Are crosswords anti-reading?

August 21, 2008
Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share
Ron Rosenbaum at Slate.com seems think so.

"What always gets to me," he writes, "is the self-congratulatory assumption on the part of puzzle people that their addiction to the useless habit somehow proves they are smarter or more literate than the rest of us."

And he takes major shots at Crawfordsville-native and puzzle guru Will Shortz in the process.

Read his whole slap-you-in-the-5-Down essay here.

So, puzzle-lovers, how do you counter-argue? How to rationalize hours spent with crosswords, Sudoku and the like?

Your thoughts?
ADVERTISEMENT
  • As an occasional puzzle person, I was somewhat shocked to find I was wasting my time. I could be reading opionated self riteous commentary instead of doing a little brain exercise (by the way, puzzles, especially trying out new kinds of puzzles has be shown to be effective in preventing/delaying onset of Alzheimer's and other dementias).

    Perhaps I should stop physical exercise as well since I could also be using that time to be more productive.

    Carolyn
  • I found it interesting that Ron believes puzzling is a 'habit'. I think that for myself and others I know, it is more of a down-time, relaxing thing to do. I usually only work on puzzles when my mind is overloaded with books, TV, work, media, long stretches of highway... Puzzles have and always will be a form of entertainment. Maybe the reason Ron doesn't puzzle is because he sees them as mindless 'work'. I do agree that some people can take them too seriously and can equate their crossword greatness to genius-ness, but don't you think writing a whole article on the uselessness of puzzles is a bigger waste of time?
  • I bet she has never completed a crossword puzzle herself. But seriously, crossword puzzles build vocabulary and exercise the brain. Who could be against that? There are always crazy obsessed people out there who take everything too far, but I think we as a society would be better off if MORE people did crosswords.
  • It's simple - we are smarter than the rest of you.
  • I love reading, and I love doing puzzles. The activities are not mutually exclusive and may be related. Working puzzles may not solve the world's problems, but neither will most hobbies.
  • Funny enough, the people I know that are cross-word puzzles lovers are extremely intelligent and well-informed. Not mentioning the fact that they are voracious readers... So, Ron's theory is probably a very personal opinion about the people he knows...

Post a comment to this blog

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT
  1. The Affordable Care Act is not the reason for the slow recovery and lack of high paying jobs for low skill workers. This is a trend that has been going since the early 80's. The recovery is real in the sense that GDP has been growing steadily at a rate of roughly 2.5% since the recession ended in late 2009 (newsflash, the stimulus worked) and the unemployment has been steadily dropping. The reason issue we are facing deals with a skills gap (not enough workers with the right credentials / experience) and wage stagnation due to corporate America being focused solely on maximizing profits for shareholders and not caring about the American middle class. Why should they? Multi-billion dollar mutlinational companies keep offshoring their profits in order to avoid paying taxes (which makes our deficit worse) they convince Americans to fight amongst themselves. If you want to create jobs and reduce the deficit, raise the minimum wage and change corporate tax laws. Of course, if you want to continue to belive that tax cuts for wealthy create jobs (which they don't) and allow corporations and the wealthy to continue to make you cover more and more of the costs of maintaining infrastructure, funding the military and other government services, then keep voting Republican. Hopefully someday you wake up and realize what's been going on since Reagan took office.

  2. Helloooooo, my name is Kate. I am so joyous to share this wonderful testimony about what Dr. Osoijiakhena, a great spell caster, did for me and my family. I wedded a year and 6 months ago, we were very happy during this whole period, i really love my husband so so much. I started noticing changes when he started coming home late at night, he stop paying attention to me, i later found out that he was having an affair with another lady, i dont know what she did to get to him but she really got a hold on him. He started spending weekends with her, and threaten for divorce. I was so heart broken and devastated, i spent many night thinking on how to get my husband back. A friend took it upon herself to to introduce me to one Dr. Osoijiakhena, a great spell caster, who once helped her with a spell that reunited her family and helped her husband secure a very prolific job. Though i had my doubts and never believed, but i decided to give it a try because i was helpless. I contacted Dr. Osoijiakhena, the Spell caster, to help me reunite my family by bringing back my husband from that other woman and break whatever hold she had on him. He only just told me that it's a minor issue, once i provide and do everything he will ask me to do, then i will have my family back again. I did everything he required. And he did it!!!!! My husband returned back to me and pleaded for forgiveness, and i also secured a well paid job in a big company, just as the great spell caster, Dr. Osoijiakhena said. I am so so happy to share my testimony on this wall. I am using this medium to tell every one that has same or similar problem to try the great Dr. Osoijiakhena through his mail: drosoijiakhenaspell@gmail.com......he is so real!!!!! He can also help you with: (1) IF YOU WANT YOUR EX GIRL/BOYFRIEND TO RETURN BACK TO YOU (2) IF YOU WANT YOUR HUSBAND/WIFE BACK (3) IF YOU WANT TO BE PROMOTED IN YOUR OFFICE (4) IF YOU WANT YOUR MAN OR WOMAN TO LOVE YOU (5) IF YOU WANT A CHILD (BARREN) (6) IF YOU WANT TO BE RICH/WEALTHY (7) IF YOU WANT YOUR HUSBAND/WIFE TO BE YOURS FOREVER (8) IF YOU'VE BEEN SCAMMED AND WANT YOUR MONEY BACK (9) IF YOU ARE HAVING DELAY IN GETTING MARRIED (10) IF YOU HAVE A COURT CASE AND WANT TO WIN (11) IF YOU'RE A DRUG ADDICT AND YOU WANT TO REALLY STOP (12) IF YOU CANNOT IMPREGNATE A WOMAN (STERILE) (13) ALL TYPES OF DISEASES I advise you to contact the great Dr. Osoijiakhena, the spiritualist for solutions via his email: drosoijiakhenaspell@gmail.com

  3. Sergeant McNally is buried in Cathcart Cemetery on a hill known as McNally%u2019 Hill. The Cemetery is in a natural bushland setting and is very well maintained.The emergency department at Ararat Hospital is known as the John McNally Emergency Department. Cathcart is approx. 4.6 km from Ararat and is approx. 345 m above sea level.

  4. My spring chicken of a Mom is turning 75 years young. She is a big fan of Frankie and I think she would get a big kick out of the film. I wanted to take her to the Broadway play but am priced out. Thanks for your time and consideration. Oh yea, Wildwood! Joie

  5. I thought this company would go bankrupt in 2013/2014. I predicted that four years ago. I was wrong. It will take another couple of years, but they will get there.

ADVERTISEMENT