Sunday, February 10, 2019

Sunday, February 10, 2019, Lee Taylor


Rubber baby buggy bumper.

The sixth sheik's sixth sheep's sick.

Pad kid poured curd pulled cod. Huh? Apparently that's the world's hardest tongue twister ever. But I was always fond of UNIQUENEWYORK - that one usually gets me by the second repetition. For your information, the specific bridge in question is the George Washington Bridge, with eight lanes on the top section and six on the bottom, for a total of fourteen.

It's a fun theme, with several twisters I'd never encountered before. I don't find SHOESECTION to be too challenging, but REALRAREWHALE's a lulu. Add in the instruction "revealer" of FIVETIMESFAST, and it's a good set of theme answers. The concept of the tongue twister also appeals to me: I love thinking about situations where the brain is fooled or confused by unusual situations. Of course, there's nothing particularly special about English for these things:

Cinq chiens chassent six chats. (Five dogs chase six cats)

Tre tigri contro tre tigri. (Three tigers against three tigers)

Bierbrauer Bauer braut braunes Bier. (Beer brewing farmers brew brown beer - it works in English maybe as well!)

Or maybe you think all German is a tongue twister...

Meanwhile, I OWNSUP that I did not think this puzzle the finest Sunday offering. There's too much of things like plural TAROS, EVENER, partial ANACT, partial BES, very weird and also plural ACERS. And a distinct lack of challenging or funny clues takes the DULCE out of the solve. But that's the Sunday puzzle for you, two times out of five, he said, pulling a statistic completely out of no data.

Here's one in Japanese: shinshun shanson sho. (Christmas song show)

- Colum


  1. Wait, "shanson" is "song" in Japanese? Seems to have come directly from the French, n'est-ce pas? And speaking of that, our French family used to offer up these vieux marrons: "turlututu chapeau pointu" ([nonsense sound] pointed hat) and "Les chausettes de l'archiduchesse, sont-elles sèches? Archi-sèches!" (The socks of the archduchess, are they dry? Very dry!) My favorite one in English is the classic "She sells sea shells by the seashore." Impossible.

    Why oh why is there a statue of a sled dog in Central Park?! Thanks for the photo, but I call foul on the cross of BALTO and ILENE. I tried an R there... grrr.

  2. The "shanson" is definitely borrowed for the purpose of this television show name. The actual word in Japanese is "uta".

  3. Took ever so long for me to get any kind of foothold on this puzzle - I had to come back to it 3 different times over 2 days. Luckily, I'm snowed in here and had lots and lots of spare time.
    Thanks for that picture of BALTO - he was a hero, taking serum against diphtheria up to Alaska where it was desperately needed. Commissioned in 1925 and even the real dog came to the dedication.
    All that, I still had that same error, Horace!

  4. 33:09
    Typical Sunday time for me. I'm familiar with BALTO, luckily, which saved me on the ILENE cross, where IrENE makes just as much sense to me. BTW, I watched all of "The L Word" with Sue quite a while back. It was fine, but not nearly as good a show as its cousin, "Queer As Folk." I never really enjoyed tongue twisters, but it's a nice theme idea.