Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Tuesday, May 24, 2016, Jonathan Gersch


I like the idea of this theme. I had no idea where it was going at all, so the revealer was a nice twist. But, and this feels like a big but, I don't like the way the revealer had to be clued to make it work. It's so awkward: 71A: Bugle tune ... or what one does to [theme answers]. One TAPS things. Yuck.

Then, there's also the issue that the way "tapping" is used is repeated in 1A (KEGS) and 62A (MAPLETREES). In both cases, you are inserting something into something else in order to allow the liquid within out. I wish they'd left 1A out of the theme answers. That would have been cleaner. All the other uses of the verb are unique.

Otherwise, the fill is hit and miss. I definitely liked DAEDALUS and GLOWWORMS. William BREWSTER is a well-known member of the original settlers of Plymouth Colony. I'm pretty sure I knew one of his descendants some years ago. Assuming, of course, that any Brewster living in and around Boston is in some way related. EZIOPINZA is a staple of crosswords for as long as I can remember, but it's nice to see his whole name.

There are a ton of proper names (including the three above). I see EGON, LIDO, ENNIS, JONAH, ALEXA, BARR, ODIE (sort of), REDD, ZAPPO, ALPO, and EZRA, not to mention ITINA. Oh, and EZEK, an unpleasant abbreviation. There are also both ATH and ASSOC. Oh, yeah, and SUPE. Huh?

OHGEE. There's a term I'd like to see removed from crosswords.

Well, the more I look at it, the less I like it. Let's just finish with SAYWHAT?

- Colum


  1. Untimed.
    I agree that this was a less-than-desireable puzzle in many ways, although I, too, enjoyed GLOWWORMS and DAEDALUS quite a bit. I entered "SUPt" instead of the terrible SUPE, but SEPIAS fixed that up. And speaking of AARP, I've not yet received my invitation to that outfit, and here I am, fifty years and nearly four weeks old. EATIT is funny enough, but it could have used a Weird Al clue. I, in addition to Colum's unlikes above, didn't enjoy TOSSTO or its clue.

  2. 4:23

    I don't mind the duplicated use of the word TAPS. It's just too bad they couldn't get in the more current slang usage. Hah!

    EZIOPINZA, crosswordese though he may be, has never stuck in my brain, so the Z of EZEK was the last thing I put in. Of course, when faced with a biblical clue for E_EK, there's not much else that comes to mind.

    I like what you did with SEPIAS, even though I have long disliked the way they always seem to clue that word. Some current photos are sepia-toned, too. And some old photos are not sepia-toned. !! OK, photographer rant over.

    I say this is something of ADRAW.