Tuesday, March 27, 2007

I beat Phil Donahue

Oh, yes. I kicked his butt. Phil Donahue placed 642nd out of 698 contestants at the crossword tournament, and I was in the top 20. (Would've been top 10 if not for one mindless mistake on the easiest crossword puzzle.) Remember Phil's trademark salt-and-pepper hair? He still has all his hair, but the pepper has given way.

I had a wonderful weekend, though I'm horribly sleep-deprived after getting about four hours of sleep both Friday and Saturday night. Fortunately, I had the good sense to stay up late socializing rather than trying to go to bed at a decent hour, which surely would have meant endless tossing and turning and getting only a few hours of sleep. I spent some capital-Q Quality Time with my crossword boyfriends (outside of crosswordland, all my friends are women—my guy friends are all men I know through the crossword thang).

Oh! On Saturday, I met my editor at the St. Martin's Press table. She handed over a set of page proofs for this book. Technically, I don't know exactly what woot or w00t means, but all the same: Woot! (Is it poor form to woot yourself rather than receiving a woot from another?)

If you are word-nerdy enough to want to read more about my Adventures in Crossword Competition, feel free to visit my crossword blog.

You know how I harbor secret fantasies of becoming an infectious-diseases epidemiologist? With a lesser degree of fervor, I think the idea of being a lexicographer is incredibly cool. At the crossword tournament, I met a real-life dictionary lexicographer. You can check out Erin McKean's site, Dictionary Evangelist, for saucy lexicographic musings. Erin lives just a few miles away from me and has a son near Ben's age, and has a compelling resume.

12 comments:

Cricket said...

Good for you at the tourney, mistakes aside. Even better for you that the book is so close to coming out and that it is reviewed wootly... favorably, that is.

DoctorMama said...

Congratulations on both.

I preordered!

The only lexicographer I knew was kind of mean. Although I married an ID epidemiologist (who recently identified an adenovirus outbreak based on a single question!), I don't quite get the fantasy, but it certainly makes him happy that at least one person on the planet harbors it.

dr_igloo said...

Congrats Orange, on the book, and the ACPT showing! I've been avoiding your crossword site since you got back because I'm planning to play-by-mail, and I'm afraid you might have puzzle spoilers posted.

I can hardly wait to get my hands on the book; it will undoubtedly increase the likelihood of my attendance at Stamford (or wherever!) next year!

Orange said...

Dr. Igloo, you won't see any spoilers unless you click the comments link on the "Stamford spoilers" post. I'm conscious of not wrecking things for the play-by-mail crowd.

Mona Buonanotte said...

You rock! Congrats! On the tourney and the book thingy.

It won't take much for me to become obsessed with Erin's site...ooh how I loves me words....

dr_igloo said...

Merci beaucoup Orange! I will go get caught up on all the crossword gossip.

So...I've been hearing rumours that the tournament is not going to be in Stamford next year. Do you have any inside info?

E. said...

Congrats on your high placing, and on your forthcoming book. I am buying it for my Old Man, who has become mildly addicted to the NYT Sunday puzzle after seeing Wordplay last summer.

Orange said...

Dr. Igloo, it'll be at the Brooklyn Bridge Marriott, Feb. 29 (Leap Day!) to March 2. A little pricier than it's been in past years, but with zillions of restaurants to choose from (downtown Stamford ain't exactly a happenin' place), I'm looking forward to it. I do hope to see you there!

Tertia said...

Its official. You are a nerd.

I'd still shag you though.

T.A. Negro said...

congrats on the book! Woot Woot!!

speaking of shagging, do you ever mix sex and crossword puzzles? is that a conflict, or too much of a good thing ... or ...?

Orange said...

You know, TAN, crossword puzzles are best as a still activity and sex, not so much. Maybe if I could get someone else to read me the clues and write in my answers...but that'd really have to be a third party, and I'm much too shy for that.

Feral Mom said...

Good stuff! And one can totally root (woot?) for oneself, especially if one has a book in the pipeline (is that a book in my pipeline, or are you just happy to see me?) Ahem. Congratulations!