Note: I wrote this cryptic about a year after the 2001 MIT Mystery Hunt, and sent it around to my teammates. Most of the puzzle can be solved without any knowledge of the hunt; however, when it comes time to figure out the "appropriate sequence" of the rows, it may help considerably to know something about that hunt's endgame. I've included the relevant information here; a full description of the endgame (which has some spoilers for the rest of the hunt, so be careful) can be found at the 2001 Hunt site linked to above. I wrote another pre-hunt cryptic ("Post-Game Predictions") about a year later, shortly before the 2003 hunt.

Still There

by Kevin Wald

This cryptic honors that fact that remnants of the 2001 Mystery Hunt still remain in the room where we left them, a year later. Each Across answer here must be altered before being entered in the grid; all Down answers are to be entered normally. The alterations made in each individual row of the grid will indicate briefly where that row fits into an (appropriate) sequence; when you have moved all the rows into their proper positions, the resulting message will briefly describe the alterations, and it's also gonna say what happens to remnants of a Mystery Hunt when you leave 'em for a whole year.


1. Foolish sort of Shaker talking to his opposite?
5. Outspoken food carrier is very French
10. By a Rhode Island videogame company
11. Tolstoy heroine left just one record?
12. Topless donut-maker is no relation?
14. Heartless larcenist over-charges for accommodations again
15. "Wiesel" I express, in part!
17. Like hobbit pretending to be dwarf disguised as elf
18. Waits from the first to barely the middle of the month
19. They bore farmers around lake
22. Setters employ this literary terrier as teaching assistant
24. Vessel contains aluminum cations combined variously with anions
26. Bit castle guard in the ear
27. Bat-wielding Canadians are former petty officers?
28. Faith that started to decay
30. Some codices of high-flown poetry
34. Kiss Abominable Snowman's footwear?
36. Criticize Icarus's last flight
38. Unkosher cow's purpose is running eight furlongs at a stretch
39. Takes back bribe the Queen left
42. Ring possessed the Wagnerian stranger
43. Worst gutless creature
44. Casanova's lady is at the right club, too
45. Antic, wild component of muscle cells
46. Heard the whole Megillah describing organic compound
47. Some Spanish paintings are reportedly just circles
48. Before taking in a bit of Scots Gaelic
49. Is unable to lean


1. Statue initially regarded as Black Bird (5)
2. 1000 opposing one adherent of the Categorical Imperative (7)
3. Traveling a mile for a Hawaiian vine (5)
4. Leaves islands shouting for Polynesian idols (5)
5. Ripped shirt seam (4)
6. Believe I will perversely hug fifty relatives of spouse (2-4)
7. Noon's at the middle of fat Hyperion's westward journey (6)
8. Literary mockeries of nationwide college exam anger states (7)
9. Other transportation systems are finished (4)
13. Knot editor's sneakers (4)
16. Immediately moves a shuttle up (4)
19. Loathing Topper in general (6)
20. Fats Domino finally meets thirteen popes (5)
21. It comes from roasted meats! (5)
22. Heads for dishes of chopped meat (5)
23. To Earth's most extreme parts (4)
24. Bottomless sea can be established (3, 2)
25. Sacred Egyptian bull destroyed Pisa (4)
29. Getting rid of unwrapped Creme Egg (7)
31. Falls for impressive tools (4)
32. Fool interrupts blessing with a big woodwind instrument (7)
33. Work that is most extensive (6)
35. Screaming French who pelt actor Sutherland (6)
37. Slot is concealing Lesothan currency (4)
39. Makes bigger holes in lots of paper (5)
40. Try to sell tar (5)
41. Terribly stern chemist (5)
42. Enemies from east, oddly (4)
43. Alongside the empty computer memory unit (4)

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