Thursday, October 22, 2020

Thursday, October 22, 2020, Sid Sivakumar


This was a fun one. I immediately thought of PERUSE for "Look over," SUV for "Many a 4WD ride," and, of course, NED for "Name on both 'The Simpsons' and 'South Park,'" but they just wouldn't fit, and I had the distinct impression that I was missing something.

Eventually, more "too short" guesses and the revealer, RUNSONEMPTY, allowed me to finally bridge the gap. 

Speaking of lacunae, GURUNANAK (Founder of the Sikh religion) is a name I have never before seen or heard. I didn't even realize that it, too, should have its own gap - that the founder was Guru Nanak, who lived in Pakistan between the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. From the Wikipedia, the fundamental beliefs of Sikhism" include the "unity of all humankind, engaging in selfless service, striving for social justice for the benefit and prosperity of all, and honest conduct and livelihood while living a householder's life." Sounds like he would have fit into today's society just fine. Of course, there's also something about "faith and meditation on the name of the one creator," which is where I imagine the conflicts might start. It seems to me that if religions could just let go of the insistence on reverence toward an imaginary being, and focus on just doing all the good things that are supposedly the will of that phantom, we might all be in a better place.

Anywhoo... when I finished this one, I didn't immediately get any notification. I instinctively looked around for a possible incorrect entry, even while wondering why it wouldn't have told me something was wrong if I were really done. Then I looked again at 21-, 36-, and 50-Across, and wondered if I needed to put in a particular word, like "nil," or all zeros, and what I eventually tried was dashes. I filled in about four of them (across two answers) and suddenly I got the "Congratulations" screen. Odd. Did anyone else have any similar trouble at the end?

One last thing - WOULDIEVER DRUNKDIAL Laura DERN or John CUSAK? You bet I would. They're two of my favorite actors! 

And a shout out to "Not-so-great depression" (DENT). That's a great non-QMC. 

Loved it. Great start to The Turn. Hope you enjoyed it too.

- Horace


  1. I finished it before I realized I'd finished it -- correctly! It wasn't until I actually *read* the revealer clue and looked at the EMPTY spaces...and just above them...that I FINALLY got the AHA moment! (Then I just put the word EMPTY in all the blank spaces.) Really, really, fabulous puzzle!

  2. 15:39
    I stopped the clock when I didn't get the "Congratulations!" pencil because I figured it was just some minutiae that was called for in the empty spaces that I'd left. I tried, like Ms. Clark, the word [EMPTY], but that didn't do it, then I tried zeroes and Xs, but neither of those worked. I can't enter dashes on Across Lite for some reason, so I just left them blank and took it as a win. I guess I could have tried the word [BLANK], but why bother? A fine trick, but not my favorite use of a Thursday puzzle space.

  3. I thought it was clever, it cost me a couple extra minutes in figuring out how to successfully end the online version. Putting X's in each box finally worked.

  4. 11:26
    Hmmmm. I did not have to do anything on the iPad version. I almost FWOE'd though, because the last letter I put in was the T of DENT and TABLES, only I had dADJOKES at 23D. Fortunately I realized my mistake in time. Brilliant theme, well executed. I love the clues for the three blank answers.

    1. Colum, it's true, the clues for the blanks were great, and I feel now, looking back at it, that I didn't really do the puzzle justice in my review... sigh, well, sometimes it goes that way, I guess.

  5. Very nice theme. For a while I was trying to stretch a "U" over two squares, or, well nothing like that worked out.

    I too ended with the T in DENT/TABLES and had to correct dADJOKES.