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Posts Tagged ‘Schadenfreude’

Listener No 4573: Jean’s Stuff by Schadenfreude

Posted by Dave Hennings on 11 Oct 2019

Schadenfreude’s very last Listener puzzle this week, following on from Falling in Love Again / Sagittarius Rising back in April.

OK, so I’d heard of the Karelia Suite, which provided the theme music for This Week on ITV way back when, but none of the others rang a bell. Hold on! There was Finlandia as well, and that eventually gave me the way in after I finally twigged that 1ac Top sailor overcome by alcohol got stripped (5) wasn’t a sailor but a top, DIABOLO.

Opus numbers no doubt led all of us on a search for the opus numbers of Sibelius’s works for which Wiki provides supplemental JS numbers where appropriate.

15ac Bacon spots Lady Sarah’s auntie (6) brought a smile for RASH + ER, and I never thought I’d find LI’L ABNER in a Listener crossword! As for the title, Jean’s Stuff, Sibelius must be turning in his grave.

For the last time, thanks, Schadenfreude.


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Jean’s Stuff by Schadenfreude

Posted by shirleycurran on 11 Oct 2019

Sad indeed to see that message in italics at the head of the preamble. We’ve grown used to solving very fair and imaginative Schadenfreude crosswords over the years and this one was no exception. One friend tells me that the title suggested the theme to him straight away but we had decided that KURGAN intersected with PTOLEMAIC producing KUOLEMA as clashing letters before we had a hint of what was to follow. Even then, I anagrammed those unfamiliar letters and produced an eye illness LEUKOMA before reading the preamble more carefully ‘The clashing letters specify whole thematic items exactly’. What a feat to produce words whose elements could be extracted and combined to give eleven of Sibelius’ works!

We had been attempting to justify FINN (for Mika Häkkinen) at 1d but now realised that he is a FINLANDER and that we can combine the FINLAN with the DIA of DIABOLO to give us FINLANDIA. KARELIA had to be there and we found it in the KAR of SIRKAR and the ELIA of TRISKELIA. I had muttered about the non-symmetrical grid but was now astonished tha Schadenfreude had managed to fit so much into a grid at all.

We needed Wiki to give us TAPIOLA, EVERYMAN, ODLAN, SPRING SONG, THE BARD, SWAN WHITE and SNOFRID and had now understood that we had to replace those titles with OPUS NUMBERS but we needed Wiki again to produce those, and were puzzled about three cases where ‘a secondary system must be used for the replacements’ until we grasped that a secondary JS system was used to identify nos 113, KUOLEMA, 115, KARELIA, and 189, SWAN WHITE.

I thought this was a delightful compilation and wish Schadenfreude could be with us to celebrate its appearance. Of course he was a first class Listener oenophile and his clues started and ended with libations, ‘Top sailor overcome by alcohol got stripped (5)’ gave us DIOL around AB and (g)O(t) = DIABOLO for the top, and ‘Junior officers getting drunk finally hearing Wren’s quiet call (4)’ produced SUBS + ON + (hearin)G + SUBSONG. We found coopers, sponges, Greek container for liquid, and a gin in the clues too, so let’s raise our glasses with a grateful toast to Schadenfreude.

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Listener No 4547: Titles by Schadenfreude

Posted by Dave Hennings on 12 Apr 2019

Listener No 4547: Titles by Schadenfreude

Not much to say this week with the posthumous publication of a puzzle by Schadenfreude. It would not be an exaggeration to say that he was a giant in our corner of the crossword world. He had over 250 puzzles published, including 27 Listeners where subjects included Hitchcock, American presidents, Buridan’s Ass and snooker, as well as this week’s Marlene Dietrich & Cecil Lewis. Many more appeared over at the Inquisitor, as well as at EV where he was Oxymoron. I understand that there are some of his puzzles that remain unpublished, so hopefully we will get to enjoy his work just a few more times. Thanks for all the entertainment, Schadenfreude. RIP.

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Listener No 4519: X by Schadenfreude

Posted by Dave Hennings on 28 Sep 2018

We’ve already had one Schadenfreude puzzle this year. Back in January there were the prime numbered presidents. My first thoughts with one of his puzzles is whether it’s going to be an easy-ish one or a bit more tricky-ish. I’m not giving too much away to say that it was middle-of-the-road-ish.

An extra word appeared in every clue. Those sharing one letter in common with their answer gave X using those letters. The others, using second and penultimate letters, gave what needed changing and what was to be revealed. The four unclued entries one cell in from the perimeter would provide the definition of Y which would also help to give Z.

All this turned out to be good fun, and the surface readings of the clues were amusing, given some entertaining extra words. We had a plucky European, an upright catholic, a diffident Italian, a swarthy earl, a rich sweetheart and, much to Shirley’s delight I’m sure, a boozy officer!

The definition of Y was DECLINED THE OPTION OF OPENING THE BETTING. The single letters provided by the clues gave cruciverbal and what needed changing and the resultant revelation was Five letters and Two word phrase in which Zs exist. The form the definition of Y traced was obviously a square, and I was lucky to guess at “checked” for Y since I hadn’t come across that meaning before.

It didn’t take long to see CROSSW in column 4 and thus change three letters to give CROSSWORD. I now wondered whether the “in which Zs exist” might be deviously guiding us towards PUZZLE as the second word, but, given that we could only change two more letters, it soon became clear that PUZZLE was impossible. GRID, however, was possible in row 10 and a crossword grid certainly, in the UK at least, has checked squares.

Thanks to Schadenfreude for another imaginative crossword showing how almost anything can become cruciverbal fodder.

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‘Quiet Guests’ by Schadenfreude

Posted by Encota on 26 Jan 2018

Welcome to the first solution & comments to a 2018 Listener Crossword …

A super puzzle to start 2018 with – many thanks Schadenfreude!  As ever with puzzles from one of the very best, there was some clue accuracy that I can only sit back and admire.  A couple of examples:

A group of [micro-organisms] put in to stop antibody (6)

Here I particularly liked the use of ‘group of‘ to define G, as in G8 = Group of 8 etc.  So this parsed as A G in REIN (stop) to give REAGIN.  [Note: the word in square brackets was removed before solving as per the puzzle’s Preamble]

Pompous [Quaker] possesses at least two-thirds of an acre (6)

It was the definition here – for BIGHAS – that I liked.  BIGHA is defined in Chambers as having quite a wide range of different areas.  The smallest of them is one third of an acre, so BIGHAS – i.e. presumably at least two of them – must be at least two-thirds of an acre.  Delightful.

2018-01-07 14.34.54

In the one cell that featured the George’s Bush, both 41 and 43 had to be ‘entered in thematic order’.  In practice that only appears to require a comma after the 41 to indicate their order – I hope I am not missing something here!

And the Title?  Quiet Guests = P + RESIDENTS.  Now if only I had spotted that before finishing the whole puzzle.  D’oh!

Cheers all,

Tim / Encota

PS If one was to create a Scoring System for Thematic Puzzles, what might you use to build up the Total score?  I’m currently experimenting with six, each marked out of 10:
Grid; Theme; PDM; Gimmick; Clues; Fun.  Do any of you already do similar?  If yes, I’d be grateful if you’d share with me via the Comments on this site.

Two or three of us compared notes at The Magpie party (many thanks Mark and friends!) very recently and were using very similar.  Thanks to Artix for suggesting the last one – I had been using ‘Overall’ – but that’s far more direct and Fun was exactly what I meant!

I’m not yet brave enough to share my marks per puzzle here – perhaps I’ll start later in the year once it’s clearer that these dimensions are working!


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