Happy Times Birthday, Listener – sorry I couldn’t make it to the party

Welcome back to George vs the Listener… well what is this?

Odd-shaped grid, no clues to speak of, a confusing preamble.

OK, clearly this is going to be a puzzle celebrating 25 years of the Listener being hosted by the Times (hip hip hooray!), but is the best way of celebrating it a game of reverse Mad Libs followed by a word search?

I like cryptic clues.  I sometimes write them, I even more rarely write them well.  I sometimes do US crosswords because of the themes, but with no clues I’m not big fan.

I can handle DLM occasionally, but at least DLM has a D in it.  This is LM + ML

I spent about an hour poking at it, realizing that many of the words in the narratives could be slotted in, which gives a pretty decent looking left hand side of the grid and a nearly empty right side.

I figured maybe I’d have more fun if I put it aside and looked at it in a few days.

I didn’t.

Sorry Tibea – I’m sure this was a lot of work to make, and it seems those could be actual clippings from Times articles (did Dimitry get a flash of recognition?), but I decided to put in a solitary puff on a streamer and drift off into the night in search of other entertainments.  I do that a lot at birthday parties, once even at my own.

Victory to Tibea and the Listener Crossword

2016 tally:  9-2-2

Feel free to tell me that I was giving this the shortest shrift that ever shrifted, and see you next week when KevGar wants to talk about something.

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