For me, one of the simple joys of Sunday morning is filling (or attempting to fill) out the New York Times Magazine crossword puzzle with my wife. And although, we’ve probably completed the damn thing only a handful of times, we always enjoy the challenge and the clever word play the editors employ every week.
My wife and I are a pretty good team. She’s quick with pop-culture and art questions and I’m pretty good with sports, music and literature. And if a science question comes up, well, we just try to fill in the boxes around it. It’s kind of insane that people are able to finish these puzzles in less than 45 minutes (which beats our record of ALL DAY). And if you need proof that such geniuses exist, I recommend watching the 2006 crossword puzzle documentary “Wordplay.” Even if we don’t finish the puzzle, it’s still a fun way to spend a Sunday morning and we’ve learned some obscure, and probably useless, facts like the mythical home of Pan is Arcadia, the “Woman With a Parasol” was painted by Monet and Dan Marino was the first NFL quarterback to pass for more than 5,000 yards in a single season (I really should’ve known that).
One of the most frequent soundtracks to our Sunday morning crossword sessions is Panda Bear’s 2015 album “Panda Bear Meets the Grim Reaper.” And not just because of the track “Crosswords” – one of the more upbeat and danceable tracks on the album thanks in part to the sample of the drums from funk classic “Ashley’s Roachclip” by The Soul Searchers. Much of the album features electronic-inspired psychedelic slow burners. Panda Bear’s vocal harmonies sound like The Beach Boys if they were raised on MDMA and rave culture. And any record that samples from “The Nutcracker” (on “Tropic of Cancer”) is an automatic winner for me.
Grab the crossword puzzle and check out these tracks. And if you know the answer to 82-across please find me on Twitter with the answer.
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