Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Thursday, December 28, 2017, Gary Larson


The first thing I did after finishing this was to go to xwordinfo to check on whether or not this was the Gary Larson. It's not. But it is a debut! Wouldn't it be great to debut on a Thursday? I sure think so.


The trick today is to UPTHEANTE. When I was solving, I never really fully assessed the situation. First I tried a rebus, but that didn't last long, and after a while I guess I imagined that you had to "blow up" the "ante," because they were just missing in my answers. I didn't notice until I was reviewing the puzzle that the word ANTE runs up from the A in each theme answer. Very nicely done.

I liked ACADEMICS (18A: Professors and such) and TURNABOUT (60A: Fair play, to some), and I really liked INDISARRAY (29D: Unorganized) and DRINKATHON (10D: Affair for bingers). Hah! And speaking of amusing, I appreciated the clue for ANI (42A: Something a Mississippi cheerleader repeatedly calls for).

1A: 1970s New York City mayor (BEAME). D. Never heard of him.
Fave: PETNAMES (15D: Honey and Sugar)
Least: Take your pick from the next sentence.

Some odd plurals (ELMOS, ANDS), and more than a few tough names (RAU, ELIE, ESAU, and BEAME), but overall, I come down in favor of this one. Congrats on the debut, Mr. Larson!

- Horace

p.s. Can you believe that the other Gary Larson retired on January 1, 1995!?


  1. 15:36
    I agree this was very well done, and it took me quite a while to figure out what was going on and whether I should put the rebus in. I'll go with RAU as my least favorite from the above list, although I've never heard of BEAME either. I've never attended a DRINKATHON, though some summer nights feel like one. I should re-read DA[NTE]SINFERNO, now that I'm a bit older. I read it when I was around the age of 20, and feel that it's possible I'd appreciate it a bit more now, from the VANTAGE of the EONS.

  2. 12:31
    I was thinking early on that this was an "UPTHEANTE" theme... then came off of it... then of course back again at the end. It certainly helped fill in the grid once the theme was apparent.

    Thanks for the note about Gary Larsen. I was wondering the same myself, although I figured it was a longshot that it would be the same guy.

  3. Oh, also I *loved* ANI (42A: Something a Mississippi cheerleader repeatedly calls for). I needed all of the crosses to get it, but -