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Diabolically Arcane

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Xmas Salon (51)

23 December, 2013

Less a Salon than a Post-It note to say the DA website will be in summer mode this week, and for much of January. That means a slow pulse while everyone heads for the cooler corners to read, splash and rejuvenate.

To regular dabblers, thanks for all your inventions and deviations in 2013. And to newcomers, possibly the new Cluetopians – curious to see what this website offers – enjoy your browsing time, and look for more active mischief later in the new year.

Just to keep your mouse finger busy, I have pre-loaded a few wordy challenges to punctuate the next month, including the customary WoWs and Birdbrains, as well as the odd clue-parade. (Of course, to get a stronger hit, grab the latest Puzzles and Words instalment.) But don’t be unnerved to suspect you may be in a chatroom of one on some days. Everyone needs a rest now & then – and this centennial year has been annus hecticus.

Of course, if you find a stellar Brit puzzle, tell the forum below. Indeed, any wordy news is appreciated, should you meet a language curio in your travels. Or maybe make a brainteaser like this one: What TV drama can gain ‘The’ at the start to become a band? (And we don’t mean Huey Lewis and The News.)

Merry X and have a fruitful and fanciful 2014. Yours verbally, DA

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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