Saturday, August 4, 2018

Saturday, August 4, 2018, Sam Trabucco


Sitting on the porch at the beach cottage, after having IDLED at the north west corner for too long, I gave up and had Horace tell me the answer to 1D: "Makeshift technique for female modesty" (HANDBRA). I hadn't heard of that cover up option before. Or RYEBEERS, or the AARE river, or that a feature of a moat is a DAM. So, there you go.

I didn't figure out the trick of the puzzle until after it was complete, in spite of my natural penchant for the literal. If I had associated the "literally" in 50A with the "8-Down" part instead of with the "one just taking up space" part, the light might have gone on a little sooner, and I would have entered EIGHT down at the end of the letters DEADW across. Combined, the two parts together formed DEADWE/IGHT. Another one of the trick answers, 18A (With 10-Down, literally, now and then), had the letters TEN down at the end of EVERYSOOFT/EN. I think I was additionally thrown off the track of the trick because my app highlighted the related clue (at 8D, for example), but the actual answer in that space had nothing to do with it.

I liked AHEM, FROTHS, FRIENDZONE, MODELUN, and I have a fondness for a ROLODEX - who doesn't like an ordered set of data?

Although I don't normally like to cave on a puzzle, today it was good for my bien ETRE. :)



  1. 11:44
    Ha this puzzle was awesome. I agree, the highlighting of the so-called cross referenced clue confused me, but it was necessary to hide the actual cleverness. I finally figured it out with BADTOTHEBO/NE. Funnily enough, HANDBRA was my first entry, with no crosses.

  2. Oh, that's quite funny about the app highlighting the (apparently, but not in this case, related answer). My app doesn't do that, so I only heard about it here.

    The cross references seemed fishy because the clues being referred to were real clues rather than "-" or "see xxx across". But that was just general suspicion unti I had most/all of EIGHT and was starting to see things like hEADW[ay] and after a bit of time trying things there I had DEADW/EIGHT and the theme.

    Nice to see a fun theme on a Saturday rather than one of those excessively (at least for me) difficult, dry, themeless (with all due respect to the people who like a difficult themeless without tricks).

    Very fast for a Saturday: 25:07.