Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Tuesday, July 15, 2014, Zhouqin Burnikel


Don't you think that, if the answer is BCE, then the clue should probably be "Pre-C.E." (although, admittedly, it couldn't possibly be), and not "24A: Pre-A.D."? Well, I think so. In other areas, we have ENOTE crossing EMOTE, YSER alongside ETNA, and other distasteful things. EDO, EON, ETS...

The theme of mass commercialism is fine I suppose, although not symmetrical, but overall I had a terrible feeling about this one. Several clues rubbed me the wrong way, and, well... you get the drift.

I liked the word SCRAPES, but is it really equivalent to "just gets?" I know the actual clue is "43D: Just gets (by)," but it just seemed slightly off. I'd rather have either "scrapesby" in the grid (which, honestly, wouldn't be good), or a clue like "abrades," or "run-ins," that doesn't RELY (71A: Fall back (on)) (!!) on a damned parenthetical add-on. Also, 4D: Fill to the gills (SATE)? Isn't one more like "stuff," and the other more like "satisfy?" It was little stuff like that that turned me off.


- Horace


  1. 8:20. I too found this puzzle meh-ish. That should be a word. EMOTE crossing ENOTE is very poor, especially with the stupid E- answer that just is NOT a real thing. Another EN-word, which I also don't like (ENMESH), although I suppose that's something that's actually used rarely in conversation. I liked MOROSE, but that's just one SOP to my desire for interesting fill. Blah.

    BTW, Horace, the puzzle's author's name is Zhouqin Burnikel.

  2. 12:26
    I liked BAJA, as that's where Sue and I honeymooned and STAR, though the clue (38A Macy's symbol) wasn't ideal for me; not that I didn't think it was a good clue for the answer, just not my ideal. LLAMAS always make me think of the Python (did people know that they're in the middle of their final live tour?) skit warning of the danger of running into them and pronouncing the "ll" as a "y." I suppose that I didn't like YESIKNOW (32A "That's not news to me") too much, but overall I didn't mind this puzzle.

  3. Thanks, Colum, the error has been righted.

    For the record, we've seen Mr. Burnikel about ten times over the course of this blog, and we have enjoyed the majority of his puzzles. Here's hoping we enjoy the next one.