At http://www.straightdope.com/classics/a3_251.html we find a mildly amusing but utterly unnecessary wild goose chase about the non-riddle “Besides angry and hungry, what is another English word ending in -gry?”
I would like to clear up this time-wasting bit of nonsense once and for all, as I have done elsewhere on the Internet in an ongoing attempt to lay it to rest permanently.
It is imperative to note that the question is necessarily asked ORALLY, not in written form. This is because it is a pun, a cruel trick question, and it is most definitely NOT asking about arcane words like gry, puggry, aggry–or any other words ending in -gry, for that matter. Here goes the real question, first heard on radio over a quarter of a century ago:
“Besides angry and hungry, what is another English word ending in G or Y?”
Get it? The “G or Y” is spoken aloud to SOUND LIKE “-gry”, and hence the well-meaning listener (or question-answering columnist) is sent off on a pathetic search for words no one ever heard of. The clever answers about “the third word” being “word” or some such contrivance are equally irrelevant, as the answer can vary as the miscreant quesioner varies the form of the question. The obvious truth is that literally thousands of words end in G or Y. “Irritating idiocy” are two that come to mind.
There. Now you never need be pestered by this foolishness again.