Sunday, June 7, 2015

Sunday, June 7, 2015, Samuel A. Donaldson


Fitting, I suppose, that they should have a horse racing-related puzzle on the same weekend that American Pharoah won the Triple Crown.

We enjoyed the punny theme answers as we drove home from a weekend at the beach. 22A: "And they're off! Ace Detective has the ____!" (EARLYLEAD), is pretty good, 35A: "It's Pariah ____!" (ONTHEOUTSIDE) is better… as is 95A: "But wait! Amex Card ____!" (MAKESACHARGE). Heh. And there are a few other bits of theme-related fill, like STATS (17D: Top-three finishes and total earnings, in horse racing), ROSE (49A: Part of a Derby garland), and, I guess, ROSA (49D: Bonheur who painted "The Horse Fair"). I won't go so far as to include 55D: Race segment (LEG), but others might, I suppose.

And it's not just the theme clueing that was good. I enjoyed the interesting 61A: Sound you can't make in your sleep (ACHOO), 42A: Tool made to scale (ICEAXE) (no question mark!), 92A: Calculator that doesn't shut off (ABACUS), 50D: Arab city whose name is an anagram of ARABS (BASRA), and 27D: How the careful think (TWICE), to cite just some.

Some of the long Down fill is quite good. DISLEXICS is good, TRENCHANT (13D: Penetrating) is an excellent word, TEMPORARYTATTOOS (37D: Cracker Jack prizes that leave a mark) and ONEAFTERTHEOTHER (15D: In succession) are, oddly, longer than any theme fill, but both are good-looking fill, and the former is clued quite well.

There's some "glue," as it were, but not too much. Best "saving clue" for such fill - 94D: Bad "Wheel of Fortune" buy for SUSPICIOUS ACTIVITY (ANE). That's the kind of thing that makes you almost happy to enter ANE into a grid, and that's the kind of thing that makes this a very good Sunday puzzle.

- Horace


  1. Completed with my mother this morning. Not terribly difficult, although we had some real difficulty with the NE corner due to having entered DoeST, until my mother pointed out it needed to be in the past tense. I liked ONTHEOUTSIDE the best. I definitely liked ACHOO, and even better, it was right above VOODOO, so a lot of double Os right there.

    A couple of typos in your review, Horace: thing and SUSPISIOUS.

    1. Thanks, I'll get on those. Tired after a weekend away.

  2. 26:46
    And DISLEXICS (DYSLEXICS), which you must have entered because its cross, EARLYLEAD was mentioned. Dennis YOST is not known nto me. No mention of IBMS, TYCO and LTDS crossing MCDONALDS? That's a lot of product in the SE. VOTENO looks strange, somehow, and BEHEST (93D Bidding) is a nice word. I didn't remember the TUNA trivia regarding Hobbes. UHURA is recovering at this time from a mild stroke. She's 82. A fitting and fun, but slightly too easy, Sunday puzzle.