had 4 letters after 2 guesses, 1 in the right place. The answer could have been a variety of words but I made a lucky guess and got it in 3.

      I think all of my misses have been answers that had too many possibilities and my last guess turned out to be the wrong one. Those are so frustrating.

      • Jmac, a few thoughts: Did your spell of Wordle losses begin when you started playing a lot of other daily word games? Could you be playing too many of them? Or maybe not giving yourself enough time between each game?

    • It just shows that the letters one starts with can make a big difference–except on the layer that I missed, where I had four letters after three guesses, three in the right order, and still did not get it. Today, I happened to have all the letters after two guesses, and I think that there were only two words to unscramble them, one of which they would likely never use, so I got the answer in three. But that was no great achievement of mine there, I just happened to have the right letters.

      I had been doing what you noted, which was trying to take some earlier guesses. That did enable me to get some answers in three tries, which was gratifying, but there is a risk,of course. I think that sometimes one can get a bit bored with the game, and try to make it more dramatic, but when one guesses early, it can leave you in a more difficult position if the guess is wrong. Choices, of course.With the recent leapt, i could have gotten it in three, but I restrained myself and tested out some other letters first, then thought,”Gee, I could have had it in just three!”

      • YEP, exactly, it’s right after I have one of those “I could have had it in 3” days that I usually get greedy.

  4. Jmac, a few thoughts: Did your spell of Wordle losses begin when you started playing a lot of other daily word games? Could you be playing too many of them? Or maybe not giving yourself enough time between each game?

    • Not really. My string of losses came about because I wanted to lower my average guesses currently 4.49. And to do that I started guessing instead of playing methodically. Bottom line I fell into the trap that I complain about all the time. I got GREEDY, and contrary to the Profit Gekko Greed is NOT good.

  5. A few repetitive thoughts! I don’t know how that double comment happened. WEIRD.

    • WEIRD

      One of my favorite words to prove how foolish English is.

      “I before E, except after C, and when sounding like A as in neighbor and weigh”. WEIRD.

  6. WORDLE is still fun for me. I don’t get bored easily in general and I don’t worry when I miss a word. I can’t remember how many I’ve missed since I started playing (maybe a dozen?) because I don’t keep my stats. I can’t remember how many I’ve gotten in two guesses either (maybe ten?). I do recall that I got three or four two guess answers in November 2022 which I decided to take as a sign of good luck in the midterms. Two guess answers are just a fluke in my opinion. When I miss a word, I am disappointed but it doesn’t linger with me. I don’t think it’s evidence of creeping dementia or stupidity, it’s just a bad WORDLE day for me. I hope for a better one the next day. The game is a combination of strategy and luck. Strategy alone will not prevail, some luck is involved. My two cents on the subject.

  7. It amazes me that William can remember WORDLE games in such precise detail. I can’t do that. He does the same thing with ball games. He can remember game plays and scores from the 1970’s and 80’s! It’s incredible. Really impressive to have that kind of memory.

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