Every Saturday morning, after a long week of learning how to conjugate and decline Indo-European languages (and after a long evening of drinking away much of what's been learned), I come downstairs and bring your newspaper inside the house.
My head, you understand, is still reeling with aorist active subjunctives, perfect middle-passive participles and the like. As a delightful respite, I turn to your third page of comic strips and begin to solve the Quote-Acrostic puzzle for the week.
I used to look forward to this pure high. It reinforced what I learned. Almost every word in a Quote-Acrostic is, after all, derived from Indo-European in one form or another.
Twice in recent months you have run the same Quote-Acrostic two weeks in a row.
Unless your acrostics editor can improve on this sorry performance, the proud tower of Post credibility will crumble and after a time collapse. If ever again you withhold our spiritual methadone of a Saturday, we decipherers shall know that all is lost.
-- Richard Laurent
The members of the Washington Post Saturday Morning Quote-Acrostic Club have asked me to write you expressing our great displeasure and strong concern over your practice, as exemplified on Saturday, Nov. 7, of running a previously used Quote-Acrostic puzzle instead of the challenging, newly minted one we have come to expect.
The first time this happened, several weeks ago, we were willing to write it off to one of those rare operating goofs that happen in even the greatest of institutions. However, this is the second time in just a few weeks that we have been deprived of what has filled the time on our Saturday morning schedules between breakfast and the start of football on TV, and we are much disturbed.
The WPSMQAC has resolved that should this egregious mishap occur again we shall, in a body, switch our allegiance to the Saturday New York Times, even though that will double the cost of our morning entertainment and deprive us of the Saturday funnies.
Please be advised also that you should never print the puzzle back-to-back with a page of the comics, as you did a week or so ago, because it is our practice to scissor out the puzzle to work on it so that the rest of the family can work concurrently on the crossword puzzle. To back up these features with another page of the comics detracts from our enjoyment of those strips as well.
We trust that you will take these comments to heart, pull up your socks and see to it that the perpetrators of these unfortunate gaffes are properly admonished. -- Robert Drury
Would you people please get your act together? First you ruin the lovely three-puzzle (crossword, cryptogram and Quote-Acrostic) page we used to get each Sunday in the magazine. It was a very special Sunday when I could solve all three!
Then we were reduced to two puzzles -- one Saturday and one Sunday. With the shiny, slippery paper in the new magazine, the Sunday crossword became even more of an adventure to complete.
Next you went and repeated the Quote-Acrostic two weeks in a row. And if that wasn't bad enough, now you've gone and printed the answers to this week's Quote-Acrostic, claiming they are last week's answers. They are not! So now another puzzle is wrecked.
Please! Enough! No More! -- Ann Petri
One repeated Quote-Acrostic puzzle is accidental. Two repeated puzzles in a month are provocation of the worst sort. This provoked puzzler suggests you have your marketing director make up a gift kit consisting of a set of darts and a life-size color portrait of the editor (?) of your comics/puzzle pages in the daily editions of The Post. Offer the kit for sale to those of us puzzle addicts who are, by now, pricked to action by that editor's misfeasance.
The profits from these sales could be earmarked for training your editorial staff.
-- Ruth Stevens