Saturday, November 25, 2017

Saturday, November 25, 2017, Kevin G. Der


Ooh, this was a tough Saturday. I'll point out some answers I'm unhappy with, but overall, who doesn't like a struggle on a weekend?

I entered through the ENSUITE, and followed with SAYPLEASE. At this point I thought things might be easier than expected. But I tried turnLANES for 1A: Places for drivers to get around (LEFTLANES). Okay, so that's actually a pretty darned good 1A. I'll give it an A- for the laugh, but a B for the fact that how many left hand lanes are there on a highway? Just one. So overall, that averages to a B+.

Anyway, I couldn't remember CALDERCUP, even though it was a clue on Thursday where it was called the Calder Memorial Trophy. So when things slowed down there, I moved via 21A: Engage in warfare (SPILLBLOOD) and LALO - how nice to have specialized music knowledge - into the SE corner.

I had TAKETIME and TREN as my entrees here. I like this corner a lot. 48A: Entertainers for whom lines quickly form (SLAMPOETS) takes the prize for my favorite clue today. But we also have two not so great answers in CASHAUDIT (I mean, I see that it's probably a thing, I've just never heard of it) and 55A: Producer of loose leaf notes? (TEATASTER). This latter is a real job, apparently, but looked to me as I entered it to be a completely made up vocation.

Anyway, the other answer in the puzzle I didn't like much was 38A: Consumers want to get their hands on it (TABLETPC). Oooooo-kay. I just don't think the clue really works.

Otherwise, the puzzle was quite smooth and well constructed. There's a mini-theme in Mexicana with ELMARIACHI, SOMBREROS, and LAREDO.

- Colum


  1. DNF

    Hats off to Mr. Amory for this impressive achievement.

    This puzzle was my first DNF (that I can recall) since I've been doing the daily puzzle (about a year and a half).

    I had probably a good 10-20% left and decided I was done with it. After Googling about a half dozen of the obscure entries (Laredo, Maine, Anse, Alfio, Peale, and maybe one other), I "finished" it in about 55 minutes. One thing that hurt me was I had SANDTRAPS for 1A for a while (with several down clues that seemed to work with it).

    Another friend of mine, who frequents the tournament circuit, finished this in 42 minutes (after looking up one item). So at least I was not the only one to struggle with it.

  2. After quite a long time each working on our own, Frannie and I teamed up to finish this one together. We used to do this more frequently, and it was fun to be doing it again, sitting side-by-side and working through it together. (Which is, by the way, how we competed in our first ACPT - doing the online version!)

    Funny that "ALpeRT" fits where ALHIRT goes. And I had beAtPOETS for a long while. Some very tough gets, but as I said, finishing it together ended up being pretty fun.

  3. DNF in 68:22
    The NW was a complete disaster. The rest was easy enough. Nice clue for BMOVIE.