Sunday, October 6, 2013

Sunday, October 6, 2013, Patrick Berry


Kind of a quick Sunday. It was a fun theme, though. I think my favorite might have been GARBAGECANTO (88A: Portion of Dante's "Inferno" that was wisely excised?). That's some quality fill and clueing right there. And BUYONEGETONEFRITO (58A: Stingy snack vendor's special offer?) is hilarious.

I learned today that the Lincoln Longwool produces the heaviest, longest, and most lustrous fleece of any breed of sheep in the world (20A: Like Lincolns/OVINE). And I had completely forgotten about the existence of Josip Broz Tito. That was probably the weakest of the theme answers. (41A: The Josip Broz Memorial Trophy?/CUPOFTITO). And while I'm in this vein, if you SKIPOFF, is that really a good way to 14D: Leave surreptitiously? Seems like it might kind of attract attention, actually...
And who knew sulfuric acid was OILY?

Nice to see mention of the useful Scrabble word "cwm" (66A: Like the word "cwm"), and Frannie knew that it was WELSH, so that helped. She sometimes quotes the old Dave Barry joke - "It's tragic to listen to Welsh mothers teaching their children traditional songs like 'Old MacDonald Had A Farm' and lapsing into heart-rending silence when they get to the 'E I E I O' bit."

I'm in kind of a big Keat's phase, so it was nice to see 98A: "Here lies One ____ Name was writ in Water" (words on Keats's tombstone)(WHOSE). I believe he ordered those lines himself. Who else would or could have, I suppose?

A lot of the other fill just seemed kind of, well, normal, but 4D: Service manual? (HYMNBOOK) was quite nice. And 97D: Pop lover (MOM) was very cute.

Clean and fun. Not stellar, or anything, but solid.

- Horace


  1. Not crazy about this one at all. The theme seems silly and forced to me. The only one I liked was NYPDBLUTO, and that only because I love Popeye, of course. I agree that SKIPOFF is very poor. The expression, in fact, is "skip out." "Pop lover" was indeed cute. Also really liked UGLY for frightful, and for some reason I enjoyed PINTA for "Old trans-Atlantic voyager," mostly, I guess, because it didn't turn out to be SST. And you're right about it being too quick. I breezed through it in my preferred fashion with almost no hesitations or hiccups. And I was doing it while Buddy and I were watching the Sunday night game, so it didn't even get my full concentration. Two final notes: I must confess to believing for my entire life that the phrase was "just desserts." I grudgingly give P. Berry credit for enlightening me. Lastly, I don't care what Seinfeld says, Richard Pryor IS NOT the Picasso of comedy. Maybe the Rauschenberg of comedy, but definitely not the Picasso.

  2. I, too, Googled "Just Deserts" to check on it, and learned along with you that it is an archaic past tense of "deserve." I also enjoyed PINTA, and your reasoning is hilarious. I also enjoyed the 66D: Lick/WHUP pair. Both are good words.

    As for the game, the Texans looked just plain awful. They just couldn't get anything going at all. And how great is it that the Gints are 0-5? Hah!

  3. 34 minutes
    This seemed extremely easy for a Sunday. I didn't stop all the way through, and like ET59, it didn't get my full attention. I was waiting to take a hot tub for the first two-thirds, then finished it while listening to some music and treating the tub after its use. I, too, thought the theme was forced, but I liked finishing it quickly. BTW, the Sunday Telegram puzzle, which is from the LA Times, took me around 45 minutes to solve.

  4. This one was harder for me than for you guys, probably because of some poor first tries at answers, including the aforementioned SKIPoff. Enjoyed the theme a lot. I also liked the immense number of 5-letter answers.