Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Tuesday, January 30, 2018, Emily Carroll


Certainly today's revealer answer is more appealing to the esthetic senses than yesterday's. Even if it brings to mind specific activities that take place at the less appealing end of your pet dog. But taken literally, HOUSEBROKEN refers to the fact that four kinds of houses are split in pieces across different answers. I find it interesting that they change levels as well. For DUP / LEX, that makes the most literal sense. For RAN / CH it makes no sense at all. I suppose an AF / RAME and a CHAL / ET could go either way.

The things I liked about this puzzle include the two long down answers. 3D: Growing problem in cities? (URBANSPRAWL) adds a decent clue. 27D: Subject of some September sports reporting (PENNANTRACE) is a bit of a tortured clue. I also really enjoyed the clue at 5A: Like the Llwynywermod royal estate (WELSH). It could be nothing else. And I challenge you to pronounce it correctly.

I can see how all those circled letters probably constrained the grid. Ms. Carroll has done an excellent job in segregating these sections of words by all of the diagonal black squares. It also makes for a bisected puzzle, which is never high on my list of things that I am fond of.

Meanwhile, my heavily penciled corrections show a slew of errors. Somehow I spelled AMNOT as AMNOn. I wanted ADmEn for ADREP, which in retrospect ignores that the clue specifies an individual, not several individuals.  I wanted GOTyou for GOTCHA and spYHOLE for KEYHOLE. And that about explains the longer time than expected for a Tuesday.

In the end, I didn't love it, but it's definitely interesting.

- Colum


  1. 5:23
    Nice positioning of the photo under the "I challenge you" phrase. Ahh... Princess Bride... I should probably watch that again.

    I got excited about beating your time twice in a row this week, until you reminded me that you're still solving on paper! Which also reminds me, I've got to reserve a room in Stamford!

    It took me forever to parse A-FRAME correctly. I kept adding the N and saying "What the heck is an aframen?! I agree that the theme is interesting, and the circles are at least all connected. They don't really have to be there, except that it is much, much easier to find the house types with them. Do you know what I mean? Sometimes circles just seem so arbitrary, but here they don't.

    Anyway, I liked it fine. And yeah, about that challenge? I decline.

  2. 11:15

    I thought that the start (ASU) is terrible, and also thought that it was interesting that worldseRies fits where PENNANTRACE belongs. The circles in this puzzle were definitely not arbitrary, as Horace mentions and the theme was pretty good for a Tuesday. And like Colum, I tried IGOTyou and ADmEn at first, which slowed me a bit.