Puzzles & games


Bridge | 15 November 2012

Time and again in bridge, when tackling problematic contracts, I miss simple solutions which, it turns out, were staring me in the face. It’s some consolation to know that this sort of temporary blindness is a fairly common condition: bridge clubs are full of people slapping their heads and groaning as they see — too



Last week, in the context of the discovery of the chessboard of Sir John Tenniel, the Times related a famous, possibly apocryphal story in which Aron Nimzowitsch mounted a table after yielding to a lesser player, shouting ‘why must I lose to this idiot?’ Nimzo is also in the news after the recent publication of


Culinary comparison

In Competition No. 2772 you were invited to liken a well-known figure, living or dead, to a foodstuff. This challenge fell on somewhat stony ground, producing a small if distinguished entry in which politicians featured strongly. Here’s a flavour of George Simmers’s Tony Blair pudding: ‘The inviting exterior has no real content, but is a


2089: Backward and forward

The unclued lights, (one of four words), can be arranged to form a quotation, verifiable in  ODQ. One unclued light does double duty. Across 1  Ape hasn’t played some game (8) 6 Lawyer admitted to most of source of power of Jews (6) 13 Vicious Israeli (lacking eyes, they say?) demanded payment (5) 17 A

Crossword solution

2086: Tufty | 15 November 2012

The key word is LOPHOBRANCH (7), defining 1A and 29A, and divisible into words of which synonyms are 20 and 36; 8A and 18; and 29D and 41. First prize R.C. Ingram, Wymondham, Norfolk Runners-up Catherine Ellis, Durham; P. West, Birmingham


No. 244

Black to play. This position is from Jacobsen-Nimzowitsch, Copenhagen 1922. How did Nimzo terminate the game? Answers to me at The Spectator by Tuesday 20 November or via email to victoria@spectator.co.uk or by fax on 020 7681 3773. The winner will be the first correct answer out of a hat, and each week I shall