Saturday, December 6, 2014

Saturday, December 6, 2014, Josh Knapp


Frannie did the bulk of the work on this one, just calling me in to fill in about four or five squares at the end. Some highlights include EYEOFNEWT (14A: Classic brewing ingredient), HANKIE (20A: Cloth with tears in it?), IDES (26A: Middle marker?) - very nice clue for that oft-seen relic, POPO (40A: Law enforcers, slangily), and ASP (30D: Death on the Nile creator?) - ditto. The trickiest answer, in my opinion, was ADAMS (51A: Number one number two), which Frannie and I thought about and discussed for several minutes before coming to the conclusion that the "Number one" part means first, and the "number two" part means vice president.

Some lovely long fill today. SWANDIVES (10D: Elegant pool maneuvers), INDIRECT (12D: Glancing) (better clue than fill, but still…), ASPIRATE (32D: What Eliza didn't do for 'enry 'iggins?"), and CANTABILE (52A: Songlike). I like being reminded of the stubborn will of the Mahatma with SALTTAX (39D: Gandhi marched to the sea to protest one), and 38D: "The poetry of reality," per Richard Dawkins" is a nice clue for SCIENCE.

So anyway, it seemed like a good puzzle, but that's just my impression from reading through the clues, ex post facto. Plus, we've been out to dinner now with Huygens et ux., and I'm not really in any condition to write further on this.

- Horace


  1. 11:19 (!). Cece and I finished this in a flash. She got EYEOFNEWT, LOOKEDAT, BLESSES, and HANDM. She's getting pretty good at this! I'm going to go on record and say this is one of my favorite recent NYT puzzles. So many great clues and outstanding entries, it's impossible to list them all. To start off with HMSBOUNTY and finish with THEXFILES. So chunky! GROOMSMEN paired with RABBI. KIMJONGIL! I really liked the clue for ADAMS as well, which I didn't parse correctly until I'd filled it all in. So, BTEN is not great, and the fact that HANDM and HAND are in the same puzzle (although not cognates of each other) is slightly questionable. But, come on! You get both ZOOLANDER and AMELIE in the same grid! Blue Steel! Eugooglie!

  2. 40:22
    I didn't parse HANDM correctly until Horace enlightened me; never heard of it. All of this went pretty easily. I knew VENTI right away (thanks "Marriage of Figaro") and SCIENCE was, indeed, clued excellently. Even EGGWASH was known by me. I'm on LINKEDIN, but rarely use it, and knew of MEME only because Horace introduced me to Grumpy Cat a little while back. Well, it's all been said about this gem.