PUZZLING I.R.S.-timating

In the month of the taxpayer’s discontent, it’s nice to be the bearer of good news – I’ve discovered an entertaining, new (to me) magazine for puzzlers. It’s called GAMES and it comes out bimonthly with all kinds of puzzles, contests, and various articles and columns about different games and toys. For $5.97 and a 15¢ stamp you can .sign up for a year (six issues) by writing to P.O. Box 10147 – Des Moines, Iowa 50349. And I don’t think any regular of this page would regret it.


To solve the puzzle, first fill in the numbered blanks of any clues you can decipher. As an aid to the solver, the clue answers are in alphabetical order so that, for instance, the answer “Dallas” would precede the answer “Dalliance.” Each lime you fill a clue blank, transfer the letters to the correspondingly numbered blanks in the message.

Each message blank is characterized by a letter as well as a number – the letter indicates which clue the blank is to be filled from. Even with a very few clues filled in, you will begin to see words and phrases take shape in the message. Use word lengths, arrangement, and punctuation to help in deciphering the message. Work back and forth, from clues to message and from message to clues, until the puzzle is completed.

Each clue indicates the answer in more than one way. In addition to straight forward definitions, clues may also contain puns, plays on words, anagrams (“The ability to lead people in confusion is a charm” – CHARISMA), or embedded spellings (“How it zeroes in distinguishes a cannon”). Another common type of clue is word construction, where the answer is built of component parts. Example: “American leader required identification in gift” (PRESIDENT = I.D. inside PRESENT).

All abbreviations are acceptable as long as they are in currrent usage (e.g., TV, p.d.q., etc.). Isolated letters may be indicated in a variety of ways – as compass points, Roman numerals, grades or scores (A, F, “zero” = O, “love” as in tennis = O), musical notations (P, F for soft or loud respectively). Parts of “words may be used (IVE or just V might be indicated by “MidwIVEs”).

The one paramount rule is that the clue sentence, with a little repunctuation, will tell exactly how to get the answer.

Hint: Two answers are proper nouns.

Send the completed puzzle (or reasonable facsimile) to Puzzling, D Magazine, 1925 San Jacinto, Dallas, Texas 75201. All correct solutions will be held for one week after receipt of the first entry, at which time a drawing will take place to determine the winners. First winner will receive a $25 cash prize. Runner-up will receive a free one-year subscription to D. Winners and completed puzzle will appear in the May issue.


Keep me up to date on the latest happenings and all that D Magazine has to offer.