This puzzle is part of the Puzzling StackExchange Advent Calendar 2021. The accepted answer to this question will be awarded a bounty worth 50 reputation.

< Previous Door Next Door >

Some of the puzzles have been pretty crazy. Here’s a simpler one for the eager but lazy:

How the Grinch Trolled Quizmas

Well, each Clu in Clueville liked puzzles a lot,
but the Grinch, who lived next to Clueville, did NOT!
The Grinch hated Puzzles; the whole Exchanged Stack!
Regardless of hardness of mystery to crack.

Venom for riddles! Hatred for brain-teasers!
And cryptics—and limericks—and ciphers of Caesar's!
Each affix? Each matrix? The match-sticks? The weigh-tricks?
Odium! Sodium! Since nigh advent day-six!

And some say the reason he chose not to solve 'em
was all through the season Clus didn’t involve him.
Each puzzle, brand new, set by puzzling free-lancers?
'Twas solved by a Clu before Grinchy had answers.

Then he got an idea! An awful idea!
The Grinch got a wonderful awful idea!
"Now here’s what I'll do," he said with resolution.
"They'll all get a puzzle that has no solution!"

Yucking and chuckling, "What a great Grinchy ruse!"
"An impossible puzzle to fool all the Clus,
with pure balderdash to turn solvers to quitters!”
He wrote like a flash with four laughs and two titters.

“Rote cliché, with word-play, and perfect logicians!
And Morse code, and graph-nodes, and dual definitions!
A big fat red herring! A lie of omissions!
I'll keep those Clus erring with bad suppositions."

On finishing typing he surveyed his writing
with a title he, vitally, had made exciting,
and voicing the whole mess, he watched his creation.
Rejoicing (in excess) as it earned reputation.

"Right now they are finding no answer will come!"
"They are all giving up! They're all saying 'I'm dumb!'"
He refreshed the page and he stared at his screen
'Til he DID find a response that dared to be seen…

Yes, ‘twas apropos—yes ‘twas quite unassailable!
The answer, although, he'd thought none were available.
It came without hints! It came without tags!
Edits or comments, or Reddit or flags!

"Yet this cannot be-" he began to implore,
then the Grinch thought of something he hadn't before.
"Maybe puzzles," he thought, "aren't about a score."
"Each puzzle... perhaps... is for all to adore!"

For what happened next? Well, in Clueville they say,
the Grinch went and tried EVERY puzzle that day!
He worked on each one! Every quiz in Clu-County!
Now he, HIMSELF, The Grinch! Is awarding you bounty.

The simple hidden message in this Christmas Fable is:

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Merry Quizmas PSE :)


1 Answer 1


So, the first thing one might notice -- and, credit where due, Jeremy Dover noticed this before I even saw the puzzle, in an answer now deleted, so if you like this answer go and upvote something worthy of his! -- is that

the first letter of the last line of each stanza, taken in order of appearance, yields the mystical message ROT-THIRTEEN.

Is this the Answer? No! Looking around for things to apply it to, we see that

the first letter of the first line of each stanza, taken in order of appearance, yields the even more mystical message WVATYRORYYF, which on ROT13ing yields: JINGLE BELLS.

Incidentally, I enjoyed the Dr Seuss parody very much.

  • $\begingroup$ "I do not like this Christmas riddle, I do not like it with a fiddle..." Only joking, this one is awesome. $\endgroup$
    – smci
    Dec 21, 2021 at 22:16

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.