A Gratuitous Puzzle

by Victoria Fernandez Grande & Ross Trudeau

[.puz][PDF][Solution] 💸💵💰

As promised, here’s are links to Tipsy Puzzlers, Ep. 1. Part 1 is the conversation with Amanda Rafkin, and Part 2 is the actual puzzle construction, featuring chat bar input from several puzzle luminaries.

Next time we do this we’re going to record it differently to frame just the speakers’ video, and perhaps we can sort out a way to include the chat. (We got invaluable input from a variety of puzzle luminaries who called in to drink/puzz with us.) Feel free to leave a comment: what was fun/useful about Tipsy Puzzlers? What could change?

Drop your email in the field to the right if you’re interested in getting a heads-up when Episode 2 drops (as well as the weekly Sunday Rossword puzzle, of course).

Speaking of, this week’s grid is a collaboration with Victoria Fernandez Grande! Spoilers and discussion of “A Gratuitous Puzzle” after the jump…

Your crossword habit, that is

Developing this puzzle was a flippin’ JOURNEY.

TWENTY PERCENT / TIP struck me as a wonderful revealer idea, because TIP, a 3-letter phrase, is exactly 20% of a standard grid-spanning 15-letter answer. “Great!” I thought to myself. “Now all I have to do is find a few answers that are 15-letters, contain T-I-P consecutively, and have no other T’s, I’s, or P’s in them!”

Hoo baby. Easier said than done. I smashed my head against that particular wall for a long time. I even tried to crowdsource on Twitter, which yielded only answers I’d already uncovered.

We were only off to the races when my favorite Spaniard and Harvard Business student Victoria Fernandez Grande (the Notorious V.F.G., before you ask) and RESEARCH S[TIP]END presented themselves.

Victoria, by the way, recently returned to Cambridge from her native Spain to continue her studies and (HOPEFULLY) do some more socially distant crossword constructing with me.

Among people named in this puzzle:

Happy Sunday, friends!


3 thoughts on “A Gratuitous Puzzle

    • Also, off the top of my head: ANTIPORN MEASURE (“Smut-curbing legislation”) or GLOBAL ANTIPODES (“Tokyo and Rio, loosely speaking”)? Maybe also something about the Granadan ALTIPLANO, but that may just be a tad too exotic…

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