Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Tuesday, June 16, 2020, Alex Eaton-Salners


Wow, this was an odd Tuesday, wasn't it? Four symmetrical blocks of units of measurement - inch, foot, yard, mile - that increase in order from smallest to largest. They are what the crossword folks like to call "triple-checked." That is, each one of the four letters (and it's kind of cool that each one is four letters long, isn't it?) is included in three different words. And when that happens, things like NIIHAU and ABSEIL (Descent by rope, as in mountaineering) often happen too. I'll admit, when I entered each of those two I feared I was making a FALSESTEP, but in the end they were right!


But they're not bad, really, because they're actual things, and that's fine. In addition, we've got the exotic IGUANODON (Bulky herbivorous dinosaur), the always amusing BEDHEAD (State of one's hair after a night's sleep), and the stately CONCHS (Seashells used as trumpets). And I liked all the answers including single letters - GOTANF (Flunked), ONEG (Universal donor's blood type, informally), HIGHCS (Notes reachable by sopranos), and TGEL (Neutrogena dandruff shampoo). OK, that last one isn't so great, because it's a product that I've never heard of, but it fits my theme. Speaking of products, one that I can get behind is RONCO (Company behind the Veg-O-Matic). I've never bought anything from them, but the name always brings a smile.

The next step up, I suppose, is answers featuring two-letter pieces, like HOLDEM, MRHYDE, CDROM, and the slightly duplicative GOFOR and ILLGO, and FEDON and LAYON. (See also BRINGITON, ONION, and the aforementioned IGUANODON.) :)

Things got a little name-heavy in the NE (TOBY, LIN, ANG, URIEL, YSL, TESLA, ORKIN), which can be a little DRAB, but in other places we have the fun word (although not always fun for everyone) EDICT (Decree), the descriptive DEFANG (Render harmless), and the tasty DESSERT (Part of the meal that the British call "afters").

Overall, I think this is a pretty impressive Tuesday. It gets a SMILEY from me.

- Horace


  1. 4:02
    I too was uncertain about ABSEIL, but NIIHAU I recalled. In keeping with the revealer, GRAYAREAS, note that each unit is a square - thus [SQUARE]FOOT, etc.

  2. "square yard" is perhaps the most obscure af the bunch but the other three are quite common.

    Favorite answer? IGUANODON. Because dinosaurs. Fossil dinosaurs, even.

  3. 7:19
    It's also nice because all four areas are English units. NIIHAU went right in for me because while Sue and I were on Kauai, we looked into how to visit there. It turns out that a special permit is required that, at the time about ten years ago, went for around $3,000 pp, and it was mostly for a "hunt." One would board a helicopter, which would land in a game area. People would then disembark from the helicopter, shoot a trusting deer that would often come right up to the helicopter area, and then re-board the craft and head back to Kauai. No tours or staying over. The deer would be collected by another crew and brought over. It didn't seem worth it, so we didn't visit. Anyway, I never heard of ABSEIL, but luckily the crosses were pretty easy. We haven't been out to eat since February, I believe, but when we are I almost always GOFOR DESSERT.