Monday, February 2, 2009

Obama's Impact On The Crossword

obama-impact-on-crossword Humankind has been abuzz with talk of Obama throughout the last year. The world of cryptic crosswords has been no exception.

The name 'Barack Hussein Obama' gives a goldmine of wordplay options to setters. A single-letter substitution in 'Obama' results in the name of the infamous terrorist head. A letter added to 'Barack' transforms it to the word for housing for soldiers. 'Obama' within itself has a convenient letter placement, enabling creative telescopic, charade or reversed clue constructions.

I'd posted about this clue some time ago. Here are a few more from UK publications in which Obama made an appearance. (These were published before he assumed office.)

Guardian 24442: Democrat retaining right ways to circumvent order to dance in 19th century poems (7-4,7) BARRACK-ROOM BALLADS
Definition: poems
Democrat = BARACK (Obama), holding right => BAR{R}ACK
ways = ROADS, order = OM (Order of Merit), dance = BALL, 19th century = AD
ROADS to circumvent OM, BALL AD => RO{OM, BALL AD}S

Guardian 24351: Democrat circle upset a fairy (5) OBAMA
Definition: democrat
circle = 0, a fairy = A MAB
O upset {A MAB} => O {BAM A}<-

There were some other nice ones, I wish I had recorded the exact wordings. One used a neat transpose: the clue talked about morally condemned candidate becoming a wanted man ('Obama, Sin Laden' to 'Osama Bin Laden').

Nothing on Obama in THC! Or was he there and I missed spotting him?

Related Posts: Osama Bin Laden

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7 comments

Ganesh T S said...

The Hindu Crossword 9309 - 22nd Aug, 2008

20 Obama upset with bike accident in Lincoln, leaves with hands on hips (6)

http://www.hindu.com/2008/08/22/stories/2008082299951000.htm

Shuchi said...

Thanks Ganesh!

Sridhar said...

Off the cuff.

Second rate heads a heady country liquor! B ARACK

Old boy and a mother head a country.OB A MA

Bush follower, a post graduate joins actor to mirror in the US of A.

Graduate heads an instrument of torture to form a last name of the precident.

Shuchi said...

Thanks, Sridhar.

Can you explain the last one - instrument of torture?

Virtual Linguist said...

Sridhar means 'to form the first name of the president'. BA = graduate, rack is instrument of torture.

Shuchi said...

I get it now. Thank you Susan!

J said...

First time here. Awesome blog!

American puzzles have been equally biased in favor of Obama. You may want to read a 2008 feature in the Wired magazine - Obama More ‘Crossword-Friendly’ Than McCain.