Friday, February 16, 2018

Friday, February 16, 2018, David Steinberg


All but the middle block of this puzzle went pretty smoothly for me. En route to the problematic parallelogram I was entertained by the clues "Put away the dishes?" for the old standby EAT, "Like privates, often" (PIXELATED), and "Things waiters wait for" (TIPS).

I'll ADD that there were a number of nicely tricky clues as well, including "One who's 60-something" (DSTUDENT), "Wednesday, e.g." (ADDAMS), and "Part of a pound?" (STRAY). I also enjoyed NEATASAPIN and FLAMBOYANT.

Breaking into the center square took some trial and error. I must have put in and taken out GABLE five times. For some reason, AMBIT, GELDS, and NEMEAN didn't leap to mind. Something about the clue for BEETS threw me off, too. I was thinking of a more general natural food coloring source. It also took me forever to think of music for 41A. "Stop playing" symbols (RESTS) - AFLAC that will surprise no one who knows me. It seemed like something of an ODDITY to have both AMBOY and AMBIT in the same puzzle.


NODEAR seems difficult to clue well, if you're going to use it, and probably not worth the effort. CAVER, COS, and ONENO win no prizes from me. And, thank heavens Mr. EADS invented something, otherwise puzzle constructors would have had to invent him!



  1. 14:08
    Young Mr. Steinberg probably doesn't remember when the ROPE in clue was actually made of string. Nor does he, perhaps, realize that the clue for ROY (21A: Name related to Rex) seems to force a duplication with the end of CORDUROY, which is often translated from French as "cord of the king." Still, who doesn't love a nice pair of cords?

    I liked a lot of the entries today. SUNNY, INAMORATA, SPEEDBALL, NEATASAPIN, BEETS. :)

    Calling cameos GEMS digs deep into the definition, but I guess that's ok on a Friday.

  2. Untimed today - I forgot to start my timer. But it was long, definitely longer than Horace but shorter than Frannie. I started with a very unfortunate mistake. I looked at the clue for 9A: "Purgatorio" poet (DANTE), and thought it was 19A. To my misfortune, "daNTealighieri" fit in that space. It took a while to take it out. My other major error was putting in sArI for MAXI. The two correct letters made it difficult to figure out. Silly me, I thought of ONENt.

    Love love love PIXELATED. That clue is perfect. I couldn't believe it was actually in the NYT!

  3. 31:39
    I'm with Frannie on having my difficult section in the middle. I finished off the remainder in around 17 minutes and thought I could be in for a sub-20, but no. I still don't know what NEMEAN is (I wanted Narnian), and the terrible NODEAR came slowly. GELDS was clued excellently, as was SALARY and DSTUDENT. I tried kirk (then sulu and worf) where TROI belongs, but each went in very, very briefly. I agree with Colum on PIXELATED. Fantastic. I also loved FLAMBOYANT. Great Friday.

  4. NEMEAN went in off the clue for me. Killing the beast was Hercules's first labor.