Friday, June 29, 2018

Friday, June 29, 2018, David Steinberg


I finished all but the southwest in under 20 minutes, but was foiled by my lack of knowledge of the guinea pig's family tree (CAPYBERA), Hannibal's foe in the Second Punic War (SCIPIO), the Christian name of CRISTIANORONALDO, some over thinking about the structure of the national legislature of Israel (it is Friday after all) (ISRAELIS), and no memory of Paul RYAN as Romney's 2012 running mate, even after I cried uncle and Horace gave me his name. AARGH. Plus, I was pressed for time. We had another engagement this evening and got home at 10PM EDT with the review as yet unwritten. TRES MAL.

The two 3-stacks of sixteens make a powerful statement in the grid. I thought the bottom three lacked afflatus - Sr. Ronaldo excepted, of course. My favorite of the six was IMAGINARYFRIENDS. My least favorite, BADABINGBADABOOM. For some reason, I've never liked that saying, but I did think it was funny that it was clued simply as "ViolĂ ".

Other fun fill includes NAENAE, SLURPEES, AMULET, and DISTRO. I thought Memorable line? was a clever clue for SCAR. I also liked seeing GRETNA Green in the puzzle. It brings to mind "Pride and Prejudice," which is never a bad thing. I didn't remember seeing it in a puzzle before so I looked it up on the RICH XWord Info site that we all LEANON in cases like this and found that it was last seen in 2008. It seems to have been more popular in the pre-Shortz era.


With any luck, I hope I'll be more ONTARGET tomorrow.



  1. Fortunately, BADABINGBADABOOM was indeed clued as VoilĂ  and not ViolĂ  (although intentionally mispronouncing this word as if it were the musical instrument was a big pastime of my childhood).

    My usual hobby for two triple stacks would be to complain about the quality of all the answers crossing them. And I guess I wasn't too thrilled with INFO and MAC and some of the others, but these are more dull than really desperate, so I guess the authors pulled it off.

    30:38 for me (probably without too much looking things up, although I wouldn't necessarily hesitate on Friday the way I would early in the week).

  2. 26:56
    Luckily for me, CAPYBARA was in the back of my mind somewhere, as was RYAN, which I, also, did not remember that well at first. I enjoyed the triple stacks, not knowing only CRISTIANORONALDO of the six. IMAGINARYFRIENDS is excellent. Of course, we know SOLTI quite well. I tried drawLOTS instead of CASTLOTS at first, but that was quickly corrected. HECTOR was nicely-clued (52D Badger). HECTOR always brings to mind fond memories of "The Iliad," though, but a clue using that would have been too much of a giveaway for a Friday.