Friday, February 27, 2015

Friday, February 27, 2015, Julian Lim


Boy, this one fell into line quickly. The first things I got were ANT (18A: Hill worker) and BOT (19A: Google worker), but soon bigger things started to come, like STEPHENJAYGOULD (52A: Evolutionary biologist who wrote "The Panda's Thumb"), which was a gimme. They could probably just have stopped at "Evolutionary biologist" and I still would have tried Gould. THISISSPINALTAP (14A: Classic 1984 film in which most of the dialogue was ad-libbed) took more crosses than it should have, but it eventually came, and then the whole top fell into place. Interesting that Sartre and Churchill were each once a PRISONEROFWAR. Churchill was a civilian reporter when he was captured in the Boer war, but escaped after just four weeks by vaulting over a wall and making his way to the train. Sartre, on the other hand, spent nine months as a POW before gaining release on the basis of his poor health. Quite a contrast.

I love the row containing YOUANDI (43A: We) and SHALLWE (48A: "Ready to go?"). SPARETHEROD (55A: Be lenient) is also nice. As is TRAMP (14D: Galumph). It's not often you hear the word "galumph." And I liked the combo of 17A: & 25D: "Certain shooter" (CATSEYE & BBGUN). I tried "aggie" for the second one, but no dice. (Get it, they're another "shooter." ... Groan.)

NONZERO (40A: Positive or negative) is odd, and REGLUED (36D: Fixed, as a model airplane) is downright poor. But there's not too much of that sort of thing.

Overall, I enjoyed it.

- Horace


  1. 19:13. The bottom was easy, the top took longer, made more difficult by stAMP and nylONS. My downs were ASIA and OWLS, but other than that I had nothing down to help. Finally got PRISONEROFWAR, which helped break it. THISISSPINALTAP took far too long to figure out. ("And in here, there's a little guy! So, it's a complete catastrophe!") GRACEPERIOD was my last long entry. I love so much about this puzzle. The only long across which falls slightly flat is STORAGESPACES (that plural...). IMAGER and REGLUED are not great. But MELISMA above PSYCHIC! GRISTLY! YOUANDI!

    I'm a fan.

  2. 43:58
    I am not familiar with CATSEYE, but the crosses were doable, though I've also not heard of a DATEBAR, which of course makes perfect sense. ROSEATE is a nice word, and I didn't mind NONZERO at all. I never saw the GARP movie, but I've read the book. Maybe I should put that on the queue. This was a nice, challenging Friday for me. Many of the recent Friday puzzles have been too easy, IMHO.

  3. Huygens, you should put it on the queue. If I am not very much mistaken, it also stars Ms. Foster.