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Diabolically Arcane

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Cilla Black & White

7 August, 2015

Trivia gem: the late singer Cilla Black was born Cilla White. She only changed her stage name owing to a newspaper slip-up. Which probably makes her history's only vocalist who owes her name to a typo, of sorts. Probably.

The bungle has inspired today's skylarking - this week's Friday Folly. What other names could have been altered by subeditor, becoming their opposite? And if such a blunder had occured, what new fate (or career twist) would await the luminary involved? For example:

Bill Extend - Shorten dumps politics to be a freelance builder on the black economy

Vin Gas - Fast & Furious 8 - The Quest For An LPG Outlet

Salman Walklive - trekking guide based in Darjeeling

Lady Sane - Gaga admits to being Aladdin's lovechild 

Doff Draper - stripper on Madison Avenue

Feel free to toy with first names, both names, or combinations. I'll aim to have a go from Bendigo too. Have fun. 

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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


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 

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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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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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