Saturday, October 12, 2019

Saturday, October 12, 2019, Andrew J. Ries

Another stair-step stack in the middle today, and I like all four of them:
NOPRESSURE (Request softener)
SECRETCODE (A spy might send a message in one) (too easy)
DEGREEMILL (Unaccredited university, say) (Like Dr. Nick’s “Upstairs University” in The Simpsons)
SIERRACLUB (Green giant)
I picked up one of these on our recent trip!

The NW and SE corners, too, are filled with strong staggered Down answers like BONANZA (Treasure trove), NATTER (Flap one’s gums), and the full TORIAMOS (Singer with the 1992 double-platinum album “Little Earthquakes”). And a big shout out to Boston’s EMERSON!
The North was the toughest for me and Frannie today. I tried “egoPROJECT” and she tried “diyPROJECT” for PETPROJECT (Usually nonremunerative undertaking). Frankly, I like hers best of all. (Having done it myself for many years, I first thought of “Self-employment.”) ILENE (“The L Word” creator Chaiken) was an unknown, and WIDTHS (Halves of some measurements) took every cross, and then a few minutes to realize that they meant half of a LxW measurement. Sheesh!
Other missteps for me included erOs for AMOR, ICEaxeS for ICESAWS, eArn for RAZE (Bring down), and COMicS for COMMAS (Characters in “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World). Again they get me with a self-referential clue!
Favorite clue: Kitchen drawers? (AROMAS). Speaking of which, Frannie has just made a batch of Tollhouse cookies… gotta go!

- Horace


  1. Had a great time with this puzzle...almost fell on the floor when the 28 Across answer fell in!

  2. 26:35
    ILENE is well-known to me, having seen the full series referred to in the clue. Also, nice to see the full ADAMWEST, and any reference to JLAW is welcome at any time. I tried FANlIt where FANFIC belongs, but it didn't quite work for the crosses. ARARAT could have been clued with a "Hitchhiker's Guide" reference, but some wouldn't have liked that too much.