Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Wednesday, December 22, 2021, Noki Trias and Lawrence Barrett

Good morning, and wake up to a double debut for today's constructors! And what a strong debut it is as well. 

Our intrepid constructors have hidden four different MARTIANMISSIONS in 15-letter standard phrases, such as CHRISTMASSPIRIT (how apt!) and YANKEEINGENUITY. Color me impressed, just to find such good phrases. MORBIDCURIOSITY! Excellent. 

On top of that, they managed to squeeze in the bonus theme answer ARES, as well as an obvious shoutout to this blog with HORACE. Nicely done, folks! We could use the publicity.

Favorite clue-answer today comes at 10D: Lose the suit? (SKINNYDIP). I had almost the entire answer in place before I got it. Also a nice reference to Bugs Bunny with LISZT


There's a fair amount of less attractive fill that was necessitated by the five 15-letter answers, such as TOA, AMS, and the very odd UMBYE. ACTIII.

But that's fine with me. It made the solve just a bit longer (also the fact that the lower third of the puzzle was isolated from the top two thirds). Overall, I'll accept that sort of trade-off. Nice work!

- Colum


  1. Yes, definitely a reference to this blog, because they also refer to Philbo with EHS. :) And Colum, do you actually own a YORKIPOO now? Was that photo taken at your house??

  2. The reference was not lost on me, oblique tho it was! That was fun and - great construction. I would have gotten thru faster had I not guessed ACTTWO (not exactly a Shakespeare boffin, here), but overall a not-bad 4:50 for a Wednesday.

    And now to go listen to a bit o' LISZT while I finish up my working year!