Sunday, January 24, 2016

Sunday, January 24, 2016, Francis Heaney and Brendan Emmett Quigley


I have just a few moments to comment on this puzzle, in between dinner after the Patriots' loss and Downton Abbey. I suppose any run was bound to come to an end, and I'm not referring to the football season, but to the puzzles this week.

The idea behind this theme is cute: take a common phrase that begins with a three letter word, switch the second and third letters of that word to create a common crosswordese acronym, and reclue the resultant new phrase. Only, see, the issue is all of that crosswordese. I just found them annoying for the most part. I enjoyed GTOMILK because I wasn't expecting it, as well as BYOWONDER, which avoided some sort of racist thing in the clue.

And too, there is a ton of crosswordese glue outside of the themes. NCR. IBAR, TMAN, SOTO crossing ISSO. And on and on. Meh.

All right, time for Downton Abbey.

- Colum


  1. It's Cam's year. I hope that's true, anyway.

    I enjoyed the theme answers today - especially SDIANDNANCY, and the 8- and 9-letter Down answers were often good, but yeah, way too much crap.

    As for Downtown, the only interesting question remaining is "What will they do with Thomas?" They're making him more pitiable, and really, with all the stale, dried up threads running through the show - Bates and Anna (Who CARES!?), Mary (You're a horrible person and you don't deserve the good ending you will certainly be given), Branson (Jesus, you're back?), Daisy (OMG, NO.), Violet (Even you're getting tiresome with your 'the old way is always better' routine), Willis (the policeman) and all his tiresome threads (Why, oh why, is he on screen so much?!?), and Edith (you're having all the luck now, aren't you?), Lord Grantham (you've gotten better, but they'll be hospitalizing you soon) .... Spratt and Denker are interesting, too - why weren't they in it this week?...

  2. Wait, I never finished my sentence! ... but anyway, you get the idea.

  3. I enjoyed the theme, and puzzle, although it took slightly more than an hour today because of the tricky SE section (for me, anyway). What about PARAMUS? No grade? I wanted "Trenton" in there. I even starred a clue: 77A "Without ___" (1990 live Grateful Dead album) (ANET), which I knew, of course, but don't own. I think Sue may have had it on cassette, but we've recently purged most of those.