March 17, 2004
The Bathroom Readers' Institute
(yes, they publish books to read on the can) is sponsoring a contest to complete the
13 years ago
(oh dear: "Contest open to U.S. & Canadian residents only." sorry far-flung monkeys!)
I suspect that this, however difficult, is of the plain vanilla type where the clue is a definition or synonym of the answer (I've been told this is the norm in the US). Once you've got into the cryptic variety of crossword we tend to have on this side of the Atlantic, no other kind will do, really.
Most "difficult" crosswords succumb quickly to multi-brain assaults. And this one doesn't look so hard... I bet that a troop of monkeys could make short work of it. 63 across, SEXEXPERTS. 50 down, BOTOX. 51 down, ORATE. 58 down, LEX.
Oh, my mistake. That's just the entry crossword. Of course it's a gut. I should read more carefully.
Plegmund, can you tell us plain vanilla puzzlers about the European version of crossword clues (or point us to a sample)?
goetter, I'm working this one at lunch today - wanna compare notes later?
Wish I could. Got a long drive in front of me this morning. See you monkeys tomorrow.
Araucaria's crosswords are the hardest I've ever tried to solve. He's a genius, my favourite clue of his was (the not too dificult as it turned out): Play ankoolger (4,4,5) His first anthology of crosswords was published last year. The rather aptly named
Speaking of bathrooms, an interesting
davehat - i assume that the (4,4,5) means the asnwer is three words, with 4, 4, and 5 letters each, respectively? or is this something i'd need to know what the hell an ankoolger was, or be british, to even begin to be able to interpret? (or is an ankoolger really anything to begin with?) most US crosswords i see are generally clues like synonyms, or short phrases. some are more interesting, with theme phrases, etc. repeated throughout. at one time i could do the daily crossword in my local paper in about 5 minutes, on average. then they switched to some moronic puzzle supplier that seems to have a different author every day, so there's absolutely no internal consistency either with puzzle difficulty or how clever or inane the clues are. since then i've gotten bored with it... with one favorite author, or at least a dependably challenging setup, you feel like you're up against your old nemesis or some such. the randomness kind of ruined it for me. i do have an absolutely huge crossword from an old subscription to "games" magazine, something like 300 to 400 across and down clues. this one is interesting, i pull it out of storage occasionally and have a go at it... i'm maybe halfway done with it (or a little less) even after owning it for about 10 years. when i get stuck i put it away for another year or two before remembering that i have it... damn, now i'm going to have to go home and find it again... if i ever finish it i'm considering framing it. it's the only crossword that i started on using a pencil rather than forging in brashly, using a pen.
Just finished the entry puzzle. I'm considering sending off for this. How hard could it possibly be?
You mean people actually *buy* things to read in the bathroom? That's the only place I can keep up with the bazillion catalogs, throwaway magazines, and "newsletters" I get.
you go, babywanna!
...care to make this a joint monkey effort (or a monkey joint effort) and contribute the 5 large to MoFi?
Does anyone else here do their puzzles in pen?
i use a pencil with a BIG eraser.
I use pen, but you can't read them at the end with all the overwriting. (I also do all the crosswords in my mother's "women's magazines" when I go to visit, because they're so simple. She hates me.) I'd be down to help do the puzzle, anyway. I love crosswords! Suck at cryptic ones, though.
Just put the completed one in the mail - I'll let you all know when I receive the
WORLD'S HARDEST CROSSWORD PUZZLE.
Back in Seattle, finished the puzzle. Putting mine in the mail now. Happy to join a multi-monkey MoFi effort.
Micky - I ONLY do crosswords in pen. They write so smoothly on newsprint....an addiction almost...
Mickey: sorry I was unable to respond earlier - kept away from the PC by daughter's 10th birthday and then sleep. Davehat is right about Araucaria. In these cryptic clues, one word is usually a 'synonym' of the whole answer while the rest could be an anagram, a set of clues to words that get put together to make the full solution, or any other cunning device. In Dave's example, ankoolger can't be the synonym, so 'play' must be. If we guess it's the name of a play, we then see that 'ankoolger' is 'look' backwards inserted into 'anger' - 'Look back in anger' (Should have been (4,4,2,5), Dave?). The clues can be vastly more complicated than this or quite simple. My own favourite Araucaria one is the simple (when you see it) "Dis duck or dat? (5)". Now someone's going to tell me that all US crosswords are like this and that
has been syndicating Araucaria for years... Unfortunately, you have to pay for Guardian crosswords on line these days (shame on your employers, Davehat).
Plegmund: Crap, you're right I should have put (4,4,2,5) (doh, sorry any one else trying to figure it out)! Is the answer to your's Eider? Apparently, crosswords on the Guardian website are "premium content". Sorry about that. I don't work on Guardian Unlimited (or the Guardian for that matter), so there's little someone like me can do about it here.
Not to worry - and yes, it's 'Eider', of course. Sorry if I seemed to hold you responsible for the Guardian - just presuming on the strength of your e-mail address.
aaaaaah. i may have to check out the guardian crossword then. i do indeed enjoy a nice pun.... many of the "games" crosswords were similar; they had one regular feature i recall that was a crossword, with ridiculously hard (i suppose araucaria-style) clues; if that was too much for you, you could lift the page (double-folded) to reveal a simpler set of clues (more USA today-style). amusing stuff. anybody know if that magazine is still out there? i discovered it by accident; saw a puzzle in an ad for "games" that said "if you can solve this in under 10 minutes you're a genius". i saw the answer almost immediately. (thought i was a genus until i got the magazine, and was promptly stumped by more than half the content... )
Plegmund, I'm going cross my fingers and pray the crossword puzzle is nothing like you've described.
Mickey, babywannasofa, have either of you received your puzzle yet? Seems to me that they've had enough time to stuff a copy in the SASE and return it.
No, goetter, I haven't. I checked the website a while back and IIRC, the deadline for the entry puzzle is July 1. My guess is they're waiting for all the entry puzzles and they'll mail the "world's hardest crossword puzzle" to everyone at that time.
It arrived today. What a beast! 21 x 21, not a Plegmund-preferred cryptic. I'll put a copy online to facilitate multi-monkey collaboration.
Probably needs proofing. Me sleepy now, will do tomorrow.
That's really, really hard. I could google some of these but it feels like cheating. Best guesses thus far: 68a - subway 45d - notch 54d - cod
they say Confucius does his crossword with a pen
A correspondent has suggested that it's probably a bad idea to post a partly-solved version of the puzzle like I have. Makes sense. Google would pick it up from my link posted here and relay that spoiler to anybody.
Aw, bunmmer! It would be fun to do it cooperatively. Could you require registration or something?
Oh, clever Pat. Sure, I could protect it with a TOP SEKRIT PASSWORD such as, oh, say, "monkeyfilter." I'll get my top monkeys on it soon.
Go, Goetter, go!
Ehm, maybe I'm late to this, but where is this "partly solved" puzzle? I found a blank thing, intimidatingly blank, and I hit the back button before the cold sweats came on.
Goetter has gone to get it. (See his last 2 comments.)
Sorry, y'all. I need a little time to recast the 21x21 html table implementing the crossword's grid into a format that allows me to add and remove entries easily. Had too much to drink last night to do it then, and there's work to do today. Will get to it late tonight, most likely. I'll leave it "intimidatingly blank" and unpassworded until then.
Last two weeks have been a mess. Sorry. Anyway,
here it is
, moved and passworded. Username:
(yeah, lowercase) Password: the
of our Super Admin #1 (also in lowercase)
It is finished! Thanks to fellow Monkeys
and the quiet but aptly titled
for many hints. In addition to the solved version, I have an (intimidatingly?)
blank version without a password
, should anybody want to solve it without hints.
Hooray for us! Though my contribution pales in the face of the other 2 powerhouses.
goetter: when I tried printing off either version, the blacking out of the bland spaces didn't print, so it turned into a diagramless. Is there something that others might want to do, apart from having a black market ready?
or "marker", either one.
path, if you use IE, you have to enable the "Print background colors and images" option under
Tools : Internet Options: Advanced
before the crossword diagram will print correctly. You want to know a powerhouse? crosswordese had already solved this puzzle, solo, before I ever started. He limited himself to identifying my many incorrect solutions on the page. This protected me from running up any number of blind alleys.
And he's not a member here, at least under "crosswrodese." And, by the way. About a thousand years ago, like late 1950s.I became addicted to double-crosstics, which were published in a magazine (Saturday Review? I can't remember.) I've tried a few time to see if they're on the net, but no success. Any idea whether they exist anywhere?
, those doublecrostics were indeed great fun! I, too, was very sorry when
This will probably sound heretical to some, but the board game
is many time more challenging and fun to play than
. There's a new version out now, too, which facilitates swifter action when more than two are playing.
Well, 2 out of 2 ain't bad.