As expressed on previous Whimsical Wednesdays, I’m a huge fan of puzzles and games – many of which I first embraced as a child. Together, my mom and I assembled jigsaw puzzles, played silly games like Pass the Pigs, shared riddles, even passed our on-the-road time with auto bingo. To this day, we both share a passion for word games – from Jumble to acrostics to crosswords. But admittedly, she’s mystified by my love for number-based logic games like Sudoku – the ever-present diversion in newspapers across the country. What Mom finds tedious and time-wasting, however, I find curious and challenging.
The way it works is fairly simple. Each game is composed of nine grids, each of which contains nine spaces, where the numerals 1-9 must be placed in a precise order, so that each grid, each horizontal line, and each vertical line include all nine digits (with no repeats and no missing numerals). What makes it simple or tricky depends on how many numerals (and their positions) with which the game begins.
It probably sounds a little boring, but I find it soothing – so much so that Dan even bought me an electronic version a few years ago: The New York Times’ Touch Sudoku from Excalibur Electronics, Inc. Filled with nearly a thousand different combinations, this handy little gadget has followed me around the country for three years now, and I’m only on Game #253. So, it seems that I’ll be playing Sudoku on quiet, rainy afternoons for many years to come.
So, what are your favorite pastimes? Not active ones, but the kind that challenge the mind and soothe the spirit?
4 hours ago