Sunday, September 11, 2016

Sunday, September 11, 2016, Ned White and George Barany


Let's see, covers, PILLOWTALK, blankets, SLEEPOVER, SAWLOGS, MONSTER, DUSTBUNNY, sheets, pad?, and ANDSOTOBED, and we end with DREAMY. Very nice touch, that. And if your female partner is going to bed in a TEDDY (also ending on the last square), so much the better. Too much? Probably. Anyway, I think the theme is cute. I like that the SAWLOGS is on the bed and the MONSTER and the DUSTBUNNY are below it. It's well done.

1A: Figaro, e.g. (BARBER) gets a B. The first clue I put in with confidence was TESS (10A: ____ Trueheart (Dick Tracy's wife). You know, speaking of that, I realized after writing yesterday's review that the first clue that I said I entered confidently on the Saturday puzzle was "WOODS" (Section of a golf bag), but that is crazy, because it's a classic binary-type answer. "Irons" would have fit just as well, and it's just dumb luck that I picked the right one. Today, I chose wrong on 7A: Foal : horse :: calf : ____" (ELK). I tried "cow," and didn't change it until KAYAK (9D: Popular airfare finder) (it's what we use!) became clear. Come to think of it, I suppose 46A: One making a pitch? (TUNER) might have fooled some today in a similar way, since "adman" is such a commonly used bit of fill. And did you notice that "Tate modern" fits in the same space as TATEMUSEUM (91A: London home to many John Constable paintings)? I did.

I enjoyed the clue for ISOLDE (38A: Tryster with Tristan), and the two "Roosevelt of note" clues were fun (ELEANOR & TEDDY). SPELEOLOGY (39A: Study of caves) was inferable from "spelunking," but I'd never known "34D: Sloughs" to mean MORASSES. Similarly, and more annoyingly, I have never heard "the OLDS" for "ma and pa." Who says that?!

But overall, I rather enjoyed this Sunday puzzle. Lots of fun stuff (WISEACRE, YESIDO, PASTICHE, BEERPULL) and not too much glue (ASTO, PREF, ISSO...), so ASAWHOLE, it's good.

- Horace


  1. The construction of this theme was a lot of fun. I too enjoyed the literal placement of various words in and around the bed in the middle of the puzzle. I would have given BARBER a higher grade simply for the clue. After all, Mozart. Or Rossini, I guess, although I only know the overture for that opera. Weirdly, the first answer I put in confidently was REVUE. I like MORASSES (sloughs) - think "the slough of despond", which, now I look it up, comes from The Pilgrim's Progress. Huh. My only major complaint was that I found it too easy.

  2. 38:06
    As you can see from my time, I agree with Colum on the too easy comment. I didn't love OPS (71D Word with black or photo) since it's not really a word, but it's OK because the shortened version is suggested by the shortened "photo." Figaro wasn't a barber in Mozart's masterpiece, although I guess he was before the time where we come in on that opera. I, too, loved the clue for ISOLDE, and the puzzle in general.