PANTHEON - New Nominees

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Here are the list of words currently under consideration for the Crossword PANTHEON (see sidebar). I am requesting feedback on this list, as well as any additional nominees you feel are worthy of consideration. For a specific statement about criteria for PANTHEON inclusion, read the PANTHEON entry (again, see sidebar). Here are the nominees. They may all get in, or very few of them may get in.... we'll see.

ENO (Brian)
Late adds:


Anonymous 12:14 AM  

I'm not one of the Xwd elite, but I've done the NYT enough to offer my strong support to the application of OONA for admission to the Pantheon. I first met OONA in the NYT, and over the years she has been a reliable gimme-answer. Her steadfastness is impressive; though I have seen OONA many times in the puzzle, never have I even heard mention of her elsewhere. I give this candidate very high marks for her "U" quotient, and recommend her with enthusiasm.

Anonymous 7:00 AM  

I nominate "EPEE". I am pretty old and have never used this in conversation except once when I found out my daughter in law fenced in college. Turns up frequently in puzzles though.

Anonymous 7:32 AM  

See ya later Oona! You too Alou! Take your Elhi with you!

And why are you still hanging around, Eno? Grab Estee, and her etui, and make like an emu and alate.

Yeah, round up usual suspects...but I would like to add that SEWER and HDTV dont seem to egregious too me.

Pen Girl

Rex Parker 8:18 AM  

Yes, SEWER and HDTV are X-word favorites, but they are very common words.

To be clear, though, I don't think of the PANTHEON as some kind of prison for X-word undesirables. More like a museum of curiosities. I don't like all the members, but I have a certain fondness for most of them (esp ETUI, who is really refusing to die).


PS - there is good buzz around OONA, Shaun. She's been a bit ... dormant of late, but I believe in her.

Anonymous 8:21 AM  

Here's some more:

Seles, Ulee, Essie, Andi, Ethel, shiv, SST, erst, and maybe Enola.

Sadly, these have all been culled from only two crosswords, both mine...

PG :)

Anonymous 8:32 AM  

If you will please forgive me one more comment:

I realize your concept of 'pantheon' does not intend to imply a kind of crossword 'prison.'

Of course, the words listed here are c-word cornerstones, they won't be going away anytime soon.

But I think constructors try to avoid these words if they can - an erstwhile quarantine if not prison.

(Sorry if this is all too OT).


Rex Parker 9:13 AM  

Point taken, PG. These words are crutches, so you avoid them when possible ... but they are also heroic words, in that they are clearly Necessary (in many cases) to make an otherwise fresh and exceptional puzzle fly. They do the dirty work.

Hey, PG, how 'bout RATER? I say that only because I solved back-to-back "PG" puzzles yesterday, both of which featured that ... word.

(To be fair, though, one puzzle was an "AT" or "@" rebus puzzle, so RATER (R@ER) seems like fair game in that instance)


Rex Parker 9:16 AM  

P.S. EPEE and SST are already in the Pantheon (see "The Pantheon" in homepage sidebar)

Anonymous 10:22 AM  

Rater for sure. Add to that ironer, dicer, ricer, etc., ad nauseum.

I think you mentioned the disinclination to ER words in a previous post - up against the wall with the lot of them as far as I am concerned.

But yeah, same have helped out self many, many times.

Agree w/regards to rebus: any puzzle that is hard to make, and is generally good in other aspects merits the odd crutch word.


sonofdad 10:28 AM  

Omoo begs for inclusion.

Rex Parker 10:44 AM  

He sure does... anything to crawl out from the shadow of his showier, five-lettered brother, Typee.

Unknown 11:17 AM  

Have you ever in your life heard (or read) someone using AT SEA idiomatically to mean "in a state of confusion or perplexity; at a loss"? I haven't. And yet, of the 208 Cruciverb records of this entry, about 70% invoke that meaning rather than the sailing meaning. Pantheonamitize it!

Anonymous 2:43 PM  

This very day I described myself as "AT SEA" in the very way you mention. However, Rex will vouch for the fact that I am atypical. Or at least my daughter will.

RATER is among the most reliable of Boggle finds, somehow, along with DAIS, NOTER, and TOTER. But that's another subject.

Rex Parker 3:48 PM  

I had to cut out online Boggle entirely, as it was making me crazy / ill. I was starting to dream Boggle. I couldn't look at words without rearranging the letters in my head. Seriously, it was bad. Had to stop. Cold turkey.

And yes, Shaun is atypical. I want to know the context and complete sentence in which you used the expression AT SEA.


Anonymous 1:45 AM  

Despite the frequency of its occurence, ASSESS has for me been a notorious answer both in and out of the NYT. I believe it should be given at least an honorable mention for its 2/3rds S make up.


Anonymous 11:35 AM  

Hmmm, I said "AT SEA" to my therapist, so the full context and complete sentence is probably subject to a client-practitioner confidentiality requirement. But it seemed an accurate description of a mental state, and she did nod sagely as if my meaning was clear, and that I was not talking about suddenly ditching the family and going around the world in a schooner.

Then again, I pay her quite a bit to nod sagely at me from time to time, so who's to say?

I think I may have said I felt AT SEA in the midst of my dissertation work -- there's an Andre Gide quote that goes nicely with this, but Google gives me too many variations of it for me to cite it with confidence here. GIDE -- that could be some nice fill.

Rex Parker 11:44 AM  

SCHOONER is some nice fill.

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