Puzzles, posts, news and general word-chat.

Diabolically Arcane

Bingo. You’ve reached David Astle dot com, a carnival of words, puzzles and more words. Welcome aboard, and have fun.

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Climate Con? Ha!

30 May, 2011

Just had to share that topical anagram with you, mixing the letters of MICHAEL CATON, the actor enmeshed in the carbon trading campaign, along with Climate-Cate. Major props to both of them, by the way, if this blog can wave a flag for a moment. Good to see some citizens – and two charismatic hirelings – create some counter-energy in the face of The Abbott & Barnaby Show, and the ulterior coal lobbies.

Enough tub-thumping. Time to rap a Wall Street Journal piece. The story looks at the hyper-newness of slang, how “yesterday’s cutting edge is tomorrow’s ho-hum”. Click here to learn about rando and rickrolling, biffles and vertical coffins. And see how you fare in the 8-question quiz. (Honest truth, I grubbed out a miserable three.).

And what new words can we add to the endless glossary? I love the gimmick I caught last week, namely antiversary, being a commemoration of a relationship break-up. Or the word in today’s Australian, to plip. Any takers? Pure onomatopoeia, of course. Plip is the new-century word meaning to unlock your car.

What more slang can we unlock? How about catonia, being the delusional trance suffered by Barnaby Joyce? Heard any coinages lately? All donations welcome.

Welcome to the new forum. Looks scary? It’s not. Feels iffy? It ain’t. The DisQus platform is here to block spam and lend us more chat options. That’s all. Please note, you don’t have to create a DisQus account to make a comment. If you do, however, it will speed your future visits. Be assured no details are abused, misused or reused. Let’s fight spam as one, and get back to the grand conversation. Thanks, DA

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Wordburger Awaits!

Welcome all puzzle-lovers, including any chompers of the Wordburger book or app. (Check them out if you enjoy words & trickery.) And if you still crave more alphabet mischief, click on the burger icon above for a fresh serve.



Packed with games, pickles, codes and cheesy puns, Wordburger is your chance to be a champion puzzler in 20 quick bites. Ideal for wordy kids keen to open a new language door, or grown-ups who want to cut their cryptic teeth. Click here. 

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Riddles in song, in code, in pictures. From Ireland & Wonderland, Einstein & Pompeii. Riddledom reveals 101 wry questions from 50+ languages & shares their secrets. A book to unlock culture via conundrum. Order here.

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Cluetopia roams the planet – and century – to find fresh crossword stories in 30+ languages. From shipwrecks to hoaxes, Cluetopia is a holiday for the head. Buy here.

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Recent Comments

Riddledom Rave

If you missed my riddle chat with Richard Fidler, then feel free to slurp the podcast at http://ab.co/1I9t1x5

Text-speak is creeping into Scrabble. Where do you sit?
OBVS I'm fine with it
Entrenched stuff - like LOL and OMG - but no more.
Words With Friends, maybe. Scrabble, no
Let the 'real' dictionaries decide first
Just the handy stuff, like FAQ and EUW
I mean, WTF?! No way
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