A “Lil High Five” from Michael Sharp




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Back in June I was feeling bad about how little I’d been constructing, so I decided to construct little puzzles. I wasn’t aware of the New York Times’ own mini puzzles until last week and I’m not sure why, considering they became a feature last year. Recently some not-so-nice things have been said regarding these dinky offerings and I agree with a lot of it, albeit not so vitriolically. For me, constructing pint-sized puzzles is a great opportunity to write some extra good clues to compensate for the grid’s puniness; remember: it’s not how big it is, it’s what you do with it– and there’s just not a lot of motion in the ocean for the NYTimes’ little boats to toss about on. If you know what I mean.

Michael and I drunkenly made a puzzle construction pact at Lollapuzzoola 8 and we’ve been working together on various projects. After trying out a NYTimes mini for the first time, I shared my minithemeless #4 and nary an hour or so later I received the little treat from Michael that I’m pleased to share with you here. He’s calling them “Lil High Fives” and I think that’s just great. We will make as many as we feel like and I will post them here.


A “Lil High Five” from Michael Sharp

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