Saturday, February 15, 2020

Saturday, February 15, 2020, Randolph Ross

0:12:11 (FWOE)

Today's puzzle had many ALEVEL Saturday entries:

INHERED (Was naturally a part of something) - Never heard in the wild.
TORTOLA (Largest of the British Virgin Islands) - Probably known to many, but not to me.
HASHEESH (Pipe filler) - When I typed it into the search bar I got back "Did you mean "Hashish?"
LEVERETS (Young hares) - I know this (and "Deseret") only from crosswords.
HEL (Daughter of Loki, in Norse myth)
And I suppose some might also include EOCENE (Epoch when modern mammals arose) and ESTERS (Fruity and fragrant compounds).


But in spite of all that esoterica, the puzzle played fairly easy for me thanks to gimmies like CHRISSIE Hynde, Bob KEESHAN (I was a Captain Kangaroo watcher), and the very recently referenced SELENE (Sister of Helios).

A careless mistake took me over two minutes to find today, because SaTSHIVA and aNHERED looked ok if you didn't re-read the clues. :( But one should always read the clues carefully, of course, and then one would get the tense correct and enter SITSHIVA (Mourn, in a way). I have got to be more careful!

There were some strong non-QMCs in "It had a major part in the Bible" (REDSEA), "Things picked up on beaches" (TANLINES), "Gets the lead out" (ERASES). But the QMCs were also good - "Takes stock?" (LADLES), "Call on a hot line?" (PHONESEX), and "Subjects of baseless charges?" (AWOLS), "Knight mare?" (STEED), and "What are depicted in some blue prints? (THESMURFS). After PHONESEX, I was thinking along different lines for that last one.

I groaned a bit at CHANTER, and VEINY is gross, but overall it was a pretty clean puzzle.

- Horace


  1. 45:34 (FWTE)
    Boy, that SE corner was tough for me, eating up around twenty minutes of my time, but it eventually (mostly) fell. I needed a few crosses to remember Captain Kangaroo's real name; I knew the clue was referencing him from the start. HASHEESH looks like it probably has a traditional, local Arab spelling like one might see in an old novel. VEINY is definitely gross. I tried shINY off of the "I" (CHRISSIE is definitely a gimme). ALEPPO was nice trivia, SALOON was nicely-clued (but led me to enter the incorrect SALmon as its cross). Lots of nice, tricky clues in here, just like a Saturday should be. I love the look of ASSESSES in the grid. I never heard of PELAGE or HEL, which led to my two errors: I tried alOISTE, to no avail at 51A.