Busy evening tonight. Had a Clarinet Choir rehearsal earlier (we're playing an arrangement of "Danse Macabre," which is fun, along with some Smetana, Verdi, Dvorak, and even Sidney Bechet), and then spent the rest of the night brainstorming some new themes and writing trivia questions. Two of my coworkers challenged each other to a trivia throwdown this week (with a United States theme), and I volunteered to write the questions. They didn't do too well on today's battery of Geography and Places questions - I was disappointed that they didn't know that Basin St is in New Orleans, The Tenderloin is in San Fran, and that Route 66 goes from Cali to Illinois (I didn't even ask for the cities), but they both correctly worked out how many landlocked states are completely surrounded by other states. Tomorrow: Law and Order, Crime and Punishment. It will be comprised of, among other things, a "name that mass murderer" stop round and a question about the Twinkie Defense. Also, TWINKIE DEFENSE is a great entry for a puzzle.
In "great words that are unfortunately too obscure for puzzles" news, my roommate is taking a home piano tuning and maintenance course, and he showed me one bit of piano innards called "The Grand Whippens". Actually, that whole course is solid gold. It came with a pipe wrench looking tool, presumably for the actual turning of the tuning pegs, and a companion book called "Smooth Moves," which details no less than 20 essential manoeuvrues you can and should learn how to perform with the tool. They all have colourful names like "The 5 O'Clock Shadow" and "The Lefthand Lift".
Lastly, I guess now that I'm into puzzle-making I should stay on top of important holidays and dates. The commemorative holiday puzzle is a mainstay of the industry, after all. Long story short, no Valentine's Day puzzle today. What I do have for you is a themed puzzle that I made for this Friday's Campus Crosswords 15x15 feature. The theme isn't quite as strong as it could be, due to an oversight on my part involving letter placement, but the entries and clues make me laugh, so I think you might still enjoy it. Note that this is my original, unedited puzzle, and not necessarily the one you'll find in print.
More words, crossed and otherwise, next Tuesday.
Puzzle: 4G Coverage
Download the PDF and PUZ files here, or solve or download the Across Lite puzzle and/or software from the Java app below.