Showing posts from January, 2022

Miscellany #1: Double Dactyls

My latest obsession is the double dactyl , a poetic form that combines whimsy, triviality, and an appreciation of solid poetic meter. You can look up the full rules on Wikipedia, but should know that a double dactyl always takes as its subject a single name that fits double-dactylic meter: DUM-da-da-DUM-da-da. Which... is a surprising number of names! Once you start noticing them, you can't stop: if inspired, feel free to write your own double dactyls about Timothée Chalamet. Or William Lloyd Garrison. Or Czechoslovakia. Or Indianapolis... These are pop-culture double dactyls, which is a good place to start (I've seen a lot of good Lord of the Rings-based ones.) I've been trying to write one about Gilgamesh Gilgamesh, the antediluvian, Mesopotamian hero, but it hasn't come together yet: Witchery-ditchery Geralt of Rivia Raising a child and cursing his luck, Everyone else in this show’s so verbose while he’s monosyllabically muttering, “Fuck.   “Pictures of Spider-Man!”

Puzzle #4: "Food Fight!"

 I just participated for the first time in the annual MIT Mystery Hunt ! I had an absolute blast, highly recommend it to anyone even a little interested in puzzles, and want to give a massive thanks to the puzzle creators and hunt organizers. Also, on a related note, I have slept for approximately 8 of the past 72 hours. Here's one of the first puzzles I ever made, when I was highly enamored of the idea of theme answers crossing each other (OK, I'm still quite enamored of that idea, but have come to realize how uncommon it is for that to be possible.) More thoughts below the puzzle. Honestly, I'm surprised at how well this one holds up, in my estimation. While a lot of the fill is a bit on the obscure side, that mostly just makes it tricky; only a bit of the puzzle is properly bad . And the intersecting themers make for a much more interesting, open grid than many puzzles.

Puzzle #3: The Amazing Juggling Octopus

It's the 8th of the month, and you know what that means, maybe! It's time for a puzzle: this one's easy, light, and hopefully fun.