Friday, February 2, 2018

Friday, February 2, 2018, Randolph Ross


If I had been solving this at the ACPT, I would have turned my grid in with a serious lack of confidence. That SW corner, with several names and unclear television show titles. I knew about the thesaurus, but was unsure about his full name (PETERROGET). Doesn't it feel like he should have a French name? Even though he made a thesaurus in English?

A quick Wikipedia search reveals that he was a British physician in the 19th century who seemed to have either OCD or some form of autism, as he started making lists by the time he was 8 years old. Interesting. And his name is pronounced roGETT, not roZHAY.

But the answer that had me most confused was 56A: Long-running pop culture show (ENEWS). Oh, wait. I get it. E! News, as in the news show on the Entertainment Network. I was stuck thinking it was like those annoying e-words, implying electronic. Well, it's certainly a thing, but without that exclamation point, I just don't know.

Outside of that area, there was much to enjoy. 1A: Biased investigation (WITCHHUNT) is a nice entry, even if it smacks too much of our current bloviator-in-chief. But better is its symmetric counterpart, 57A: Pointing of fingers (BLAMEGAME). These two gave the puzzle as a whole a political bent.

My favorite clue is 30D: Brown family member (EARTHTONE). Not at all what I was expecting. I also enjoyed 35A: Well-known speaker (BOSE). That's some nice misdirection.

Well, okay. So there's also 48D: Spoiler of a perfect report card (ONEB). Why not "one C," or God forbid, "one D?" I won't linger on AGASP or abbrev. NCAR. For that matter, TATAS is just begging for a Huygens level clue.

Milo has never been in any of those DOGSPAS.

- Colum


  1. 21:11
    Impressive time, Colum. Are you still solving on paper? If so, I'm practically speechless. But I will still say that we now have a room booked in Stamford for Friday and Saturday nights. Hopefully, we'll see you there!

    This was a great puzzle. I was really mired down there in the SW, but finally, the excellent SEXCAPADE and EARTHTONE broke it apart. So good. Interesting stuff about PETERROGET. I liked the clue for HURTS (Smarts). So much good.

    And I'm surprised about Milo. I'm sure it won't be long now, what with him having become such a famous actor and all...

    1. Oh, you've heard about his star turn? He's getting a little snooty for us. Oh, wait. I mean he has a little snoot.

  2. 27:50
    I assume that Milo was named after the main character in "The Phantom Tollbooth." My slowdown also was in the SW, where I kept trying SEXpAlAcE instead of the much-better SEXCAPADE. TATAS would have been nice clued along with that somehow. Lots to love in this puzzle, as others have mentioned, but I'll add JIVES and its cross JOKE. Nice stacks in the N, E, S and W. I was able to drop ESTATECAR right in off of the clue, thanks to a recent puzzle, and I even, surprisingly, entered BUDSELIG off of the BUD___. I didn't know PETERROGET's full name, either, nor did I know of the proper pronunciation. I didn't love RVER, XER or BAYER, but the inclusion of those answers was a small price to pay.