Thursday, September 2, 2021

Thursday, September 2, 2021, David W. Tuffs

Another day, another debut. Congratulations, Mr. Tuffs, on breaking in on a Thursday!

The trick today, as we learn from the revealer, is to read certain entries ENDLESSLY, that is, without their first and last letters. This is made more obvious for us by circling the letters we are meant to avoid. 


It's helpful that the four theme answers are truncated real words, and that the original words are sometimes more common than the "found" word - especially in the middle, where [S]TABLEMAT[E] meant nothing to me without the ends. Placemat, sure. Table cloth, sure. Table top, even, but table mat? Nope. Nothing. [P]ROSECUT[E] is also in this category.

I had quite a bit of trouble in the middle and lower half. ITGUY (He can help you after a crash) took me forever, but it seems so obvious now! And why was MIN (Low point: Abbr.) so hard for me? I was thinking in all the wrong ways on "Prints, perhaps" (EVIDENCE), and crossing that, I only know TPAIN from the SNL "I'm on a Boat." Knowing he was also in Flo Rida's "Low" would have prevented me from trying "Hector" out as the Trojan War hero. That didn't help things. And speaking of people I don't know, count this STASSEN among them. If I weren't so sure of SRO, I would have dropped Pat Paulsen into that spot. ("We've upped our standards, now up yours!")

In the end, although my solve seemed to go on almost ENDLESSLY, there was quite a bit to like in here. I was happy to be able to pull DONKING's name out from the depths of my memories. MEDICINE (Something that nearly one million Americans practice regularly) was interesting - (We've always known you were one in a million, Colum! :) ),  "Like someone receiving baseless accusations, maybe?" (AWOL) was great, ROYALWE ("I") made me smile, as did YEOMEN - for its G&S association, and JEANLUC, because, well, it's JEANLUC!

Played very tough for me, but I very much enjoyed it.

- Horace


  1. I found this tough too. Tough and strangely unrewarding. Maybe just a frame-of-mind thing. Would have been nice if there was some relationship among the circled letters. 8:37 today

  2. Wow, Philbo!!! Warp-speed! As for me, I clocked in at around three weeks.

    But I LOVED it! I got ENDLESSLY fairly early, but only from the first clue part. Ditto, Horace, on DON KING -- super entry but darn, I couldn't remember his name...and kept wanting B.B. KING For No Good Reason. Lovely work, I thought...and a debut, you say? Super!

  3. I like the theme, and the length of the words and their internal mates, but I agree with Horace about "table mat." "Rose cut" I have heard of. 7:39