Saturday, February 6, 2016

Saturday, February 6, 2016, David Steinberg

Unknown time - seemed like a good long while.

The online version of the puzzle seems to be undergoing some sort of transformation. One day it shows an empty square where you make a mistake, the next day it resets the time every time you it pause. Yesterday, my time was "0:03:24," according to the NYT site. Today it's 13-somehting... but it really felt more like an hour. We were entertaining tonight, so the solve was very disjointed and neither of us could really focus. Perhaps it was that disconnectedness that left me feeling a little lukewarm about this one.

It starts out well enough - I guess the ACIDWASH look was meant to look broken in, so sure, "Make look old" is acceptable. Let's give it a B-. And my favorite clue answer might be 58A: Piano (SOFTLY). It's a music clue that I entered immediately, unlike 3D: Its icon contains a pair of quavers (ITUNES), which took me forever! No one ever says "quaver" for "eighth note," obviously, but hey, it's Saturday, so I take my lumps there.

In other places, it's a little harder to do so. 28A: Five-time N.B.A. All-Star Pau GASOL  is completely unknown to me. As is LOCARNO. I had all but the first letter and I still needed the cross. And what a cross it was - "35A: Couple of star-crossed lovers?" LONGINGEYES. What does that even mean?!

Oh, well... we enjoyed PYRENEES (59A: Locale of the ancient kingdom of Navarre) (Henri IV FTW!) (and is it really that ancient?), and SERIESFINALE (7D: Pilot's opposite) was good. But as I said, I felt a little distant from this tonight. Maybe it's the $400 worth of wine that was consumed over dinner, maybe not...

- Horace


  1. 21:34
    I liked ACIDWASH better than you. My favorite is 9A: Whiz at multiplication? (RABBIT). I can't believe how long it took to figure out ___FIESTICK. Ah well. Pretty good puzzle, but not amazing, in the final analysis.

  2. 37:38
    I loved 1D for both its clue (Summer job?) which was one of the best misdirection clues I've ever seen, and for its answer (ADDING). 2D Lens cover (CORNEA) kept it going. BATIKS are an art form that Sue and I will shortly be seeing a great deal of, and hopefully purchasing several, and any allusion to Asimov, albeit via the roundabout mention of the Will Smith movie (IROBOT) is welcome. SOFTLY went in immediately over here, too, and LOCARNO was completely unknown...all crosses necessary. Great Saturday, fill-wise and because I could finish it in a relatively short time. And yes, that was some high-end wine...and food. Fun night!