Martin Gardner and the MAA share a long history. In 1958, around the time he started his famous “Mathematical Games” column for Scientific American, he submitted the first of many problems to The American Mathematical Monthly. In 1982, as his column wound down, Gardner's first MAA article was published in The Two Year College Mathematics Journal. He wrote for MAA journals the rest of his life, particularly The College Mathematics Journal and Math Horizons. Gardner contributed to the latter almost annually from its founding in 1993 until 2005.
Gardner's prodigious writing activity continued right until his death in 2010. Articles, stories, problems, solutions, Quickies, and other kinds of contributions continued to flow. His last mathematical article to appear in an MAA journal, “L-tromino Tiling of Mutilated Chessboards,” was the centerpiece of a special puzzle issue of The College Mathematics Journal in 2009, and it is included here.
Early in 2010, Math Horizons editors Steve Abbott and Bruce Torrence were surprised to receive a typescript manuscript. Gardner used a typewriter his whole life, never email. The submission was accompanied by a note, “Is this short story something you can use? I wrote themath column in Scientific American for 25 years. If my piece is not right for Math Horizons, there is no need to send it back. All best, Martin.” There was not enough time for the editors to thank Martin for his submission .