Look at Me Dear, I'm a Puzzle!

Monday, January 6, 2003 Zeb's puzzle solution

In May of 2001, I entered a world completely new to me- the world of puzzles. The window to this world came in the form of my wife, Melissa. In the process of courting Melissa, I gathered clues to what she was really like during her leisure time. She would speak of weekly trips to the office supply store for more pens, and subscriptions to magazines that I had never heard of. Upon marriage, the situation became clear - my wife was addicted to puzzles. Not just any puzzles, but logic puzzles called "Paint-by-Numbers."

If you were to visit our home, you would see stacks of paper sheets in every room. On each of these sheets is a puzzle. Some of the puzzles are finished and colored to perfection. Some of them haven't been touched. However, the majority of the puzzles are in a state of flux. Melissa likes to solve several at once, occasionally making a mistake. She will throw her hands up in disgust and proclaim, "Oh, I messed up!" I'll give her a confused look. All of the puzzles look the same to me.

I attempted to share her enthusiasm. She gave me a photocopied sheet of several of the smallest puzzles (Melissa doesn't like to write on the originals). I ruined the first one in short order. I regained my composure, and after an hour of eye straining, found success with the second puzzle. It was a birdhouse… I think. Melissa was very pleased with me, but I left the room before she could offer me another sheet.

I am not jealous of the attention my wife gives to her puzzles. It takes some of the pressure off of me to be entertaining all of the time. We like to joke about that. Before a long road trip, Melissa will ask me to round up all of her puzzle materials, which include a large plastic carrying case that I like to call her "briefcase." I groan and drag my feet to hunt all of her stuff down. As encouragement, she reminds me, "If I have my puzzles, I won't bother you while you drive!" It works every time.

As I write this, my wife is perusing the Conceptis website. She checks it at least once a week. As a result, I can be sure that Melissa will see this small contribution from her husband, and it will be quite a surprise. Look at me, Dear! I'm a puzzle!

Oh My Gosh!

A comment from Melissa: Tuesday, January 07, 2003 2:33 AM

Today, after I got home from work, I had the surprise of a lifetime waiting for me! Puzzletimes January issue was in my inbox, and a picture of my HUSBAND is on the front page! Wha...??? So I read it, and I laughed so hard I was in TEARS! Then my dear husband tells me how this all started! That he accidentally sent you a funny message teasing me for my addiction to puzzling! And then I was in even MORE TEARS! I am STILL laughing! Now I have figured everything out. Why he is getting a mysterious package from Conceptis! My goodness!! I have not laughed so hard in a LONG time! I maintain my mantra... you guys are the greatest!

Thank you for the wonderful story and the beautiful picture! I can't wait to start coloring it. It is beautiful! I'm not worthy!!!

One delight puzzler, : )


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