Patterico's Pontifications


Acrostic Number 1

Filed under: Acrostics,General — Patterico @ 7:59 am

I made a puzzle! Scroll down to solve it.

My father in law is a genius, and one of the most interesting people I have ever met. Over the years he has created different computer games and puzzles as a hobby. He has started sharing acrostic puzzles with the family. When he visited this past weekend, I asked him to show me how he does them. He has invented his own spreadsheet, which formats your puzzle, lets you know what letters you have and have not used, and has all kinds of formulas that provide you with useful information on how you are doing (like the consonant/vowel ratio). I got a copy of his spreadsheet and created my first one yesterday. Here it is (link to printable version below):

Acrostic Number 1

It’s two pages, so use the arrows at the bottom left to turn the page back and forth. (They appear when you put your cursor over the puzzle.)

If you’re unfamiliar with these puzzles, here are the rules.

The bottom part consists of clues, designated A through I. You read the hint for each clue and solve it. There are blanks with numbers under them, and each number corresponds to a number under the corresponding blank in the top part of the puzzle. Solve a clue in the bottom part of the puzzle, and you can start filling in the corresponding blanks in the top part of the puzzle.

For example, the first space in clue A has the number 132 under it. If the answer for clue A were “bedazzlement” (it’s not) then you would write in “bedazzlement” in clue A on the bottom, meaning you would write a B in the blank with the number 132 under it, an E in the blank with 101 under it, and so forth. Now you can find the blank with the number 132 in the top part, and fill in a B. You can find the blank with the number 101 in the top part, and fill in an E. And so forth.

The top portion of the puzzle is a quotation or saying, using the same letters as are used in the clues at the bottom. The top part is what you’re trying to solve. As with the bottom part, there are blanks with numbers under them. In the top part, each number is preceded by a letter, corresponding to the clues on the bottom part. This way, when you complete a word in the top part, it is easier to find the corresponding blank below.

For example, we established that 132 is the first letter of the answer to clue A. That means the number 132 in the top part is preceded by an “A” — just to tell you which clue has blank number 132.

For the top part, if there is no break in the numbering, the spaces connected by consecutive numbers are all one word even if they scroll to a new line. For example, 26G-33F here is an eight-letter word even though it scrolls to a new line. For the bottom part, each clue may consist of multiple words even though there are no blanks. (Clue A could be “bedazzlement” or it could be “ibetyoudowin” — or any combination of 12 letters, no matter how many words it is.)

Here’s a fun extra hint: the first letters of each correct clue in the bottom part, read in order starting with clue A on down, spell out the name of the person who said the quote in the top part.

Have fun!

P.S. I have displayed the puzzle above to intrigue you and get you to do it, but the best way to actually solve it is with pencil and paper. You can print it out by clicking on this link and printing the .pdf: Acrostic Number 1.

First to tell me the full exact quotes in the comments wins. Assume the comments section is filled with spoilers.

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