Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Wednesday, March 18, 2020, Ricky Cruz


Welcome to day three of quarantine, as my two daughters are fond of saying. They've got a jigsaw puzzle out and are making excellent progress on it. In other positive news, the young doctor in my department who came down with a cough and a fever last night tested negative. So at least we have that.

We also have the crossword puzzle, which today is not full of it at all, but rather full of FUL. Each of the theme answers takes a standard two word phrase, appends -FUL to the end of the first word to make a new word, and reclues wackily. I really loved 60A: Terrible attempts at peeling corn? (AWFULSHUCKS). That's worth a good chuckle.

I liked CAREFULBEARS and PLAYFULDEAD just fine, but I'm not sure about 45A: Exam in an interior design class? (TASTEFULTEST). What the clue is describing is a test about taste, while the answer seems to be describing a decorously put together examination. Too much? NAH. That's the point of a blog: to enjoy all the good and simply note the parts that don't quite make the same impact.
Just a NIP
Meanwhile, NEWSFLASH! I love a lot of the fill here. 8D: Introductory scene in some rom-coms (MEETCUTE) is excellent. We watched La Bohème on the Met Opera On Demand last night, and the first act is all about the meet-cute. In fact, there's very little tragedy in the opera until the last fifteen minutes or so. Could it be called a rom-com-not-so-com?

Cece was helping me out today and got both FONSI (thank God, because that one would have required all the crosses for me) and DENMARK.

- Colum


  1. 10:34
    No wonder your time was so low. You had help. I, on the other hand, had to get all crosses for FONSI and DORA Maar. DENMARK took only a couple of crosses, then an educated guess. I tried EXCELin at first down in the SE, but ANKLE and TASER fixed that up. I don't love ATAT, but the rest is fine, as was the theme. Nice clue for DANTE, if a little obvious with the question mark.

  2. 9:43 (FWTE)
    Count me among those who did not know FONSI, but DENMARK went in off the clue - well, after Switzerland didn't fit.

    My mistake in FONSI was the O, and I blame it all on my miss-spelling of GOLuM. Stupid Lord of the Rings!

  3. I too needed the cross for F?NSI, and even that took a guess of TOE over TeE or TiE (which are both words, one golf related even but hard to fit with this clue).

    The theme was nice and when I was up to ?????SHUCKS I figured that one was going to be good. But when I had PLAYFULDEAD I was thinking of some kind of pun on "Grateful Dead" and it took a while to find a better theory.

    Totally agreed that there's a lot of nice fill and long downs. Hard to pick just one or two, but I'll highlight PANSEARED and a nice clue for DANTE.