Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Tuesday, September 1, 2020, David Steinberg


It feels like it's been some time since Mr. Steinberg's name has appeared in the byline, and after checking xwordinfo.com, I find I am correct - it's been since January! That's a long time for a constructor as prolific as he. Although perhaps I shouldn't be making assumptions. As prolific as they.

Which brings us to today's puzzle, as it turns out! Mr. Steinberg has provided a quick primer on PERSONAL / PRONOUNS, providing the three most commonly used pairs hidden in other phrases. I particularly liked BUTHEY and THEMET for hiding the plural (or alternate singular) pair. But did you notice the very large slash sign going between each pair? I didn't, until I read another review elsewhere. 

I have also come across further alternatives, including the gender opaque xe/xyr (pronounced "zee/zir"). Others include the number and gender non-specific co/co; a set created in 1975 which uses ey/em. There's a whole rabbithole here (as we at HAFDTNYTCPFCA discover on a regular basis when reviewing).

But for me, the bigger BROUHAHA is the recent resurgence of the humble HOHO. A classic dessert snack just chockfull of all the preservatives a growing body could want, it's been making its presence... or ey's been making eir presence felt on a regular basis in the puzzle. But did you prefer a yodel or a Swiss cake roll in your youth? Enquiring minds want to know.

On another side note, Mr. Steinberg has served us a bevy of beverages, with the two alcoholic MAITAI and MIMOSAS, and the two pick-me-ups CHAILATTE and LEMONTEA. To go along with them (because food should always accompany our alcoholic choices), the HAUTE cuisine includes a SALAD, an APPLE, TRITIP beef, and a TORTE. Accompanied by HAMM.

Too soon?

Finally, I am not entirely convinced by FBPOSTS. Google agrees with me, in that typing in that search term leads to "facebook posts." These reviews are henceforth B posts.

- Colum


  1. I like the concept, and the large slash is very elegantly done, but I got hung up on the BUTHEY section (which I do not buy as actual vernacular). I did not know ROBB, and I had guessed THee instead of THOU, so that was a right mess. Further, I've never heard of a TRITIP, but since I didn't even know it was in the puzzle until reading this review, I guess I won't complain so much about that one.

    For the record, I'm in favor of xe/xyr, which I pronounce "zay/zair" (like they their, but with the z sound).

    And yes, I'm glad you mentioned the HOHO renaissance. Very exciting.

  2. Don't know if I was equally enamored of all the themers, but hey, these things happen.

    TRITIP is well known to anyone who might want to eat beef on a budget. Of course now that I've said that the readership of this blog will no doubt go out and bud the price right up to kingdom come.

  3. 7:02
    I enjoyed a Ring Ding in my youth, but doubt that I would now, if they're even still available. I liked the inclusion of the full ARTHURASHE; it's always nice to see the full version of crosswordese. I didn't know of TRITIP, BUTHEY, I'll accept it. I remember enjoying a soy CHAILATTE from the Starbucks back in the day. I have no preference, however, for the PERSONAL/PRONOUN choice of the they/them crowd; whatever people ultimately decide or feel comfortable with is fine with me.