Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Wednesday, August 27, 2014, Gareth Bain and David Poole


Boy, I really enjoyed this one. It's perfect for New Englanders, who tend to drop Rs where they do appear, and add them where they don't. We don't do this personally, but we hear it an awful lot. Anyway, all the theme stuff made me chuckle. Maybe FRANKZAPPER (24A: Microwave for hot dogs?) (the answers made me chuckle more than the clues) is my favorite, but I am, of course, partial to CONGERLINES (17A: Libretto for "Eel Trovatore"?) (ok, that clue is awesome), because it references our favorite crossword word, EEL.

The other two long answers, WHATALAUGH (29D: "That is SO stupid!") and FOAMPEANUT (17D: Bit of packaging detritus) are both excellent, and, really, so is a lot of the rest of the fill. TRIPE (12D: Horsefeathers) is a great word, VISTAS (10D: Prospects) is nice, SPARTAN (48A: Lacking the traditional comforts) (a friend has long referred to our house as "Sparta") is lovely, and ABJECT (1A: Showing hopelessness) is a fine start.

It is odd to see ROADEO (14A: Truckers' contest) again so soon, and there are a few other minor annoyances, but overall, I thought this was very nicely done. And is it just me, or did it feel a little harder than Wednesdays sometimes do? Maybe it's a function of having two constructors working on the puzzle, but I really felt out of sync with some of this as I was doing it. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

There's much more I could call out, but I think you get the idea. I thought it was a very good Wednesday.

- Horace


  1. 28:37. Wow I had a hard time with this one, and it wasn't because I was using my iPad for the first time either! Couldn't see FOAMPEANUT for the longest time, and TAMPA was not obvious in any way. Meanwhile I had TatERPLAYER which really made me struggle. Ah well.

  2. 24:27
    I need to take a DNF IAW my own rules here. I had FcC in for 11A Do Not Call Registry org. instead of FTC. cRIPE seemed a fine outburst along the lines of horsefeathers, but no one was looking for an outburst, so.... I had TatERPLAYER in there, too, Colum, until I needed UKE and BIG, but it took awhile. I'm accustomed to OESTE now, and consider it quasi-crosswordese. I loved NEWMOON, but not its clue; I needed the crosses to get that one. Nice mention of CALI (15A Colombian city of 2+ million), although "'What the...?' sloganeer" would have worked just fine, too. 69A George's friend in "Of Mice and Men" (LENNIE) brings to mind the unpleasant chocolate moose variety. I concur that this was a fine, albeit slightly harder, Wednesday.