Friday, September 6, 2013

Friday, September 6, 2013, Brad Wilber and Doug Peterson


This solve went the same way that Hemingway says you go bankrupt - "gradually, and then suddenly." We started it while we watched the NFL season-opener, and both of us were a little drowsy. I immediately got a few things, like CARROTCAKE (17A: Dessert often with cream cheese icing) (a personal favorite!) and then PUCE (1D: Brownish-purple) (Really? Wasn't that JUST in?!), EWOKS (26D: Endor natives) (Ditto! ... or was it "Endor?" Or both?), and a few other things. Frannie got APPLECIDER (12D: Press production) and KTEL (39A: Onetime TV music vendor), IND (22D: Not the party type? Abbr.) (Nice!), and several others. Then we both drifted off while the Ravens looked to be beating up on the Broncos.

When I woke up, Peyton had taken charge. Seven TD passes!? Really? It got interesting for a minute there in the third when that idiot dropped the ball before crossing the line, but not quite interesting enough to keep me from picking up the puzzle again. And this time, things just started to drop.

A lot of it today just seemed like tricky clues for very standard entries. I thought of LPGA immediately for 18A: Ironwoman org.?, but hesitated because I didn't (and still don't) know exactly what they're referring to. Is that a specific tournament? Is it because "irons" are used in golf? Anyway, all I really needed was female + sports organization = LPGA. And the same was true of the clue immediately above - 16A: Only event in which Venezuela medaled at the 2012 Olympics (EPEE). Had no idea that that was true, but fewer puzzles DON'T contain "epee" than do. That kind of thinking ended up working against me, though, with 49A: "Revolution 9" collaborator. I thought "music person + somewhat unusual + three letters = "Eno."" Nope. Did John Lennon even know Brian Eno? I kept asking myself. Are the ages too different? Duh. It was ONO.

Not a terribly exciting puzzle. Good "Huygens material" though, with BCUP (48D: Smallish lingerie spec) and OTHERWOMAN (56A: One-third of a triangle, maybe). The latter was also one of the better clues. Much of the long fill was just kind of boring.


- Horace


  1. I guess I liked this one a lot more than you did. I thought the two triple-ten stacks were of very good quality. 1, 15, 60, and 62-Across were interesting factoids or bits of trivia. As you note, OTHERWOMAN was very cleverly clued and nicely risque. CARROTCAKE was the weakest, but like you I love the stuff, so I'll let it pass. Yes, of course it's because they hit most of their shots with irons. And there is nothing wrong with clever, tricky clues for standard fill. That's a very good thing. All puzzles, it seems, necessarily contain some dreck. Why not be creative and have fun with it. The clue for the ubiquitous REBA was an excellent case in point, as was the one for ENYA. Even for a simple word like WAR, Wilber and Peterson get in a PJPII quote. That to me is attention to detail. ORAN too was very intelligently clued. The clue for ESTER wasn't stellar, but at least it was specific, rather than the usual "Chemical compound." Finally, I loved seeing "Mendoza Line" in there. I don't suppose Huygens chuckled and filled that in immediately, as I did.

  2. Yeah, you and every other blogger... I don't know, I guess it was clean enough, and I do appreciate clever clueing, but I guess it just didn't do it for me.

  3. 31:11
    This seemed fast for a Friday, but as people (some) say, much of this was in my wheelhouse. I didn’t know, however, that 1A Old Hollywood low-budget studios, collectively were POVERTYROW, or that URANIUMORE was 15A Wine bottle contents in Hitchcock’s “Notorious,” but everything filled in very quickly in that corner due to the crosses. I like any mention of Teri GARR and just knew most of the stuff cold. Of course, Horace will be happy to know that I enjoyed 48D Smallish lingerie spec (BCUP) quite a bit, as well as OTHERWOMAN. englishteacher59: "Mendoza Line" was not familiar to me. I was actually a much better hitter than that, usually, plus my father was the coach, so I always got to bat regardless.