Can you cross out the unnecessary letters to leave a common phrase?




As ever, please do NOT post your answers, but do feel free to say if you have solved it and how long it took.  Solution on Monday!

If you enjoy the Friday Puzzle, remember that I have produced a kindle ebook containing 101 of the previous Friday Puzzles! It is called PUZZLED and is available in the UK here and USA here.



  1. Very good. Took me a couple of minutes to write them all out and stare at. Then saw it. You’re a funny bugger Richard.

  2. About 2 seconds. Then another 10 to realise there was actually a key. V nice. Good use of that particular common phrase.

  3. I think a lot of people posting comments need to realize, just because this kind of thing jumps out at you does not make it easy.

  4. ok got it now. i should have known! i didn’t think about it enough before starting to work it out and just assumed because it was to do with letters that I wouldn’t be able to do it.

  5. No clue at all after reading just the quiz. However, once I read the comments, got some direction. Ten minutes in all. Any way, enjoyed this post after several weeks.

  6. Yes

    Few seconds to see how to do it
    Few more to remove the unnecessary letters
    Few more to believe this was a puzzle

    Took longer to write this comment


    Like the pun

  7. From the comments I was expecting something witty and amusing. Didn’t quite live up to that, but I’m glad it’s one I was able to solve!

  8. Totally puzzled until I read a couple of comments and realised there was a ‘trick’ to it – then about 10 seconds! Very good!

  9. I’ve already solved next week’s puzzle. It will be too easy, ambiguous, not really a puzzle, and wrong. Hope my incredible intelligence doesn’t spoil the fun for ayone …

  10. I started crossing out letters, then saw the ‘punny’ comment and got it within a few seconds. Very devious – and very literal as well 🙂

  11. As non-native speaker i think i have no chance finiding the “common phrase”… and it has no “F” in it.. That’s why i prefer math/logic riddles..

    1. Berhard, you do not need to be a native speaker to solve the puzzle.

      It took me a couple of minutes but I did look at the comments which helped.

    2. Paul, you are right.. but i found the “wrong part” at first… (googled the wrong part and found the hint for the right solution…)
      Felt like a half an eternity until i found the solution.. So thanks for encouraging me to give it another try..

  12. Couple of minutes. Getting the answer that I thought was the answer helped me get the answer that really was the answer.

  13. 3 copy pastes into a word document, 1 re check of the question – about 2 mins in total. Not what I was expecting but makes total sense.

  14. About 10-15 seconds for “I wonder if it’s ….. ….”, and then another 30 seconds confirming and smiling when I found out I was correct.

  15. Used 5 Minutes … then gave up.
    Then went for doing something else – came back and then it was so easy!

    Very funny and nice twist.

    Thanks for giving me something to think about every Friday 🙂

  16. Goshh, how are you guys all so clever?! I’ve been looking at it for ages and I still can’t work it out. I need to get better at puzzles haha.

  17. The answer: Yes, I can.

    Struggled with it for about a minute, then went to do something else, and when I came back it immediately popped up.

  18. Spent about 30 seconds looking at it and gave up. Looked at the comments and saw how many said it was easy. Tried again and almost immediately got it! Everyone is right, it is funny…

  19. I do think those who do not find the answer have something particular regarding their spi or they are not familiar with English (but even that is not really an argument)… They finally got the answer when they get the paranormal instinct to read Debbie’s answer (lol).

    I felt much excluded from the mass when I realize that I really could not find the answer! I was looking for its logic, which would certainly take me maybe all my existence to find; merely because there is no logic in that. I mean, trying to find somewhere something that does not exist is…well, a waste of mental energy, and it’s like following no purpose!

  20. I was about to post that my answer to the question posed was – No I damn can’t, just like the rest of the puzzles you post that I can’t get, and then I suddenly got it!! YIPPEE!!! (I must get out more 😉 )

  21. Took me about 12 hours. Coming back to it about every hour knowing there was a trick to it. Figured it out about 11:45pm.

  22. About 5 seconds to solve it, then another 5 minutes trying to come up with a rude alternative solution. “ATE MY ASS” is the best I could do… 🙂

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