Saturday, September 21, 2019

Saturday, September 21, 2019, Joon Pahk and Erik Agard

0:14:38 (F.W.T.E.)

When I saw the bylines, I was excited and, I admit it, a little afraid. Mr. Agard won the A.C.P.T. a couple years ago, and Mr. Pahk has been on the podium more often than not over the past several years. And the result was pretty much just what I expected - a good, tricky puzzle.

Still a little odd to see him without that thing over his eyes.
Lots of playful clues today, like "Place where you pay for what you break" (REPAIRSHOP) and "Reacts to losing one's hearing, perhaps" (APPEALS) - two excellent non-question-mark clues. "Group that's on the take?" is cute, but maybe a little too far to go for CAMERACREW.

And what do we think of "Baby buggy?" (LARVAL)? I would have preferred to see just "larva," as it seems to me like the clue calls for a noun (baby) instead of an adjective, but perhaps I'm just not reading it right. And I also don't really understand "Spot starter?" for TEAKETTLE. Is it because the whistle of the kettle might startle Spot, the dog? Or because if you want a "spot of tea" you need to put the kettle on? ... I'm not quite sure...

I liked the "quote" clues, including "Wow," (IMPRESSIVE), "That was uncalled for" (LOWBLOW), "You got that right!" (SUREDO). And "Poking vigorously" (JABBING), happily reminds me of Colum's younger daughter, who, at the age of about five, went around poking people and called it "Festival poking," or something like that. But when I tried to join in and give her a jab, she quickly announced "Festival poking is over!"

My error came at RIPER (Tenderer, maybe), where I had guessed "RarER" and never looked back. TRINIS (Some Caribbean islanders) didn't mean anything to me, although TRaNIS probably should have thrown up some red flags, and I guess I just didn't look closely at STErINS. ERGS!

Overall, though, this was a fun one.

- Horace


  1. 20:48 F.W.T.E
    Yeah, exactly the same error(s) here. I knew something looked wrong there and finished the puzzle anyway. I immediately went there to figure it out. In hindsight, it all makes sense. TRINIS is for Trinidadians, I'm fairly sure, although I'd never heard it. STEPINS... well, OK, never heard of those either. And RIPER for RarER certainly makes sense. Alas.

    Boy, I had this puzzle about half done in, I wanna say, about 5 minutes. Bunch of help from some long answers going right in with minimal crosses (IMPRESSIVE, TRIBECA, DISTRICT, CAMERACREW, SOCIALIST, LOWBLOW, CARUSO, etc.). Needed just one cross to get KIEFER not Donald. And KUNTAKINTE needed zero crosses, as Roots was *THE* biggest national TV event in my prime TV viewing years (Horace, did you watch that when it first aired? And were you old enough for it to grab your attention or just a year or two too young?)

    Anyway, yeah, spot of tea. No question.

  2. 10:09
    I too had RarER for RIPER, but fortunately thought STErINS was too weird, so I took out the AR before finishing the corner and figured it out before the final square. EUREKA! I'm with you, Horace, on Baby buggy? (LARVAL). I'm assuming the constructors wanted the word "buggy" to be an adjective, but it just doesn't quite work for me. But how about 46A: James who is more than a little forward? (LEBRON). That's great! So much fun today. I really enjoyed this puzzle.

  3. DNF (59:03)
    The SW completely did me in. The remainder wasn't too bad, although the NW took me a little while to get squared away. I did not make the same mistakes as Horace and Icarus, though. I tried SimpsonS where SOPRANOS goes until I figured out one of the middle crosses, but not much else would come, and I was approaching the hour mark with little hope.