Friday, July 03, 2015

A chip off the old block …

Here’s my dad in 1948. He’s working on his favorite Sunday event...first reading The New York Times from cover to cover and then attacking the Puzzle. I recall many times when we would hold up our usual 4 PM Sunday dinner until he was finished.

I’m definitely a chip off the old block when it comes to this. For many years I’ve worked a crossword puzzle every night in the hope that it will stave off Alzheimer’s disease or, at the very least, help to keep me halfway alert in my old age ! 

Many of my contemporaries have done the same thing but we all seem to agree that it’s no longer as much fun as it used to be. It seems that the puzzles now are filled with current TV or Hollywood names and, since they hold little or no interest to me, the only way I could get the answer would be to look them up on the internet. Even the clues seem to have gone from “hard to solve but interesting” to “Oh, well. Another trip to the Computer”.

This all became very clear to me last night when I was stuck on a five letter space starting with the letter “P”. The clue was: “Unmilled rice in the Philippines”. Really??? For you die-hards out there the answer is PALAY but for me it was almost the last straw.

I still have Dad’s dictionary on display so I decided to look up that word. Of course it was not there. The closest word was PALAVER …definition “folderol” and that seems to say it all for me !


Blogger Anvilcloud said...

My brief fling with crosswords seemed to end abruptly quite some time ago.

5:35 PM  
Blogger Bonnie Jacobs said...

I think you've hit the nail on the head! Too many clues these days are from television or from movies or about "celebrities" who are known and "celebrated" for being well known. Too much drivel (twaddle, claptrap, balderdash, nonsense) for me!

8:28 PM  
Blogger NCmountainwoman said...

I am in total agreement with you. Far too many of the clues and answers involve celebrities these days.

5:12 AM  
Blogger troutbirder said...

My sentiments exactly...

6:27 AM  
Blogger Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Years ago, I would also attempt the NYT crossworld puzzles and it became a competition at the office where I was working. In truth, I never ever hoped to finish, but it was challenging and fun. I agree that current puzzles are much harder because of references to current things I either do not know or care to know.

7:33 AM  
Blogger possum said...

Ah, Crosswords. I, too, used to enjoy them immensely... and then, they changed as you said... so I gave up on them. Probably still have books of them sitting on some dusty shelf or shoved in a box of stuff I haven't gotten myself to throw out yet.
Mostly nowadays I do Sudoku. Or I get the latest edition of Mensa puzzles and play with them. Anything to keep the brain-cells functioning.
Years ago some friends and I used to tackle the VA Beach newspaper crossword in the faculty room at lunch time. Rule #1 - no pencils. Had to be done in ink! What fun, but they were not the NY Times! You could finish one on your lunch hour (22 minutes).

10:35 AM  

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