Saturday, April 29, 2023

Saturday, April 29, 2023, David Steinberg

Greetings, Dear Reader. Horace here, taking over a day early, as Colum said I would, so he can enjoy his vacation in Éire. Or is that Erin? Or maybe I should just go with Dublin... Sláinte, Colum! Enjoy yourself over there and say hi to the fam. :)

p.s. It's her last name.

Now, after that happy paragraph, let's talk about the puzzle. Last night my brother called to say that yesterday's NYTX was extremely tough for him, and we agreed that every once in a while it's good to be humbled by a puzzle. Me, I knew some of the things he didn't and I breezed through it, but when I saw Mr. Steinberg's byline, I worried that today would prove yet again that Pride goeth before destruction.

But while I wasn't ALLSMILES, and I wasn't shouting out WHATATREAT, or HOWNICE, I didn't BAWL either. I dropped in ABBA, but didn't know whether it would be "cLAP" or "sLAP" at 13A "Respond quickly, as to criticism, with 'back'" (It's CLAP), and ACRE (One of three in many baseball fields) wasn't something I immediately thought of. It's nice, though, to have that as a reference point. Up until now my understanding of an acre has been based on my grandparents house lot, which was perfectly rectangular and almost exactly half an acre. And frankly, it'll still be easier to picture that, than the amorphous and inconsistent shape of "many baseball fields." But still...

Can you believe that BADROMANCE is almost fifteen years old? Yeesh. Where does the time go?

Some clues seemed a little too oblique. Or just not as perfect as I would like. "Social climber?" for example, for APE. Sure, APEs are social animals, but is that enough to clue this on? For me, I ended up getting the answer from crosses and then looked back at the clue and thought, "Huh. Ok." Similarly, after realizing that CHAMPAGNESHOWER (Big postgame celebration) was correct, I thought "Is that something anyone would say?" I mean, sure, we've all seen players spraying champagne around, but has anyone ever said "Oh boy, here comes the CHAMPAGNESHOWER?" I would guess not. And the less said about WOWIEZOWIE, the better.

"It requires you to pick up the pieces fast" for SPEEDCHESS. Well... ok. Sure. I wanted "jacks," but couldn't stretch it to ten spaces. SPEEDCHESS requires you to think fast, and if you can, you end up moving the pieces quickly. Ugh. I don't know. Maybe my dislike for PICKLEBALL put me in a bad mood....

I hope you all enjoyed it. Me, I'll see you tomorrow.

- Horace

1 comment:

  1. Love this one. Beautiful entries, super clues. And fun things to find out, like the USO running special airport lounges for returning troops. Nice job, David!