A note to Gambit crossword fans



Last week's paper was the first in many years without a crossword puzzle. Gambit’s longtime crossword constructor, Merl Reagle, died Aug. 22 of complications related to pancreatitis. Merl was 65 and a legend in the crossword world; his death was memorialized in The New York Times (twice!), The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times and other papers. And he had the ultimate honor of our age: a cameo appearance on The Simpsons.

In the weeks to come we will try out two crosswords that are popular in other alt-weekly newspapers. In Sunday's paper, you'll find both "Jonesin'," created by Matt Jones, and “The American Values Club Crossword,” edited by Ben Tausig. Both have the cultural references and wordplay that were so popular in Merl's puzzles — fewer clues about obscure rivers and dynasties, more clues about pop music and slang and lots of puns — some great and some so awful they're great.

Eventually we'll just run one puzzle, but we want to get reaction from the cruciverbalists among our readers (crossword solvers are a passionate bunch). Which one do you prefer?

Please let us know your thoughts. Email us with “crossword” in the subject line. Happy solving.

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