Friday, August 28, 2015

Friday, August 28, 2015, Samuel A. Donaldson


A classic Friday. I got off to a fast start in the NW with the excellent LAWYERUP (1A: Prepare for a court battle), the old-school ONEONONE (15A: Common court battle), and the modern GOPUBLIC (17A: Tell the world). It's just too bad that ESTREET (19A: Locale of the American Red Cross headquarters in Washington) wasn't clued with a Bruce Springsteen clue, but I suppose that would have been more of a Monday/Tuesday kind of thing.

It got harder for me after that. STEPPED (11D: Like ziggurats and some mesas) went right in, but MASSEXODUS (12D: Lots of outgoing people) (nicely clued), took quite a bit longer.

I liked the pair of "imposed" clues, preferring FOISTED over SADDLED, but both are good words. The SE is totally solid today. Love WAITWHAT (56A: "Hold on ... did I hear that correctly?"), and ENDNOTES and FIRECODE are also good, and it took me a long time to figure out that both 47A: Single or double (GETAHIT) were being used as verbs. The SW is less good, with AGORAE and ISAO, and I don't particularly love EARLYSTAGE (25D: Embryonic), but FREAKOUTON (26D: Subject to a hissy fit) (another sneaky verb) was amusing. And speaking of the SW, I had "STUDIoS" in for 45A: Writing rooms (STUDIES), and didn't know NED (43A: Leo's advisee on "The West Wing"), so I just could not come up with JETER (43D: Captain Clutch of baseball). Honestly, I was all set to take a DNF, but Frannie took a look at it and finished it up in about two minutes. I also had trouble with GINA (47D: Actress Carano of "Fast & Furious 6," 2013), VERDI (44D: One who made many Shakespeare characters sing?) (I kept wanting a Muse!), and the aforementioned GETAHIT, but Frannie fixed all that up, too.

Anyway, overall I enjoyed the challenge, and I decree this to be a good Friday!

- Horace


  1. I was reluctant to write in HOTH because, you know, there are so many inhabited ice planets out there. But as I was staring at the grid, I actually felt my throat getting a little tight, so I decided I better put it in.

  2. 12:23
    Outstanding themeless. I agree that ISAO/AGORAE is the weakest area. I started with WEPT and put YOUREOK in but took it out because of the WY at the top. I even had PEC in but didn't think the C would work. Obviously it all eventually went back in, but not until I'd finished the entire SW and came back up. I too had STUDIoS, but knew JETER so switched it around.

    I like the pair of "sum" clues, with the sneaky Latin one being the better of the two. You left out HASACOW (shades of Bart Simpson). VERDI was an immediate get for me. I must have been in Friday mode throughout. Nice puzzle!

  3. 57:15
    I had most of the crosses for LESMIZ, but it still took awhile, which is odd since I just finished reading the book recently. I put in WhoaWHAT at first instead of WAITWHAT, and i had AYEaye instead of AYESIR (which seems a bit strained). My last letter entered was the "F" of BEFOG/FREAKOUTON, but there were no errors and I got the "Congratulations!" box immediately. My favorite: 28A Barely communicates on a smartphone? (SEXTS). I agree about the great GETAHIT cluing. Excellent Friday.