Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Confessions of a Puzzle Nut

New York Times Puzzles are the BEST!

I am a puzzle-oholic, an addiction I can't shake. Of our two daily papers, we have to take Deseret News, because it has the New York Times crossword puzzle and the Sheffer Crossword with Cryptoquip. If anyone knows of a 12-Step Recovery Program for puzzle-oholics, please let me know.

I feel puzzles are a great past time, but my husband says they're just a waste of time. However, I read somewhere that puzzles keep our brains lubricated and sharp. My brain needs all the help it can get.

I really like figuring out the themes in the NY Times puzzles. For instance, in the puzzle above, the theme was alcoholic beverages. What do Donald Rumsfeld (20 Across), Amy Winehouse (26 Across), Wallace Beery (45 Across) and Natalie Portman all have in common? You're right. This is an easy one. They all have alcohol in their names, as in RUMsfeld, WINEhouse, BEERy and Portman. Obvious when the puzzle is solved. But you don't know the theme until the puzzle solved. Oh, so clever.

Cryptoquips have also become a favorite. I always try to solve these without using the clue at the bottom. Each letter is replaced with another letter. For instance, replace all P's in the puzzle with D's.

When solved the above "Quip" says: "The old church, lacking any keyboard instruments, may soon be seeking an organ donor."

Once a month I receive a Remicade infusion for my R.A. I sit in a comfy Laz-E-Boy with an IV in my arm for about two and a half hours. I take my book of puzzles which includes Sudoku, WordSearch, Mazes, Crosswords and Cryptoquips. I've finished my last book which included loads of good advice in puzzle form and I thought I'd share what I learned.

In a Letter Replacement puzzle was the following quote by Eleanor Roosevelt:

"Both the president and his wife can never give
way to apprehension even though they
are probably more aware than
most citizens of the dangers that may
surround us. If the country is to be confident,
they [the president & wife] must be confident."

Other favorite crytoquips with sage advice:

There is no greater loan than that of an ear.

Facts don't cease to exist when ignored.

Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without losing your temper or self confidence.

Society is like the air--necessary to breathe, but insufficient to live on.

Anytime the going seems entirely too easy,
make sure you are not heading downhill.

It is a sad fact that too often we are interested in justice for

Seven days of a crash diet can make one WEAK.

The closed mouth will gather no feet.

He who toots his own horn is a one man band.

It is hard for those with no talent to be modest.

The more intelligent a person is the more originality he discovers in others.

Some people have delusions of adequacy.

I dare say that which we call a cauliflower by any other name
would not taste any better.

If at first you don't succeed, you'll receive a lot of advice.

Hourglass figures are most fasionable until there time runs out.

We'd be happy to pay as we go, if only we had finished paying for where we've been.

My puzzle book is complete. Time to go buy a new one because tomorrow if Remicade day! Puzzles help keep me sane.


KM said...

I admire people, actually, who are religious to doing puzzles... I too, really enjoy the way they turn the brain wheels and keep our minds sharp. My problem is maintaining patience and resisting the urge to quit at the slightest manifestation of frustration. I totally support you in doing these! Keep going and fun post.

kenju said...

I work on puzzles all the time, and I do them in ink - to keep me honest. I found out when I met my birth mother that she deos hers in ink too, which seems an odd thing to pass on in genes!!

Travelin'Oma said...

Crossword puzzles and playing chess are things I wish I did but I don't. People who do them always seem very intelligent and upper-class to me.

PI said...

The day's treat is attempting the Daily Telegraph puzzle. Unfortunately it is getting harder. Or I am getting dumber.

Anna said...

Sheri, good for you. I love Sudoku, and I used to addicted to my nintendo DS which had many many of them on, until my baby came along, lol. There is nothing wrong exercising your brain, good for you again. Nice post btw. Anna :)