The June 1997 Puzzler

by Emily Cox & Henry Rathvon


Fortune Cookies

The best Chinese restaurant in our neighborhood is the Cryptic Wok, where the noodles are spicy and the fortune-cookie messages are suitably puzzling. For your delectation we've reproduced below the curious auguries and maxims we've found in our cookies so far this year. As it happens, these messages make up the 16 Across clues whose answers belong in the accompanying diagram. The clues are in random order and are strung together with no extra words to connect them, and the beginnings and ends of clues do not necessarily coincide with the beginnings and ends of fortune-cookie messages. To place the Across answers in the diagram use the Downs (which are normal) as a guide. Answers include four capitalized words.



  • You will marry without having a bit of dough
  • Many are transformed by your simple and natural charisma
  • One rotten apple takes a long time to change
  • Peace and love will fill spirits in this place
  • Stay heartless -- it will make you dissent that way
  • Eating right, you will possess the character of Superman
  • Superficiality runs in celebrity
  • Body weight goes up and down, but you must shed the outside pounds
  • Going into openings distresses a worm in a cuckoo
  • She who takes to the skies audibly drops from the skies
  • Power and influence appear misleadingly large
  • Wear the work of a tailor and start on the outside
  • Longing arrives when you look back in admission
  • The deeds of a wandering knight decline
  • Splitting peace of mind will bring you good fortune


  1. English clan chief has gas (6)
  2. Leader of an Arab family, for those listening in (5)
  3. German gent vocalized pause coming before a Spanish painter (7)
  4. Terrible sot hops around a country (7)
  5. Drugged, almost hold post office up (7)
  6. Warn off young Henry IV's sea creatures (8)
  7. Times are turning crass, ultimately (4)
  8. Cook quickly holds mass in class (7)
  9. Hammer left covered by water plant (6)
  10. Female gymnast coming down on bad leg shows fight (8)
  11. Reach the Windy City during a night before a holiday (7)
  12. Longed for salary finally gained (7)
  13. The old man fusses about soft drink (4,3)
  14. Augur's back in powerful omen (7)
  15. Supplies valuable rock in streets (6)
  16. Farm animals' home was first fashioned (6)
  17. Private eye initially turned a bit blue (5)
  18. Fashion designer is one in stick-up? (4)



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