Friday, October 22, 2021

Friday, October 22, 2021, Robyn Weintraub

"Oh frabjous day, Callooh callay!" He chortled in his joy.

Is how I feel when I see Ms. Weintraub's byline on a weekend themeless. What a lovely way to start the days off, coming home, opening the iPad and enjoying a good puzzle. My only complaint is that it went by so quickly!

I broke in with the ELLA/ELLEN duo, combined with the LEIS/LEAS pair, making this part fall very quickly. With ____LISH in place, 16A: Digital color presentation? (NAILPOLISH) was quickly clear, and the rest of the NW corner fell into place. 

The two long downs out of this section also came easily. 5D: Local alternative (EXPRESSTRAIN) has just enough ambiguity to make it a little tougher, while 17D: How you might count to five (ONONEHAND) was pretty straightforward. 

The middle trio of 13-letter answers in a staircase are very nice. I love 29A: Courtroom conclusion (CASEDISMISSED), bringing to mind many movies where a wrongly accused person triumphantly gets off, such as Legally Blonde, My Cousin Vinnie, and Liar, Liar. I had more difficulty with 32A: Comment after an amazing statement (LETTHATSINKIN). Here I had __TTHAT___ and thought it should start with "But that's..."

"TAOS Pueblo" by Helmut Naumer, Sr.

33A: What might be found between X and Z? (GENERATIONGAP) is a lovely bit of QMC work, in my opinion. I thought it would just be Gen Y in some form, but this makes much more sense!

I find in grids like these that if you can get the central section, the rest becomes a lot easier, because you have a solid set of three letters for any crossing answer. EATINGFORTWO, for example, could only start with the first word, once the ___ING is in place. 

I enjoyed 44A: Kitty food? (POKERCHIP), and had a "kitwo" moment for 48A: "Walk" (GOONSTRIKE). Could it be "goon stride?" That's not a thing, is it? (Hint: no, it's not). Hah! Finished in 5:49.

- Colum


  1. Wasn't quite as quick as you, Colum, but this did move right along. I enjoyed "It covers a lot of ground" for SOIL, and "Problem for a king" (MATE), but I thought "Calendar heading named for a Norse deity: Abbr." was a little vague, since Tuesday and Wednesday are also named for Norse gods (and Friday for the wife of one). And speaking of wives, I liked seeing AMY in the grid. :)

  2. So it's not just me that gets a little frisson of delight when it's Robyn Weintraub? :) I thought this was great and clever and fair and thoroughly enjoyable. 8:59 for me, reflective of the entire week - been in a crossword solving funk for days. Weird! Back on that horse tomorrow ...

    1. Phil - at the last real-life ACPT Robyn handed one of the puzzles to me and I'm still talking about it! No ... it's not just you. :)

    2. I'm totally going next year. Totally!!!