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Solution to The Salt-N-Pepa Diner


by Ben Smith, Mike Nothnagel and Sandy Weisz

On each page of the jukebox, all of the song clips are "What's New, Pussycat?" by Tom Jones, except for one, which is a clip from a Salt-N-Pepa song, followed by a series of "whoa"s (from "What's New, Pussycat?"), the last of which is longer than the others.

The initial letters of the songs that play "What's New, Pussycat?" spell out DON'T NEED THESE SONGS OR ARTISTS OR JOHN MULANEY'S ROUTINE TO SOLVE WHOA WHOA WHOA, as an additional hint that the songs that play the Salt-N-Pepa clips are the only important ones.

Jukebox pageNon-WNP? song positionDisplayed songSalt-N-Pepa lyricsNumber of "whoa"s
AA3One Thing Leads To AnotherWe could get loose, but we can't get naked8
BB6Money, Money, MoneyYou came to the right place to get your head straight8
CC9Questions 67 and 68it's my independent funk / You're sleepy3
DD5Be Our GuestNow who do you think you are5
EE6Smells Like Teen SpiritI love to see the other women yearn waitin' on their turn6
FF5BasketballI'm-a rip shop and drop the bomb8
GG5Least ComplicatedYep, I said "Well, let me shoot the real stuff"9
HH4Change My Way of LivingCuttin' up a storm sometimes it's frightening8
II4Stormy Weather(To speak on this) (Well that's illy of you)2
JJ5Don't Worry About the GovernmentNow you shouldn't even get into4
KK7CelebrityI'm an addict, strung out on dopeness5
LL6HustleAnd had you on your hands and knees6

Determine the word in the lyrics of the Salt-N-Pepa song that is replaced by the long "whoa".
(As a solving aid, these words are in alphabetical order by jukebox page.)

Non-WNP? song positionSalt-N-Pepa lyricsSalt-N-Pepa songFollowing lyrics
A3We could get loose, but we can't get nakedShake Your ThangIt's not a crime, it's legal, we answered
B6You came to the right place to get your head straightI Like To PartyThe cure's for sure, the beat's the bait
C9it's my independent funk / You're sleepyIndependentGo to bed
D5Now who do you think you areNone of Your BusinessPutting your cheap two cents
E6I love to see the other women yearn waitin' on their turnBoy ToyMoney earnin', more money, cash, checks
F5I'm-a rip shop and drop the bombBreak of DawnBoom-bam-slam with the jam in effect
G5Yep, I said "Well, let me shoot the real stuff"Here We ComeBang-bang people know my name, claim to fame
H4Cuttin' up a storm sometimes it's frighteningDoper Than DopeFirst comes the rain then strike the lightning
I4(To speak on this) (Well that's illy of you)Silly of YouJust plain
J5Now you shouldn't even get intoNone of Your Businesswho I'm giving skins
K7I'm an addict, strung out on dopenessI Like To PartyBut you can't chew, sniff
L6And had you on your hands and kneesDo You Want MeLook, I am telling you straight

Each of these words is one half of a common " and " phrase, just like our featured artist. First, determine the companion word in each phrase. (As a confirmer, the length of each page's companion word is the same as the number of tracks on that page. For example, page A has 5 tracks, and the companion word is ASKED, which has 5 letters.) Then use the numerical position of the Salt-N-Pepa clip on the page as an index into that word.

Word from lyricsCompanion wordIndex into
companion word
Letter from
companion word

Each of the " and " phrases is thematically related to one of the displayed songs that contains a Salt-N-Pepa clip. Beginning with "asked and answered" (the phrase derived from the clip on jukebox page A), take the indexed letter, then connect the song title that played the Salt-N-Pepa clip to the related phrase on another jukebox page. When the chain is connected correctly, the indexed letters will spell KETCHUP N WHAT, which leads to the answer MUSTARD.

Jukebox pagePhraseLetter from phraseSong on jukebox pageAssociated phraseNext jukebox page
AAsked and answeredKOne Thing Leads To AnotherCause and effectF
FCause and effectEBasketballShirts and skinsJ
JShirts and skinsTDon't Worry About the GovernmentChecks and balancesE
EChecks and balancesCSmells Like Teen SpiritScratch and sniffK
KScratch and sniffHCelebrityFame and fortuneG
GFame and fortuneULeast ComplicatedPlain and simpleI
IPlain and simplePStormy WeatherThunder and lightningH
HThunder and lightningNChange My Way of LivingStraight and narrowL
LStraight and narrowWHustleBait and switchB
BBait and switchHMoney, Money, MoneyDollars and centsD
DDollars and centsABe Our GuestBed and breakfastC
CBed and breakfastTQuestions 67 and 68Asked and answeredA

Authors' Notes

First of all, if you haven't heard John Mulaney's Salt and Pepper Diner routine, please set aside the next six minutes and fourteen seconds, and enjoy:

From Sandy:

The Mulaney bit, and trolling with "What's New, Pussycat?", is a favorite pastime in our house, and got me wanting to do the same with a puzzle in the hunt. The first pitch was:

Fortunately, we quickly moved from that and eventually found this lovely balance of Salt-N-Pepa and Tom Jones.

From Ben:

Can you believe that John Mulaney also has a joke about Salt N Pepa? I forgot about this recent monologue bit until a week before the Hunt.