Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Put Your Thinkin' Cap On.......

I Just About Got 'er Done
When I was growing up, my mom and dad would sit together on the sofa in the evenings after dinner and work the crossword puzzle in the daily newspaper.  They would take turns writing---mom would hold the pencil one day and dad the next.  The one not doing the writing would call out the clues.  Dad would always have his arm around mom.  It looked quite cozy to a child like me at the time.
Not Quite Finished!
Fast forward to age 24.  I had not ever had time to try to work a crossword puzzle before that age.  I decided to sit down one fine Sunday afternoon and knock one out.  I certainly did not expect to have any problems whatsoever in working it.

You talk about becoming frustrated!  Man!  I couldn't seem to get a single word!  My self-esteem plummeted.  How could it be that I was having so much trouble?  After all, I had a college degree and knew a good bit about a lot of things, I thought.  Ha.
There Are Still A Couple Of Words To Fill In
Looking back, of course, I now understand that if one wants to begin working crossword puzzles, one should probably not start off with the New York Times Sunday edition.  Insert smile here.

For a couple of years I worked very hard to learn how to work these puzzles.  There are tricks to the trade.  There are oft-recurring answers.  One must learn to look for the tricky, double-meanings of clues.  Some of the crossword authors are obviously deceitful people and probably should be avoided in real life.  But, lots of practice does help one's skill level.

These days, I work a crossword puzzle about five days a week or so.  I do feel like it helps keep a feeble mind like mine sharp, whatever that is.
STILL Not Finished!
Since I like gratification in a reasonable length of time, I usually don't attempt the New York Times puzzle, as that always takes me two or three sittings to complete.

Radar O'Reilly's Drink?........................NEHI
Jesus' Language?..................................Aramaic
Rod Shaped Bacteria (2 Words)..........E Coli
Deuterium, e.g. ....................................Isotope
Gerald, Jimmy, ________....................Ronald
Backspace On A PC.............................Erase
Ms.Perlman of "Cheers".......................Rhea
Beneficial Insects..................................Ladybugs

It's a lotta' fun!


  1. Reading your post makes me want to work a crossword puzzle. You are light years ahead of me in this department. I am glad you are working them daily.

  2. I did crossword puzzles when I was still working and things got tense. I haven't touched one since I retired. Strange now that I think about it. I hope you are having a good day. Blessings...Mary

  3. My dad worked crosswords for many years. He only received an 8th grade education but was quite intelligent. I started doing them years ago too - to the point that I have stacks of 'Guide Daily' sections of the DMN waiting for me to get to them... These days blogging is taking up more time than crossword puzzles, but I still tackle them several times a week. :)

    Table spread = oleo


  4. i love crossword puzzles and online scrabble! i do the easier puzzles in my grandma's lady magazines... ya know, the ones that include tom cruise's baby's name and things of that nature.=)

  5. How fun! I love puzzles and games. It keeps your mind sharp. But... I'm with you, the NY Times is way and above the time I like to spend on them :)

  6. Funny...I think they're so frustrating. But you're right- they do keep the mind sharp- and I need all I can get right now:)
    Suduko Puzzles help with this too.

    Nice to come across your blog.

  7. Back in Germany I loved crossword puzzle in the daily newspaper.

    Today I am reading the daily news at the internet, but when ever I find the time, I am searching for crossword puzzels over the net. It is really good for the brain.

    Have a great day

  8. Mary---Looks to me like you've got your hands full with that totally GREAT blog of yours!

  9. Texwis---You are also a busy bee. Bloggin' does take time, doesn't it?

  10. Kelli---you know the answers to those questions, but I don't! I get frustrated when I get cluse like "Tom Cruise Wife".


  11. Dawn---I see a lot of people working the sudokos instead of crosswords these days.

  12. Petra---I like the internet Xwords, also---they are easy to erase and work with.

    By the way---I feel terrible I cannot comment on your blog. I do read it every day and love it. Maybe my own computer is at fault, but I can't find a remedy.

  13. Karen---I agree---I'd like to be able to finish a large puzzle in an hour or two---The NYT puzzle sits around the house for days!

  14. I used to lots of crosswords before I took to writing poetry. won quite a few small prizes too.

    Loved the read.

  15. Good for the mind for sure! I'm good at the 4-5 year old ones!!! :)

  16. very nice!!!it is good for the mind yes indeed!!

    wish you a very good weekend!!

  17. Hi Clint -

    I too like crossword puzzles though not the complex ones.

    I read somewhere that Bill Clinton regularly completes the New York Times puzzle.