Thursday, March 25, 2021

Thursday, March 25, 2021, Alex Eaton-Salners

Opposites not only attract, they PILEIN on each other in today's theme answers. In each of the six theme answers the circled letters form an antonym of the complete answer word. So, WONDERFUL contains WOEFUL, ANIMOSITY contains AMITY, the FEASTING amusingly encompasses FASTING, and COURTEOUS, CURT. In some cases, like the latter, my eye fooled me into seeing circles where there weren't any, and I found myself wondering what was so opposite about COURT and COURTEOUS? But a timely tip from Horace cooled my impulse to go GONUCLEAR in the review. :) I doubt it was intended as such, but the lovely C/AP "Best" (DEFEAT) might be considered bonus theme material, in a way. 

I enjoyed the interesting factoid about the color RED being on the flag of every permanent U.N. Security Council member. That clue, along with a couple of others, brought the topic of travel to mind. It was, perhaps, not a great leap, because I've been thinking about travel a lot, especially now that the weather around here has begun to improve. Plus, I've been reading "The Olive Farm" by Carol Drinkwater, of "All Creatures Great and Small" (original version) fame. In the book, she and her French boyfriend buy an overgrown olive farm in the south of France near Cannes to refurbish and eventually inhabit - living her dream, and mine - I mean the part about the French boyfriend. ;)

By Deer hunter Rick Jacobs of Elk County, Pennsylvania took this image at the Allegheny National Forest in Northwest Pennsylvania while attempting to photograph deer for the upcoming fall hunting season. Fair use,

I think the fact that you couldn't figure out the theme clues without the Downs slowed me down a bit - at least until I understood what was going on. The clue at 12D, "Distance between 'some' and 'where' in 'Somewhere over the rainbow'" completely confused me until the answer (OCTAVE) became clear through the crosses. If they had been any trickier, I might have hit a false note there. In order to make full use of this blog's specially glossary, I might also mention that TATAMI, especially with today's clue ("Mat used for judo") is totally KOFKAesque for this solver. I narrowly avoided a FWOE at the cross of ""China/North Korea border river" and "Division of the Justice Dept." Fortunately, my decision to try the vowels "in order" for that blank square paid off - YALU!



  1. Nice review. I loved that OCTAVE clue! So tricky. And that GRAINY photo is very disturbing, hoax or no hoax.

  2. I dropped the OCTAVE answer right in because, as it happens, I've been performing the song of late with one of my musical partners. Well-clued nonetheless. I liked this one OK, but as Frannie mentions, I was slowed a bit by needing downs for the theme across answers, but still, at 13:35, pretty fast for a Thursday for me. I liked the PRURIENT/[PURE] pairing the best, but I have to say that EFFECTIVE/[EFFETE] and ANIMOSITY/[AMITY] ran close seconds. Were it not for the location in the clue, I'd have dropped maYAN in where ARYAN goes, so there's that. GSPOT: very racy.

  3. Niinpä! Olen oppinut vähän suomea. 56Alas oli "gimme!"