Sunday, November 17, 2013

Monday, November 18, 2013, Edgar Fontaine


Well, this was fun! We were greatly amused by the theme. Frannie's favorite was GREGORYSPECK (20A: Part of a bushel belonging to Dick?). And by the way, I forgot to brag about how my lifetime of Maine clam-eating let me put in "four" the other day when asked how many pecks were in a bushel. Ask me how much a peck is in regular terms, though, and I don't really know. All I know is that it's kind of a lot, but two of my brothers, my sister, and I can easily put away that many steamers. The other brother's a vegetarian, thank goodness, or we'd have to order more. Mmmm.... steamers....

... Oh, right, the puzzle. Maybe it was partly due to the likable theme putting me in a good mood, but I was also amused by the preponderance of stock crossword fare. TSAR, AERO, OGEE, OPIE, EXES ... sometimes it's enraging, today it was strangely comforting. Maybe also because it was cushioned by such ridiculously non-Monday fare as AMOURPROPRE (26D: Self-esteem, as the French would have it), OBERON (2D: King of the fairies, in Shakespeare), and IONIAN (49D: ____ Sea, body of water south of Italy). PARENTHETIC (3D: Like the end of this clue (in terms of punctuation)) was nice, as was SPECIES (9D: Homo sapiens, for humans), but EYEPIT (48A: Facial socket)?!? I don't even like writing it out! Yuck, Mr. Fontaine, yuck. Also, OSAMA (31D: ____ bin Laden) - too soon?

Anyhoo, even with "eyepit" (Egad! I wrote it again!), we both enjoyed this one. Nice start to the week.

- Horace


  1. 10:41
    GREGORYSPECK was, indeed, the best one. I was able to get OBERON immediately, but AMOURPROPRE took most of the fills. Not knowing French is a disadvantage to one filling in crosswords, even more so than not knowing Spanish. And what's wrong with EYEPIT? Well, I just asked her and Sue thinks it's "gross."

  2. 7:39. The theme was excellent. HARRISONSFORD was fun too. I too liked PARENTHETIC and AMOURPROPRE. For some reason had the hardest time with ENVOY because I was stuck on RON Lichtenstein, which is just silly. BTW I too hated EYEPIT. What is that? It's not even a correct term. Should be orbit or oculum or something.

  3. I would just like to say, for the record, that the comment above, attributed to me, belongs to my hubsie, who mistakenly logged in on my FB account.

    I would also like to say that I completed this crossword puzzle, so I am not wholly deficient.

  4. Huygens, do you, like me, long for the day of crossword liberation wherein fearless constructors have the freedom to extend 20-Across by a couple letters and clue it with "Member of Dick," or better yet "Dick Johnson"? True, it would necessitate a slightly different theme, of which "Sharon's Stoner" could be a part anyway. Anyhoo, yes, OBERON is nice, as is VISAGE. I would also like to call out the excellent and unusual cluing of III. How refreshing to not see "Early first century year," or some such drivel. To close, I will say that I have learned from crosswords. C'est vrai. I had never heard of AMOURPROPRE until I encountered it in a puzzle a half-year, or so ago. Today, I filled it in after getting just two or three letters. Cool, huh?