Monday, March 9, 2015

Monday, March 9, 2015, Debbie Ellerin


I put in BETA at 1A, guessed BORES for 1D (Many long PowerPoint presentations - great clue!), and never looked back after that.

I like the theme, hearkening back to my childhood. All five of these games predate my birth, having come out in this order: Sorry! in the year 1929; Clue in the year 1949; Risk in the year 1957 (in French); Life in the year 1960; and Trouble in the year 1965. I never played the last one that I can remember, although the concept of the "Pop-o-matic" dice roller seems familiar in retrospect.

All five of the theme answers are reasonable phrases. I wanted LIFEboaT initially. CLUEMEIN is the best, in my opinion, even if I don't think I'd ever say that phrase. It's colloquial enough to be interesting.

ALAS and WOE were a nice pair; SBARRO and SARDI a strange pair of bedfellows. ATARI appears for something like the third time in the last week. ABBA has a lot of fans in this household. I was sort of hoping for something else at 18D: Miss America toppers (TIARAS).

Um... okay, I have to quibble with 22D: What an electric car doesn't need (FUEL). First, they could have easily cross-referenced the clue to 3D (TESLA). But more importantly, wouldn't you call the electricity the car uses a kind of fuel? It certainly doesn't use gasoline. I'm open to argument on this one, but it struck me weird.

- Colum


  1. 6:04

    Nice time! I fumbled around a bit, but overall, I like this one too. We played Clue, Risk, and Life a lot, the other two I've played maybe once or twice. I think we had Parcheesi, which is just like Sorry, but harder to work into a phrase, I'm guessing.

    Totally agree that electricity is fuel. People think electric cars are the be-all and end-all, but all that electricity comes in large part from burning coal. Hook your Tesla up to solar panels, then call me.

    SCHEMA is a nice non-Mondayish word. And speaking of ATARI, do arcades even exist anymore?

    Favorite fill: ECLAIR, 'cause, you know, I was just eating them from patisseries last week...

  2. Yes, the time on Diary of a Crossword Fiend was 3:23, so I'm close-ish. Actually not at all. Half a minute's a lifetime for a Monday, but give me my moment, damn it!

    BTW, got your postcard. We are definitely going to Paris, but not this year.

  3. 8:25
    Yes, excellent time. I've played all of those games, including Parcheesi, and agree about the electric car/fuel thing, although the amount of coal or oil needed to produce enough electricity for a full charge of an electric car is negligible compared with the amount of gasoline needed to propel a car that far. Not that I don't agree with the solar panel suggestion, as you know. I, too, entered LIFEboaT first, but quickly changed it to accomodate the ever-present ABBA. My favorite theme answer was hands-down SORRYCHARLIE because it also evoked the old Chicken of the Sea add with Charlie Tuna, which probably came out at about the same time as the game Sorry.