Friday, November 25, 2016

Friday, November 25, 2016, Patrick Berry


Patrick Berry is back today with a typically high-quality puzzle. It took me quite a while to get going in this one - I think my first truly confident answer might have been HAMLET (40D: Play containing the line "Good night, sweet prince"), which gave me HORATIO (37D: Speaker of the line in 40-Down), and I worked my way back up to the top from there. I finished the puzzle where it began, in the NE, where ALCOHOLRUB (13A: Sore muscle treatment) (not a thing I know about) and TRAWL (19A: Drag out of a bed?) (nice!) were very slow to come. In fact, the very last thing I figured out was the excellent 1D: Immersive experience (BAPTISM).

Lots and lots of good seven through ten letter fill. PARTIALITY (17A: Special fondness), SCRAPES (3D: Difficult situations), BRITANNICA (35A: Pax ____ (century preceding W.W. I)), HEAVENSENT (40A: Arriving at just the right moment), and SPACESUITS (56A: Landing gear?) were all quite good. And I like the idea of ALEXANDERS (24D: Creamy cocktails), but I've never actually made myself one. It just always seems like such a waste to use only an egg white. What do you do with the yolk? Make custard?

BYPRODUCTS (15D: Unlooked-for results) was another nice long answer. TAX RETURN (34A: Prepared statement) had a fun clue. There was a lot to like.

1A: Strongly disparage (BASH) I will give a B-. Why? BECAUSE

Very little to complain about. Thumbs up.

- Horace


  1. ~29:42
    I went to get my hair cut and forgot to shut the timer off, which reads "59:42." I was gone for around a half-hour. The "X" of TAXRETURN/ALEXANDER was my final entry BECAUSE, for some reason, I couldn't see it. The puzzle is excellent: LESSONPLAN, IMPALA, TEACADDIES and APOSTLES were all fantastic and well-clued. For short answers (other than LUCY), I loved SEER (27A Future reporter), because I wanted "cub" so badly and MUTE (8D Cello attachment near the bridge), because who doesn't love a cello? Very smooth and beautifully flowing puzzle.

  2. 10:11 (completed with my mother)
    Very nice puzzle, as Mr. Berry's name typically implies. I'm not convinced by ALEXANDERS (isn't it a "brandy Alexander"? So it's a partial and a pluralized proper noun). Anybody have any sense why TEACADDIES is clued with "gunpowder"? When I google it, I find a kind of tea called "gunpowder" but that seems somewhat obscure.