Last week, a fellow puzzler passed along this link, which had an intriguing premise. The folks at BuzzFeed asked prominent crossword constructors to contribute their favorite tricky or misleading crossword clues, challenging the audience to puzzle out as many of them as possible.
The constructors involved are a who’s who of top puzzlers, including Ben Tausig, Peter Gordon, Elizabeth C. Gorski, Brendan Emmett Quigley, Matt Gaffney, and several of the puzzlers involved in the Indie 500 tournament: Erik Agard, Neville Fogarty, Andy Kravis, and Evan Birnholz.
There are 14 tricky clues, each with either some crafty wordplay or some delightfully wicked humor attached.
Now, fair warning, some of these are a bit risque (one drops the f-bomb), but they will all put your puzzly skills to the test.
[I wonder how Nancy Drew would do…]
My personal favorites were “Journey accompanier, often [9 letters]” and “Michigan county I promise never to use in a crossword again [6 letters],” both of which involve a level of honesty and pop culture awareness that transcends standard crossing cluing.
I managed to riddle out 10 of the 14 clues. Some of them were vague enough to allow for multiple answers — you don’t have a grid or crossing entries to help you limit options, after all — so I gave myself credit if the correct answer was one of several that came to mind.
How did you do on this crafty BuzzFeed challenge, PuzzleNationers? Let me know! I’d love to hear from you!
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