FRIDAY, Oct. 26, 2007 - David Quarfoot

Friday, October 26, 2007


Relative difficulty: Challenging

THEME: none

[updated 3:30-ish]

There will be no commentary today until after 1pm. Many apologies. Procrastination has finally caught up to me - which is to say that I have to grade exams all morning. Second-worst part of the job, next to grading papers. Hence the procrastination. ANYway, I'll post a little something in the early afternoon.

See you then,

Rex Parker

PS you are of course free to discuss the puzzle amongst yourselves.

PPS or you could amuse yourself by checking out the results of my most recent book-buying excursion.

And now I'm back. I wasted much time hanging out with my smart, cool students pretending I was somehow like them. Sad, I know, but diverting in a harmless way.

As for the puzzle, I have shocking news: I really didn't like it. REALLY didn't like it. Orange assures me that this is only because I was tired and was trying to solve immediately post-yoga - my mind was just not in solve mode. She also assures me that weeks from now I will love this puzzle. We'll see. My standards for DQ puzzles are ridiculously high, thus, this is probably a very good puzzle. But I was disappointed by a bunch of fill (but especially cluing, which may not have been DQ's fault). For instance:

1A: News Corporation-owned Web site that's one of the 10 most visited sites in the world (MySpace) - could you make the clue more boring and leaden? NewsCorp? Ugh. There's gotta be way more exciting ways to clue a snazzy entry like MYSPACE.

37A: "Let me live my own life!" ("I'm not you!") - If I try real hard, I can almost hear some kid saying this to his parent - or maybe a friend saying it to another friend? But only barely. I would have liked the answer much better if it had been "GO TO HELL!"

  • 59A: Former field food (K Ration)
  • 61A: Terminal timesaver (E-ticket)
  • 11D: Center of connecticut (silent C)

I consider all these to be beneath DQ. He's either used them before, or someone else has, and they just seem too wannabe-tricky.

64A: Crossword source since 1942: Abbr. (NY Times) - blecch. Too meta / self-congratulatory

4D: With 20-Down, waffle alternative (pop / tart) - absolutely not. These are from entirely different food universes. I can order a waffle at a restaurant. I would sit down and eat waffles off of a plate. Neither of these is true of pop tarts. Maybe [frozen waffle alternative] would have worked, because of the toaster connection. Maybe.

15D: Cheering section (rooters) - technically correct, but you would say the clue; you would never say "My ROOTERS are up in the bleachers!"

50D: Bernoulli family birthplace (Basel) - First I'd need to know who the @#$# the "Bernoulli family" is. Next, I'd have to know that there is a place in the world named BASEL. No luck on either count.

17A: What the key of D minor has (one flat) - random phrase. How 'bout [What two British people share, perhaps]. That's no less makeshift.

Better stuff included:

14A: Yellow fliers with large eyespots (Io moths) - wanted MOTHS so bad but wouldn't write it in because, really, what word could go there that's two letters long?

22A: Miss Gulch biter (Toto) - this is the "I Am An Idiot" clue of the day. I had No Idea for so long, and couldn't think of any animal that ended in "O." Things were so bad that I was wishing the answer could have been ASP.

36A: Walled city of the Mideast (Sana)
53A: 1980s sitcom title role (Alf)

I just like these 'cause they were easy, and I needed easy last night.

62A: Its value is in creasing (origami) - so great. Just happy the answer wasn't IRON.

2D: Poem reader at the 2006 Olympics ceremony (Yoko Ono) - hasn't she been in a DQ puzzle before? Anyway, I don't like this answer much, but it totally saved my ass last night. Magically got the answer off of just the final "O." I was in Deep deep trouble in the NW until I cracked this one.

35D: Lopsided court result (love set) - nice, in-the-(tennis-)language phrase.

46A: Taper (VCR) - hmmm. Yeah, I'll allow this. Borderline, in that its cluing is too cutesy / intentionally misleading. BUT ... I had VEE for the answer at first, which I like as a wrong answer, and so I got at least a little pleasure out of this clue.

Didn't know:

8D: Family group (genus) - last thing I filled in was the "U" (changed it from an "E," of course).

44D: Burial place of many French kings (St. Denis)

9D: _____-Neisse Line (Oder) - whatever you say.

27D: He wrote "It's certain that fine women eat / A crazy salad with their meat" (Yeats) - never read him; didn't know he wrote such silly verse.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

64 comments:

Whitey's mom 7:27 AM  

I thought it was a pretty good puzzle except for the mental head slap over VCR. Your book buying netted some goodies.

dk 8:27 AM  

I almost thought Alf would be Aly and prepared myself for the worst.

Could not remember Mr. Slate as I could only think of the Jetsons.

Interesting mix of old nd new and I concur with Whitey's mom that VCR was a reason to have a cow.

pinky 9:02 AM  

VCR was my last word and I thought it was a great one (after giving up on TIP)
Remembered Fred Flintstone but not Mr. Slate

Had REDLINE for REDWINE.

MOTHS came easy. IOMOTHS never came at all.

TROUNCES came on the heels of yesterday's JOUNCES

No groaners today. (Except IOMOTHS)

Gary 9:06 AM  

How is a Snit a pet?

rick 9:37 AM  

You can be in a snit or a pet. They are interchangeable.

kratsman 9:40 AM  

Snit=pet by dictionary definition. More commonly seen as "in a pet."

Great Friday puzzle, imo. First entry was EPI, which immediately gave me SILENTC. Solved NE, NW, SW, SE. About average time (15 minutes +/-) for me for a Friday.

Lots of terrific fill in this one.

rick 9:47 AM  

I shot myself in the foot many times with this puzzle.

Had NETFLAT for 39D (think Second Life), NETCOM for NEXTEL, SEC for ACT which really messed up my SW.

For some reason in "S" in SEC made me think of MALAISE and the rest of the corner came quickly after that. I use NETFLIX and I never think of it as renting anymore than I think of renting cable or power although I guess I do.

In the NE I had GENES instead of GENUS and while I have heard of turf toe I have not heard of PGATOES.

The NW came last because MYSPACE just did not enter my mind even though I already had PACE.

YOKOONO (nice seeing her whole name) came to me way after Maya ANJELOU.

1,2 and 3D were my last entries. I made this puzzle much harder than it needed to be.

Did like VCR a lot. It's such a great clue/answer pair that it must have been used before but I don't remember seeing it.

Anonymous 9:58 AM  

ete, hiver? help.

Orange 10:05 AM  

Eté and hiver are the French words for summer and winter.

I loved the Quarfoot puzzle. Quick, while Rex isn't looking, everyone sneak out the window and come party at my house. I've got a keg.

Penny 10:24 AM  

Be there in a minute, Amy. CHUGS it is.

Loved this puzzle in spite of many a MISSTEP on my part. Taper, enemy as an adjective, trounces for buries (you'd think I missed the game on Wednesday), thought POP TART but said PAN CAKE and ate it in the NW. Thought about nitting PETITES but realized that PETITES are not just the clothes but also the dainties who wear them. Is brass synonymous with GALL because of uh certain globular body parts? (Hey, what do I know? A mere SWF.) I thought you had to abscond WITH something and not merely SKIP OUT. Also ran afoul of the law in thinking a WRIT might come before an ACT.

Ended with such a happy memory. Toto biting Miss Gulch.

And in the nightmare category. Oh, Rex! I've been there and I absolutely hated it.

marcie 11:05 AM  

Very enjoyable challenge for me. I too fell into the genes/genus pothole, and couldn't for the life of me figure out what the opposite of a bee-keeper might be... great head-slappers when they came. I wanted the ere to be pre- but that went quickly when 7D appeared to end in TP. Snit=pet was another hang-up, I *almost* tried shia (alt. spelling for chia-pets?) Taper was another goodie. Had no idea what "Cab" in quotes might mean but the crosses gave it to me. I too thought abscond meant "take something along" when skipping out.

Loved the "I'm so smart to remember my circle of fifths" feeling for 17A, my first fill.

Penny... excellent question on the brass = gall hehehe.

Jerome 11:35 AM  

DQ,

I always love to see see a puzzle of yours, but today (last night) I struggled so hard to get on the same wavelength as you that the price of many the aha moments seemed out of proportion to the payoff. This might be due to the fact that I was solving while watching the end of last night's very exciting game.

Wade 11:38 AM  

After doing the puzzle pretty much daily (at least Wed-Sat) for 11 years, I've been away from it for a little over a month (left my company job to go out on my own--with a mortgage, car payment, two kids in private school and an unemployed wife, why not now?). Today was my first day back with the puzzle. Took me almost 40 minutes, but I did get through this one without aid. The NW was the last to go for me, and I was tripped up for awhile not be "GENES" but by "GENRE" (instead of GENUS.)

profphil 12:13 PM  

Even after I had VCR as an answer, I still could make no sense of it. Decided based on the crosses to keep it even though I wa sure it was a misstep. So I chose to act and not wait. It was only after reading Linda's blog entry re taper/vcr (3 times o mi gosh) that I had a D'uh moment and realized a VCR tapes telivision programs and is therefore a tv program TAPER.

I found the puzzle really difficult and only succesfully filled in the entire bottom half with only 2 or 3 clues filled in the top half. Still have not mastered Fridays.

Rex, I can commisserate with you, I hate grading papers and giving out grades, absolute torture and I procrastinate like nobody's business.

Crazy Salad 12:15 PM  

Three-fourths of this puzzle was Friday-hard, well-executed, enjoyable, doable and a fun struggle. The NW, however, I found to be beyond Saturday in difficulty. Where was I during th '06 Olympics opening ceremonies? "Nowhere Man". I had Angelou and couldn't give it up (Rick - is it "Anjelou"?). Still difficult to envision Ms. Ono at such an event. Took forever to remember the modern usage of "hostile" as a noun. The I in OMIGOSH wasn't happening, and the IOMOTHS have never gnawed any wool in my closet. (Thankfully there is plenty, as it was 37 degrees out for the morning dogwalk.)

"Let me live my own life" was a great clue. Not quite sure how the WAIT and ACT clues work. Loved "in...creasing". Never thought of slugs "creeping", in fact I can't think of a word that perfectly describes their movement.

Thanks DQ. Looking forward to Rex's update and his "take" on "taper".

profphil 12:31 PM  

crazy salad,

Enemy can be used as an adjective as in enemy territory which would be the equivalent of hostile. I too had O mY gosh and although I had poneyes which clearly was wrong would never think to turn the y into an i.

Nitpicker 12:34 PM  

This was wonderful - very nice use of the latest technology terms: myspace, netflix, eticket, nytimes (oops, maybe not).

No nits here .. not even iomoths.

Nitpicker

crazy salad 12:52 PM  

profphil -- you're right / I was making that particular one harder than need be...thanks.

rick 12:59 PM  

I googled and it is Angelou (thought it was "gal" and got the "Did you mean...?" with the correct spelling.

I am amazed at how much I trust the internet to be correct, all that Nigerian government money must be going to my head.

IOMOTH has to be one of the coolest insect names ever. Sounds like an electonic bug from a sci-fi story.

Eric 1:02 PM  

Finished about a third of this thing. Thank god for Rex and all of you!

rick 1:37 PM  

eric,

Keep trying. I've been doing the Sunday puzzle my whole life and didn't know about the graduated difficulty of the dailies until I read a book about the Crossword Puzzle Convention.

After that I got a subscription and downloaded a raft of Friday and Saturdays.

It took monthes until I finished a Saturday, some of which I went back to 20 or 30 times.

I'm not fast (today's took me over an hour) but I usually finish.

Sometimes just putting it aside helps. I got stuck in the NW and decided it was time for more coffee. I didn't get five steps away when MYSPACE and SMITTEN both popped into my head.

penny 1:44 PM  

"I got stuck in the NW"

Man there must have been some big traffic jam in that area. I can't believe how many other people have said just that.

How Many? I'm not telling but it's more than your average number.

Includes me.

rick 1:59 PM  

It was a wierd combination of answers for me.

I had HORSES for PONIES after rejecting ANGELOU. Had 4,5,6 and 7D which gave me enough for MOTH.

I had no idea who Miss Gulch was even after seeing (no exageration, my daughter was an addict) The Wizard of Oz over 100 times.

Have never heard SOT for SPONGE, seems it should have been SOP.

Same with IOMOTH. I have no excuse for not getting MYSPACE, it just never entered my head (and this is after years of monitoring my kids mySpace pages).

Like I said above, MYSPACE finally gave me the corner.

dk 2:01 PM  

Eric, I concur with Rick. The late week puzzles are an endurence task and even more fun when - just you think you are doing well...

What is really fun is when your stupid younger sister (you know what I'm talkin about) can do the Sat puzzle in about 30 minutes and it takes me... well longer.

Make sure you do them in ink as it both builds character and intimidates others.

Rikki 2:40 PM  

Another DQ puzzle to savor like a good 'cab.' Lots of great clues for everyday stuff: myspace (you might have to be under 30 to get this, but it's all the rage), redwine, eticket, netflix, nextel, pop tart (which I thought was pan cake) origami, nytimes (cute). Lots of clever clues for epi, title, tithe, pgatour, silentc, loveset. Not much in the way of obsurity: Yeats, St. Denis, Mr. Slate, Sinatra, Sana, all gettable if not known outright. Never heard of the Bernoulli family or the word pet used for snit, though I frequently use snit when having a cow. Wanted 'right on' for 'rock on' but, like trying to squeeze my middle-aged body back into petites, some things just don't fit.

VCR was clever, but I think I've seen it before, maybe in an earlier DQ puzzle? Favorite clue was Miss Gulch biter. Hated that witch. Coincidence that it was over 'enemy' and crossed Yoko Ono?? Maybe just to me, sad reminder of the demise of the fab four. I had to blame someone. Loved all those o's in one answer, though.

A challenging romp, appropriately fridayish. Thanks, DQ.

Hang in there, Rex. I couldn't have graded exams during last night's nailbiter either.

Rikki 2:47 PM  

Looked it up and discovered why I didn't know the Bernoulli family. They are Swiss mathematicians. I thought they sounded like they should be producing olive oil, but no... here is a link if you are interested in knowing more.


http://library.thinkquest.org/22584/temh3007.htm

Wobbith 2:50 PM  

What an awesome puzzle today. Amazingly lively fill and great, tricky, (but not unfair) fun clues. Didn't get any momentum until ORIGAMI which came instantly. Then worked up and got boondoggled like so many with GENES instead of GENUS, and finished in the bumper-to-bumper NW.

Nice work DQ!

Eric 3:24 PM  

Ugh. Had "Sept" for "Not quite 58 down," and "Oct" for 58 down. Made sense to me and fit right up until it didn't.

And Pan Cake for Pop Tart didn't get me started well, though I was disgruntled by separating pan and cake.

Anonymous 3:28 PM  

The Bernouilli Effect explains why airplanes fly: the upper surface causes a relatively lower pressure on the upper surface of the wing, which is called Lift.

Ron in Dallas 3:57 PM  

Amazingly I got pop tart quickly , after I decided there was no way to separate pan cake and feel good about it. first answer 'one flat' (because one sharp doesnt fit) and then toto and had to google to get yoko ono (why does she depress me)
and then looked up 1963 host of oscars and it said jack lemmon not sinatra, but sinatra was following year, so that is not so right, but are the '63 oscars for the '62 films ? i get confused.. And Pitt has true blue and gold colors too, so put that in for a minute but did not work, a clever puzzle since there was enuf to keep me playing along, but still tough,
now on to saturday !

jae 5:07 PM  

I really liked this one, perhaps because DQs seem to be fairly easy for me. My first two entries were ENEMY and PONIES which gave me MISSTEP whose "M" reminded me that Murdock's Evil Empire had purchased MYSPACE. So, I got out of NW before the traffic jam. SW also went quickly as I rememberd MRSLATE, the correct spelling of OMIGOSH, and got NETFLIX and ETICKET without much effort.

I also had GENE for while and was just as surprise and amused by VCR as all of you. A great puzzle, I hope Rex gives it another look.

penny 5:07 PM  

Sad to say, I did not recognize Miss Gulch either. What a fabulous lot to forget. The wonderful Margaret Hamilton. The voice, the stoop, the cackle and that fantastic ride through the night on a broom. She also sold Palmolive soap or something.

I saw Gulch and something about the word made me think of TOAD. I really wanted toad but doubted if toads bit people. Maybe once they turned into princes? There was reason to hope. Except those were frogs, I guess. The only thing I ever saw a toad do to defend itself was pee on the hand holding it. Or maybe give people warts.

I agree with Amy. It was a great puzzle but not for them what's already been through the ringer.

jae 5:12 PM  

Sorry, meant Murdoch's Evil Empire.

Anonymous 5:22 PM  

Rexy,

Glad to see you "REALLY didn't like" the puzzle. This proves you aren't me in disguise. As for my own thoughts about my own puzzle, I remember thinking at the end: "Man, this 7-letter-heavy layout feels so early-Shortzian. I think I'll avoid it in future constructions."

I did a vague count of clue changes from my original to the published version and I think that number is upwards of 70-75% (depending on how one defines a "change"). This is the highest change rate I've ever had and is likely do to two factors:
1) There are a number of new entries and it's unlikely I'd think of the cleverest clue around. (Although I really liked my clue for SILENTC - which, naturally, you hated.)
2) I originally clued this puzzle to be the hardest thing on Earth. Will clearly toned it down to Fridayish difficulty. Some examples of the easification:

Answer: ORIGAMI
Change: Its value is in creasing
Original: Collection of animals, perhaps

Answer: REDWINE
Change: "Cab," e.g.
Iriginal: Cab, e.g.

Answer: ONEFLAT
Change: What the key of D minor has
Original: Common signature

Answer: TGI
Change: ___ Friday's
Original: Run leading to an F

A few people have brought up the clue "Taper" for VCR. This was first used back in 2002 in a Klahn puzzle and is a brilliant product of either Klahn, Shortz, or Longo depending on who actually wrote the clue. It's an interesting clue - add a question mark and it's much easier; remove the question mark and it's totally insane.

DQ

Orange 5:25 PM  

I thought of olive oil too, Rikki. Eventually the name Bertolli came to mind. I do not know what city the Bertollis hail from (nor do I care).

Pop-Tarts + science = FIRE!

Anonymous 5:56 PM  

I still do not see the connection between the clue "Taper" and "VCR".
Can someone "clue" me in?

Peter E. Engler
engler@njit.edu

Anonymous 5:58 PM  

Yeats was my first answer. Give him a try, Dr. Parker.

penny 6:16 PM  

The videocassette recorder (or VCR, more commonly known in the UK and Ireland as the video recorder) is a type of video tape recorder ...

It tapes things. Just one of those mean-spirited clues that fools us into thinking we're fools. But we aren't, for the most part.

Kitt 6:46 PM  

Hmmm Well, DQ -- I really liked the puzzle. I got a smile on my face as I printed it out this am and seeing your name. Hate to think so many clues are changed after you submit. While there may be reasons for that -- it must suck!

Carry on! We want more DQ~

Veritas78 6:53 PM  

Sorry, "vapid" is not "arid." It just isn't, even if the root involves steam. I could have accepted "airy" like an airhead, but not "arid." Someone needs to go back to crossword school.

Anonymous 7:20 PM  

I had _neflat, and from that, I guess I'm the only one who thought that D minor has AN E FLAT. I could have slapped myself for how ridiculously long I stared at RAOTERS (I actually resisted putting in the TERS for quite some time).

I didn't know Sana is a walled city, but guessed Sana off the S, just because it's a crossword regular.

I was in the middle of that NW traffic jam (I probably caused it because I was stalled there for a VERY LONG time). Finally had to google the olympics. Since I'm middle aged with no kids, My Space took an understandably long time.

I also wanted (but resisted entering) Sept and Oct instead of wait and act and I wanted pan cake, but couldn't bring myself to split the word. Good thing on both counts because I do the puzzle in ink (not because I'm overconfident, but because I can't see what I've written if I do it in pencil and I don't enjoy doing it on-line).

Eileen, the Crossword Queen (not today)

Martin 7:30 PM  

veritas78,

A definition of "arid" is

Lacking interest or feeling; lifeless and dull: a technically perfect but arid musical performance.

In other words, "arid" can mean "vapid."

Joseph 7:52 PM  

Yes, "arid" was a stretch. No one uses that second definition, except maybe a Times art reviewer.

Worse I think was the clue "Pet" (answer: SNIT). "Pet" in some universe apparently means "a fit of bad temper." Please! The clue may as well have been, "a word."

rick 8:11 PM  

No, I got PET/SNIT immediately. Maybe it's an age thing or raising teenagers (which also would be an age thing).

They are direct replacements in a sentence.

Jim in NYC 8:22 PM  

Someone said: "After that I got a subscription and downloaded a raft of Friday and Saturdays."

I subscribe to the paper version, but I can't find downloadable puzzles OR the famous "applet" on NYTimes.com. Can anyone clue me in?

Michael 8:28 PM  

A wonderful puzzle - I don't agree with Rex at all her. Clever, but fair clues. Like many of you, I really liked taper-vcr even if it has been in a puzzle before. The only answer that I never heard of was iomoths. Unlike some of you, I got this part of the puzzle early, but then I just stared at iomoths. Maybe it was 10 moths, I thought. But that didn't make any sense...

I thought was just right for a Friday as far a difficulty goes.

Martin 8:34 PM  

jim in nyc

Free Premium Crosswords for home subscribers.

Jim in NYC 8:55 PM  

Thanks, Martin.

Joseph 9:07 PM  

Hmmm. Maybe that usage of "pet" is an English thing. Are you English, Rick? Googling "in a pet" didn't bring up anything relevant for pages, but I did eventually find this Burns reference: http://www.worldburnsclub.com/poems/translations/holy_willies_prayer.htm

Orange 9:44 PM  

Joseph, just accept that "in a pet" means "in a snit." (I think I once heard that it was actually a familiar phrase to someone in West Virginia.) It's the most technically defensible way to clue APET in crosswords, and you'll be seeing it again...more often than you'd like. It's just one of those crossword thangs.

Fergus 9:47 PM  

"In a Pet" I've never heard. Which subset of English speakers uses this term? Also, as Veritas and Martin commented upon, ARID and Vapid may fall into the the same definition zone but they really don't work together as crossword pairs, unless one drops any notion of flair and imagination.

23D "Heavens" had so many possibilities after TOTO's mouthful of Miss Gulch's calf that it made me wonder whether loose slang is all that fitting for the NYTIMES crossword. In my beachy, hippie-flavored college town, I hear way too much vapid slang, and I can state that "ROCK ON" is not a very good substitute for "Way to go, Dude." It's hardly worth analyzing the finer points of distinction, since this sort of phrase is uttered without much considered opinion. (So maybe the clue is sneakily, intentionally accurate?)

Interesting to have some insight into DQ's clue suggestions along with, and in contrast to, WS's edits. Seems like the constructor is sort of at the mercy of the editor? I would have thought that the editor would have returned to consult with the constructor, if only to ensure that the internal coherence of the constructor's art has kept its integrity.

Rikki 9:47 PM  

Orange, that link was hilarious. How many degrees of separation are you from the author? Just curious.

Rikki

Kitt 10:12 PM  

Eileen: you weren't alone. I also had "ANEFLAT" for bit. Also, I tried "HOT CAKE" (I think pop tart is my very least favorite answer here -- NOT a waffle alt!)

Thought of Sept/Oct but since there was nothing in the clue indicating abbreviation(s)...moved on.

billnutt 10:53 PM  

This puzzle TROUNCED my gluteus maximum as badly as the one from two weeks ago.

I actually sorta liked the "one flat"/"D minor" clue, but that's my fondness for music-related clues. The silent C/center of Connecticut drove me batty. I actually put in the letters "VCR" a solid 10 minutes before I realized the meaning of "taper."

It didn't help that I assumed "Bob Hope" was the host of the 1963 Oscars. Argh and Double Argh.

I like Yeats, but I had no idea he used the phrase "crazy salad" in any of his poems. Oh, those wacky Irish...

Liked K Ration. I looked at the 64 across clue and thought, "No, there's no way it could be the NY Tims. Must be the LA Times."

After a couple of false starts, I was able to fill in the West. Practically the entire East was a nightmare, though.

Though I only took Spanish in high school, I've learned "ete" from crossword puzzles. This is the first time I've seen it clued as "hiver's opposite."

Well, fortunately, I did sudoku earlier in the day, so I could devote the whole evening to this...

Joseph 11:04 PM  

Ah - thanks, Orange. I hadn't run across this bit of crosswordese.

Still, I'm as curious as Fergus to find out where this is a regional term. It's not marked as archaic, after all, and I dearly hope that dictionary editors don't consider a word's inclusion in the Times puzzle an instance of modern usage. :) I wonder where one goes to research such regional differences.

Anyhow, here's a plea to all of you hard-working crossword constructors: if you find yourself about to pen "apet," please, back up!

Fergus 2:10 AM  

Gaga and SMITTEN -- the key to puzzle, then SKIP OUT

flyinggargoyle 8:59 AM  

I have to agree. I have never actually *detested* a puzzle before, but this one got that moniker about halfway through. Too many of the clues just seemed cheap instead of interesting, clever or insightful. I'm surprised it made the cut and was published.

kim 2:46 PM  

Pigheadedness got me on this one. I was convinced that the 1963 Academy Award host was Bob Hope too. Unwillingness to accept anyone else prolonged the agony, for sure.

Also resisted Yeats right up to the end. Doesn't "It's certain that fine women eat/ a crazy salad with their meat" sound very Ogden Nash?

Mary 6:02 PM  

I had no problem with pet/snit. As for the rest of the puzzle...well, I only just finished it.

Funny thing, the TV is on right now and I just watched a Geico ad featuring Mr. Slate!

Anonymous 1:30 PM  

ete and hiver are french, not spanish.

Qov 6:57 PM  

Oh thank you for having a crossword blog. Now there is someone who (I can pretend) will care about what I think of the crossword.

I agree on 4D. I had "pancake" for quite a while. I think it a sad sign that David never had proper waffles growing up, and that fifteen years of breakfast were frozen waffle, poptart or cold cereal. Very sad.

I thought one flat was clever. I don't know music so I was waiting for letters to find out if it was one flat, no flats or [a-f] sharp.

Genus was very good. I too had GENES and thought it weak, then bopped myself when I realized: kingdom phylum class order family genus species.

For 55/58 down I had OCT and SEPT and except for the lack of cueing for the abbreviations I was very happy with them. I spent a while confused because a BILL is something that is not yet an ACT. "Time to" is missing from that clue set.

I didn't think vapid was a good clue for ARID, but I suppose if it fits in an art review it can stay.

I don't think the poetry sounds like Ogden Nash at all. The rhymes aren't crazily contrived enough.

ChickenGrrl 6:09 AM  

Rexie (may I call you Rexie?), I find myself turning to your blog more and more when I get stuck. This was in the Dallas Morning News on Dec. 7 - why we get them so much later than you is beyond me, but whatever. I love reading along to see the answers that stumped you that I got quickly (see: TOTO), and vice-versa (SANA).

Keep on solvin'...

jpChris 2:26 PM  

I always have a problem with Yoko Ono because of a SNL or SCTV skit where she was singing and they referred to her as Yoko? Ohno! I keep wanting to add an "H".

WWPierre 3:47 PM  

See my comments on tomorrow's puzzle. (If you happen to be interested, that is;)

  © Free Blogger Templates Columnus by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP