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Comments on Puzzle #31225: Cryptic Puzzle 15
By Joe (infrapinklizzard)

peek at solution       solve puzzle
  quality:   difficulty:   solvability: line logic only  

Puzzle Description Suppressed:Click below to view spoilers

#1: Joe (infrapinklizzard) on May 16, 2018

The description is a clue to the subject using cryptic crossword clue rules.*

Every cryptic clue is made up of two parts; a definition, and a literal description of the answer using wordplay. They can be in either order (though not intertwined) and there is no separation between them.

Here is a page describing some of the techniques:
or an easier-to-read PDF:

*The length is not given because the picture gives another clue.
#2: Raymond Fuller (rfuller4) on May 16, 2018 [SPOILER]
Comment Suppressed:Click below to view spoilers
#3: Koreen Marcum (mom24plus) on May 16, 2018
#4: Joe (infrapinklizzard) on May 16, 2018 [SPOILER]
Comment Suppressed:Click below to view spoilers
#5: Joanne Firla (JoFirla) on May 16, 2018
Thank you for breaking it down. I have yet to figure out any of your cryptic puzzles, but that hasn't stopped me from trying.
#6: Joe (infrapinklizzard) on May 16, 2018
A good way to start is to dissect finished clues to reverse-engineer them. Look for the "grammar" of the clue. Make sure you can see how each and every word fits into the clue. This gives you a starting base when you look at new clues. It gives you an idea of what to look for when trying to separate the definition from the wordplay. You get a feel for keywords that broadcast the type of clue (like odd, broken, weird, etc., that imply an anagram).

Keeping trying is the only way to learn.
#7: Bruce Yanoshek (yanogator) on May 17, 2018
Thanks, Joe. Cryptics are the only kind of crossword I do. Regular crosswords are just boring now, because either you know the word or you don't.
#8: Bill Eisenmann (Bullet) on May 17, 2018
I got the answer pretty quickly, having been turned on years ago to cryptics the same place as pbn (thank you forever, Games World of Puzzles!), but couldn't make heads or tails of the image until I knew what it had to be. Keep 'em coming Joe!
#9: Joe (infrapinklizzard) on May 17, 2018
I also started with Games Magazine. For many years I thought the cryptics were a waste of space. I did almost every other puzzle, but couldn't even get started on them. Then, slowly, I made some headway, usually with the anagram clues. I would diagram the clues I finished to understand them better. (This was before the internet and other easy distractions.)

I was very proud the first time I finished a whole puzzle. And then I had a large backlog of puzzles to do. Woohoo! When I'd finished those and the ones I'd found in the bookstore, I started making my own tiny ones (mostly 5x5 with 6 clues each).

All these puzzles are my own clues. I subscribe to Afrit's maxim that "I need not mean what I say, but I must say what I mean". Clues that have extra words to make the "surface sense" better but which don't make sense in the "literal sense" annoy me. <rant> For example, "It's exhausting, but follow it up with a telephone call (6)" [down clue] with the answer "tiring". "It's exhausting" is NOT a proper definition of tiring. The "it's" screws it up. (Also the "but" makes no sense in the literal version.)</rant>

Eventually that obsession faded a bit. And now I can't even find any cryptic books in bookstores. Very sad. My favorite setters were Cox and Rathvon. They always said what they meant.
#10: Kathy Cain (kathycain) on May 18, 2018
For me, cryptic puzzles are a form of mental gymnastics. Thanks for these puzzles, Joe.
#11: JoDeen Mozena (ozymoe) on May 21, 2018
Joe, I still have a subscription to GAMES magazine! I ordered my first subscription back in the 70's when they started up...their parent company was Playboy, believe it or not! I'm not too sure how that came to be, probably something to do with the publishing business.

I love the cryptics, too lol. Those extra words that annoy you, annoy me as well. I have a very logical mind and I want it all to fit neatly. Thank you for these!

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