23 Apr

Square Dance Puzzle

Warning…this is totally geek-centric.

Here’s how I found this (embarassing description of meaningless surfing follows…)

I was going to start writing choreography. I decided to see if CSDS had been updated, so I went to Vic’s site. Once there, I saw that he’s added a new document to his site: Two Couple Primer. So of course, I had to read it.

There was a link at the bottom to an 80-page ebook on pairs dancing, but it lead to a 404 error (there’s a typo in it). So I deconstructed the URL and ended up at KARL BELSER HOME PAGE. Okay, clearly a square dancer; let’s see what he does.

Hmmm…this looks interesting: COMMITTEE TO PROMOTE SQUARE DANCING HOME PAGE. (I wish Karl wasn’t so into all-caps page titles…). I wandered around the links here for a while (checked out the organization’s history and the square dance videos at the Saddlebrooke Squares site).

Then I went here: Square Dancing 101. Whoa! This is an odd document. This description of square dancing for the Unnamed Facility Square Dancing Club is unlike any introductory document I’ve ever seen and includes some complicated rules about handholds (“Handholds are greedy”) and token movement.

So of course, I had to discover what this was about. More URL deconstructing led me to the MIT Mystery Hunt. The url of the square dancing page indicates that it’s from the 2003 puzzle. I tried starting from the top, but couldn’t figure out how to get to the square dancing part. So I started back from the Square Dancing 101 document, and got here: Barn. Of course, square dancing would happen in the barn.

I didn’t attempt to solve the puzzle, but here’s a puzzle for you: can you identify the caller in the audio files that go along with the puzzle? Hint: MIT notwithstanding

, it’s a West Coast caller. Here’s the solution to the puzzle (both of them).

So, I told you it was nerdy. I think I’d better go write choreography now.


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