Crossword Puzzles.

Since my retirement, I spend every morning reading five newspapers and solving the seven crossword puzzles that appear in them. As my family and friends say, it keeps me out of mischief.

On the days that the papers do not come following national holidays, I am lost in the mornings and you can easily sense that I am out of sorts on those days as it recently happened on August 16, 2019 the following our Independence Day when two friends who had called me up on the phone were puzzled at my mood till I explained to them my predicament. That experience has taught me to keep a couple of crossword puzzle books in stock so that I can spend some time on them on such days.

A most frustrating aspect of solving crossword puzzles in when I am stumped for answers. I can spend hours on the thesaurus, dictionaries, telephone calls to friends to find solutions. I have known to even make overseas calls to find answers for clues pertaining to the UK or the USA.   Often, the last resort, Mr. Google also is of no help.  There are some setters of cryptic clues who, in my opinion are simply sadists.

And the relief in finding the answer the next morning when the solutions are published, is only surpassed usually by the feeling that I should kick myself for not having thought of such obvious answers!

This post was inspired by the following joke.

A girl is doing a crossword puzzle…

“What’s a 7-letter word for ‘easily perceived or understood’ that starts with ‘O’?”

“Isn’t it obvious?”

“It should be, but I can’t figure it out. That’s why I’m asking.”

14 thoughts on “Crossword Puzzles.”

  1. Nice joke. My grouse with crosswords is that to my mind they should be solely about words and their meanings, so you have to rack your brain in a creative way. It annoys me when crosswords include general-knowledge clues that don’t call for any creative thinking because you either know them or you don’t. For example, “The 28th President of the United States”. How would I know that?

    1. Those kinds can be solved using Mr. Google. Many others pertaining to rural UK for example or some strange things/people in the USA are the ones that baffle me most. And I agree, the very creative cryptic setters can be very devious and I consider them as sadists as I mention in my post.

  2. LOL!!! did you intend for this post to be delightful?
    I think it is.
    and Nick…
    “The 28th President of the United States”. How would I know that?
    indeed! I don’t know all the presidents in order! I doubt many Americans do!

    I suppose it turns into a test of how well you can look up an answer!
    the thought just crossed my mind that perhaps working puzzles is an addiction.
    can one become addicted to something like that? that would explain your mood on the dark days after a holiday! kind of like a withdrawal of sorts.
    sadists are not known to be fun people Sean. be patient with them! LOL!

    1. I intend all my posts to be delightful. I am glad that did one delighted you. Yes, solving crossword puzzles or other obsessions like sudoku are addictions indeed. Thankfully not harmful though.

  3. You brought back a memory Ramana of my dad and I in our ritual after supper every day when we’d sit down and do the nightly crossword together. For years. I learned all sorts of words.

    Today I content myself with 12 friends and our Scrabble games on line. Same group for years and years. Keeps me on my toes. I am good, though, if I say so myself. Thanks to my dad.


    1. I would love to play scrabble but, I am hopeless doing it online. I used to be quite good at it decades ago. I am unable to find anyone interested to play the table variety.

  4. wow…now that is quite a way to keep your brain in working order…not to mention all the news and articles you read in the paper. I would imagine that sometimes, maybe later you look online for some information pertaining to whatever – be it the puzzles or the other words…
    Catherine de Seton recently posted..Pilgrimage book and Collage

  5. I so love that “obvious” joke. It’s brilliant. I know at least two people in my life who wouldn’t get it. One is my mother who also obsesses over crossword puzzles. Not, of course, that she would let anyone help her. And even if you did, inadvertently, by blurting out a possible answer, she’d claim that she knew it all along. Which, no doubt, she did. Still, midwives do welcome being appreciated too.

    Talking of which (parents and routine), the older my parents get the more they cling to a timetable. I’d probably live with it quite happily, might not even have noticed it except that when I was still at home they were totally, and I mean totally, slap dash about time. Come home from school (one in the afternoon) expecting a meal? Forget it. First there were potatoes to be peeled (by me – hot ones), a table to be laid (by me) and then a suitable wait. At least my siblings and I are living proof that hunger is the best cook. And my mother, by her own verdict, is the queen of sauces.

    Anyway, enough sobbing on the above lines, now my parents’ life is clockwork. If I (when they were still talking to me) went so much as a minute or two over my allocated time on the phone they’d, literally, cut me short. It’s ok. Who knows what will happen to any of us as we advance in age? I shudder to think. May my son be spared from any future eccentricities of mine.

    Hug you, my dear Ramana, obviously,

    1. I cling to a timetable too. Have always done so from my childhood. My father was, like your parents perhaps, teutonic! I feel out of sorts when I am unable to follow it like the instance I quoted of newspapers not arriving on time. Fortunately for them, my son and daughter in love with whom I share accommodation, both are not and indulge me my idiosyncrasy.

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