2022 Puzzle 11: “No End in Sight” Solution

November’s MMMM challenged solvers to find a hit song from the ’70s. The puzzle’s title “No End in Sight” provides the main clue to the puzzle’s solution. The grid contains nine entries that are also words (with unrelated meanings) if the letters “END” are appended. For example, OFF can transform into OFFEND, and GODS into GODSEND.

Each of the nine words formed in this manner can also be clued using the clue of a different grid entry. For example, OFFEND can be clued as [Aggrieve], which is also the clue for WRONG, and GODSEND can be clued by [Blessing], which is also the clue for FAVOR. One more step remains.

The clue for the puzzle’s final Down entry, OFF, [Like a faucet that has been turned all the way clockwise, say], suggests looking at the new nine words in a clockwise order. Doing this, and taking the first letters of the new entries, gives S-O-F-A-R-A-W-A-Y, or So Far Away, one of Carole King’s big hits, and this month’s meta answer.

The full END-less list and corresponding words are shown below. A big thanks to Tamara Brenner for creating both this list and an appropriately illustrated grid that shows how to do this more clearly than my explanation!


Meta Song:

I was in New York City and was able to hook up with longtime collaborators and friends Skip Ward, David Silliman, Martha McDonnell, and Eric Donnelly to learn and record this classic. Enjoy!


Selected Solver Comments:

Gwinns   I think of this as a Dire Straits hit from the 80s!   Also a great tune!

SoccerMom    Thanks for the puzzle and the memory of listening to my Mom singing along to this great song.

JHSeeman   One of my favorite songs, came out when my then girlfriend now wife was at a different college 6 hours away. Lots of travel time to visit her (btw, married for 31 years now)   Happy to spark these memories!


Alternative Music Clues:

Bird Lives suggests cluing YIP as [“Over the Rainbow” lyricist Harburg].

pbfrommn suggests cluing XRAY as [___ Spex (English punk rock band] and DOUBLES as [“She’s Actin’ Single (I’m Drinkin’ ___)” (1975 country hit for Gary Stewart)].

Evam suggests cluing DEED as [“No Good ___” (song in “Wicked”)].



FunkyPhD   Little known celebrity fact: Every year after Rosh Hashanah, Carole King puts her Shofar Away.

Allan Patterson   I was C. King the answer, and found it in the Tapestry of my life.

Jwaan   Doesn’t anybody put letters in order anymore?/ It would be so fine to understand your letters at the start /Doesn’t help to read /You’re just anagramming away   There was a clockwise pattern to the solution letters, hinted at by the last Down entry.

EFlatMinor   Enjoyed finding all the loose ends.

thanman2   I liked this meta so much I wished it would never end!

HunterX   Quite a Tapestry of meta-construction!


A total of 187 solvers found their way to the correct answer this month. The average rating for the puzzle was 4.42 stars out of 5, third-highest of the year, and the average difficulty rating was 3.25. This month’s randomly chosen winner of an MMMM coffee mug is Mark Delaney of West Grove, PA. Thanks to Matt Gaffney for blogging the puzzle at Crossword Fiend, where you can rate the puzzle (thanks!) and/or leave a comment.

Thanks for playing and see you next month!