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Saturday, January 06, 2007


I Confess!

It's 2007, so I'm going to make a confession-I am an addict. Okay, I'm actually addicted to about four things, but I don't want to scare anyone off.

I solve challenger crossword puzzles, in ink. Yes, I'm one of those annoying people. I blame my mother. She uses pencil first and then, for whatever reason, goes over the writing with her pen.
But as all children must, I blame her.

When I was still in elementary school, I was the kid who was always out sick. Whatever the wind carried, it blew into my body and I'd be down for the count. Being a kid, homework and TV weren't enough to keep me busy, so mom gave me the LA Times crossword puzzle to do. She'd also play scrabble with me. Hence, my addiction to writing as well. (Now you know two)

In time, puzzles weren't just to keep me busy and out of her hair on sick days (she's never actually said that's why she started me, but as a mother myself, the guess must be on target), but to help me learn a dangerous amount about a lot of different things and expand my vocabulary.

My favorite Saturday morning activity, before I post this column: I sort the LA Times and the Orange County Register and organize the crosswords in order of difficulty. Then I make a nice big pot of coffee (addiction #3) and have a wonderful time with all of them, culminating with the NY Times challenger.

At first, I kept my addiction from by husband, but once we were married I had to let him know of my weakness. In the beginning, I'm sure he thought our love would somehow cure me. Alas, he was so wrong. Now I had another source for answers having to do with the sports world. I roped him in. He doesn't do them (he'd lose an arm if he tried taking my books or magazines, I think), but when I'm really concentrating, he'll quietly ask "Can I help?" Who wouldn't still be head over heels in love after 26 years with a guy like that????

In fact, our children were appalled one year and then were aghast at my joyous response. We were going through a rather tough financial time and it was Valentine's Day. My wonderful hubby went on the internet, searched out crossword puzzles, downloaded about 50 and put them into a small paper folder (the kind kids use for school reports). I was so overwhelmed I almost cried. Really.

Our kids rolled their eyes. "How could you give mom puzzles for Valentine's Day" and then, "You actually liked it! You'd think he just gave you a five carat diamond ring or something!"

Kids, they just don't know the real meaning of love.

And just to let you in on my fourth and final obsession, which you've probably guessed, my husband.

Great article, Carine. I want to confess, I also do the puzzles in ink. And I absolutely need to have my coffee with them!
That's why we're such terrific cyber-friends Ruthie!
You are just the cutest person!!!!
Whoops!!! That's from Ruthy, your Walking Club friend on Womans Day.
thank you Ruthy, so glad you come and visit!
Carine, very nice post, i enjoyed reading it.
at least you have "good" addictions!! i think your last addiction is your best, it tells so much about you as a person,faithful, romantic at heart and sincere! have a great Sunday!

I finally got to read your post after struggling to get onto the computer for the last four days (my 17-year-old daughter's laptop is on the fritz--she was going through withdrawal before taking over my pc)!

OH, what a great way to spend a Sunday morning!! It sounds so enticing...I don't do the crosswords, but just to sit with a pot of piping hot coffee and do ANYTHING relaxing on a weekend morning sounds like heaven to me!! And the story of your hubby actually taking the time to look up crosswords that you would like and present them to you as a gift is just priceless. What a gem!

Take good care,
Thank you summer and Lisa! Yes, he is a gem and them some. I know the feeling about the computer Lisa, I've written so much, that wonderful gem of mine has to buy a new keyboard! I'm having to practically pound everything out twice right now!!
Fun post Carine. The first step to overcoming an addiction is admitting the truth. In your case, you don't need to overcome your addictions...just enjoy them! ;)

Ciao bella...happy new year.
I do! Maybe a little too much, but then, that's what addictions tend to do to a person!
Crossword puzzle and word puzzle fans are no longer in the closet. I too am an ink-using puzzle fan.

While I tend to gravitate to crypic crosswords and diagramless crossword puzzles, I do enjoy a challenging Sunday puzzle.

My significant other does not understand the attraction to puzzles. (She often chides me for using words she doesn't know.)
I'm addicted to blogging and my husband. I understood about the puzzles - that was awesome. My mom one year was dirt poor and so loved giving Christmas presents - somehow I got the point across that more than anything I wanted just paper and pen - and she found bright red little folder and a pen. Best present I ever had - my son didn't get it then, still doesn't. Congrats on 26 years.
thanks for the giggles, I'm not addicted to puzzles, but my mum is, so I understand!
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