A standard evening with the Evening Standard – By @_SamBeaumont
By Sam Beaumont
A standard evening with the Evening Standard
I started a great new habit last week. A crazy little thing I’ve got into doing on the tube ride home from SCA. Whereas I used to spend my commute staring absent-mindedly at people’s shoes, or playing that game where you try to balance without holding on, I’ve now found something even more exciting… The Evening Standard’s ‘Games & Puzzles’ page.
First you’ve got your classic sudoku – the perfect blend of numbers and logic. For my money, it’s the most fun you can have with a 9×9 grid. There’s literally no competition. Also, the newspaper business must be doing better than everyone thinks, because the generous people at the Standard offer a whopping weekly prize of £50 if you text them with the 3 numbers in the shaded squares. Ker-ching.
Then there’s the crossword. Or should I say crosswords! You can either do the cryptic one (which still makes absolutely zero sense to me) or stick to the classic. The latter is basically just a test of how good your mental thesaurus is, and although I’ve got to admit I haven’t yet finished one without an actual thesaurus, I’m sure it’ll help with my vocabulary.
There are also a few funky looking puzzles that I didn’t recognise. However, I haven’t tried them yet so I can’t accurately report on the levels of excitement they might offer. I would guess high though.
But why am I telling you about this treasure trove of puzzle-based fun? Other than to show off about how exciting my journey home has become?
The main reason is because I think this new little habit could be useful for all of us as we get busier and find it less easy to switch off. Doing a few puzzles on the way home has helped distract me from D&AD by focussing my mind on a different kind of problem. It lets my subconscious work on the important stuff while I’m busy trying to work out a 10 letter word for terrier.
So even though it might be difficult to convince yourself that you have time to take a break, if you do have half an hour, try hitting up the Evening Standard. Just don’t enter the sudoku competition. That sweet £50 is mine.