On-air challenge: Today's puzzle is called "Middle C" — as in a midpoint on a piano. I'll give you a four-letter word. You rearrange the letters and put a C in the middle to make a common five-letter word.
Example: OVAL --> VOCAL
8. [two answers:] RULE
Last week's challenge: Last week's challenge came from Joseph Young, who conducts the blog "Puzzleria!" Let A = 1, B = 2, C = 3, etc. Think of a five-letter word whose letters' values add up to 51. Now take this word's last two letters. Add their values. (For example A and C would total 4.) Change these two letters to the single letter of the alphabet that represents their total. (In this case, D.) The result will be a new word that is the opposite of the original.
Challenge answer: Thick, thin.
Winner: Gradie Cartlidge from Oak Harbor, Wash.
This week's challenge: This week's challenge comes from listener Jay Feldman, of Davis, Calif. What three common five-letter nicknames have the same last four letters and alphabetically consecutive initial letters? Or to put it another way, think of three common five-letter nicknames that have alphabetically consecutive initial letters and the same last four letters. Which common nicknames are these?
If you know the answer to next week's challenge, submit it here by Thursday, Jan. 20, at 3 p.m. ET. Listeners who submit correct answers win a chance to play the on-air puzzle. Important: Include a phone number where we can reach you.