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Author Topic: The multinational August 31 crossword  (Read 1243 times)


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The multinational August 31 crossword
« on: August 31, 2017, 07:34:50 PM »
David Poole is a mathematician. As a teenager, he began solving crossword puzzles. Then his friends started giving him puzzle books as gifts. Finally his wife suggested he try to create a crossword of his own. He did. Poole's crosswords have been appearing in the New York Times and Los Angeles Times since 2008. His puzzle today includes these puns:

Volleyball players in Dublin? IRISHSETTERS
Number cruncher in New Delhi? INDIANSUMMER
Dance lessons in Madrid? SPANISHSTEPS
Airport inspectors in Beijing? CHINESECHECKERS

Beginning in the early 1700s, bread -- in addition to being a food -- was a symbol of subsistence or livelihood. In the 1930s, "bread" became a slang word for "money." In volleyball, "setting" is a fast maneuver which allows another player to make a spike. Illustrated instructions can be seen at

"Indian Summer" is a period of unseasonably warm dry weather, usually following a period of colder weather, in late autumn. The first known use of the expression appeared in 1782 in Michel Guillaume Jean de Crèvecœur's collection of essays, Letters From An American Farmer: "A severe frost succeeds which prepares it to receive the voluminous coat of snow which is soon to follow, though it is often preceded by a short interval of smoke and mildness, called the Indian Summer."

The Spanish Steps are not in Spain. They are in Rome, Italy. The 135 steps scale a steep slope between the Piazza di Spagna and the Piazza Trinità dei Monti and are named for the Spanish Embassy which sits at the base of the hill. A popular tourist attraction, the steps were cleaned and refurbished in 2016.

"Board member" is a clever clue for KING. It refers to a chessboard. "What a shark strikes with" is a clever clue for CUE. It refers to a pool shark or a hustler. It has been many years since brand names were not allowed in crosswords. Today's puzzle includes three: BIC ("Wite-Out maker"), AMANA ("Appliance maker since 1934") and MIATA ("Mazda MX-5, familiarly"). 

Today's puzzle had five clever puns with references to different countries. Kenya think of any others? (Okay, okay -- I'm going now.)


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