Here’s my attempt at finding a new format for crossword puzzles. Imagine you are looking at a normal, everyday crossword through a pair of binoculars. The lenses are fixed, as is the crossword page itself, so that you cannot scan around. You are stuck with exactly this view of the clues and this view of the grid.

I’ve constructed this crossword specifically for this puzzle, although I started with a square area. The idea is that with limited visibility and a limited section of each clue and entry area, you can still piece together all the answers. In some cases, there is an ending for a word that is guessable, in other cases it’s the beginning of the word.

After a certain point, a theme should emerge which will give you further insight as to what all the other clues are about. With a bit of guesswork at the start, a complete puzzle solution will finally emerge.

This particular one was a test. As it is my very first Binocuword, it has a few rough answers. I don’t really expect you to know what the original name of one small part of the ISS was, but perhaps you’ll forgive me in the spirit of this being a “prototype”. On the other hand, if you love it, let me know and I’ll make more!


Below is a puzzle I presented at the January 2018 L.A. Puzzle Party. Looking back I would say it is Difficulty Level: HARD.

Situquations sample

Some say the worst thing about sitcoms is that they are too formulaic. Let’s test that! Take a moment to print out the two PDFs linked below.

You will see that I have written out a bunch of EQUATIONS that represent either the Title or Plot (or else the major plot point of famous Episode) of two dozen of the most famous sitcoms. Just like in math, these equations feature several variables. Wherever you see a LETTER in an equation, it refers to the name of a major character in the show (either their first or last name, whichever is more recognizable). Likewise wherever you see a box  in an equation it refers to one of the ICONS you see on the page (ie. the icon will go in the box). Both LETTERS and ICONS are constant and wherever you see them they have the same numerical value. Note: the character name MAY BE DIFFERENT from show to show, but it will have the same value no matter which equation it is in.

Here is an example:

In the example above, “E” refers both to “Earl” (in the first equation) and to “Enough” (in the second) but in both cases it has a value of 8. Solving for E, you will find that the “Hello” icon is likewise 8! Where possible, I have given artistic hints for the tougher equations. Once you have all the ICON and LETTER values, move on to page 2 for the hilarous conclusion to this week’s laugh-filled episode.

Instructions for Page 2 are included in the printout.

Once you have the final answer, contact me to see if you have it right!

Situquations Page 1

Situquations Page 2