Thursday, September 25, 2008

What's a Five-Letter Word For "Messiah"?

For the NY Times Crossword Puzzle, "OBAMA":

According to the puzzle database maintained by, ever since that game-changing day in 2005, OBAMA has appeared regularly as an answer in New York Times crossword puzzles. With its wonderfully convenient alternating series of commonly used vowels and consonants, OBAMA has been the answer to the clues “Senator who wrote ‘Dreams From My Father,’” “Future senator who delivered the 2004 Democratic convention keynote address” and “Presidential candidate born in Hawaii.”

But what about MCCAIN? Shockingly, not once has MCCAIN been an answer in a crossword in the New York Times, The Washington Post or the Los Angeles Times.
A couple years back there was a really good documentary called "Wordplay" about the Times crossword (review here) and one part discussed the puzzle that ran the day of the the 1996 Election where the clue "Tomorrow's headline" could've been answered with both "CLINTON ELECTED" or 'BOBDOLE ELECTED" because all seven crosswords had clues that could be solved with either letter in those spots. If they could pull that off, why can't they fit McCain's name in someplace? Other than bias, I mean. Exactly.

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