Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Wednesday, March 27, 2019, Michael Hawkins


Wednesday (WEDIDIT!) is always a resting place of the odd themes, the out there ideas, the concepts that don't work for tricky Thursdays (THURMAN!) or the advanced beginner Tuesdays (TUESBELLE! - okay, okay, I'm done. Still just loving yesterday's theme...).

So today, we have the unusual revealer at 49A: Misconceptions about money ... or a loose hint to 20-, 24- and 44-Across? (FINANCIALMYTHS). I'd never come across this concept before, but it Googles well. The puzzle then takes this idea and comes up with three phrases with mythical or legendary entities worked in. The best of these is UNICORNSTARTUP - an entrepreneurial endeavor that is markedly successful, so-called because of the rarity.

But I'd argue that the whole puzzle falls apart with 44A: One profiting through litigation, not innovation (PATENTTROLL). Because if the Troll is so obvious to be patently visible, how can you call it a myth?

Oh... not that patent. I get it now. IKID!

Other than that, the puzzle suffers from a lack of exciting fill. SEARCHER is kind of meh, while ATTYGEN should probably not even ever show up in a puzzle, in my opinion. Of course, your opinion may differ, but it's my blog, and my HOTTAKES, so there.

Meanwhile, 57A: Discuss one's toilet habits, for example (OVERSHARE) made me uncomfortable.

Anyhoo, I made myself laugh by taking forever to get 10A: Alternative to Venmo (CASH). I was so convinced there was some other app out there to transfer money from person to person that I didn't even consider this other thing Mr. Hawkins was referring to. Paper? That people accept as a way to transfer wealth? How unusual.

- Colum


  1. I agree with Colum - this would have been so much better for me if I knew those terms. I was totally unfamiliar with any of the three myths! Now that I google them, they are out there and "in the language" - just not my language. Ah me! Thanks for the great picture of Othello, BTW.
    I needed 18:49 to FWOE - for the life of me, NIGH just wouldn't fall!

  2. 8:12
    This one flew right along. I was familiar with all of the financial terms having gone to school for that sort of thing. I don't take a PATTYMELT, but I take a reasonable facsimile thereof, but I do, on occasion eat an OREO, which ABUTs the former. Frannie must like seeing AMY in the grid, for some reason. Nice that both BARD and IAGO are in the grid.

  3. Oh but there is an app called Cash. . Of course it is named after the pre-digital way of transferring wealth, so the answer works either way.

    Evidently the puzzle is more in my wheelhouse than some because UNICORNSTARTUP and PATENTTROLL are everyday words in my world, and I had heard of ZOMBIEBANK although that looks like a bit of an obscure term and is especially found in contexts like the 2008 financial crisis.

  4. 9:49 (paper)

    I think maybe I've heard of ZOMBIEBANKS, but really, none of these phrases were in my everyday speech or knowledge.

    Funny that there's an app called CASH. I didn't know about that either.