Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Tuesday, February 4, 2020, Queena Mewers and Alex Eaton-Salners


I am always delighted when I don't see the connecting theme of disparate long answers until the revealer shows up. And for this musicophile, I do enjoy the surprising connection, MUSIC. The disparate instruments hidden in the answers would essentially never be in a single ensemble. It's almost a baroque group such as you might find in a Brandenburg concerto, but for the triangle. And all of them could be in a modern orchestra, with the exception of recorders. It would certainly make for an interesting OCTET.

I was a little offput to find SEXORGANS in my grid. "How vivid," as Auntie Mame would say. I'm not a prude by any means, and I often enjoy things that are a little blue or risque, but this one is perhaps too salient, as it were.

Otherwise, there is a little much of the sort of thing like IOTAS, OOHS, INRI. But I found the overall solving experience enjoyable.

Note the excellent OKILLBITE (which now looks oddly like an exhortation to murder someone). I also really love the word CHICANERY. Fortunately, it seems that there was no such activity underlying the inability of Iowa to report out the results of yesterday's caucuses. By the way, count me in as one voter who is unclear why Iowa holds such an important role in our democracy. For a year now, the Democratic candidates have been living in that state and New Hampshire. And there is simply no way that the electoral votes from those two states will have any impact on the outcome of November's election.

SOMANY and SCADS are the ways in which I am not a CUBER. My nephew, however, is one. He can solve a Rubik's cube in 30 seconds from a random state. And he's ten.

But I use my IDLE time to much better purpose. For example, in case you hadn't heard, I write a blog on the NYT crossword...

- Colum


  1. An enjoyable puzzle that I was able to finish rather quickly; but, don't ask what my time was, as I don't time myself. Now that I am retired, I don't feel the need to rush through things. The theme was good. When I attended university I had a friend who was a music major. She played the violin; I can play the kazoo...sort of. The only minus was "sexorgans". I thought the NYT crossword had a policy concerning such topics. Still, a good puzzle.

    Notre Dame '87

    1. Retired, and a year younger than I? Or maybe you pursued your degree later - taking a bit of a break after high school? Either way, congratulations.

      Beloit, '88

  2. 6:20
    SEXORGANS was surprising, but not particularly blue; certainly not as blue as some NYT crossword answers, such as, for example, LOVETRIANGLES. Nice how none of the theme answers needed to be SHOEHORNS into the grid. The only old-ish theme answer was TAPERECORDERS, and that in both senses (the instrument and the device). CHAMPAGNEFLUTES are used here at the YBH once per year: the celebration of the Summer Solstice! This year it's at a good time (5:44 PM on Saturday, June 20), so it'll be a big one. A fun solve, as noted by Ian, taking me slightly longer than yesterday's, just as it should.

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