Friday, January 10, 2020

Friday, January 10, 2020, Brendan Emmett Quigley


I didn't solve this one very quickly, but no matter, I was very happy not to have to TAKETHEL. And speaking of Take the L, that southeast corner is where it almost happened. I was kerflummoxed by SEEPIER - I had lEakIER for too long, thanks in part to the initial L being supported by my incorrect guess of UCla on the down (Golden State school inits). I should have gotten UCSB sooner - having recently donated to the school, I've been getting a lot of mail from them of late - but still I didn't think of it. AFROFUTURISM didn't leap to mind. And BLESSME if it didn't take me forever to come up with that equivalent for "Goodness gracious!" I tried mercyME and woEiSME and I don't know what all. The other answer in that area that threw me for a loop was STRIPS for "Funnies." Of course, I totally get it once I got it, but I don't know that I've ever heard them called that. Anyhoo, that corner was a real humdinger, but in the end, I was EPT. Ept!

In contrast, the southwest to northeast diagonal went pretty smoothly. I wasn't fooled for a minute by "A home in the major leagues?" (OAKLAND). I also enjoyed "One who goes through the motions?" (LAWYER). I liked SOPSUP and then SEETHE for "Boil." APPLESHORTCAKE was a bit of a surprise. I've never had that kind of shortcake. Funny that APPLET shares a P with it.


"P's and q's typer" (PINKIE) and CENSE for "Perfume" were tough for me, but good. However, I was, and still am, confused by SIL for "Meaning of an embossed 'S,' maybe." What's that about? On the other hand, I loved the next clue "Smack on the street, e.g., for short" (PDA) - ha!

"High winds" for OBOES was excellent. I also liked BITMOJI, OMNIBUS, SPYRING, SIPHONOFF, and LETHARGY.

All in all, a fun PLAYAREA for this solver.



  1. 16:55
    I thought there was some good stuff in this puzzle, but I really hated SEEPIER. Not only is it an odd comparative, but it's also based on an adjective that no one has said ever. Boy, that sieve is seepy, isn't it? My spell check doesn't even accept it as a word. So that's a no go. SIL, on the other hand, is from RSVP.

  2. 20:46
    This went along pretty smoothly. Like Frannie, though, I'd entered lEakIER and UCla (although I thought the latter was too obvie for a Friday), but they were corrected in relative short order by crosses. PUREE was really the only answer for 51D, and I'm very familiar with STRIPS, being a regular, daily reader of them, so that only took a cross or two. IDAGREE with Colum about SEEPIER, and with Frannie on AFROFUTURISM, a term with which I am unfamiliar. I don't know if I like that APPLE_ crosses APPLE_____, right in the middle of the word, or that both OAKLAND and OAK are in the puzzle. And I don't know this CHRISTO fellow, but all-in-all there was a good deal of nice cluing in the puzzle, especially for crosswordese like our old friends STLEO, ALF, OBOES and OAHU (even though I prefer a nicer reference for the latter). Is this the first appearance of JUULPODS?

  3. 23:55
    I did not like the inclusion of JUULPODS in the grid. "Cigarette" and "Marlboro," for example, haven't been in one for many years. Call me a prude, but I don't like it.

    You can count me among those who didn't like SEEPIER, and Colum - I tried to tell Frannie that it stood for "s'il," but she chose not to believe it. I get it, but I don't love it.