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Diabolically Arcane

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Salon 55 (Speaking Live)

3 December, 2012

If you reach this post in time, you may catch my natter with Natasha Mitchell on Radio National’s Life Matters, around 915am, give or take.

Tomorrow evening, going from studio to auditorium, I’ll be presenting a comical crash-course in how to survive a close encounter of the cryptic kind at the Fitzroy Reading Room. Happy to report this free gig is booked out, which may inspire the City of Yarra to sponsor a sequel some time soon.

The whole hoopla is tied to the new title, Puzzles and Words, where I talk about the Fregoli Delusion, soyccinos and the whoa-boy trench of Far North Queensland. Buy the book if that makes no sense. While here’s the place to go huh if the week’s Times or Guardian puzzles make no sense.

And last up a puzzle: if SEPARATE shares its even letters – in matching slots – with DELAWARE, what American state shares its even letters with the well-known major city of another state? [And feel free to offer more odd/even state challenges, with byline and number in the Comments.]

Have fun out there.

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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