Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Wednesday, April 17, 2013, Samuel A. Donaldson


I may be hypersensitive, but I found it a little sad that the theme of the puzzle today, two days after the bombing in Boston, was security. But I won't dwell on it. I did that yesterday.

There was some good cluing in this one. Right off, the oh-so-common AMA was given a clue that made me need two crosses to fill it in, 1A: Org. founded by Dr. Nathan Smith Davis. I liked that change, and I also liked the tricky 13A: Minnesota neighbor (MANITOBA), because even though, after going through the neighboring U.S. states and figuring out that it had to be a province, I still needed a couple letters because I couldn't think of the answer right away.

On the down side, and there was a lot of downside, I find answers like ESTOP, REPACK, and ADRIP, kind of lame. I think AMUCK (1D: In a frenzy) is less common than "amok," and MAPLE is less common as a 2D: Bat wood, than "ash," isn't it? Is "Happy Days" still on anywhere in syndication? "Mrs. C." was an easy answer, of course, and I suppose a lot of solvers are my age or older, but jeez, it seems old even to me!

Overall, meh.

- Horace

p.s. Huygens, were you somewhat annoyed that 69A: Primes, e.g.:Abbr. are here reduced to just being NOS?


  1. 21:16
    I finished this one online today since I don’t exercise on Wed or Thurs during EDT. Had to fill in a few crosses to get MANITOBA, and I didn’t ever hear of Russell KERI. I liked the theme, and it helped me with CLEARANCESALE and AMUCK (strange word, I agree). Of course, I knew APOGEE. I originally thought that 22A Component of some bills was FEE, but it turned out to be TAX, which I figured out easily with the cross of 20D EXPATS. I liked CAMERAREADY. I had to think a bit about the connection of SECURITY with DEPOSITSLIP, but it was early (3:50 AM) and I hadn’t rented a cabin or cottage for many years. I, too, originally thought "Well, that's too many squares for ASH" for the bat wood clue. Anyway, this seemed pretty easy overall.

    And yes, I was annoyed by the "NOS" thing.

  2. 10:33, although it seemed a little harder than that time would indicate. I found this one to be all over the board. Some kind of cool and/or unusual stuff, some typical crossword dreck. I liked seeing the Minnesota clue, of course. I thought Manitoba right away, as I am pretty sure I've seen a similar thing before. For some reason I liked BADCASE and its somewhat odd clue "Extreme form, as of an illness." I also liked the original cluing for BIO. As a denizen of the 70s, I enjoyed seeing DANNO and Mr. Mojo RISIN. On the downside we get the seemingly and annoyingly ubiquitous AROD, ranchERO. Not thrilled with AMA and AMAS in the same puzzle. Theme rates a "meh."