Yes, this is Will Shortz.

Yes, hello, Mr. Bellamy. I did receive your application.

Well, to be frank, I’m not sure you’re the right fit for the New York Times Puzzle Division.

No, I agree, those are some impressive credentials. None of the other candidates have nearly the breadth of experience you do writing crosswords for maritime publications. But we’re looking for a bit more variety in our puzzles.

Well, take a look at the sample crosswords we provided. Now take a look at yours. Did you notice anything unusual about your letter distribution?

It was probably more than just “a little heavy on the Rs.” And while many of our puzzles adhere to a theme, we’re really looking for someone capable of producing multiple different themes in any given week.

No, that’s really not necessary, you don’t need to—

Okay, fine. Eight letters? That’s gotta be DOUBLOON. But that’s still—

“Disease resulting from Vitamin C deficiency?” SCURVY, obviously. But Mr. Bellamy—

RUM! The answer is RUM! But we do not have a job for you, Mr. Bellamy, we just don’t! I’d appreciate it if you’d accept that and move on.

Okay, fine, one more.



Starts with an M, huh? How about MOTIVATIONAL?

Okay then, I give up.

You’re not going to tell me? So be it. Goodbye, Mr. Bellamy. Please don’t call here again.

Denise? I’m looking for a twelve letter word starting with an M. The clue is: “Will Shortz is this.”

Pirate Crossword at SnorgTees