Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Tuesday, December 27, 2022, Lynn Lempel

I didn't need today's revealer to solve the puzzle, but I did enjoy the theme once I reviewed the completed grid. In the shaded squares are words that form common expressions when paired with the word "double." And each such word crosses another in the grid, making it a literal DOUBLECROSS. The most common pair (to this solver, in any case) was double DATE and double PARK, but double CHIN and double DIP came in as a close second - although really, double DIP shouldn't be a thing people! I also noted an almost double cross of another kind of SYD and KYD in the middle east corner. 

A couple of clues that almost double crossed me were "Classic car inits." where I tried gtO instead of REO. And I started with LIVEin for "Have as one's residence" which  messed up my entry of MAGENTA - without my leave or notice. Fortunately, I was able to straighten that out when I got to 44A: "Fail to keep a promise" and found REeEGE staring me in the face. You couldn't really say I finished this puzzle on the double: total solve time: 7:33.


A nice QMC, which, I thought this morning could be considered a clue with a double take, was "Sheepish utterance?" for BAA. I also enjoyed the clue "Texter's chortle" for LOL. I thought that including "of old" in the clue "Charitable offerings of old" for ALMS was particularly apt. Apt! I was also very happy to see PLY in the grid ("Thickness of yarn"). Such lovely specificity. "Org. that oversees court battles" (NBA) was fun. Fill-wise, I enjoyed DERANGE, AFLOAT, OAF, SPARKLE, MAGENTA, and BOT

The grid is filled with literary  references of interest - or ROIs - including AENEAS, BEANSTALK, AUDEN, and BILLY Budd, along with other topics. I went down a rabbit hole looking into Mama CASS Elliot. And, speaking of rabbit holes, the puzzle also includes a new-to-me clue for the classic OREO. According to the fabulous XWord Info, OREO has appeared 354 times in puzzles in the Shortz era. One day soon I will scrape the results of the Oreo search and attempt to determine the number of unique clues for this old chestnut. For today's puzzle, maybe a theme-related cluepportunity could have been something like 'also comes in a double-stuf variety." :)

It's getting late. I better post this on the double!



  1. I made what could have been a fatal mistake on this one - invited my son to watch me do "something that Dad's really good at". Thankfully, it just flowed in and only took 2:42 (suitably impressing the lad), though I hesitated at one point as I'd never heard of Thomas KYD before. We spent more time after completion trying to understand the theme, as we thought the idea was that the shaded words all went with "CROSS". D'oh!

  2. Wow. You solved an entire puzzle in the amount of time I spent hesitating over one answer in Wednesday’s puzzle. Amazing.

  3. That is quite an impressive solve time, Philbo. My own was faster than Monday's, but still over five minutes. Anyway, nice theme. Like many, I needed to look the puzzle over after finishing in order to understand it since I didn't need it for the solve. And that's a lot of OREO. I look forward to the analysis.