Saturday, February 27, 2021

Saturday, February 27, 2021, Yacob Yonas

I love seeing this kind of open grid on a Saturday. Wide-open corners, chunky feel ... it would have looked slightly more daunting, I think, if the central diagonal were shorter, but even so, it looks very nice. That said, it was one of those very rare Saturday's when things just fell into place very quickly. 


I immediately thought of "b-ball is life" for 1A, so it wasn't hard, after LAS ("____ MaƱanitas" (Mexican birthday song)), LOVETT (Four-time Grammy winner Lyle) and FACEPALM ([I'm such an idiot!]) fell in, to change it slightly to BALLISLIFE. OK, maybe FACEPALM went in once I had the F ... sometimes it's hard to remember.

One piece of that quadrant that took longer was the chuckle-worthy C/AP "Set for the afternoon?" and TEASERVICE. Nice. And although I didn't know "Renato's wife in Verdi's 'Un Ballo in Maschera,'" I always enjoy seeing the name AMELIA. BITEME, on the other hand, was a bit of a shock for this old prude.

MOONBEAM (Night light) was cute, ASCIIART (... \_(^.^)_/) was interesting, but there were many that just seemed kind of straightforward. SOLARCAR (Vehicle equipped with photovoltaic cells) and FINEDINING (Opposite of cheap eats), for example. Then there were a few that we've seen quite recently, like DATAMINE (Dig for insights, digitally) and MEETCUTE (Trope seen in rom-coms). And very few, like MASER (Atomic clock timekeeper) and ISIDORA (George Sand title heroine), that were truly Saturday-level.

I whipped through this in 0:08:24, which for me, on a Saturday, feels quite fast. I liked it fine - especially the fun bits, like EASYA (School softball?) - but it's always a little disappointing to be done with it so fast on the weekend.

What'd you think of it?

- Horace


  1. Definitely a fast Saturday! 6:51 for me, 80 seconds faster than the Boswords Spring Themeless League preseason puzzle. I had FLIppED for FLICKED, but other than that, nothing really held me up too much.

  2. Love it! After BALL IS LIFE, BITE ME fell right into place. Except for MASER I either knew or inferred all the entries, which seemed so fresh and new to me. (7:00 or thereabouts)

  3. Agree on the relatively easy Saturday. My own solve time was 14:50, which is pretty fast for me. Like Horace says, there were a few Saturday-level answers (HAILE, TRACI Braxton, DANIEL Kaluuya and AMELIA), but most of it went right in.