It's ScuttleButton Time!

Mar 20, 2012
Originally published on March 20, 2012 11:16 am

I spent Saturday afternoon at a meeting of the American Political Items Collectors in Tyson's Corner, Virginia, and while it is always wonderful palling around with my fellow insane button collectors, it's even better when I come away with plenty of items that will extend the life of ScuttleButton.

ScuttleButton, as you know, is the once a week waste of time exercise in which each Monday I put up a vertical display of buttons on this site. Your job is to simply take one word (or concept) per button, add 'em up, and, hopefully, you will arrive at a famous name or a familiar expression. (And seriously, by familiar, I mean it's something that more than one person on Earth would recognize.)

For years, a correct answer chosen at random would get his or her name posted in this column, an incredible honor in itself. Now the stakes are even higher. Thanks to the efforts of the folks at Talk of the Nation, that person also hears their name mentioned on the Wednesday show (by me) and receives a Political Junkie t-shirt in the bargain. Is this a great country or what?

You can't use the comments box at the bottom of the page for your answer. Send submission (plus your name and city/state — you won't win without that) to

And, by adding your name to the Political Junkie mailing list, you will be among the first on your block to receive notice about the column and the puzzle. Sign up at Or you can make sure to get an automatic RSS feed whenever a new Junkie post goes up by clicking here.

Good luck!

By the way, I announce the winner on Wednesday's Junkie segment on TOTN. But with a new puzzle up every Monday afternoon, you should get your answer in as soon as possible.

Here are the buttons used and the answer to the current puzzle:

At Last! — Button put out by friends of Ted Weiss, a Manhattan Democrat who was finally elected to the House in 1976 — ten years after he first started running for the seat.

Amtrak button — The U.S. passenger railroad government-owned company.

2 Clark for President buttons — Retired Gen. Wesley Clark was a Democratic presidential hopeful in 2004.

Ohio Conservatives for Phil Crane President 1980 — Crane was a GOP congressman from Illinois who was the first to launch his candidacy for the 1980 nomination.

So, when you combine Last + Train + 2 Clarks + Phil, you just very well may get ...

Last Train to Clarksville. An early hit by the 1960s musical group The Monkees, and featured here in memory of one of its leaders, Davy Jones, who died on Feb. 29. Truth be told, this song was not one of my favorite Monkee hits; I think "Pleasant Valley Sunday," "Valerie," "Words" and "She" were much better. And I can't believe I'm engaging myself in a conversation about songs by the Monkees. Especially when there's so much more important stuff out there. Like this week's Political Junkie column.

Anyway, this week's ScuttleButton winner, chosen completely at random, is ... Cindy Mussavage of New Bern, N.C. Cindy gets a TOTN t-shirt.

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