Ask any cruciverbalist where to start with puzzles and they will warn you it can quickly become obsessive.
For The Saturday Paper’s resident cruciverbalist, Mungo MacCallum, the idée fixe started early with the crossword over breakfast at his family’s kitchen table. It continued through university, where a professor once threw out MacCallum for puzzling over a crossword during a lecture – “Not, he insisted, for being distracted over 9 across, but for taking too long over it. Undeterred, I puzzled on.”
Puzzles can provide not only entertainment, but also insights others cannot see, and enlarge both horizons and experiences. As MacCallum says, “Who would not rejoice to discover the notorious Britney Spears among stern Presbyterians?”
On that happy note, get solving.
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Mungo MacCallum is a political journalist and commentator and the author of several books. He has written for The National Times, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Nation Review and The Monthly. He is The Saturday Paper’s crossword writer.