Category Archives: Uncategorized

Woodworking 101

Holy crap, people — I did something HANDY. Doorknobs come in a standard size: They are made to fit holes with a 2 1/8″ diameter. The hole in my daughter’s bedroom door was, inexplicably, just 2″. It needed to be expanded by an eighth of an inch before the new doorknob could be installed. Here’s […]
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How to enjoy a National Puzzlers’ League convention

1. Get there on Wednesday, so that you can go to the picnic. Over the years, this has become the true start of the annual NPL convention, though officially the con doesn’t get going until Thursday evening. This year the variable weather in the host city — Portland, Maine — forced the picnic indoors, and […]
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“Moving Parts”

It’s been nearly three years since my last New York Times Sunday crossword. Way too long! We rectify that oversight with a new puzzle you can find in the 7/20 issue of the Sunday magazine. Expert solvers can avert their eyes from the special instructions — the puzzle will still be solvable, though it might […]
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Emoji That

A comedian on Twitter tried his hand at recreating a famous movie, from start to finish, in the medium of emoji. Can you figure out what movie this is?
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“April is for Authors”

I’m back from hanging out with two dozen authors and about 1,000 kids at “April is for Authors,” a popular and well-run festival in Palm Beach, Florida. Let’s see, what did I do down there… – I palled around with Tyler Whitesides, author of the “Janitors” series. Kids regard him as a flat-out rock star […]
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A shorter-than-usual ACPT wrap-up

I bounced around this weekend between varying states of healthy — one minute I felt fine, the next minute the cold I thought I had left behind came roaring back. Friday night at the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament, I did something utterly unheard of: I was in my hotel room by 8:30 p.m. and asleep […]
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It’s a Push

My daughter has been learning Javascript through Codeacademy’s online series of courses — ergo, I, too, have been learning Javascript. It’s been smooth sailing, more or less — we made a rock-paper-scissors game with no great difficulty, and we’re starting to wrap our minds around for loops and if statements. Every once in a while, […]
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Invasion! answer

The answer to this puzzle… Each answer word is found on a particular day of the month; that number also corresponds to a U.S. president. (What do aliens generally demand? “Take me to your leader.”) The answer word in that box can be found within the last name of that president… except for one of […]
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One More Meta

Before this year’s Mystery Hunt, I came up with a “practice metapuzzle” for my team to solve. Want to give it a try? E-mail me (ericberlin@gmail.com) if you’d like to confirm your answer. Invasion! When the aliens landed in your backyard and demanded what such aliens always demand, you thought, well, this isn’t likely to […]
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Gotta Catch Them All

Somewhere toward the end of the 2014 Mystery Hunt, my team, Palindrome, reached the runaround — a final series of puzzles even more dastardly than the puzzles we had experienced all weekend. We knew that another team had already won the event, finding a coin hidden on campus and earning the right and responsibility to […]
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