It's not often that stuff that gets thrown over the transom at BEQ.com Headquarters that makes me stand up and take notice. Ticking time bombs, for instance, are one of those occasions. But sometimes, when I sift through the heaping mail pile of unpaid American Express bills and unread issues Golf Digest, I spot something that makes me go, "whoa." Today's guest puzzle by (relative) newcomer Tom Pepper was one of those instances. Tom's has already written two Monday puzzles in the Times so far. Throw in this crossword that I'm running here as well, and it looks like Tom could have a bright future in this biz.
I asked Tom to take a moment to introduce himself, and here's what he said:
I live in the crossword-famous Minneapolis suburb of Edina. My dream job would have been juggler by day, ragtime piano player by night, and math word problem solver on the weekends in Bend, Oregon, but I couldn't find that job, so I went into accounting. I work as the Finance Director for the nearby city of Eagan. I started constructing crosswords a couple years ago when the nest emptied and I suddenly had a lot of time on my hands. My wonderful, dear daughters live in Chicago and Oregon so there's no one home telling me to put the crosswords down and go to bed each night--I could use that sometimes. I volunteer as a tutor to East African adults one night a week, and as a teacher for a National Alliance on Mental Illness class for families another night a week. When weather permits, which is not that often here, I play golf. About once a year, I drag my 1960s baseball card collection out of the boxes to make sure I still remember what team everyone played on.
Thanks, Tom. Share the puzzle, everybody.