The Week In Crosswords

As if Araucaria hadn’t earned enough people’s admiration for his long career and dignified handling of terminal illness, the Guardian notes that the 91-year-old master has introduced BBC IPLAYER to the British crossword lexicon.

Sorry for not mentioning that National Puzzle Day was coming up on January 29, but it didn’t get a huge amount of press. Oh, there were celebrations here and there, but some of them didn’t even get the day right. If we want to elevate the day to the point where Congressional recognition is a real possibility, I suggest focusing more attention on it through grass-roots puzzlehunts and Kickstarted projects like Mike Selinker’s Maze of Games project. (Patrick Blindauer, from Facebook: “I’ll be trapped in a cage forever unless this Kickstarter campaign reaches $80,000 (at which point I’ll be released to write a puzzle for the book).”)

Or maybe we can make January 29 the day to announce the the nominees for the real Orca Awards.

This weekend’s Westport Crossword Puzzle Contest had an unusual number of perfect scores and the same three finalists as last year. The ACPT’s top three spots have a similar tendency to be filled by the same faces year to year, but that high number of perfect scores may suggest the bar needs to be raised a bit on this crowd.

You’ll probably be moved by this story of crosswords bringing three generations together, even after Grandpa has passed on.

On the other hand, I take no responsibility for how you’ll respond to the following Funny or Die video, which is totally G-rated but still just one very light edit away from being Will Shortz and Julieanne Smolinski “slash fiction.”

Cross Words – watch more funny videos

Ironically, there are debates about whether “slash fiction” refers solely to work featuring homosexual pairings or not, debates which feel a bit like the great ILLIN’ debate. But anyway…

Lexulous, the app developed by the original not-entirely-authorized developers of the Scrabble app, is now available on Android. The Daily App Show has a review:

Crossword-maker profiles: Philistine and the Davids! Specifically, Philistine (“Surely any rudeness is merely in the eye of the beholder, is it not? (Yes, of course it was rude!)”), David Ben-Merre (“I go hours without thinking about crosswords”), and last week’s star David Astle (“I once worked as a Tarzanagram”).

Crossword-maker not being profiled as a crossword-maker: Frequent NYT contributor and lead developer of a diabetic life-saving device Daniel Finan. (Hat tip: Mark Dixon.)

Ego-solve of the week: Daniel Dae Kim. I’m just glad he’s no longer clued as “that guy who died but then didn’t but then did on Lost,” because that actually doesn’t narrow it down much.

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5 Responses to The Week In Crosswords

  1. Zulema says:

    Didn’t know where to post this, but two new CHE crosswords appear this morning; however, clicking “download” gets me nothing, no way, and after going through “site map”, returns me to the same place, so will we have to subscribe? CHE is a fine publication, but I have been retired for almost 20 years.

    • pannonica says:

      Thanks for the heads up, Zulema. The Chronicle’s posting habits are erratic, to say the least. I advise just waiting a bit until they sort things out. And I guess I’ll have a puzzle or two to write up, retroactively.

    • Barry says:

      The puzzles have an extra ZERO in the URL on the CHE page. WIJ’s puzzle pointers work fine


      • Zulema says:

        Barry, thank you. Your link took me to the yearly Calendar on the Puzzle Pointers rather than my usual way of getting these puzzles through the Puzzle Pointers (the weekly calendar) and your way worked fine. We are all grateful.

  2. Jan says:

    Congratulations to Andy K for winning the Westport tournament, and to Pete and Glen for making the finals again. I was happy to be one of the clean solvers. These 4-puzzle tournaments are a great way to warm up for the ACPT, and there’s another one coming up next Sunday 2/10 in Killingworth CT. We won’t have the whiteboards for the finals, but we will have Pete and Glen competing! We also have two warm-up puzzles writtten just for us. More info on the Killingworth Library website.

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