FEATURES

In Other Words... by StanleyNewman

In OtherWords.../Stanley
Newman
)

Letters
3
Cover Story by HeleneHovanec
Merl Reagle:WestCoastContemporary...5
ReagleSpecialties
7
New Wave ir Ia Reagle
9

OuseSaarEnow?

Over the next severalissues,I will be discussingcurrent
issuesof importancein thecrosswordworld.
The subjecttoday,gentlereader,is "Crosswordese,"
those
obscurewords- foundin thedarkrecesses
of theunabridged
dictionary- thatoverpopulate
all too manycrosswords,
but
areneverseenor heardanywhereelse.
While someconsiderCrosswordese
to be all words that
appearfrequentlyin puzzles,I excludefrom this discussion
wordsttratyoumayactuallyseeoutsideof crosswords
(ERIE,
AREA,erc.).
Ftip Sidesby RitaBongiomo
4
Firs_t,_a
sl-orthistorylesson. During crosswords,halcyon
ComedyCouplesby RandolphRoss
days
of
the
1920's,it waspuzzlemakers,
deliberateintentio;to
6
work
obscure
wordsinto apuzzle. Back then,multiple-word
Only the VowelsHave BeenChanged
answersweren'tallowed,andcluesweretakenright out of the
by Eric Albert
dictionary.Sothewayconstructors
put someuarGtyinto ttreir
For and Againstby CathyMillhauser
10 puzzleswastodelveintotheirdictionariesfor infrequentlyseen
Up, Up and Away by ErnstTheimer.... 10 words.Peopleweren'texpectedto know thesewords;in fact,
anunabridged
dictionarywasstandard
equipmentfor themany
Writers' Market by CathyMillhauser
11 puz,zle-solving
pa{ies thattook placein thosedays.
Balancing Act by Donna J. Stone
t2
Crosswords
havecomealongwaysincethen.Editorialrules
This Old Houseby ArthurS. Verdesca.........
13 now permitpartial phrases,multiple-wordanswers,popular
Old SchoolTithesby A.J. Santora
15 culture references,and so on. This evolution has n-early
CrosswordConstructionby Alex Vaughn...
15 eliminatedthe needfor constructorsto useobscurewords.
But Crosswordese
liveson, analarmingextent.A recent
Celebrity Golf by Mel Rosen
L6 examinationof a wide rangeoftocurrent
crosswords(in books,
Echoesby William Lutwiniak
T7 newspapers
andmagazines)
revealedthatobscurewordsmake
Oral Examby MarkDiehl....
18 up from 10to 15percentof thetypicalpuzzle.Thatworksout
Say That Again by Manny Nosowsky
19 to as many as 20 of the little monstersin just one Sunday
And One to Grow On by RichardSilvestri ..20 crossword!
Why is this so alarming? It pelpetuatesthe belief by the
SweetAgony by CharlesR. Woodard
2l
world-at-large
thatyouhaveto knowtheseuselesswordsiodo
MusicBoxesby LouisSabin........
puzzles.Justaskyour intelligent,erudite,non-solverfriends
..................22
why theydon't do crosswords
and you'll seewhat I mean.
GoodSportby Dorothea
Shipp.....................22
There'sno questionthatobscurewordsarekeepingmillionsof
Not Quite by FredPiscop
............23 prospectivesolversawayfrom puzzles. At
a time whenour
High-Spirited
by ShirleySoloway
................
23 nationhasa severeliteracyproblem,ptzzleeditorsshouldbe
SomethingExtra by ThomasW. Schier.......26 striving to make crosswordsmore accessible,especiallyto
andyoungadults. Clearly,this is not tappening.
No GreatShakespeare
by Samantha
JoKaz. .....27 adolescents
Therearemanymoreformsof entertainment
competingfor
A MovableFeastby TripPayne....................27
.
Americans'attentionthesedaysthantherewere30 yearsigo.
CONTESTPUZZLEz
Crosswords
mustbeginto reflectthecontemporary
worldmore
Mean and Nastyby Mike Shenk
28 thantheydo todayor our audiencewill soondisappear.
In the final analysis,the useof obscurewordi-is norhing
morethana crutchthatallowslesserconstructors
to completi
theirworkmorequickly. And they'rea boonto lesserediiors,
whoavoidhavingto doanythingcreativeto maketheirpuzzles
more
challenging.
Diagramlessby StanleyNewman
T4
Somepuzzleeditors
haveactuallybeenquotedas
sayingthat
Cryptic Crossword#1
crosswordfanslike obscurewords. Well, I meetand cone_
by Emily CoxandHenryRathvon
..........24 spondwith thousandsofpuzzlerseveryyearandhaveyet to
lover. Who's right?
Cryptic Crossword#2 byFredpiscop...........U encounterevenoneCrosswordese
There'soneway to find out. Drop mea postcard-with
your
Split Decisionsru
by GeorgeBredehorn........25v-ote.Vote"yes"if youlike obscurewords
in puzzles;voteino"
if you don't. Your commentson the subjeciarealsoinvited.
p.O. Box 909, Bellmore,
Sendyour cardsto: Crosswordese,
NY I1710.Theresultsandyourcomments
will berevealed
in
a futureissue.
To becontinued.
..

CROSSWORDS

VARIETYPUZZLES

tr

Page 2

CROSSWRD

September/October
1991

FEATURES

In OtherWords.../Stanley
Newman

In Other Words... by StanleyNewman
Down & Across

contest
#2Resuus
ii;;tu*iloffiil

tCrosswordeset
Survey Results

)

In
. a recentcolumn,I askedCROSSW RD readersto write
with ttreir opinionson Crosswordese,
thoseobs.ure *o.Os
foundin greatprofusionin lesserpuzzles.
anOyou,"rponded,

3
..::3

Cover Story by HeleneHovanec
in abiqway.Crosswordese
received.
And the Wynner is...
."*J;h;;#;,,ii;
. II nver
5
O(7^ rrntina
r^..^^r r- - . r r
o-ver.9S%o
voting i-in favor
of
banishing
obr.;;;;r";;
A Few Cluesfrom the Lu twiniakFite.. 7
deprhsof rhediCdonary,
wheretheybelons.
|
"
Lutwiniak's SecretLanguage
readercomments:
9 | Somerepresentative

..Obscure
wordsorclues?No,no,andNO!If I wanttoknow

| -.

nose_haircripper,
rcan
I n:::,T*::fj:31.":.",11tc_ertic

CROSSWORDS
v'r
r vr rrr\,

ageousrv
l :?:_:l11|T,:-laeologist.Challengemybrainwitr,o,rt

f,.tr1Ti:.s::y19,,:'*n.::_-o-'1*"
1 |:'::.i[3::iffi;yil.j;*T"x-,1,#3

MetricLesson
bvJeffrev
Frank.....................
4 | 3:"r"* endeavor.
L"t',d."d":;v;T"utffJ:ffitJj$':
-'
Light Exerciseby William
eteanor
Murphy,
Lutwiniak ..............

Bronx,N.i.

6 |
operation
rransration
byRandorph
Ross
....8 ;;lil.Ti:T.,:#xl'3iwffi:T:1,ff;$il:"J"::1,il
Wnat,No Sorts?by Williampolvogt...........10
|

| .ti.riff;
Film
Film
Fauna
Fauna
bvMannv
by
Mannv
Nosowskv
f n t ^^,-_^",^il,l1ld,t,msn3kin_goutforroday,syouthonyour
Nosowsky..I.............ro
| ru;fr":fi-c;i;:ffifr"$::[Tng;ilr"""ilr?#
...11

l::1:lTlT:lo.:"1u:.?Iru.harrdslvesri
C_asting
off by CathyMi11hauser.................
r;
t_o
Go!
by
Arthur
s.
verdescr....
...:....:::i;
Iuv

| i: :*lt.ur

outorabout
r,000
1";!nupi;.1o,,*o,0..

in m_y
school,
onryt*o 1inlft;6;##;r._
I studens
*".'.9'l- MattJones,
Mii'""*ru , ore.
|

How
Swede
s-rre
rsbvA.r.Santo.".....::::::::i;
"r;:t",iff.i#:r"Jr,J1ffh,Hft,l,:1ilill""&
Headsetby ErnieFurrado
............15|| nounolroot,
N.r.

Classesfor Assesby Eric Alben . .. ..............i;

| ..*:9!1;-*"wordsinpuzztesarenohelpinspreadinglirerac

lunch Lineby MerlReagle...........................17
| 3:1":1t*^1:l'":ddiscooragerho.;h;'h;;;*""**o

ever
enjoving
--Fred
crosswords."
Arex.vaugan
...........
18 | "ri*+ffi?J#il,
ff#H#ilf.:'$fii:
I::::HITii:r
me
churning!
*.o,
rhese
ridicurous
Frontand
iT#lyfn:"T:g1tJ.y.-'
^y |
Backby
Soroway...:.......t0
lli.t:v
|
::1d;;-ffit,Lff,,'"t'.hH,i;#:Xj"';T:"#*"J.:r"i
Why They Divorcedby Frances

Hansen......21 I ::lltll,.",":p."r.iona,"J.*o"r*myoererioraring,ler,snor

Sound Effects by Lois Sidway .................".
;;

byMel
'^vr r\vDv'
Rosen
.
Il,,r Buddies

in oneof thelastbastions
of "erudite
| {o.m.ote..oufuscation
"".Y,i1il;;Y3"f,,T

. ...::
.'.''".;; ||
"""22

"Those
stupid.liule Y:-9':lltl.sinippi-vr,ss.'
blips areno tongeiLuscureafter vour

''
.:..
g,#lfl*::(:]
"{o;t'ei"r'
""ryhackneyed.
;;;;"
And
riere
?1 | :y *F beobscure
byH":,1"9-t'.1:"0..
charles
R woodaxd
..........;;
*-d,
t;:il:JTXl?j,:;tllff;
!$vers'oiteryna
|
1n_""1J
11,"*
virtuoso Performance
moment

whenrhemenhllightbulbclickson.we
by RandolphRoss....2i
--"";;
| wantchallenge,notfrustration."-veeconversegam-ml
_y:to.lt:l
Hot and Cold by Trip payne .......-....
I

puLzrn**
coNrEsr

""""'Lt

l*'.ls:lrlll

Returnof MeanandNastybyMikeshenk....28 ;|:jjil:::il?:-^sianbirdsever!"-phvuisMcKav,
|

yARIETY
| | fPIJZZLES
rrr'.''-LEat

l,l:'

Artrousandetc.
Istronglydislikerheuseofrheesorcric

| ff::T:#fillllllli:i{'"f':lJlrkupapuzzresorurio

l"rtlfl,rl"_*;acenrwords."-LeoJ.Jark"*rtisr""irr",*.".

,4lnrlLfl$i::!":f:'ff'""fft"jffi;:n
3li?l?s::l*jji1?Newman

'rrL \/r usDwur(r#l
respond.ents
rlngedin agefrom15to 75.)roiilis anc
| 1111"'
bv Emilv cox and Henry
sritltuminio;t iffd ;;;i; crosswords,
Rathvon..........24
rakenore:
| :::.T:* o:"" found
Cryptic

Crossword#2 byCattry
our.
rvrilnausei..2 | t"Y"::
II
you',re
unw.illing
orunable
Split Decisionsru
sprit
tokeepuseless
Decisionsrubv
words
by George
GeoreeBiedehorn........is
outof
Bre6eho"r, r" I _

crassineds
SOLUTIONS...........
Page 2

lftil-i:,;il";*''i*3fi?,ffi,i'','T#:fi:#l

I yourretirement.

.;;:? I,"1-i"tr*i![:'"',..'fif
1""tr$,'.ilJTfl:i:X.li"_

..............29-31ffi;il
|

CROSSW RD

bepresented
in rhenexrissue.

tr

January/February
1992

FEATURES

In OtherWords.../Stanley
Newman

In Other Words...by StanleyNewman
)
Letters
3
Contest#3 Results(November/December)..
3
Cover Story by HeleneHovanec
Simon& Schuster:TheyStartedIt AIl... 5_
The CrossWord puzzleBook
7
CrosswordConversation
s

'Crosswordese'
Survey(Continued)

Last issue's column was devotedto the
results of the
CROSSW RD Crosswordese
survey,andrep.esentatiue
letters
| lomtheg5'oofttrereqpondentswhowantCrosswordeseoutlawed
| frompuzzles.
But whatofttreotherSVo?-They
havestrongopinionsas
well,

present
th* ;e'is.il;
I make
T:::::Y,T::::'j-'llgtdn't
some
interesring
poinrs
wirich,.rirruJ",

lfiffi;

he;

This lettersumsup theminority opinion
on Cros*o.d"r",
"I
seenothingwrongwith a sotveitravingtofoot
up unusual
wordsor usagesin anunabridged
dictionarylaslong
as
meuseof
Saturday's
Heroesby Bill poIvogt...................
4 thele.yordsisn'tjust o mati it .u.V fo. u.onsrrucoror eCitor
Have I BeenHere Before?by ired piscop
... 4 to finish off a puzzle. puzzlesaresupposed UeeOucationaUy
Away We Go Go Go by RebelcaAlexander... rewarding,aren'tthey? Thereareptenty io.easy,
6
of
oossword
Animal Activistsby WilliamLutwiniak........
andbooksforprospective
newcomers
g magazines
tocuttheirteeth
on.
Take Me Out to the Movies
"I
amalarmedby a tendencyb lowereducational
by WayneRobertWilliams....................
aimsmerely
10 to accommodate
a growingmassof youngerpeoplewho
Hot Stuff by ShirleySoloway
don,t
knowor areroolazyto studyor look thinls
ip. i"t "Ur. to work
MarriedNamesby Randolph
Ross.................11hr. 9.:.pyilgs is anacquiredskilrin whilh d" Ju". rr,ould
rake
- William N. Mendlen,
by
Munny
Noro,orrf
...............
Santatvtonica,ialif.
rz pride."
9jd
9_oyptes
Mrs. Malaprop'sAnatomyby A. J.Santora...13 Youmaybesurprised
thatlagree*i*, eu"f tningMr. Mendlen
Womenof Spring by Lou Ravel..................ls:ay,1.Perplally, I enjoylearningunusualwlrOsanOmeanings,
andtheydo havetheirplacein ,.liarder,,crosr*o.Or.
Ecphonesis
by ErnieFurtado
But puzzle
.........................
f 5 edibrs haveto havea senseof what solven
*L f*"fy to find
IdentifyingInitiatsby EricAiben ................f6 interesting,
andmustavoidusingobscure
rei"i*.siurt U..ur.
ModernLatin by Merl Reagle
they're
tired
......................
of theusualmeanings
17
of commonwords. fu Mr.
Uorratthe Cluesby SidneyL. Robbins
........1g Mendlenimplies,too manyconsfuctorsand editorsusetheir
reference
Troublein theBookcase
booksasa crutch,f,Uingtf,ei,purrfesiin
byFrances
Flansen
n.edt"rsty
......19 obscurereferences
just to makerrremaiificutt
SayWhat? by RichardSilvestri....................20
t sotue.
Oneexamplewill illusratethedifference
Shorthanb
d y L o u i sS a b i n ..
.
U"i**n ..interest_
.. . . . . ..............2t ing"
.,Mauna
and-"ne€dlessly
obscure.,,
i, *," aru"you,ll
Orchestration
by Randolph
Ross.........
.........22 almostall thetimefor thewordLOA, and_;for goJ reason. see
peopte
Will of the
by MiihaelW. perry.......22 just isn't anotherway to define the *o.O'*irf,out There
using an
It Cleanby CathyMillhauser..............2Suncommonreference,
soaneasyptnzlewon,tdefineLOA"u"y
5..q
PuzzleNeophyte
by Charles
R.Woodard...........26 orherway. Burit,sperfectlyAf ,ignt for a traraeipuzzleromake
thesolverdig a linledeeper.
..FIa*J
MideastMoviedomby Alex Vaugfrn.....
_ boff"g",,won,I
.......27 be-familiarto most,but TheJue
at leastsolversJff tuu" a frameof
EscortServiceListings by JeaneiVesfer.....27
reference
to discerntheanswer...Long:Hawaiian,,is
CONTEST PIJZZLE #5:
alsomore
but expertsolven will find ir ino..ring
lifficutt
ro
leam rhar
RatedNinefor Difficultyby EricAlbert.........2g ldaunaloa means,,long
mounrain',in Flawaiian.
But whatif LOA werefte lastname
of an unOistinguished

CROSSWORDS

VARIETYPIJZZLES

Diagramless by StanleyNewman
Cryptic Crossword #l

t4

by Emily CoxandHenryRathvon
..........24
Cryptic Crossword#2 byKuenL. Hodge
....2
Split DecisionsrM
by GeorgeBredehorn.
...,...25
Classifieds
SOLUTIONS

29

:ffj:ijl3J:13r,*::??gy^oranuuu."uiutionforrepidop
eriss of Angola?Whatif LOA weren"n*"
oiu;;;;ffi;;
with apopulationof 364?Wouldthese
meaniffi efai. gamefor
crosswords,just becausethey might appear
i"n**a reference
book?Of coursenot! A crosswordedimr
hasto knowwhereto
drawtlreline. I don'tknowof anysoluer,Mr.
VtlnOteninctuAeO,
whowouldwelcomethissortofbbsc_e,
uselesinformationin
crosswords.
By theway, therewas baseballplayer
namedLOA, and
lo
thereis noLepidoprerists
ofAngofa.nur rh.r" aauaty is alOe,
Utaf, andir doeshavea populationof
3&.
Andyoucanfinditregularlyasa cluein acertain.
prestigious,,
newqpaper
crossword.

tr

Newman
ln OtherWords.../Stanley

FEATURES
t
In Other Words...bv StanlevNewman
illiam
Lutwiniak
In Memoriam: W
3
Letters
3
Contest#4 Results(January/February)......3
Cover Story by HeleneHovanec
Man
J
Will Shortz:Renaissance
Are
5
And the Other Wynners
Terms of Engagement
7
TreasureHunt
9

TheBrandName'Controversv'

A numberof readers
responding
to our recentCrosswordese
surveyincludedcommentson someof their own pet peeves.
Severalbroughtuptheirdislikeof brandnames.Thisletterwas
typical: "Any word which can be found in conventional
dictionariesshouldbe okay. But can we get away from
capitalizednamesof commercialproductslike Lux andTide?
Pleasehold down on items which mav not be aroundin 10
years."
As I recall, ttris so-called"controversy"aboutthe useof
inpuzzleswasstafledbyanewspaperreporter,
brandnames
not
a ptiuzzle
editor. A ptzzle editor, discussingthe differences
"traditional"
between
and"contemporary"puzzles,happened
Eureka! by BrendaPomeranceandRon Gilman... 4
to use
4 to mentionthat contemporarypuzzlesaremorelikely"major"
Rd. Work by StanleyMerkin
names,
reporter
brand
and
the
seized
on
that
as
a
Newsmakers bv Shirlev Solowav
6
More Than One by MonteRohane
8 difference.
Let's set the record straight.A puzzleeditor's decision
Ye Gods!by KarenHodge
10
whether
or not to usebrandnamesin crosswordsis a minor
Mad Magazinesby FredPiscop
10
point.
stylistic
It hasto be,sincebrandnamesmakeuplessthan
TV Twosomes
by AlexK. Justin.....................11
percent
one
of
theanswers,evenin "contemporary"puzzles.
PatterAnswersby CathyMillhauser
............I2
What youngwhippersnapper
startedthe practiceof using
GettingtheMotor Started
"itemswhichmaynot
names
brand
and
bearoundin 10years"
Robert
Wayne
Williams
13
by
puzzles?
in
It
Surprise!
was
Margaret
Farrar,
at least50 years
Inside Stuff by RichardSilvestri
15
"Crosswordsof TheTinre
Examining
ago!
a
copy
of
s," Series
Seeka Phrase,Shakespeare
(1943),
1
first
New
ttre
compilationof
YorkTimescrosswords,
by Manny Nosowsky
15
Wired Up by Alfio Micci
L6 I've countedhundredsof contemporaryreferencesthat we'd
Hague-Zasperation by Merl Reagle
t7 consideroutdatedtoday.Herearejust a few:
"Reclpientof theDistinguished
FlyingCrossfor heroisrnat
Moonlightersby MannyNosowsky
18

CROSSWORDS

Bali"
Murder of theCathedralby CathyMillhauser
...19
Mark My Words by ErnieFurtado...............20 "U.S.High Commissionerof the Phlllppines"
"Island city ln enemyhands"
Loopedby Frances
Hansen
..........2I
"Brltish prlsonersinceMay 10, 1941'
Big Shotsby Randolph
Ross
........22
"Former presidentof the World Bank"
A Tale of Copseand Robbers
by Max Hopkins
....................22 "Unconqueredport on the GulfofFinland"
"U.S.ship sunk by Japan"
PardonMy What? by Charles
E. Gersch.....23
"Middle Easterncountryvisitedby Willkie"
StirredPotsbyRoben
Lieblich
...............
...........26
Books of original crossword plzzles,with an intendedshelf
ZZToppers by A. J. Santora
.......27
life
of several years, have never been this topical, nor should
Variety Packby Trip Payne
........27
they
be.
CONTESTPUZZLE #6:
But Margaret Farrar recognized 50 years ago the need for
Ugly to the Nth Degreeby RichardSilvesri...28

VARIETY
PUZZLES
Diagramlessby StanleyNewman..................
14
Cryptic Crossword#1
by Emily CoxandHenryRathvon
..........24
Cryptic Crossword#2 byFredPiscop
...........U
Split Decisionsru
by GeorgeBredehorn.
.......25
Classifieds
Page 2

29

newspaper crosswords !o be as topical as the rest of the
newspaper.It's somethingttrather former contemporarieshave
"new
forgotten. As the
kid on the block" with my nationally
syndicatedNewsday Daily Crossword, I've broughtback this
topicality.
As far asbrand namesgo, MargaretFarrar originated theiruse
"blatant"
too, in amannerfar more
thantoday's occasionaluseof
words like ESSO and OREO. Farral's first "inner clue" theme
crosswordsof the early 1950's were basedon brand namesof
cigarettes, automobiles and the like. If puzzle solvers accepted
Mrs. Farrar's use of brand names and contemporary references
40-plus yearsago, what's all the fuss about today?
n

CROSSWRD

May/June1992