Archive for September, 2009

No Answers Today, Only Questions

September 15, 2009

Pretty deep title, huh?  Actually, I am trying to be both jokey and soul searching at the same time because the blog is a bit of a mess right now.  I did not post a puzzle on Friday, so of course no answers yesterday.  Some of the problems are technical, ie posts are out of order, wonky internet connections, cameras that won’t talk to laptops blah,blah, blah.  Some problems are familial, a toddler’s illness here, a financial discussion there et al.  There is also a pinch of “bit off more than I can chew”.  I had puzzles ready to go before I launched this whole thing, but I’ll be damned if 17 weeks didn’t go by a wee faster than anticipated. 

I am going to have to put a hold to things for a bit, and fix up some stuff around here (the blog) and here (pointing to own head).  There are nuts and bolts things to work out with the blog, I am not the most tech savvy dude that ever lived, and I am short on finished puzzles right now.  I would rather take some time off, clean up the blog and come back ready to go than to try and push through and keep up with haphazard or missed posts.  I’m not saying that I won’t fall behind again, but this gives me the best chance to continue on another uninterupted run of puzzles. 

Even though this blog is totally a hobby for me right now, I can not help but feel that this is a failure on my part.  I feel that I should have been able to stay on top of things better and kept the puzzles coming.  So I am disappointed in myself for not getting the job done as they say.  I do know that failure is a much better teacher than success, and it is true that you learn more from your mistakes than your triumphs.  So what then have I learned from doing Puzzling New York City?

  • I am not a Type A personality.  I am over 40 so the days of working ’til 3:00 AM are long gone, and I do not get any joy in taking time away from my family to persue this endeavor.
  • I am OK with this.  Whether this makes me a better or worse person I leave up to you. (Judgers)
  • I will always be better at finishing tasks if there is a tangible reward.  Right now there is no money in this, nor many readers.  I would be pushing through if either scenario changed, especially the ladder.  I am very good at working hard not to let someone else down.  Right now, I have no one to let down.
  • Having said all this I should still try harder.  If I do attract a readership through these posts, I must have the good habits of posting regularly already in place or I will do something like this when it will matter to readers.  This is my big step, putting work in without immediate results to make it smoother for my to do so when the results come in.
  • 17 straight weeks of puzzles is my record.  I will try and best that.  See?  There’s one of the artificial goals right there!

So that’s it for now.  I am off to do some blog clean up, evaluate my tech issues, and uh, oh yeah, work on some puzzles.  I will be back up and running on October 1, with a new puzzle October 2.  See you then.

IAAI Update! 10/5/09

Guess what?  I number two puzzles number 8!  Woo hoo!  So on the plus side my record is 18 straight weeks, but on the minus side I can’t count!  This will be fixed shortly.  Also, we are going to do a recap of puzzles on Oct. 1 with a new puzzle Oct. 8.

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Bugs

September 12, 2009

Arrrrrrrrrrrrrrgh!   Posts that won’t publish!  Sick toddler!  This weeks puzzle will be posted ASAP.  Answers will still be Monday.  God willing.

Answer to Puzzle#18 Brainteaser: Sports in the City

September 7, 2009

The answer to the question, “What is the winningest professional sports franchise to represent New York City?” is: (more…)

Puzzle#18 Brainteaser: Sports in the City

September 4, 2009

Since this is the Holiday Weekend and all, here is a short brainteaser:

What is the winningest professional sports franchise to hail from New York City?

Happy Puzzling and Happy Labor Day Weekend!

Pyramid Power!

September 1, 2009

I’m really enjoying constructing these word pyramids.  I seem to be able to create them with minimal problems, and I actually like the constraint of having a finite number of letters to use.  Constructing the puzzle feels more like solving a puzzle for me, especially when I am staring at all of the letters in Brighton Beach sans the second “B” and I come up with “Bathing Chore”.  When I go over a set of letters again and again and again, and then anything coherent pops up, it feels much more like finding an answer then creating one.

There are three challenges for me with these puzzles.  Firstly, I want to start with a different letter than any previous pyramids that I have done before for Puzzling New York City.  This means that B, N, and O are now off my list.  Only 23 more to go!  The trick is that I would like to have a legitimate one letter answer to start, and I have already used “blank” train and Avenue “blank”.  We’ll see how this goes.  The other two challenges are to keep as many clues as New York-centric as possible and to avoid extreme “puzzle speak”.  I think the most puzzle speak thing I got this time around was “Right A Bone”, but I didn’t find the phrase too jarring.  As for “Cher Boating”, I could have gone with “Herb Coating”, but the image of Cher toodling about New York Harbor in a yacht was just too delicious for me.

This brings me to the New York-centric phase.  Some things are totally based on New york stuff, like Go Bare.  The latest issue of Harper’s Bizarre (HQ’d in NYC) has supermodels who have dared to have their picture taken with no make-up on.  The mag itself called it Go Bare.  Go Fig.  Oh, and the models are shot in black and white with perfect lighting so they just still happen to look gorgeous.  Again, so brave of you ladies, so brave.  Other clues need more finesse to get into NYC.  For instance, an ad catch phrase (Grab One!) becomes a New York thing because the advertising world can still be referred to as Madison Avenue.  The Adam and Eve clue on the other hand was way too universal to jam into say St. Patrick’s Cathedral, so I let that one stand without a NYC reference.  So be it.

Is it a bit of a pain to make as close to 100% of my clues be about New York City?  Not really.  I am finding that the Big Apple has both a big reach and a big embrace when  it comes to the rest of the world.  It also provides a flavor to these puzzles that I like, and hopefully is paletable to you as well.

Holiday Weekend Puzzle

Friday’s post will be a short brainteaser.  Monday’s post will  be a short answer.  Tuesday’s post will have some info in it regarding September’s puzzles.

BTW

For anyone who cares:  Throbbing Ache is a true anagram for Brighton Beach.  Take from that whatever you want…