Friday, December 19, 2014

Friday, December 19, 2014, Brad Wilber and Doug Peterson


This is a strong puzzle with long, triple-stacked corners. Frannie got a foothold in the SW with DRACOMALFOY (56A: Fictional school bully with henchmen named Crabbe and Goyle), and from there we worked more or less counter-clockwise, ending with what is probably the weakest triple-stack, in the NW. But still, the weakest here isn't really all that bad. I didn't love POLOPONIES (2D: Ones involved in horseplay?), but ANKLESTRAP (3D: Stiletto attachment, perhaps) wasn't bad, and it might please at least one frequent reader.

I guess enough time has passed, because I actually cracked a smile when OJTRIAL (36A: Major media event of '95) became apparent. Heh. Slow-speed Bronco chase...

LEADVOCALS (28D: Frontman's assignment) was clever, in that obvious kind of way, and all we could think of for a long time for 62A: Track star of 1977 (SEATTLESLEW) were humans like Sebastian Coe, Steve Ovett, and Bruce Jenner. Not that all of those would fit... but still.

SPIREA (45A: Flowering shrub whose name comes from the Greek for "coil") is one of my favorite plants, and I'm happy to have learned something about its name today. What the heck, let's put in another photo:

There, isn't that nice?

Anywho... there was the usual smattering of schlock, but overall, I liked this one.

- Horace


  1. 49:43
    Most of my trouble was in the SE, even though there was quite a bit elsewhere with which I was unfamiliar: DRACOMALFOY, SEATTLESLEW, SPIREA (although I filled in the SPIR right away), OPENMRIS (I'd never heard of the "open" variety) and ORYX. Even so, everything was within reach with crosses for me, so it was a good, solid puzzle. Favorite among many gems: 37D Pack animal? (JOECAMEL).

  2. 18:37, although finished with two errors, due to putting LasECUT and not recognizing that SPaREA and sEC were incorrect. What is NEC? I loved OPENMRIS and OJTRIAL for the outrageous appearance of each in the grid. I order open MRIs for claustrophobic patients from time to time, but the resolution is much poorer than the standard MRI images. I like the SW trio of long answers the best. SENIORITIS comes a close second. POLOPONIES and PIRATERADIO I could do without.