Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Wednesday, February 5, 2014, Tracy Gray


Before all of you all get all up in arms about 17 minutes for a Wednesday, let me point out that it is Frannie's time, not Horace's. I can never get myself to hurry.

Now, on to the show. I thought the puzzle was quite sound. A Quiet Riot, if you will, filled with NOISE starting in the top left corner with ECLAT (14A. Dazzling success)  and finishing in the bottom right corner with YIPS (57D. Puppy sounds), with quite a bit of racket in between including BOOMs, Oom-PAHS, OLEs and KEYS.

Generally speaking, the answers appealed to me more than the clues. For example, 16A. RUBE (Con artist's mark), 33A. CREASE (Lacrosse goalie's area), and 49D. SKEWER (Shish kebab need). Other nice words include JEST (36A. Do some leg-pulling) and LARK (54A. Bit of harmless mischief). And you don't see PRATE every day (65A. Yak, yak, yak), although, I must say that one experiences it with some frequency. On a personal note, the puzzle includes several words that have featured prominently in my current romantic relationship. So, a thumbs up for that. :)

I also enjoyed the theme. SHREDDED is a cute way to describe the anagramization of  WHEAT (37A. Breakfast cereal ... or a hint to what's found in the answers to the four starred clues?)

Less popular with me today: REHABS (1D. Fixes up, as a fixer-upper). Does anyone actually say rehabs as a verb for domicile renovations? I thought, as I typed it in, this is so New York.34D. Add __ of salt (ADASH) - lame. 59D. Cinch __ (trash bag brand) no matter how you spell it, SAK is unappealing.

As I typed in TASSE (53D. Cafe au lait holder), I thought, Huyguens isn't going to like this! However, I hope he was cheered by 46A. Puts up (ERECTS).

So, come on feel, the noise, at least until the Librarians come along and SHHHH us.

~ Frannie


  1. 14 mins.
    What? You're in a relationship with a TRUETO you WEEDY and WILD (but LAZY) OCELOT? ANYHOW, I didn't think that this puzzle was HELLONHIGHWATER. SOWHATELSEISNEW? I don't mean to PRATE, but didn't everyone enjoy seeing SNEE in there (lacking, alas, its "snicker")? THEWALTONS...meh, but ALF? There was an excellent half-hour.

  2. I forgot to mention that END (31A PC key below Home) took me quite a while to get because I never use it, mostly because I don't know its purpose.

  3. 8 min (unofficially timed). Hi, Frannie! Lovely to see you on here. Some chestnuts in here I could have done without (ALAE, OLIO, EON). But otherwise I like an anagrammatic theme, and the revealer is, as you say, a pretty way of cluing us in. I suppose all it takes is a computerized scrambler to show all possible concatenations of the five letters, but still, finding the five long answers that will fit the grid takes some work. Yesterday was J, today is W, leading to the very nice WHEEZE. I liked it.