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.

Loading tweet...

Meh 11

10 June, 2011

Was it me? Maybe I woke up feeling grumpy, but a month back, Times 8971 really rubbed me the wrong way. In fact it debbur me, with three Meh clues in a single puzzle.

For newcomers, Meh looks at clues that don’t measure up, for reasons I explore below. If you agree, then amen. If you don’t, then mount a counter-claim. Either way, see if you can concoct a slicker alternative – I dare you.

  1. Writer gives us news on economist = WORDSMITH [Times 8971 – Smith the economist is called Smith because his ancestors once smithed things, just as wordsmiths do….Am I grumpy?]

  2. Writer of poetry filling king and partner with desire = HENRY LONGFELLOW [Same puzzle, and kindred beef. Henry the king = Henry the poet = Henry Bloody Rollins. And fellow isn’t a real leap either.]

  3. Mostly dry region, a part of US = ARIZONA [Ditto Times. So how do we know to truncate ZONE? The doubly duty of ‘mostly’ is mainly unfair.]

  4. Left an aquatic bird light = LANTERN [As surface sense goes, this effort from Shed is a dead albatross.]

  5. Braying beast making a fool of a woman = SHE-ASS [Brummie, a bit of karaoke for you: She’s Once, Twice, Three Times the Same She.]

  6. Conspicuous person calling for taxi’s public announcement device = LOUDHAILER [Is not a person hailing a cab equivalent to a megaphone hailing a crowd? Maybe I need a lie down.]

n"
comments powered by Disqus

Gargantuan News

Yep, my Gargantuan Book of Words is big & full of words. Not just English but secret codes, Papuan pidgin, Zulu worms, sound FX, funny goldfish, letter origami. You get the drift? It's big. It's fun. And it's out now

Medal

Gargantuan Book of Words

Sneeze words. Fake pasta. Viking slang. Gargantuan is a jumbo jumble of puzzles & games, mazes & quizzes, tailor-made for that wordy wonderkid in your life. Or anyone in love with letters, secret codes, puns, rhymes, emoji & all things languagey. More here 

read more +

Wordburger

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. 

read more +

Riddledom

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.

read more +

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
See Results