Thursday, January 4, 2018

Thursday, January 4, 2018, Daniel Mauer


I got this puzzle's number starting with the grid-spanning revealer 4WARDINGADDRESS. Well, sort of. I felt that I knew 38A had to be [for]warding address, but couldn't make it fit, so I thought, aha! a rebus. Which it was, sort of; the unexpected numerical rebus - with a twist! The puzzle had four clues that read, "Answer found elsewhere." Then, elsewhere, solvers were given the answer as the clue, and in the grid, when correctly completed, the location where the answer should be entered. So, the clue for 18 across was "Answer found elsewhere." The clue for 13D was Macarena, but the answer was 18ACROSS, so we put MACARENA in at 18A. Somehow, it was easier to solve than it is to explain. There was one of these clue/answer/clue pairs in each quadrant, and each location answer crossed its clue answer. But, clever as this trick puzzle may be, I didn't really love being handed the answers just by solving the locations, which were largely given away once you figured out the trick.

Today's not-so-hidden capital at 14A (Many-hit Wonder: STEVIE) didn't fool me anymore than yesterday's did, but the one at 7A sure did. I don't spend much time on social media, so when I looked at 7A Yelp alternative, I thought, oh boy, what's another thing like Yelp? Well, another thing like yelp turns out to be ARF. Ha!

The pair of Hill workers clues spiced up the old chestnuts SENS (Hill workers: Abbr.) and ANTS (Hill workers) a bit. And 30D Angels might come to its aid (STARTUP) was nice.


I didn't DOTE on the number of abbreviations ALLOWEDIN like ACC, NEV, PRES, XII, SSRS, OVA, and ACR, even as valiantly clued as they were. And entries like Right-angle pipe (ELL), Desk chair part (CASTER), One providing input (ENTERER), and Approached dusk (LATENED) weren't gr8, but I suppose that's the price of a complex trick puzzle like this.



  1. 25:28
    Even when I realized the trick, it took me a while to solve this one. The "A" at CREATINE/ACC was a complete guess, and my final entry. I figured out the theme after around fifteen minutes with 70A's 48DOWN and its crosses VIED4 and INM8. OSTINATO is nice and went in without crosses, which was fortunate at WIEN, especially. Decent trick for a Thursday.

  2. 18:08 FWOE
    This was fun to try to figure out, although it felt more like a mind teaser than a crossword puzzle. I think the OSTINATO / VIEN cross took me two tries.

    I also did not like PRES (U.S. 1). I spent a few minutes trying to parse this and couldn't figure it out until lying in bed later in the evening when it hit me that maybe they were saying that the President is the #1 executive in the US. Perhaps the current state of affairs caused my mental block on this.

  3. 17:57
    Got the trick down in the bottom where SEACOW crossed 48DOWN. It's funny, because Colum and I were just saying a couple days ago how you don't often see a numeral in a puzzle. And here are eight of them!

    I don't know what CREATINE is, and that A was my final entry, too.

  4. 9:32
    Horace, I was just thinking about this conversation with you as I solved this one! It's just like I was hoping: numbers in one direction, the syllable in the other direction. I guess we're just a few months behind. Meanwhile, the revealer is perfect. I enjoyed much of this puzzle, but agree with the (presumably) necessary glue issues. My final letter was the Y in OXY / PRY.