Saturday, March 18, 2017

Saturday, March 18, 2017, Roland Huget

57:04/FWLOE, or, if you prefer, DNF

Well, I had a lot of problems with this one, as you see from the above. As I counted up the errors, Horace suggested I needn't bother, and said I should write DNF instead, but I feel like I *did* finish the puzzle, I just had a lot of mistakes. So, dear readers, I leave it to you to decide DNF or FWLOE.

I don't want to come off sounding like a sour grape, but I didn't enjoy this puzzle all that much, quite possibly because it was difficult for me to solve, but not difficult in a fun way. There were so many content clues that I was clueless about that it was more of a struggle than a challenge.

Things went south pretty quickly for me as I filled in the north east and realized in very short order that I had a definite Natick on my hands. I didn't know the name of the Creator of Bluto and Wimpy, nor do I have an even passing familiarity with Mercedes-Benz lines, never mind the mid-luxury ECLASS. I had two or three letters that I thought might work for both a class of car and a first initial, but unfortunately, I eliminated B-F right out of the gate as being too similar to not-so-great grades in school. Derp.

However, the main problem area for me was in the north west. I'm not familiar with "We're No Angels" and have never heard of ALDORAY. Worse yet, I really expected to be able to get 15A. From the heart, in Latin, but could not figure it out. I had EXA_IM_O, but as far as I knew, there was no Latin word for heart that fit that pattern. After I finished (or didn't finish the puzzle), I looked up the definition of EXANIMO online and there is general agreement that it means "from the heart" but if you look up animo in any Latin dictionary, you'll see that the word means spirit. That's what I get for taking the "in Latin" part of that clue too literally. :(

Beyond the specific problem areas mentioned above, there were a couple clue/answer pairs that I didn't think were the BESTEVER. My least favorite was 27A. The Allegheny and Wabash, to the Ohio: Abbr. (TRIBS). Ugh. I thought PANIN for 49. Prepare for a close-up seemed odd. I think of panning as more of a sweeping shot, left to right, and a close up calling for more of a zooming in action. I didn't like AGELINE for several reasons, but especially in the case of a Crow's foot, And re-raising in a poker game may be an aggressive play, but I don't like it as a noun. I am sure these are all perfectly cromulent equivalents, but to my mind they lacked the clue to answer exactness that I enjoy.

Anywho, enough already with the grousing. I enjoyed 7D. Going in and out of middle management? YOYODIET. FINETUNE for Tweak was nice, and I thought 56A. Commoner contemner (ELITIST) was especially nice because the clue itself sounded suitably snobby.



  1. You're not alone, Frannie! I too made too many errors in this puzzle and am giving myself a DNF. That ECSEGAR / ECLASS crossing is a complete Natick. No two ways about it. And ALDORAY was a huh? I made things worse for myself by putting DaRk in at 5D, and trying CRAnk for CRATE. And the NW and SE corners are so isolated, they were separate puzzles. Plus who wants NAZIERA? Nobody, that's who.

    ASUSUAL tripped me up as well. Because I put ASyoUdo in, and that U made it seem correct...

  2. 46:04
    Wow, tough crowd. I enjoyed the puzzle. I didn't know ECSEGAR, but ECLASS is well-known to me, and the rest of the crosses were fine. I loved SUCK (10D Be lousy) for its boldness, and I always enjoy GAFFERS, which reminds me of the MST3K quip by Crow, I think, who said "Is the 'gaffer' the guy that keeps screwing up?" ALDORAY is also unknown to me, but again, the crosses were fine. UPANDUP is good, and LECTURE (55A School address) is clever. Should we be saying JIVETALK (33D Cat's tongue), though? I tried eyELINE for a short time at 13D, until I figured out COURAGE, and tigerFISH instead of ZEBRAFISH at 21D, but these were corrected quickly enough. I agree that PANIN is not any good. Favorite clue/answer? Maybe 18A Bad representation? (LUCIFER).