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PUZZLE: Unthemely #80



Over the last few weeks I’ve been leading corporate team-building workshops for Puzzah!, a puzzle room business in downtown Denver. The participants often ask me questions related to my work as a crossword constructor, most commonly, “Do you know Will Shortz?” No one has yet asked me the stereotypical “which comes first, grid or clues?” question. Yesterday a participant asked me about my favorite entry in a crossword I constructed and I mentioned the German word GEMUTLICHKEIT that I used as a seed in an Unthemely puzzle. It’s not my absolute favorite but it illustrated how an unusual word with an interesting meaning is a popular starting point for a crossword constructor. I’ve started thinking about other possible crossword questions that workshop groups might ask and what my answers would be. Of course, it would probably be a better use of time to put together a stock answer about Will Shortz.

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