Monday, February 17, 2020

Monday, February 17, 2020, Sally Hoelscher

8:00, FWOE

A FWOE is not the best way to start off one's week of reviews. I can claim jet lag as a mitigating factor, NON? Horace and I are just back from an EPIC trip seeing the ALPS, doing ALOTOF ESSEN, and experiencing other fun things.

I completed the grid in fairly short order. My problem, which took me forever to locate, was that I got *too* affectionate with the U.S. flag and called it OLe GLORY. For some reason, MOeS, as an informal name for Internet forum overseers, didn't throw up any red flags. I needed a PEEKOE the solution to CLEAR up such AMESS.

Today's theme clues contained titles of memoirs by First Ladies and their publication dates. The solver's job was to match the correct First Lady with the corresponding book title. The only title I knew right off the bat was "Becoming" (MICHELLEOBAMA), but given the theme, and the years in the rest of the clues, the others weren't too difficult.

I was entertained by the clue/answer twist "Ire" for ANGER; it's almost always t'other way 'round. I  thought "Suitable for the country" (RUSTIC) was a good, slightly ambiguous clue for a Monday. I enjoyed PLUTO and NUBBLY, but GLUEY less so. I also noted real eggcess in the southeast where OVOID crossed OVUM.


I thought AME (Inits. in some church names) was a little lame, but otherwise there's really not a LOTTO to complain about. Except, of course, my self-created TANGOS. Thank OVENS I have a few more days this week to try to redeem myself.



  1. AME -- African Methodist Episcopal -- are familiar initials in my neck o' the woods (Roxbury). Congratulations, Ms. Hoelscher on your debut!

  2. Just for laughs, I timed myself today. It took me 12:39 to completely finish the crossword. I figured out the theme rather quickly, even though I have never heard of the books. I stumbled on OVOID (I wrote in OVATE.) CLANKS also slowed me down; I wrote in CLANGS. PLUTO is still one of the planets in my book. NUBBLY? Huh? EMOJI? Huh? SHOGUN? Huh? "Rueben sandwich" made me hungry, but not LOX (even with Lent approaching). Favorite: PUP. I like dogs.


  3. Although I got AME from crosses, it doesn't strike me as unduly obscure knowledge. Although I suppose it depends a lot on things like where you've lived, etc.

    My biggest "huh?" was ISS for "Mag. number". I was sort of thinking in terms of "magnetic" or who knows what, but the crosses pointed to ISS. I went to other parts of the grid and got the "succcessful solve" indicator, so then I went back and with a more leisurly look at it figured it must be "magazine" and "issue".

    Oh, and yes I had OVate before OVOID and CLANgS before CLANKS, so you aren't alone, Ian.

  4. 4:52
    Amusing review, Frannie. This puzzle threw up no big roadblocks for me. I've heard of all of the referenced books, but read zero of them. I never heard of AME, growing up and living in a more RUSTIC setting an hour to the west of the Boston area all of my life, but thanks to Ms. Clark for the info on it; seems like an interesting amalgam, although I'll never know firsthand in all likelihood since I don't generally take a church. PLUTO is rightly not a major planet, and I've been an advocate for that for most of my life. I support, however, that the IAU waited until Mr. Tombaugh died to demote it and to come up with a good definition of a major planet. Nice, but slightly disturbing, photo of an EJECTOR seat in action. I wouldn't wish to try one out firsthand.

  5. A.M.E. Zion was one of our rivals in the church basketball league when I was young!