Monday, April 1, 2013

Monday, April 1, 2013, Gary J. Whitehead


I quite enjoyed this April Fool's Day edition puzzle. It was a little tougher than a usual Monday, because of all the "Fool" clues. I think there were eleven in all, my favorite of which is probably DUNDERHEAD (18A: Fool), just because it's such a ridiculous word.

As for the regular clues, we had Deco for 5D: 1910s-'20s art movement, which screwed things up for a while in the North. I thought EMEER seemed plausible for 15A: Mideast potentate: Var., because aren't emir, emeer, and ameer all valid variants? Anyway, EoSTASIA (21A: Area including China, Korea and Japan), finally told me that things weren't quite right, so DADA, the art movement had to be.

Nice to see Jack BENNY (64A: Comic Jack of old radio and TV) in there, and I liked IRONMASK, INCISOR, and SVELTE. Didn't particularly love NONROMAN even though it definitely is 50A: Like the Cyrillic and Hebrew alphabets, it just didn't seem all that great. Why not say, Like every great conquering civilization after 600AD? Blah. And EARLAP?? Again? What the hell? I feel Will Shortz is trying to legitimize it by including it once a week! But I don't say the whole puzzle is bad because of a couple, less-than-perfectly-acceptable-to-me clue/answer pairs. On the contrary, I thought it was overall a good, enjoyable puzzle. Especially for a Monday, and that's no joke!

- Horace


  1. 15:32
    I listen to BENNY often on the Sirius Classic Radio channel. EARLAP wasn't that great, and I, too, enjoyed SVELTE and DUNDERHEAD and mistakenly entered DECO for the art style until EASTASIA insisted upon itself.

  2. 9:30. Yes, I think there were eleven fools, but more than that, there were five nouns, five verbs, and one word, "dupe," that goes both ways. Also, 67-Across could have been clued as "Fools." ASSEs. Quite the clever Monday. You can't do much better than diagonally symmetrical NINCOMPOOP and DUNDERHEAD on a Monday Times. Learned a new word today too, which is always nice. TROCHE. And, yeah, what's up with EARLAP? Where the hell is the F? I did not mistakenly enter "deco," although it would have been a nice D-share with DECCA.

  3. Interesting about the noun/verb/bi distribution. You've gotta think the constructor thought about that detail, don't you?

  4. Yeah, I'm sure he considered that. Not much is unanalyzed when you're making a puzzle.