Sunday, August 17, 2014

Sunday, August 17, 2014, Caleb Madison

Sittin' Solve

I chuckled my way through this puzzle. Horace had run once across and down and handed it over to me, as usual on a Sunday. The first theme answer I got was WRITINWRONG (20A. Spellin' things incorrectly?) Then, I was off and runnin'. A favorite was 75D. Carryin' a load of grain? (HAULINOATS). Mr. Oates, the singer, figured in a clever clue/answer pair yesterday, if I remember correctly.

In addition to the humorous theme answers, were several other chucklers, such as 89A. Union formation? (MRS), 7D. Make a note of? (SING), and 58D. Dealbreaker? (NARC). I also enjoyed 101A. 1/4 of zero? (ZEE) and thought it might appeal to Hyguens as well, who I'm guessing also enjoyed 66D. Big goof (BONER) and 114A. Accouterment popularized by a "Seinfeld" episode (MANPURSE). [Editorial aside, Accouterment, as spelled in the puzzle is marked by the Google as a spelling error. Google appears to prefer the more Frenchified accoutrement. Hmm.]

Nice cross of 36A. Beak (NOSE) and 21D. Cyrano de Bergerac, famously (WOOER). Other nice ones were 61A. 50 Cent piece (RAPVIDEO) and 4D. Old-timey medicines (TONICS). I also liked both clue and answer for 122A. Madcap (NUTTY).

The professional librarian in me enjoyed the related clues 88A. Bibliography listings (SOURCES) and 120A. Put in a bibliography (CITE). And, as a fan of identical clues with different answers, I very much enjoyed 46D. and 97A. Deeply impressed (AWED and GRAVEN respectively), however, today's other pair of identical clues, 74A. and 71D. Hardens, had answers that were too similar to be cool (CONGEALS and GELS respectively).

Although the clue for 11D. was cute (You can count on them), the answer was the ridiculous plural ABACI. When, oh when, will a puzzle constructor take on the challenge of fitting abacuses into a puzzle? [Editorial note: ABACI is marked as misspellt by the Google, abacuses is not so marked]. As much as I love robots, 59D. Engineering topic, being answered with ROBOTRY was on the lame side. Also, I didn't love the clue for 65A. H.S. Dropouts' documents (GEDS) because not all dropouts get GEDs. But I AGGRESS. In sum, as I completed the puzzle, I LOLLed (50A. Lie around), and also LOLed.

~ Frannie


  1. 36:04
    We thought you'd like this one, Frannie! Punny (a reference to a recent puzzle du toi beau frere) all the way through, and some nice ones, too, as you point out. We particularly liked SHOWINTELL (106A: Demonstratin' how to shoot an apple off someone's head?) and the clue (116A: Usin' less stickum?) for CUTTINPASTE.

    We agree with the great stuff noted in your second paragraph - MRS, SING, NARC - although perhaps less ZEE. And I think you have to allow for MANPURSE because, if I remember the episode correctly, that is indeed what they called it over and over (as the show was wont to do) even if Google has cottoned onto something else.

    We also liked the Cyrano/NOSE cross and actually had written in NOSEY and NOSE for a while, but realized that wasn't going to work. WOOER came along soon thereafter.

  2. DNF (~45 mins.)
    The "M" in ELMST/MRS eluded me, even though I was thinking marriage with the clue for MRS, and for some reason I was thinking of a town name, not a street name, so 76D never dawned on me. I, indeed, enjoyed both BONER and ZEE, as well as BARRINGRILL, but yes, ROBOTRY is one of the worst answers I've ever seen. Sue and I have eaten at 18A Celebrity chef Matsuhisa (NOBU), and quite enjoyed it. Finally, I was happy to see AWAYWEGO (22A Departing words), although I think that a Jackie Gleason reference would have been a better cluing for it.