Average American allusively / SAT 11-5-22 / Alternatives to baskets / Famous game-saving 1954 World Series play by Willie Mays / Peter Pettigrew's animagus in the Harry Potter books / Brined white cheeses / The beginning and end of all music per Max Reger / Traditional Polynesian beverage that numbs the mouth / One in a nursery rhyme pocketful / Location of a daith piercing / Cardamom-containing coffeehouse creation

Saturday, November 5, 2022

Constructor: John Westwig

Relative difficulty: Medium

THEME: none 

Word of the Day: THE CATCH (13A: Famous game-saving 1954 World Series play by Willie Mays) —
The Catch was a baseball play made by New York Giants center fielder Willie Mayson September 29, 1954, during Game 1 of the 1954 World Series at the Polo Grounds in Upper Manhattan, New York City. During the eighth inning with the score tied 2–2, Cleveland Indians batter Vic Wertz hit a deep fly ball to center field that had the runners on base poised to score. However, Mays made an over-the-shoulder catch while on the run to record the out, and his throw back to the infield prevented the runners from advancing. The Giants won the game 5–2 in extra innings, and eventually the World Series. The Catch is regarded as one of the greatest plays in baseball history. (wikipedia) 
• • •

Weird U-shaped beginning to this solve, as I went ETHOS, SEEPED, and then, tentatively, JIBED (8D: Agreed). IRANI was also tentative, though JAM UP was more confident, and finally UNO CARD went in, the first thing that actually felt rock solid (11D: Skip or Reverse). That answer may also have been the highlight of this puzzle for me, as PINERY (?) set things on a rough track (12D: Dole Plantation, e.g.), and then the first marquee answer, HOLD A SEANCE, continued down that track, only a little more so. Look, HOLD A SEANCE is not exactly EAT A SANDWICH in its arbitrary verb-phrasiness, but it's definitely EAT A SANDWICH-esque. HOLD A SEANCE is tighter, for sure, more focused. I don't even dislike it, really. It's just that ... there are only two other answers in the whole puzzle that are this long or longer, so it's bearing a lot of weight, this answer; maybe if the rest of the grid had been really humming, HOLD A SEANCE would seem like a fine, even colorful addition to the party. But the bright, longer answers are simply few and far between today, and the other stuff is merely OK. HOLD A SEANCE isn't really up to the task of being one of so few marquee answers today. Early in the solve, that answer just felt a bit clunky, *as marquee answers go*, and it didn't feel like a harbinger of good. Once I dropped through NOT GOOD and CRAPPY, it felt like the grid was trying to tell me something. Confessing something. 

I don't actually think the puzzle was CRAPPY, but ... take CRAPPY (38A: Bad). I really hate it in my grid. I mean, I say it, from time to time, but it's an ugly word. It makes the grid ugly and depressing in a way that CRUMMY or CRUDDY just doesn't. IOSAPP is also ugly, in a different way—a somewhat worse way, because it feels like it wants to be original and fresh, but it just looks made-up and weird. I mean, it's a real thing, but it's just not an entertaining answer. Feels forced. PRSAVVY also feels forced. Very forced. Like, extremely forced. PRSKILLS googles twice as well, and even that feels a little iffy. I get that the it must be tempting to debut an answer, but maybe that answer in your swollen wordlist isn't ... great. Consider it. 

HIDE AND GO SEEK ... is a thing (14D: Game where it always counts) (cute clue, clever use of "it"). I wouldn't say the "GO" part, nor would most people in most circumstances, but it's definitely ... a thing. I do love PRIVATE EYES—a very big part of both my leisure and working life—and I love both the movies in the clue, so that was the real winning answer today, for me (50A: Figures in "Knives Out" and "The Maltese Falcon"). But it just wasn't enough to lift this one out of the humdrum. The puzzle was properly tough, so I got a good workout, but I didn't get much of what you'd call "enjoyment." The one thing this puzzle did give me was a feeling of vocabulary power, as I had no trouble with [Ochlocracy], a word I learned from a *brutal* Bob Klahn puzzle back in 2007!

Always nice to learn something from a crossword and then be able to put it to use ... fifteen years later (!). What else? Not sure why we're still doing Harry Potter clues, honestly. I mean, if you've got SNAPE, then you don't really have any other cluing options, but RAT!? To be clear, I am, in fact, trying to "cancel" J.K. Rowling. That is precisely what is going on. I won't succeed. But she's the rich white nice-lady face of a global bigotry movement, so ... pass. "RAP GOD" feels exceedingly hard as clued (17D: Eminem track with the Guinness World Record for "most words in a hit single"). I'm not nearly as rap-averse as many of you—not rap-averse at all, in fact—but the very existence of this song was news to me. But I don't mind it, in that you can infer the answer from fair crosses, and you learn a bit of trivia along the way. I got super-annoyed at the puzzle when I tried to move up into the NW corner from below, towards the end, and while I could work out CHAI TEA from -TEA (2D: Cardamom-containing coffeehouse creation), the other two 7-letter Downs leading up into that section were giving me -ING and ... -ING (not helpful!):

Luckily THE CATCH ended up being a gimme, and the corner fell from there. Only real error today came slam-bang in the middle of the puzzle, where, faced with -DDAYS at 34A: Romps, I wrote in SALAD DAYS. But then I got out of that jam with the help of the LADIES, who gave me the "L"—"Take the L," they said (This seemed unkind ... but then I understood). The "L" helped me ditch SALAD and replace it with different greenery: FIELD! I finished the puzzle having no idea how I was supposed to get from [Unsalted, perhaps] to ICY. Just baffled. Was thinking about snacks, cocktails ... people's dispositions ... it was only after I started down the road of "what are some things that are ICY?" that I hit upon "sidewalks in winter," and bam, the connection between salt and ice all of a sudden made sense. Maybe if I'd solved this puzzle in winter, that connection would've been clearer. We certainly salt our walkway and sidewalk multiple times each winter to keep ourselves and our neighbors from, you know, dying. But here in early November, no ice as yet, so the clue did not compute. And today, no ice again. 70 degrees in fact. Gonna go soak it in while I can. Enjoy the rest of your day.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Facebook]


Natasha 6:05 AM  

The word "humblebrag" is getting watered down-- it should be both falsely modest and contain a thinly-veiled, well, brag, which I don't think ITRY does. It's just falsely modest. Harris Wittels's legacy deserves more respect than this.

Conrad 7:10 AM  

Thank you, @Beezer from YD, for the explanation of RAFA.

Overwrites: nut before ICY at 4D jazz before BACH at 5D, and @Rex salaD DAYS before FIELD DAYS at 34A. PRSense before PRSAVVY at 40D led to SECRETIng before SECRETIVE at 55A

PINERY at 12D and NENEH Cherry at 26A were WOEs, although more-or-less easily inferable.

BritSolvesNYT 7:29 AM  

We have Hide and Seek here in the uk which looked like the answer for the longest time but couldn’t be due to the answer length… finally realising you call it hide and go seek over there was today’s revelation. Even after a couple of years solving this puzzle daily I’m picking up differences I didn’t know between British and American English most days!

Other than that found this puzzle solid, standard Saturday fare. Always enjoy Harry Potter clues bringing back happy memories of reading them all back in the day.

Unknown 7:35 AM  

Most IOS apps are not made by apple; they are created by third parties.

Anonymous 7:38 AM  

Started out with a screaming error: STEAMED for 1D. Never a good thing. I knew "amanuensis" as "secretary" because I was one in a graduate English department while working on my master's and some of the older faculty liked to refer to us that way. Somehow that didn't translate into SCRIBE. For 15A, I wondered whether the "Nice" in the clue referred to the city in France, and that held me up too. So it was a slippery, even ICY, beginning.

But things opened up here and there, especially in the south, providing footholds that would get me to the music without any help. No idea how I knew MAGNETO and KAVAKAVA--must have read them somewhere but the context eludes me. Unlike Rex, I'd rather see CRAPPY than cruddy, but we are seriously picking nits here. I really liked this puzzle.

Learned a new word: ochlocracy. I like saying it! I don't like living with it, though. Please vote.

Bob Mills 7:38 AM  

I agree with Natasha that HUMBLEBRAG is a misleading clue for ITRY. This was the hardest part of the solve for me, because I had no idea what an IOSAPP was. But finishing a Saturday through trial-and-error still feels satisfying.

Phillyrad1999 7:42 AM  

What I liked about this puzzle was that there was only 1 name as an answer. Unfortunately I always thought the artists name was NEENA Cherry not NENEH Cherry. So that was a bit of a hiccup but the rest of it felt a little easier than most Saturdays. I liked the nod to MAGNETO. While IOSAPP is technically a thing (if you are a developer) it is not a thing for a consumer. Love the use of both Knives Out and Maltese Falcon. Have been waiting for Knives Out 2 to come out. I appreciated learning what Amanuenses was just not for 1A - had to get it from the downs. Also wanted Skip and Raverse to be some sort of remote control reference but UNOCARD was at least smile worthy.

pabloinnh 8:03 AM  

Looked at 1A and thought, STENOS again, so soon, and now we're spelling it STENOES? Fortunately that didn't work and I went elsewhere looking for a place to get in, and didn't find one until I saw the Willie Mays reference, and put in the CATCH part, which got me started. I know how famous that catch is, but it seems that any time I hear THECATCH on tv these days, they're talking about the Joe Montana to Dwight Clark play. That's a shame, because Willie made the better CATCH, says me, who also prefers baseball.

Fairly speedy once I got going. MAILBOX before MAILBAG, and a WTF on NENEH and KAVACAVA, but otherwise OK. I assumed PINERY had something to do with the Spanish word for pineapple, which is pina with a tilde, as in pina colada, but maybe it's just coincidence.

I liked your Saturday just fine, JW. Enough Jazzy Words to be interesting and about the right amount of challenge. Thanks for all the fun.

And now on to the Stumper.

Anonymous 8:04 AM  

When I was growing up in Texas we played a lot of HIDE AND GO SEEK, but when I emigrated to New England I learned that much of what I said was wrong. Well, you can take the boy out of Texas . . .

Wanderlust 8:07 AM  

I feel like Rex really loves a puzzle for its answers and I really love a puzzle for its clues. And I loved this one because it had awesome clues, some just beautifully clever and some delightfully knotty.

In the former category, there’s the clue for HIDE AND GO SEEK, as Rex notes. (I, too, wondered what was going on with those two extra letters when I had HIDE AND … but I do remember using the GO when we were kids.)

Other witty clues: “raise people’s spirits” for HOLD A SEANCE (which doesn’t feel “eat a sandwich-y” at all to me), “Met for a few hours in the evening” for OPERA, and especially “a bad one is your fault,” for SERVE.

And then I absolutely loved the two head-scratchers - “phrase that’s often contracted.. or suffix for something contracted” for ITIS, and “this clue’s answer might contain more than seven letters” for MAILBAG. Most of those are very blah answers but they all shine because of the cluing.

Once again, I will channel my South Asian friends and say “Chai is just tea, people, it is not a KIND of tea!”

Honestly, the only thing I really didn’t like about this was PINERY. Wha….? Do they grow pine trees on the Dole Plantation? If so, why? And if they grow what I think they grow on the Dole Plantation, why isn’t it a PINEappleRY?

JHC 8:16 AM  

I had the unusual experience of getting an obscure name with no help, and also needing multiple crosses to fill it in. I pulled NENEH Cherry out of my childhood easily, but had the vowels wrong. (All fairly crossed, though.)

Roberto 8:19 AM  

the catch is more well known as a football thing by the 49 er s.. dwight clark and Joe Montana ....pinery was brutal...

Johnny Mic 8:21 AM  

I thought this one was pretty easy for a Saturday. It was easier than Thursday in fact. Felt cool cause I knew NENEH Cherry, I absolutely loved that song and video. And ICY was my first entry today. This one felt very vocabulary heavy to me

Son Volt 8:28 AM  

Up and down for me - CRAPPY is aptly clued in that mess of a SE corner. FIELD DAYS is a quaint center but seems misclued? A lot of the misdirects fall flat - see SELFIE.

OCHLOCRACY is cool - and PINERY is just offbeat enough to bring a smile. Oh oh, are we gonna fly down in the EASY CHAIR?. I love the GYROs at Fontana’s in Bayside. Don’t care about the author but keep the kid lit out of my puzzle - ditto for animated Disney.

My favorite ARIA from my favorite OPERA

Try Anna Stiga’s Stumper instead.

Joaquin 8:35 AM  

Another great Saturday puzzle - a challenge and a learning experience (Amanuenses and Ochlocracy are both new to me).

For 4D [Unsalted, perhaps] I wanted this: "Bland diet one must follow when his kidneys have gone south".

Loren Muse Smith 8:39 AM  

Not too hard, even though two fill-in-the blanks offered no toe-hold entry. First thought for that “space” was “crawl,” but I didn’t write it in. Rex – same thoughts re HOLD A SÉANCE and PR SAVVY.

The star of the show today was the clue for IT IS. I’m pretty sure I read somewhere that the common contraction for IT IS used to be ’tis. Imagine how many people would have been spared the public grammar shaming of confusing its and it’s. Pedants could be focusing their helpful wrist-slaps on the singular they or the incorrect usage of decimate

HIDE AND GO SEEK/HOLD A SÉANCE. I had “have” A SÉANCE first and briefly chewed on the difference between having an event and holding an event. Quickly lost interest. Those two entries took me back to my childhood in Chattanooga. Man oh man did we play some HIDE AND GO SEEK. (The GO was definitely part of the name.) Apples, peaches, pumpkin pie. . . who’s not ready, holler I! And we held a crap ton of seances. Our go-to invitee was William Frawley ‘cause he’s the only famous person we knew who was dead. I think a bit later we added Walt Disney into the rotation.

I’ve been a lifelong loather of hot weather. So I dreaded FIELD DAY all year in Chattanooga ‘cause I knew we’d be outside in the heat for hours. Aggie B, my swimming nemesis, was rich and had her own personal battery-powered fan at FIELD DAY. The jealousy I felt for her, the rage, the depth of emotion, is why some people write poetry or create angry paintings: it was ineffable.

METONYM – I adore all the nyms and just wasted about 15 minutes down that rabbit hole. Did you know that Polish/polish, March/march, Turkey/turkey . . .are capitonyms? Bruce Haight taught me the word oronym (new deal/nude eel). A euonym(Usain Bolt) is a synonym for aptronym. Inaptronym (Cardinal Sin) is its antonym. Eminem’s alethonym is Marshall Mathers. Your day is now complete.

Ok. So we have SEEPED and SECRETIVE. Considered in this light, you could argue that if something SEEPED, it was SECRETIVE (/suh*KREE*tiv/), heteronym of sneaky sneak SECRETIVE (/SEE*kruh*tiv/).

I’m sorry, but Seatac looks governmentsome, like it should always be written S.E.A.T.A.C, an acronym for, say, Southern Economic Agriculture Trade Alliance Commission and would appear in minor news stories: S.E.A.T.A.C. will meet next Monday in Atlanta to discuss increasing farmer subsidies.

Liked PRIVATE EYES/SPY CAM. Sometimes I wonder if I’d act differently if I thought there may be a SPYCAM recording me. I bet I would. Switch from Bravo to the history channel, eat ice cream out of a proper bowl, seated in an EASY CHAIR rather than straight out of the container, standing over the sink change out of my sweats into elegant khaki slacks and an ice-blue cashmere sweater. . .

OK. One more “I’m sorry but”. . . I guess the recliner EASY CHAIR is considered ugly and common and distasteful by interior decorators. I don’t care. When I have the money and the space, I’ma buy me the most in-your-face widest, cushiest, electrickest recliner I can. They’re miracles. It’s my plan to get an oversize one that heats and massages and stuff. Something like this.

PS – “Daith” is a nobodyknowswhatthehellthatisonym. [see also philtrum, lunule, and glabella]

DanQuizzing 8:46 AM  

The YouTube video for "Rap God" has 1.3 billion plays, it is not even slightly obscure.

OffTheGrid 8:48 AM  

@Wanderlust. I agree about the cluing today. It really sparkled. Today's puzz would be my POW. Yesterday's a close #2.

Michiganman(I'm not Z) 8:53 AM  

I know The PINERY as a beautiful Ontario Provinicial Park on Lake Huron.

S. Goodman 8:54 AM  

Not sure about 30A. In my understanding.....

An order against disclosure (e.g., by a judge during a trial) would be a gag RULE specifying explicit prohibitions for a particular purpose in special circumstances that justify temporary overriding of the right to freedom of speech. A gag LAW would not be an order, as such, but, instead, would be the legislation that provides for such an order. And in the United States, anyway, such laws are generally considered unconstitutional because they involve prior restraint. But this is not so true in some other countries - even in Western European countries. Nonetheless, in neither case is a law an order - the law is, rather, the legal basis for issuing an order that will enforce the law.

But maybe a real live attorney can set me straight on this.

Lizard Breath 9:00 AM  

One of the neural pathways that has lain dark and dormant and cobwebbed for more than three decades suddenly roared back into action. In 1988, NENEH Cherry and her song floated into my awareness, probably because it was played incessantly on MTV for the weeks. Then she floated out of my awareness, and I have thought of her not once for 34 years. And then last night, the pathway got its chance to shine when I got that answer immediately.

My kids wonder how I don’t remember the most basic details of a movie I saw a week ago. It’s because my brain is crowded with NENEH Cherries!

beverly c 9:05 AM  

The BIGON, PINERY, MAGNETO corner gave me some trouble, but even so this was probably my second fastest Saturday.
I liked seeing SEANCE, but I agree the HOLDA was sort of arbitrary. We played HIDEANDSEEK as kids - no GO.

But now it's official: I'm coming down in the Pro Theme camp when it comes to the puzzle. I prefer the ones that have that little something extra.

Anonymous 9:18 AM  

(Long time reader—first time poster here) The first one I got was chaitea as my son drinks chai nearly every day and I showed to him and said “someone’s going to get slammed for this” because there’s always an uproar that “chai” literally means “tea” so it’s redundant and it annoyed me in the same way the “Legos” answer does when it’s in the crossword because the plan of “Lego” is “Lego”!

Carola 9:44 AM  

Not quite a romp, but definitely on the easy side for a Saturday. I got off to a slow start, with SCRIBES yielding me only ETHOS as a cross and a sole MAGNETO as a toehold next door. But WIT got me STEWING, after which the grid unfurled smoothly to the bottom. Favorite moment: realizing that HIDE AND SEEK was going to recover the GO of my childhood: shades of heading to East Side Park after supper on summer evenings as dusk fell.

Help from previous puzzles: MAGNETO. No idea: NENEH, RAP GOD. THE CATCH. New to me: the concepts of WEB ART and PINERY. Eyebrow raised at: HOLD A SEANCE. Cultural confusion almost do-over: SCArab instead of SCALES.

RooMonster 9:57 AM  

Hey All !
ICY as clued could also be used to describe a personality trait. Sure it can, just squint a little!

Tough in each area, but managed a snail-pace solve, steady, with no breaks, and managed a 100% error free solve! In only 28 minutes! Fast for me for a puz that I had to think on.

Last section to go was NW, happy to finally see Rex also ended up there. He usually flies though the NW without a hiccup when I find it difficult. Had GApLAW in, but was able to correct with my last entry, RESTING. Let out a "Hmm, two INGs pretty much next to each other " It's like disappointment in something you think should be great.

Good puz overall. Didn't think it was CRAPPY. Is CRAPPY an Ass-next-to-thing that (insert person who tracks the ASSes here *since my memory of course is failing me as to who(m)? that is*)?

PEORIAN? Explain that to me so I can look like a bigger idiot.


Three F's

burtonkd 9:58 AM  

@Britsolves - I believe it is regional here, as I've heard it less often with "GO" as per Rex.

@Unknown - That bothered me too in that IOS is the operating system, not an app. But I guess if Apple creates an app that runs on IOS, the clue is OK.

I agree with Natasha, but with "ITRY" having made an appearance fairly recently, it popped right in.

BACH and SCALES in the same section are reminding me that I need to stop dawdling here and go practice for my church prelude tomorrow. I wonder if BACH plays well in PEORIA.

Got NENEH only through every single cross

@Wanderlust, I agree that the clues make the puzzle, and there was a lot of joy to be had here, plus it was a very fast Saturday. PER Rex, I notice when there is some kind of marquee-newly-in-the-language-phrase, and smile at that also, but it is not a requirement for me (yet?).

I like the way the double VV in SAVVY and the two Y's next door look down in the SE.

RESTING crossing EASYCHAIR was nice. I don't even own an EASYCHAIR, or my first answer LAZYCHAIR, but I always fall asleep after dinner with wine somewhere during the final showstopper of The Great British Baking Show and wake up just in time to see who is getting booted that week. After I SKIP or REVERSE back, the spoiler does in fact spoil the rewatch.

Since nobody else seems to have looked it up yet, here is the surprising order of definitions for PINERY (per M-W):
1: a hothouse or area where pineapples are grown
2: a grove or forest of pine

burtonkd 10:02 AM  

@Roo - Peoria is a stand-in for Middle America for show biz types. People in coastal elite cities will create a play or film for their local audience tastes, but need to consider if it will "play in Peoria" if they want to make real money off of it.

Teddy 10:04 AM  

Chai means tea in Russian. Chai tea means tea tea. Always makes me laugh. (And while we’re at it, La Brea means the tar. So the La Brea Tar Pits are The Tae Tar Pits.) Also yeah, crappy is crappy fill. But I liked the puzzle more than @rex. Helps to be an amateur, I guess.

NYDenizen 10:13 AM  


Wordle 503 3/6*
⬜R⬜A⬜ I ⬜S⬜E


mathgent 10:13 AM  

Joaquin and OffTheGrid! Come on over to this corner of the playground. I've got cake. We seem to be the only ones who loved the puzzle. (But we haven't heard from Nancy yet.)

Sparkle galore, plenty of crunch, learned a few things, single-digit Terrible Threes. Wow!!!

Teresa 10:22 AM  

Note to Rex: Sand works every bit as well as salt and isn't brutal to the environment. Start a trend in your neighborhood!

GILL I. 10:25 AM  

Not to sound exceedingly PEORIAN, so i'll just say WOW...I JIBED with John today.
I couldn't even get started in the attic so I bounced on down to the basement. I slapped away a WEB or two and found the PRIVATE EYE with his SPY CAM being all SECRETIVE. Well, that was fun!
I paced my way up to the center and thought NOT GOOD. I really wanted to get 1A.
My grandmother taught me the word Amanuenses. She said it was a word with flair and that secretaries, in those days of yore, where proud of being one. Well, secretary didn't fit so I sat a long time, determined to find an answer. CHAI TEA gave e the C I needed...SCRIBES of course. The downs were forming...very slowly at first but I was getting a second wind.
Lots of do-overs Dam/JAM...Not nice/GOOD...Inre/ IT IS....spot/SEAT. All minor and all erasable with crosses.
I really loved this puzzle. I will now know what Ochlocracy is. That PINERY and PEORIAN are real words. And that clues like the one for MAIL BAG and ICY won't fool me anymore.
KAVA KAVA is god-awful... and it sits right below a TKO....

TTrimble 10:37 AM  

Okay, I looked up PINERY and here's what it says (Merriam-Webster): "The meaning of PINERY is a hothouse or area where pineapples are grown." (I just copied and pasted directly from the Google search results; I didn't open up the book, so to speak.)

I must have fallen asleep mid-solve last night; when I came to, saw my computer had also fallen asleep, and I went to bed. Thus when I logged in this morning, the puzzle clock showed a time that was NOT GOOD. Oh well. Maybe the sleep did me good, though, because I wrapped it up in a jiffy. It didn't feel too hard, even though I didn't know MAGNETO and PINERY and ochlocracy. Instead of CHAI TEA I'd put in "yogi TEA" last night, which is a little dumb (that's a brand name). But Yogi Tea makes a KAVA tea, which I like. I couldn't figure out what to do with KAVA last night since I needed more letters than in "tea", but this morning remembered that they repeat words a lot in Polynesian languages, so I tried KAVAKAVA and say hey, whaddya know, it worked.

Willie Mays was also in the Shot Heard 'Round the World game of 1951. I'll read about THE CATCH after I post this.

I TRY but sometimes fail to remember when to write JIBED and when to write "gibed". Maybe this puzzle will help.

Referring to @LMS's post, I do know "philtrum" and "lunule". The latter is not accepted in Spelling Bee but "lunula" is, for some reason. I don't know "glabella". I do know the word "glabrous", which is one of those words that doesn't mean what it sounds like it ought to mean, if you know what I mean. You might think "glabrous" signifies something vaguely unpleasant, like "gloppy" maybe. What would be the -nym word for that phenomenon?

Also, in her post, she mentioned public shaming over mixing up "its" with "it's". Okay, here's what I think, and it would take a major effort to learn to unthink this: every time I see someone get it wrong, I internally shake my head at them. It happens an awful lot (and based on anecdotal evidence, I seem to see Brits get it wrong maybe even more than Americans).

Now, this is harmlessly PRIVATE, not public, so I'm not really that ashamed of myself for doing this. But I'll think: how old are you now? Because you should have gotten this sorted out a long time ago, you know; it's really not that hard. And a little part of me thinks less of you for doing it. (If it's part of rapid-fire typing in a text or PRIVATE message, then it's not so bad, but if it's a case where you have time to compose your thoughts, then it's NOT GOOD. Just stop a moment and think when you come to the word.) Here, this may help: we write "ours", not "our's", "theirs", not "their's", "yours", not "your's", "hers", not "her's". The spellcheck, which by the way you should also take advantage of, assures me so.

(It just amazes me that so much stuff is misspelled, especially when I see it on, for example, news broadcasts, or in big titles. Just really blatant errors. Don't you people check to see what you've written at all, before you go public? Slow down, and have a look. [No, I'm not talking at you good people, and I don't much care if you misspell something: I'm talking about real publications and the people behind them.])

Oh, and please TRY not to substitute "of" for "have". E.g., "I should of warned you not to do that." I'm looking at you, J. Geils Band.

bocamp 10:44 AM  

Thx, John; just right for a Sat.! :)


Pretty much on John's wavelength for this one.

Only dilemma was wanting an 'i' for CHAITiA. Thot NiNEH might be a name, but spidey-sense kicked in and, voila! along came CHAI TEA to the rescue.

Always enjoy seeing THE CATCH.

Fun 'romp'! :)

On to the Sat. Stumper by Anna Stiga. 🤞
Peace 🕊 🇺🇦 ~ Compassion ~ Tolerance ~ Kindness to all 🙏

JC66 10:48 AM  


I sure hope you're joking.

TJS 10:53 AM  

@Roo, Haldeman during one of the Nixon scheme sessions, "But will it play in Peoria ?"

Agree with @wanderlust, etal, that the cluing made the puzzle today.

How can someone slide from "crap ton" to the "nym" discussion so effortlessly as @LMS ?

So OFL finds "crappy" "an ugly word" but doesn't mind throwing "f**k" into his message occasionally. Hmm...

jcal 11:00 AM  

I grew up in the New York area and the game is definitely Hide and GO seek. Perhaps r4egional? And, speaking of NY - the opera clue was delightful.

TTrimble 11:11 AM  

Most of the time here, I'm joking around or laughing at myself a little. Sorry if that was triggering.

Tom T 11:21 AM  

Kept my modest streak ("all my streaks are modest," he humblebragged) alive on a technicality. The last letter I entered was the "I" in I TRY, but no Happy Music. For some unknown reason, I simply couldn't see that answer (even though it's been in puzzles before and I had no trouble--sheesh). So I ran the other vowels to no avail and then began to doubt the Y in PINERY. Finally I thought that perhaps the problem was to be found elsewhere, and quickly realized that when I saw SEANCE, I quickly typed in HeLD a SEANCE, not going back to read the clue for tense. Popped that O in and done.

First toehold came in the SW with ADMIT IT, OUTER, FLIRT, FETAS. From there proceeded counterclockwise at steady pace to the end.

Had MAILBox before MAILBAG, and raw for Unsalted, perhaps, but few if any other type-overs until the afore mentioned thud at the end. Oh, and lAPGOD before RAPGOD, which made me laugh--God as a Pomeranian ...

A good Saturday puzzle. Put me on the "liked it" team.

Unknown 11:24 AM  

Great Puzzle, John! I love your last name--you should put "WESTWING" as an answer in a puzzle sometime as a way of "signing" it. Enjoyed thinking of "first LADIES" and "LADIES first"... clever. Also liked the clue for HIDEANDGOSEEK. I thought SCALES was a bit tricky--I mean, I'm October born, and was just like, well, it can't be Libra--what's the other October sign? Took forever to puzzle that out. Thanks so much for an awesome Saturday exercise, John! We enjoyed it. 22 minutes for our Father/Son team... --Rick

egsforbreakfast 11:31 AM  

@Michiganman 8:53. More evidence of global warning if they’re growing pineapples in an Ontario provincial park. Thanks for the heads up.

@LMS. ‘It’s too long since I I told you how much I love reading your wacky thoughts every day. I might subscribe to your SPYCAM channel. I like the “Apples, peaches…” kickoff to the GO SEEK facet of the game. Ours was “Here I come, ready or not. Behind a tree or a stump or a rock”.

In college I had a time-lapse type sequence of about a dozen frames of THE CATCH on my bulletin board. I had torn it out of a Sports Illustrated that was probably featuring the 50 greatest moments in sports or something, since I was in college in the ‘70s. I can still picture the turn and throw with his hat flying off his head. About 20 years later I got to meet and talk with Mays. Very special memory for me.

Spent last weekend with my 5 year old granddaughter. Played many rounds of UNO, so Skip and Reverse were top of mind.

Once upon a time, detectives worked only for the government. Then they decided to privatize PRIVATEEYES.

I think that KAVAKAVA is an accepted treatment for BERIBERI.

Really nice cluing on this, particularly ITIS. Thanks for a great puzzle, John Westwig.

P.S. To whoever it is that counts “F”s each day and has aCRAPPY memory:
Our ARMs (Ass-Related Materials) are kinda skimpy today. There’s CRAPPY, as you point out, and SEAT. And in the clues, there is “The beginning and end of all music.” And “Press secretary’s assett”.

If we don’t get some more solid ass/butt/keister fill going soon, I might have to put this feature behind me.

Beezer 11:41 AM  

@mathgent, count me in the crowd that really liked the puzzle and I agree with @wanderlust that quite often the clues make the puzzle. This puzzle gave me a lot of resistance but it was satisfying when, in the end, I prevailed. Amanuenses was a new word for me and I HOPE I remember it.

Okay. Am I the ONLY who thought of a “pocketful of rye”? Imagine my inner embarrassment when I finally realized the clue was referring to the MUCH more common Ring Around the Rosy…

@TTrimble, I think you are conveying that proper grammar and spelling do make you wince internally but you aren’t one to publicly shame. Hah! I might be a criminal in a trial over “evil” thoughts. I WILL tell you that to this day, when I am writing, I usually have to pause a second to mentally decide whether I am conveying “it is” or not. And don’t get me started on newspaper articles these days, especially in smaller metro areas like mine. At breakfast my husband and I will often show each other an article and say…is there ANYTHING in here that says WHEN this happened? (Or who, what, etc). Sometimes The who, what, where, and when are so scattered through an article it becomes a game of “seek and find.”

Nancy 11:52 AM  

Miracle of miracles, I finished it with no cheats. Didn't think I would with all that pop culture in the NE.

Trap I fell into: I had the wrong "Washington" for the "hub" and put in rEAgan instead of SEATAC. This futzed up everything on the right side of the grid.

I was also wondering why HIDE AND SEEK was too short. Oh, I see: It's HIDE AND GO SEEK!

Anyone else who saw THE CATCH in real time? We didn't call it THE CATCH back then, though, -- not enough time had passed. It was a BASKET CATCH and I was wondering hy I couldn't make it fit.

I struggled -- cursing the puzzle while dealing with MAGNETO and UNO CARD and KAVAKAVA and RAP GOD while applauding it for FIELD DAYS and MAIL BAG (note that great clue, Lewis!!!) and PEORIAN. A mix of the annoying and the sublime -- but a terrific challenge nonetheless.

Anonymous 12:02 PM  

I grew up in Texas gulf coast town. It was HIDE.AND SEEK. Later lived in Chicago, London , Indy— No GO.

mathgent 12:12 PM  

There's plenty of cake left and it's delicious. C'mon down Gill, Beezer, and Nancy.

Masked and Anonymous 12:21 PM  

If U have to solve a themeless puz, this is M&A's kind of solvequest. Knew or could infer most (but not all) of the answers, and the clues were often framed as real cool riddles. Has some character to it. Throw in the Jaws of Themelessness, and U got yerself a winner.

First, the total no-knows: NENEH. KAVAKAVA. METONYM.

The clues that I found extra-thoughtfully dreamt up: ICY [ergo staff weeject pick]. ITIS. OPERA. SERVE. MAILBAG [wanted MAILBOX, at first]. SELFIE. WEBART. HIDEANDGOSEEK. There were several more goodies, but those came to mind immediately. Seems like only a couple of em went with a ?-marker clue, btw -- most of em went the riddle route.

fave fillins: NOTGOOD & CRAPPY. At that point M&A was really hopin they'd go for one of them third tier "Bad"-clued words. Also got a nice, desperate kick out of IOSAPP.

Thanx for the feisty fun, Mr. Westwig dude. Nice job.

Masked & AnonymoUUs


puzzlehoarder 12:29 PM  

Medium sounds about right for this puzzle. It could have gone faster but I did it lying down on the sofa last night half asleep.

Amanuenses was vague to me. My guess was DIDACTS (SB classic). BACH and ETHOS showed me the error of my ways but little else.SEEPED was no help with RAPGOD but JAMUP supported by JIBED was where I started putting in entries.

After filling the NE the rest of the grid went in steadily. I had a NENAH/NENEH write over as well as FLUTE before FLIRT. I was thinking cobras on the latter.

I think workman like would be a good description of this puzzle.. As some have noted there were a few rather bland entries that were elevated by good cluing.

Yesterday's puzzle was the first one I've done since Sunday at least they got the progression of difficulty from Friday to Saturday correct this week.

Fri-Tue -0, Mon pg-4 sheesh, Sun -0, Sat no idea I stopped at 32 words and never go back to it

Teedmn 12:34 PM  

I loved the clue ""Game where it always counts" for HIDE AND GO SEEK. I hitched a tad when HIDE AND SEEK didn't fit but GO came to me immediately. I said them both out loud to see which seemed more natural and decided I've said/heard both before and wouldn't care to choose which was more common.

This was even easier for me than last week's Saturday NYT. My entry was at SCALES/ETHOS/SEEPED and oozed on from there. Only the SE held any challenge when I was missing the second KAVA and POSY. The pocketful I first came up with was "ryes" from "Sing a Song of Sixpence" but I didn't put it into the grid, thankfully. Forgot about Ring Around the Rosie.

I always get JIBE, JIVE and GIBE mixed up in my head and have to shuffle them a couple of times before they settle into their proper places. I doubt it will ever not be an issue, after all these years.

Thanks, John Westwig, for the Saturday entertainment.

@birchbark, saw an Oregon Junco at the feeder today, a first. My bird book says they don't come east of the Dakotas. Any sightings in your area?

@Carola, from yesterday, you didn't think southern Wisconsin needed a town with MOUNT in its name (trying to avoid spoilers here) but I took a multi-day bicycle trip from Blue Mound in a circle that included New Glarus and, compared to my childhood on the southern MN plains, that area of WI is equivalent to the Rockies (or at least the Appalachians.) Lots of ups and downs.

Master Melvin 12:44 PM  

When I was a kid in Queens in the 1940's we elided the name of the game into something like HINEGOSEEK. Eventually I came to realize what the full name was. Whenever I saw HIDE AND SEEK in print I wondered what happened to the GO.

Gary Jugert 12:45 PM  


For those needing the back story on Peter Pettigrew, he's the reason Harry is an orphan as he caused Harry's parents to be murdered after betraying their hideout to the bad guy. Pettigrew then spent 12 years hiding out as a pet rat in plain site. How awesome, right? I might have chosen to hide in a MAGNETO costume in PEORIA playing HIDE AND SEEK with PRIVATE EYES, but I live life small.

Great great fun puzzle. As usual on Saturdays I looked up a few starlets, but fewer than usual, so having real words with fun clues instead of people and Asian cooking ingredients made it enjoyable.

I remember a couple of Ouija board sessions as kids. We'd HOLD A SEANCE and I was the guy moving the pointer with SECRETIVE subterfuge. I helped us talk to all kinds of dead people. At the time it seemed like a hilarious thing to do, but now I think I might have been providing an important service. Swami me.

YEA TO US instead of YAY TEAM meant the southeast was extra slow to come around. Plenty of tough stuff over there.

CRAPPY! Keep up the juvenalia you lonely NYTXW editors, you titans of tee-hees, you purveyors of the putrid, you knights of the naughty, you solicitors of the scatalogical, you fans of the fart farce fun, you assessors of our asses. You're doing an exceedingly crappy job.


1 A broken pencil.
2 My ass (ehem).
3 My universal reaction to eggplant codified.
4 The New York Times crossword of late.
5 A pro-45 brain at work.
6 A gaggle of Starbucks patrons.
7 Rebuttal to my assertion I was working.
8 The scourge of truth with batteries.
9 Snoop Dog's smoke detector in his guest house.


jberg 12:55 PM  

Fine puzzle, and I loved the clue for MAILBAG, even though I wrote in MAILBox with complete confidence. But I had three big problems:

1) I've actually encountered one or two places called PINERY, and they grew pine trees -- so though I could see where the clue for 12-D was going, I thought it was wrong. But I looked it up afterward, and that's what it means -- a pineapple plantation. Doh!

2) This one's even more my fault: I misread the clue fro 9-D as referring to 46-A, and put in chIp. IRANI pretty quickly showed me I was wrong, but there were those letters, sitting there and confusing me until I could figure out what to write them over with.

3) The Zodiac clue. I don't know my Zodiac, so I tried to remember what had six letters and put in cancEr. A little later I got SAGA, giving me the ES ending, and suddenly remembered PISCES. That made it really hard to see SCRIBES. Only after I did see it did I realize that the puzzle wanted me to use English. I guess when the clue said "symbol" instead of "sign" it wanted me to describe that symbol, rather than calling it by its name; but at that point I fell into a deep semiotical reverie about along the lines of "I know the map is not the territory, but is the symbol not the sign, either?" That probably added 5 minutes to my (unmeasured) solving time.

I think "Will it play in PEORIA?" is an old show business thing, when you had to tour a show to really make any money. The meaning is not so much "average American" but "rube," somewhat derogatory. I spent 3 days in Peoria once, mostly holed up in a meeting room, but it seemed like a nice city.

Lost opportunity to clue RAT as a Chinese Zodiac symbol.

jberg 12:56 PM  

@Barbara S. from yesterday -- apologies for the typo, but I'm glad you enjoyed it!

old timer 12:58 PM  

Never heard of NENEH and never want to. I was so flummoxed I forgot to put in the H, though HAIL is well clued. We get something between golf ball and pea sized HAIL every year, in sunny Sonoma County. Loud enough to wake you up in the middle of the night.

I grew up in Los Angeles, and it was always HIDE AND *GO* SEEK, on my street in Westwood. Traditionally, after counting to 20 or whatever, It was required to call out, "Here I come, ready or not." I played it indoors with my elder daughters, and was constantly amazed that they did not find my hiding place behind shirts or suits in a closet. Or laying flat on the floor between a bed and a wall.

I should have got SCRIBES but only did after several crosses. To me, SCRIBES are always followed by Pharisees. But before the invention of the typewriter, an author hired an amanuensis to write copy for the printer or publisher in a big round hand.

Clue of the week: Shot only you can take.

Cyclist227 1:00 PM  

I usually struggle on Saturdays. Not to humblebrag :), but for whatever reason, this one was no problem. Glad to see that Rex rated it a medium.

jae 1:12 PM  

Top half kinda tough, bottom half mostly easy so...medium? Not NOT GOOD and not CRAPPY, in fact there was a fair amount of pretty good stuff. Liked it.

Ride the Reading 1:14 PM  

One of those puzzles where it seemed would have to put it aside and come back later - but then finished in slightly less than average time. Wanted MAIL Box, but that didn't look like it would go with the down. Was trying to spell it sceance instead of SEANCE. Had gum UP instead of JAM UP.

Think more in terms of GAG rule than GAG LAW - took a bit to sort that one out. Smiled at the clue for HIDE AND GO SEEK - though I fall on the no GO side of the go/no go debate.

Cringe moment earlier this week, as TTrimble has mentioned the band - at the WTA Finals in Fort Worth, during a late doubles match, "Centerfold" played as the players sat for a changeover. Was still playing when they went back onto the court to resume play.

MaxxPuzz 1:23 PM  

Did the 2007 Klahn beast after Rex mentioned it. It really was a toughie! But what a good workout. Thanks for the suggestion!

Carola 1:35 PM  

@Teedmn 12;34 - Indeed! The town of which we speak lies at the edge of Wisconsin's Driftless Area, so called because it remained unglaciated during the last Ice Age and thus free of the glacial "drift" (scoured-away sand, rocks, boulders) characteristic of the geology of the rest of the state. It's a fascinating region, with its own niche ecosystem. I'm glad you got to experience some of its beauty, although perhaps the "ups" of the ups and downs might have worn thin!

Gene 1:36 PM  

Seems like Rex got it wrong in the clue for 14D. Literally wrong, "it" is "It" (capital I).

Anonymous 1:47 PM  

here here! there’s neither false modesty nor sufficient bragging in ITRY

Beezer 1:54 PM  

@TTrimble…HAH! I meant IMPROPER grammar! That made ME wince!

egsforbreakfast 2:14 PM  

Please note that the Bob Kahn puzzle from 12/29/07 contains three HAs (Hidden Asses): BRASSARD, CLASSA and PLATEGLASS. Very important stuff. I might need to go through the archives and score every NYTXW ever published.

LenFuego 2:20 PM  

This one felt harder than it ended up being. Starting off trying COPIERS for Amenuenses did not help. Fortunately NENEH was a gimme for me since she contributed I’ve Got You Under My Skin to the RedHot + Blue Cole Porter tribute CD that I wore out when it came out. The SE corner was full of difficulties for me but it ended up sorting out once I hit upon PRSAVVY.

TTrimble 2:45 PM  

I make mistakes all the time like that! Anyway, I think you understood me. Of course my post was exaggerated, over the top, etc. -- it was partly an act, and partly confession of "evil thoughts" like you say. And of course it's ridiculous to assign much weight to "it's" versus "its" -- the mistake is understandable since in most cases, a possessive is formed by adding an apostrophe s. Still, I can't help noticing it.

I never remark on anyone's grammar to their face, unless their grammar has me seriously confused. It's really a losing proposition, and so many of these grammar rules are ill-founded to begin with. My Mom used to "correct" my grammar all the time, even well into my adult years, and sometimes it would make me really angry, especially when it showed she wasn't listening to what I was trying to say. So I don't do that. If I'm in front of the classroom and a student has misused a mathematical term, I'll gently correct them because that's something they need to know. Or I correct a student or colleague if they've made an incorrect mathematical assertion -- you absolutely have to do that. But mostly I'm trying to find the rightness in what they're trying to say, very much along the "yes, and" principle of improvisation.

Aelurus 2:53 PM  

Loved this puzzle. Finished in 1 hour and 18 minutes (cleanly, not common on Saturday) and was happily engaged throughout.

Wanted BACH right away for 5D but just moved on and was surprised on returning to it and seeing _ _ _ H. Okay, then, in it goes. The first of only three names, and I knew VERA too.

Same for EAR and OUTER. First thoughts, but, nah, moved on. That type of clue must be a reverse fakeout on Saturdays.

Among the many great clues (hi, @Wanderlust 8:07 am):
[Unsalted perhaps] for ICY.
[Phrase that’s often contracted...] for ITIS.
[Raise people’s spirits?] – After I got a few downs I also got over thinking about those spirit-filled, raised-glass toasts and filled in HOLD A SEANCE.
[Clue’s answer might contain more than seven letters] – Wanted pangram for some reason and then realized it’s because this week I started playing the Spelling Bee again!

And clues whose answers I wanted to know:
[Famous game-saving 1954 World Series play] – Got CATCH, but the three lead-in letters? When RESTING appeared I laughed and entered THE with a mental note to look this awesomeness up later.
[Traditional Polynesian beverage that numbs the mouth] – Had K _ _ _ K _ _ _ and figured it might be twin words so when I got the second KAVA I entered the first and luckily guessed right.

@Gill 10:25 am – Wonderful story; I think your grandmother certainly had flair!

@TTrimble 10:37 am – Thanks for looking up PINERY; I imagined Bob Dole had a second home in a pine forest.

Off now to look up Willie Mays’s CATCH and why KAVAKAVA is numbingly popular.

JC66 3:16 PM  

@Joe D, @bocamp, et al

Again, I found tomorrow's Acrostic pretty easy.

pabloinnh 3:33 PM  

@JC66 Thought today's Stumper was on the easy side too.

DigitalDan 3:35 PM  


Re: JK Rowling: Rex, you're just a typical ignorant muggle.

Amy 4:02 PM  

I moved from California (where we said Hide and Seek) to Ohio (HIDE AND GO SEEK) when I was in elementary school, so pretty sure this is regional.

CDilly52 4:03 PM  

Tough after the easy diagonal but it might be the residual effects of the outpatient back surgery I had yesterday. Great clues, especially the obe for MAIL BAG.

On ‘TIS, the folks in the UK use it frequently. I like it and brought it home as a “language souvenir,” something I do when I travel. Language fascinates me. Still on ‘TIS, it js also the title of a poignant memoir by Frank McCourt. I recommend it.

So many ways to get fooled on this one. Despite my very encouraging start in the NW with SCRIBES, THE CATCH, and EASY CHAIR and continuing through the diagonal all the way down through CRAPPY (meh), OPERA, POSY and RAT (my niece was of the Barry Potter generation), I had a few blanks. The FIELD of FIELD days was a mystery. As was the GOI” in HIDE AND GO SEEK.

THAT “GO” was the giant problem for me. Never in my 67 years of life loving the game since I was three. I recall vividly when my oh so cool “old” cousin, Merilee deemed me ready to play after I demonstrated my ability to hide and wait to be found. Before that, my hiding prowess exceeded that of my sibs and other cousins. When I was not quickly found I would come out and yell “Nobody found me!” before “It” gave up and called “Olly olly infrees!” The only game of the type I have ever played or heard of by name is Hide and Seek.” Go figure. At least others here in the glorious neighborhood have heard both and suggested it may be another of those regional things.

All in all, we have had two puzzles in the past two days of exceptional quality. ‘Tis wonderful. Happy weekend all.

bocamp 4:09 PM  

@JC66 (3:16 PM)

Thx for the heads-up re: the Acrostic; will look forward to tackling it tm. :)

@pabloinnh (3:33 PM)

Agreed; easy Sat. Stumper (relatively speaking); 4+ x faster than last Sat.'s, but 2 x more than td's NYT'.
Peace 🕊 🇺🇦 ~ Compassion ~ Tolerance ~ Kindness to all 🙏

Anonymous 4:29 PM  

iSO app is not a thing that Apple EVER sold. There are iOS compliant apps, but you can do bugger-all in the nonexistent iOS app. Total puzzle fail, imho

JC66 4:47 PM  


Yeah, relatively easy.

dgd 4:48 PM  

I think "hide and seek" is more common in the US. But "go" is added at times. To my ears "hide and go seek" sounds older and maybe it is disappearing even here.
Good point though about how on both sides of the Atlantic we continue to discover expressions and words that are different from what is used on the other side of the Atlantic (or as Barbara S. has noted many times, among the US, Canada and the UK). It is still happening to me at 70.

dgd 5:01 PM  

Tastes do differ! The selfie clue was one of my favorites. Even though I never took a selfie and hate the concept. I rather liked the cluing though as Rex said a lot of the answers are blah.
Also to me it was hard puzzle.

Beezer 5:13 PM  

@Ride the Reading, I thought that too! As an attorney, I’m pretty sure there is nothing called a “gag law,” there are non-disclosure agreements and gag orders. Before I commented I put “gag law” in as the search term and got the definition of a “gag order.” So yeah, that gave me pause but I forgot about it by the end of the puzzle until you pointed it out!

Anonymous 5:16 PM  

That was my reaction as a retired lawyer. What came to my mind was "gag order" which I have seen and heard. But as Joaquin said, close is enough for crosswords.

Joe Dipinto 10:58 PM  

@JC - Yeah the Acrostic was easy. I don't really like when the quote contains a lot of small words though. This one has 33 that are 4 letters or less, out of a total 46.

Anonymous 12:55 AM  

Being both a Giants and Niners fan, I wouldn’t say it’s necessarily *more* well-known, but it does cause me to have to think twice re trivia answers that use this clue.

Anonymous 1:01 AM  

Enjoyed the puzzle. Some good clues in there helped keep it entertaining. Also been liking the blog a lot more the last several days, with seemingly some more balanced takes, and with fair criticisms. My visits here have been more enjoyable.

Anonymous 1:12 AM  

My favorite fast-typing mistake (usually while deep in thought over the prose I’m composing) is when I type “ov” for “of.” Takes me out of my head immediately and I cringe at myself. lol

Anonymous 1:14 AM  

It’s weird, I have to agree with Rex here: big fan of the f-bomb, but somehow CRAPPY made me blanch a bit. I guess certain expectations for words in certain places.

Anonymous 6:58 AM  

West coaster here, and we only call it hide and go seek so it could be regional? Or maybe just the way our small community always said it.

Anonymous 7:28 AM  

It’s generational. Easy one for me (millennial).

Anonymous 7:29 AM  

Great info; if only I could find a way to remember these!!

Anonymous 10:21 AM  

It literally has no results come up on google. I don’t know what this is supposed to mean. I live in Chicago, a short ways away from Peoria, and I can tell you no average American lives there… this should’ve caused more havoc on this blog.

Anonymous 10:22 AM  

I am surprised more folks aren’t irritated about the chai tea clue! Definitely not a “coffeehouse creation.” Yikes!

CAK 7:04 PM  

Grew up in NE Ohio - no GO in our game 😉

CAK 7:13 PM  

Or GO seek and find 😉
I have to admit that seeing the possessive form written as "it's" really gets my goat! All you have to do is read it as "it is" then you'd know something is amiss (or a mistake 😉).

kitshef 11:25 PM  

That 2007 puzzle took almost an hour - although I could argue it was easier than today's as I finished that one with no errors. Today I finished with guM UP in stead of JAM UP, not knowing the spelling for JIBES and not really feelling like consulting a cross-reference halfway across the grid.

spacecraft 12:16 PM  

Got the north first for a change; the south proved far more inscrutable. I had the most trouble with that stupid game, which I always knew as hide and seek. Had the HIDEAND part, but SEEK was two letters too short. Can't believe how long it took me to realize there was a simple "GO" in there. Only then did I remember: we used to call it "Hideygoseek" when I was little.

That gave me the MAILBAG (not box) and the breakthrough was on. So I call it medium (north)-challenging (south). Saturday clues all around; triumph points aplenty. Birdie.

Wordle par.

Anonymous 12:55 PM  

@Anonymous 12:02pm:
Perhaps, it is an age thing. I grew up in the Chicago area and it was definitely hide and go seek, when I was a kid.

Burma Shave 1:51 PM  




thefogman 2:41 PM  

Very challenging for me. Not much to gripe about though. Well, maybe FETAS being plural is a bit of a stretch. All in all, it was a decent Saturday puzzle by a young constructor.

Anonymous 3:29 PM  

@Unknown 7:35am:
The clue does not say Apple made it. IOS apps are only useable on Apple devices.

Anonymous 3:34 PM  

@Anonymous 10:22am:
Almost every coffeehouse that I have been to has also had tea on their menu. But, no tea shop has had coffee.

rondo 3:54 PM  

I found this puz quite easy. Did not even approach having a write-over. And it seemed low on the PPP scale. Can't help but hum the 70s song from Paul McCartney and Wings 'MAGNETO and Titanium Man'.
Wordle par.

Diana, LIW 4:55 PM  

Talk about triumph points!!! I was staring at blankness for a long, long time. Then bit by bit but then...stuck. Really stuck. Left it. Came back.

And got it!!

Even MAGNETO (a name - a name of some sci fi creature) didn't beat me down.

Diana, Lady-in-Waiting for Crosswords

thefogman 5:19 PM  

20A HOLDASEANCE reminded me of a story told by signer Sharon Robinson who was a backup signer and friend of the late great Leonard Cohen. She was at his bedside when he was ill and Leonard appeared to be sleeping. As she got up to lease Leonard asked “Where are you going darling?” Sharon replied that she had a plane to go on tour, but that she would come back to see when she gets back. Leanard responded, “ Well, if I’m not here try a OUIJA board.”

thefogman 9:03 PM  

EDIT - Make that singer not signer…

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