Cryptic Puzzle TOM TOCE
I Never Do Anything Twice . . .
THE SuDoku FRoM TWo ISSuES AGo proved enormously
popular. Any normal person would repeat that format exactly. but that
contradicts the credo I try to live by, as expressed in the verse below.
So what to do?
Once, yes, once for a lark.
Twice, though, loses the spark.
One must never deny it,
But after you try it
You vary the diet . . .
You’ve my highest regard,
And I know that it’s hard,
Still, no matter the vice,
I never do anything twice.
Trying to have it both ways, I am repeating the Sudoku idea, with some new
twists. This time, I am not providing the
letters that will fit, Sudoku-style, into the
diagram. You must ascertain them from
the clues. One hint, though: Look for the
anagram clues. They especially will help
you determine the eight letters.
Eight letters? Yes, because this Sudoku also uses blackouts—the nine
characters will be three vowels, four
consonants and one blackout. The
completed diagram will meet Sudoku
requirements: The nine characters will
each appear once in every row, once in
every column and once in every 3 × 3
The cryptic clue answers will fit into
the diagram, Boggle style. That is, each
word occurs over adjacent squares, moving up, down, left, right or diagonally.
Note that there are 72 letters called for
by the 17 clues, and they will fit into the
diagram in a one-to-one correspondence.
This fact can help a lot in deciphering
some of the clues: Each letter in the
diagram is used only once. Starting and
ending points are provided (and shaded
in the diagram, as additional guidance).
I have also started you out by placing
three of the nine blackouts.
A correct solution will include the
answers to the 17 clues, a properly
completed Sudoku diagram and the
eight-letter last name of the author
of the verse, who also happens to be a
seminal figure in American cryptic puzzle circles.
Most of the answers are common
words. All but one is playable in Scrabble,
and that one is a common prefix. Another
is somewhat unusual but mildly suggestive, so I thought it would be perfect for
a bunch of actuaries. There are no proper nouns. You can’t play proper nouns in
Scrabble, so I’m being redundant here.
But better that than deficient!
The clues are all cryptic clues. This
means that one end is a fairly straightforward definition of the answer, while the
other is an alternative, often mechanical,
way of getting to the same word. The
mechanical means I may use include
puns, homophones, anagrams, constructions and double definitions. (For
a further explanation of cryptic clues,
e-mail me at Thomas.Toce@ey.com.)
Ignore punctuation, which is intended
Thanks to Eric Klis, for test-solving
and editorial suggestions.
Solutions may be e-mailed to the
author at Thomas. Toce@ey.com. In
order to make the solver list, your
solutions must be received by Sept.
a3..a1 Ways domes cracked ( 5)
a6..b7 It makes sense? Ridiculous! For
starters, no one negotiates ( 3)
b3..c4 Horrid hockey star ejected and
put away ( 3)
b5..a5 He’s wacky, that transvestite! ( 3)
b9..c9 Ten cents for poor Demi ( 4)
c1..e3 Kind of film appearing in thin
dielectric ( 5)
c5..c8 Frenetic dancing in Missouri?
Shut your mouth! ( 4)
d2..c2 Whispering, “Attila, dear” ( 3)