Free Association 13

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Hi everyone! This guy is Dr. Anthony Fauci. He is not in the puzzle at all. He has nothing whatsoever to do with anything in the puzzle. But he is the hero we all need right now. So gaze upon his greatness and be thankful for science and those who are honest purveyors of it.

I had several ideas for themed puzzles related to the current public health crisis that has changed every single one of our lives. I decided that none of us need to think about that issue any more than we already are. So I will leave that to others. Instead, I decided to throw up a Free Association puzzle that isn’t too difficult. I need brain candy right now to counteract the serious attention I must give to the pandemic to keep me and my family as safe as possible. I assume you do too. I’m a psychologist and I have weighty things to discuss with my clients (now via telehealth), but for you, I thought it was best to serve up what I hope will be a fun, fluffy distraction. I’m calling it 3/5 difficulty, but maybe it’s a 2.5/5. I don’t know. Honestly my main thought was let’s make this thing an easy and hopefully-fun Friday that would give Rex Parker no reason to be pissed. You can be the judge of whether that goal has been achieved. We’re all stuck in the house, and we need more puzzles. This is my humble contribution to that effort.

If you will allow me a small indulgence, let me ask you to please stay home. Stay. Home. Your kids will ask to see a friend or two. Sack up, be a grownup, and say no. Many of my kids’ friends’ parents are making my job much harder by being, how shall I say? Unwise. Yeah. Unwise. Insert whatever pejorative you like here and that’s probably what my wife and I have been saying about them in private. My daughter’s Instagram feed is filled with groups of teenagers out and about in the world, air-kissing each other with about 3 microns separating their potentially-virulent mouths. Our children don’t have fully-formed frontal lobes. That’s their excuse. If you are a parent who is letting them go out and be in close contact with their friends, I don’t know what your excuse is. This is not Spring Break. Okay?

Thanks for your indulgence. I now return you to your regularly scheduled non-virus puzzle. See you next week!

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