Click here to submit a clue for this page.

Clues people have sent in for this page:

sjwk: 12.04.2003

Exodus 17:16: For he said, Because the LORD hath sworn [that] the LORD [will have] war with Amalek from generation to generation.
Fever on the coast from Ogawe estuary is most likely to be malaria, particularly since malaria is treated with quinidine gluconate, as mentioned.
Cape Mirik is off the coast of South Africa.
Truman Wetmore is associated with Sacred Heart singing in New York State according to this page, which also describes shaped note singing - a way of using shapes for writing sheet music. A clue for decoding something?
Just noticed - 8 hairs on the smiley bloke this time. Whatever that means.
anonymous: 12.04.2003
two other things about the cards. the first ace should be a spade, not a diamond; and, generally, the fifth card is reported
as a jack of diamonds, not a queen of hearts.

Eri: 12.04.2003
Regarding the references to Truman Wetmore, Watertown, New York State, Sacred Harp towards the bottom of the announcement, I
found references to all on this page.:

M. 12.04.2003
Okay, here's what two hours on Google found me...Very Afrocentric, I
wish I had a paper atlas so I could sit down and see how all these
places relate to each other.  I think it's mostly the west coast of
Africa.  I've got no sense of geography and despise online maps.  More
of the weird brain chemical business, they mentioned the dosage of a
medicine in a different ad but I haven't got the time now to look it
up.  Maybe more later?

Norbert's House:  Lafayette Louisiana, Cajun restaurant?

moelleux de porc au curry avec riz sauvage: pork curry with wild rice

process up the street to Widener (room number and in situ contact as per
5/1/97, ADW, Third Level) no clue, there's a Widener University in
both Delaware and Pennsylvania?

Arbella: April 8, 1630 The Arbella departed Yarmouth, Isle of Wight, and
arrived at Salem, Massachusetts, June 13 and following days. Flagship
of the "Winthrop Fleet.?

verrucous endocarditis: Verrucous endocarditis sometimes associated with
disseminated lupus erythematosus. Synonym: atypical verrucous
endocarditis, Libman-Sacks syndrome, nonbacterial verrucous
endocarditis...uh.  yeah.  I have no idea what that means in English.

Myeloarchitectonics: The pattern of myelinated nerve fibres in the
brain, as distinguished from cytoarchitectonics.
portside physiatry: Physicians who specialize in Physical Medicine and
Rehabilitation are called "physiatrists". Physiatrists are specialists
in the diagnosis and treatment of patients of all ages in three major
areas of medical care. Diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal
injuries and pain syndromes, Electrodiagnostic medicine, and
Rehabilitation of patients with severe impairments
Cape Mirik: AFRICA. Cape Mirik, West coast of Africa longitude
16w,latitude 19.5 n.,

Freetown: Sierra Leone

Monrovia: Liberia

Mt. Nimba: Located between Guinea and Côte d'Ivoire, Mount Nimba rises
above the surrounding savannah. Its slopes, covered by dense forest at
the foot of grassy mountain pastures, harbour an especially rich flora
and fauna, with endemic species such as the viviparous toad and
chimpanzees that use stones as tools.

the Mandaras: the northern Mandara mountains of N. Cameroon and N.E.
Nigeria (

Libreville: Gabon.

the estuary of the Ogowe: To the south of the Cameroon rain forest, the
Ogowe River Basin in Gabon is the dominant natural feature

the Luanda breakwater: (Angola) In times of war or peace, Luanda?s
most distinguishing feature remains the Ilha, the sandy peninsula that
acts as a breakwater between the south Atlantic and the Angolan
quinidine gluconate: This medicine is an anti-arrhythmic used to treat
an irregular heartbeat (also malaria?)

Quinquagesima: the period of 50 days before Easter

Benguela: Angola

Ascension Day: commemorates the ascension of Jesus into heaven,
celebrated 40 days after Easter;

Watertown: lots of these in the U.S.

the Third Sunday in Advent: 12.21.03

The Epworth League: Methodist youth organization?

in anticipation of the New York State series of, inter alia, Sacred Harp
conventions: Sacred Harp singing is a non-denominational community
musical event emphasizing participation, not performance. Singers sit
facing inward in a hollow square. Each individual is invited to take a
turn ?leading,? i.e. standing in the center, selecting a song, and
beating time with the hand. The singing is not accompanied by harps or
any other instrument. The group sings from The Sacred Harp, an oblong
songbook first published in 1844 by B.F. White and E. J. King..

ein Bauunternehmer: a contractor?

Exodus 17:16:  King James Version says ? For he said, Because the LORD
hath sworn that the LORD will have war with Amalek from generation to
generation. (Amalek = Amaleka was the grandson of Esau, who had sold
his birthright for a pot of lentils to his brother Jacob. When Esau
also lost his inheritance to Jacob, Esau hated Jacob and vowed to kill
him. Esau therefore taught his grandson, Amalek, to hate and pursue
Jacob and his descendants, the  Israelites).

he mentions the "ghillie callum," which is "an ancienct scottish gaels
war dance" involving swords.  (dear google, i love you).

Bob 12.04.2003
Apparently the whole message didn't make it the first time, so i'll try again. Poke hand, Aces & 8s, is called "The Dead
Man's Hand." It's what Wild  Bill Hickok was holding  when he was killed. Two other things about the cards. the first ace should be
a spade, not a diamond; and, generally, the fifth card is reported as a jack of diamonds, not a queen of hearts.

Rich: 12.04.2003
Question for M about one of his clues :

"Norbert's House: Lafayette Louisiana, Cajun restaurant?"

How'd you associate "Norbert's House" with Lafayette ?
I had always assumed that this was a reference to Norbert Wiener -> MIT -> Boston


Re: Aces & Eights
This implies that this particular spin on the hand is from John Ford's movie "Stagecoach".

anonymous: 12.05.03
RE:verrucous endocarditis
sjwk: 12.05.03
Random thought: Could the 'stagecoach' film reference have anything whatsoever to do with the 'Wells Fargo' envelope in the recent delivery?

Hi Rich - Google found me while I was searching for "Norbert's house." I thought it was worth noting because of the pork curry dish. I've never heard of your Norbert, but then, I'm a Latin Americanist. I think you might be more right then I in this case...
anonymous: 12.04.2003
clue:  Aces and eights = "dead man's hand"

Kate: 12.10.2003
Here's what a little bit of research has turned up.  Widener is the name of a library at Cambridge University in MA.  This
is another MA reference, in addition to the Arbella.

I reviewed the 5/1/97 posting.  Several number could indicate a room number, 234 the most likely suspect.  

I think the use of asylum is also important, with several meanings including: extradition of political refugees, protection/safe
harbor of criminals, or a place of sanctuary.

Squirrel Nut Zipper : 12/11/2003
Interesting that the Dead Man's Hand (even the variation in Stagecoach)was just mentioned in The Straightdope.
Beacon: 12.14.2003
I hadn't noticed Norbert before with the exception of Norbert Weiner (a mathimitian) from Mayday
1990. "...fresh Letter of Marque from Boston Common to Norbert's house...".  

"Norbert the Narc" is also a charachter in knockabout comics Freak brothers.

near a terminal 12.12.2003
All you smart people like the complicated clues but I still prefer the simple ones.  Widener is the main
library at Harvard and it is truly down the street from MIT.  The street would be Massachusetts Avenue and in my
time that was the most famous street in Cambridge.

donkeykong 12.18.2003
i'd bet a lot of donuts that the widener in the ad is at harvard.  it is up the street from mit and all the
math nerds they keep there.  most of it is locked up and strictly off limits even to harvard undergrads.

Wilbur: 02.19.2004
I wonder if they aren't really experimenting on people they capture.  That's extreme but these people hate wtih violent
passion.  You can be real smart and real mean at the same time.

near a terminal:03.09.2004
Not sure how accurate this is but one source listed Truman Wetmore as a doctor. At least there was a Truman Wetmore 
who was a doctor in Connecticut. That might correlate with other aspects of this message.  Some of the cybernetic 
or statistical people could probably suggest more complicated analogies but I wonder if the names and the facts 
aren't closely correlated? That would work and hardly anyone would notice.  Then something else, like numbers or 
even sequences of letters, could give a time or a geographic location.  A whole timetable could appear and still 
look completely crazy.

near a terminal 05.26.2004
clue:  The shape of this whatever it is has the same general form as the one in January of 1988.  Haven't they mentioned
shapes and configurations conveying meaning?

Dave: 07.07.2004
In response to "Widener" library and the mention of "Watertown."  There is a city named Watertown in the
greater Boston/Cambridge, MA area.

Earle Martin: 06.30.2004
The foreign text at bottom right (above "THE ORPHANAGE") is in Tibetan. The closest I can get to what it says (using is "smanapasa nadapala smana pasa". Maybe someone who actually speaks the language can
do better.

ThePhoenix 07.20.2004
Re: the Tibetan Script...using Omniglot as Earle did, I got: Samanapasa nadapala samana madara. It doesn't seem to translate
into Tibetan (according to the limited online dictionaries I found) but maybe it's meant to be sounded out loud, so it sounds like
another language? Semana Pasa sounds like Spanish, or conversely Madara could sound like Murderer in English with a bit of an
accent-like Some Man Pass not the pala(?) Some man a murder or something like that? Just a stab at a theory (no pun intended).

mbs: 8.16.2004
The Hebrew appears to be from Psalm 130:1 - "Out of the depths I cry to you..."

SylvanWitch 02.14.2005
Again, perhaps really obvious, but the Arbella is the ship on which John Winthrop brought the settlers of the
Massachusetts Bay Colony to the New World in 1630.  I'm getting a definite blue-blood vibe from some of this, but I
could be totally wrong, as I've just seen this for the first time today.

Juls 03.30.2005
The Tibetan - may be a little error here but it transliterates to sman pa sa (or poss, sman pas); nad pa la;
sman; sder; I can't translate it properly, but it seems to be about health / disease, medicine and physicians or
suchlike.  'Sman' is remedy; 'sman pa' is physician; 'nad pa' is a sick person; sder - not sure about this one. 
Omniglot is a very useful site but there are issues with transliteration of Tibetan that it doesn't go into - this page
is helpful and the site has an English/Tibetan online dictionary:

near a terminal 10.11.2005
You never know where insight will turn up.  I was at a party and some drunk chick about 20 years too old to be interesting
was telling me about one of her main interests.  Sure enough, it is looking at Hance's sight.  I stress "looking" because I doubt
that she is capable of reading drunk or sober.  Even so she said something that never entered my mind before. If you start looking
at the the very first one and then work your way down Hance's list after about a dozen or so "looks" you begin to see a mandala in
your mind.  I don't mean she looked at every one all the way through and then saw whatever it is she thinks it is that happens.  I
mean she goes 1-2-3 etc and quits somewhere around 12.  I doubt that she spends more than 10 or 15 seconds on each one.  So I tried
the next day when my mind was at least half sober and I did get weird or unexpected or call it whatever you please but what she
said did happen in my head.  Some of the designs that would flash and then fade were multi-dimensional, some were flat and some
kept moving so I couldn't focus.  I tried it again the next day and not much happened.  So I forgot about it for a week or 10 days
and then had a major dream in which Luther and one of the other people started talking to me about joining up and being on the side
of light.  Sounds nuts and it was a dream which are crazy by definition but I think better of the drunk chick. At some point I'm
going to start looking at 12 or 13 at random and see what happens.  Not exactly eager to do it because I'm a little worried about
what might happen especially in dreams.  If this is by design then we are dealing with something much different than many of us see
as amusement.  Then again maybe I need a better brand of booze.

hance Errm ... yeah.

D. Thomasson 04.04.2006
For the Hebrew in the ADW announcements, I decided to make a little Hebrew Primer for the Mayday Mystery readers.

After completing the basic Hebrew alphabet:

I came across a most excellent Hebrew tutorial site:

Select "Grammar" from the left side menu to access info about the Hebrew alphabet including vowel markings.

tashi 09.07.2006

The Tibetan text says "sman pas nad pa la sman sder".

I think "sder" is a typo for "ster", which looks similar in Tibetan. (སྡེར་​ sder, སྟེར ster, if you have the fonts)

"sman pas nad pa la sman ster" = means "The doctor gives the patient medicine" (literally Doctor-by patient-to medicine gives)

"ster", meaning "give", makes more sense here than "sder", which means "claw".

"sman" can mean medicine, drug, herb, or just remedy, cure. "sman pa" is someone involved with "sman", i.e. a doctor.

Lewis Winthorpe 05.19.2008
Like his Puritan brethren, Winthrop strove to establish a Christian
community that held uniform doctrinal beliefs. It was for this reason that in
1638 he presided over the heresy trial and banishing of Anne Hutchinson from the
colony. During this trial Winthrop referred to Hutchinson as an "American