Friday, April 13, 2018

Friday, April 13, 2018, Joe Krozel


The grid today looks a lot like a fan, with tight transitions from blade to blade that are sure to rankle my co-blogger, Colum, who is not a fan of such limited connections. I didn't have too much trouble going from quadrant to quadrant, as it turned out, but I did end up groaning a bit more than I like to while solving. In the top half, for example, we have UNTAPE (2D: Begin to remove, as a diaper) - first of all, gross. Second of all, I wanted "unpin." When did we start taping diapers? And lastly, gross. And that's just the first one! We also have RESOLE (6D: Do some cobbling work on), UNNAILED (10D: Loose, in a way, as planks or siding), QUINNS (18A: Actors Aidan and Anthony), DURANGOS (14D: Dodge S.U.V.s) and PENTA. I'm ambivalent about CUSSER (1A: One talking a blue streak?) and UNMIXED (13A: Segregated) - the words themselves are not all that great, but the clues elevate them.


On the up side of the up side, I enjoyed SMOKES (3D: Defeats decisively, in slang), EXEMPT (5D: Not obligated), DRUMROLL (8D: Intro to a big announcement) and ACQUIRED TASTES (7D: & 12D: blue cheese and black coffee, typically). And GAZELLES (25A: Agile African animals) is elegant along the bottom, there.

So, kind of a split decision in the North. In the South it's a little better, with DIVEBAR (49A: Seedy establishment), HARANGUE (27D: Scold at length), DENATURE (47A: Render undrinkable, as alcohol), ANGOLA (46A: OPEC nation since 2007) (Who knew?!), BOREAL (34A: Northern), and SPARSE (42A: Not abundant) (had ScARcE for a while...), which are balanced out by ENDERS (41D: 1985 novel "____ Game"), BSTARS (34D: Rigel and Spica), and WEASELED (29D: Acted evasively).

I don't know... I guess I come out liking it more than I dislike it, but in the beginning I was doing a lot of sighing. Onward!

- Horace


  1. 18:44
    Until I saw Horace's time, I thought I'd really flown through this one! I tried CUrSER at 1A for a while, but it didn't last too long, and I, too, initially entered ScARcE where SPARSE belongs, but really, nothing was too Friday-difficult. UMLAUT is excellent, to add to Horace's "good" list, as are CRANIA and GREAVE (the latter always fondly bringing to mind "The Iliad"). I have to part ways with Horace on BSTARS since, as I've said before, even for those of us that pay attention to such things, no one is memorizing star classifications. Ask me to point out Rigel and Spica and I will, but ask me in two days what their classification is and forget it.

    1. I was not clear - I, too, dislike BSTARS. I grouped it with WEASELED, though, which might be where the confusion comes in, since some seem to like WEASELED as an entry. And sure - it's not in the same category as ENDERS and BSTARS, but I still don't love it.

  2. 11:08
    Solved with Cece, which was fun. I agree with most of the likes and dislikes above. A lot of sighs and groans around our part as well. One that I will disagree with you about is ENDERS - I don't like a partial, but this particular novel is a huge favorite in our household, myself and both children.