Tlazolteotl's Codex

Erin Rhode


The key to this puzzle is to realize that it's all related to The Vagina Monologues.* The quotes are lines from the book and the initials are trios of women actresses who performed it at New York's Westside Theater.

The following words are clue words from the flavortext:

There are essentially two halves to this puzzle, the half that clues the letters and the half that clues the ordering. Each quote corresponds to one letter of the answer word.

The proper order of the quotes is related to the actresses. They should be reordered in the chronological order in which they performed the show at the Westside. (This is somewhat tricky to find online, although it is easy to find sites that list all the women who have performed the play.) The proper order is:

AI = Amy Irving, RP = Rosie Perez, MA = Mary Alice (Feb 22 - March 5, 2000)
AM = Alanis Morissette, AM = Andrea Martin, SK = Shirley Knight (March 21 - April 2, 2000)
CD = Claire Danes, JL = Jenifer Lewis, MM = Mary McDonnell (April 18-30, 2000)
MT = Marisa Tomei, DC = Diahann Carroll, JI = Judith Ivey (May 16-28, 2000)
JS = Julia Stiles, GR = Gloria Rueben, MT = Mary Testa (July 25 - Aug 6, 2000)
JM = Julianna Marguiles, TG = Teri Garr, SL = Sanaa Lathan (Aug 22 - Sept 3, 2000)
BS = Brooke Shields, MR = Mercedes Ruehl, AG = Ana Gasteyer (Sept 5-24 2000)
EJ = Erica Jong, AT = Angelica Torn, LV = Lauren Velez (Nov 7-26, 2000)
HM = Hayley Mills, JL = Joie Lee, KH = Katherine Helmond (May 14 - June 24, 2001)

To determine the proper letter: Each of the sentences corresponds to one of the monologues, as listed in the book, The Vagina Monologues, not the play. (This is important as "The Vulva Club" is not performed and "I asked a six-year-old girl:" is generally titled "A six-year-old girl was asked" in scripts. Because of this, the solver really needs to go out and find a copy of the book.) For example, "He said it was cluttered and dirty," is in "Hair." More specifically, it is the 4th sentence of "Hair." Take the 4th letter of "Hair" and get "R". The remaining letters are found in a similar fashion (see below).

When the letters are ordered as explained above, they spell out the answer, GIRLSRULE.

*This would be less surprising if you knew the author of the puzzle well enough to realize that she's producing the MIT production this coming February.

The properly ordered sentences and their corresponding letters:

It needs to talk about all this shit. ~ Amy Irving {Fifth sentence of "My Angry Vagina" ⇒ 5th letter = G}

Second grade, seven years old, my brother was talking about periods. ~ Alanis Morissette {First sentence of "I was twelve, my mother slapped me" ⇒ 1st letter = I}

He said it was cluttered and dirty. ~ Claire Danes {Fourth sentence of "Hair" ⇒ 4th letter = R}

It's very damp, clammy. ~ Marisa Tomei {Fifth sentence of "The Flood" ⇒ 5th letter = L}

If it could speak, what would it say? ~ Julia Stiles {Third sentence of "I asked a six-year-old girl:" ⇒ 3rd letter = S}

The black dot was equal to a black hole in space, and the squiggly lines were meant to be people or things or just your basic atoms that got lost there. ~ Julianna Marguiles {12th sentence of "The Vagina Workshop" ⇒ 12th letter = R}

For example, I had a large collection of frogs when I was a little girl: stuffed frogs, china frogs, plastic frogs, neon frogs, happy battery-operated frogs. ~ Brooke Shields {Fifth sentence of "The Vulva Club" ⇒ 5th letter = U}

Like, if we'd grown up in a culture where we were taught that fat thighs were beautiful, we'd all be pounding down milkshakes and cookies, lying on our backs, spending our days thigh expanding. ~ Erica Jong {10th sentence of "Because he liked to look at it" ⇒ 10th letter = L}

I do not see them as separate things. ~ Hayley Mills {Third sentence of "The Woman Who Like to Make Vaginas Happy" ⇒ 3rd letter = E}