"Oh, I don't know how to do those things."
That, everybody, is an instant conversation killer. Because frankly, what am I supposed to do with that? When they continue with "I'm an attorney/investment banker/research scientist/rabbi/real estate broker/truck driver/etc," am I supposed to go "I don't know how to do that, either"? Sometimes I do say that, because, frankly I don't know anything about torts/Roth IRAs/control groups/The Torah/land tax/cabs/etc.
(And to think most other constructors get the softballs: "do you write the clues first?," or "you must know a lot of words." Maybe I just hang out with the wrong crowds. I'd kill those questions. But then again, after a lifetime of answering those questions, I'd probably be sick of answering those as well.)
So I'll throw this out to the community, as you are all crossword people (thank you). Anybody got any brilliant ways to counter that question? Please leave any or all suggestions in the comments section. I'm trying to think of a crossword theme somewhat built around this awkward coctail party conversation.
In the meantime, enjoy this one. New puzzle on Wednesday.