I’m very pleased to present, with his permission, my friend Phil Stiendel‘s first crossword! We were in the shit together back in ‘Nam– er, grad school, and we share a love of science and puzzles and… The Smiths?
I used to hate-listen to The Smiths, mocking Morrissey’s self-indulgent misery treacle by singing along in the style of Kermit the Frog and flailing my arms about. I had a couple songs on my running playlist, and would laugh every time my endurance went up against “…and you go home and you cry and you want to DIE.”
But after my husband walked out on me in July and shit got real, I found myself listening to The Smiths all the time. And not just listening, but finding solace and meaning in Morrissey’s low expectations surrounding relationships, abandonment, not having any good clothes to wear, etc. In a moment of clarity I realized that things must be pretty bad if I’m actively relating to Morrissey.
So did I grow to love The Smiths? I’m not telling, but I was delighted to solve this Smiths-themed puzzle and I hope anyone who hates/loves Moz & Co. enjoys it too. Or hates it; I don’t care, I don’t care, I don’t caaaaaaaaaare
Phil thanked me for the “nice review” in the comments, and I realized that I spent the whole post talking about my own Smithssues, if you will (and you will). I want to say more about Phil and how nice it is to have my friends starting to make puzzles of their own.
I’m pretty sure Phil was carrying a puzzle clipboard before it was cool, and he doesn’t stop at crosswords– cryptics, metas, cryptic metas and crazy stuff that makes blood leak out of my ears. He came down to Lollapuzzoola ’14 with me, is an MIT Mysteryhunter, and wrangled me into participating in a BAPHL hunt. I believe he will be making a puzzle for the next hunt, and I will gladly post it here afterwards.
What keeps me making puzzles is how much fun they are to share, so it’s absolutely wonderful to get to solve my friends’ creations. Thanks, Phil!