MONDAY, Apr. 5, 2010 — Todd McClary

No access to online version of puzzle this morning. Wife already did the one in the local paper. Here is her grid.


Sfingi said...

Never heard of TAEBO. Apparently it's Billy Blanks (?) TAE BO aerobic workout.

Is WETNAP a common expression?

Wrote over: blog = CHAT, RopE = RIDE, DIEOff = DIEOUT.

2-word phrases, the final being some sort of photo word.

Getting so I hardly notice sports. However, the only Boggs I knew was Congressman Hale Boggs Dem. Rep.. Louisiana, father of Cokie Roberts. He was a segregationist, and died in a plane crash. He was a member of the Warren Commission but disagreed with the final report for which stand he was accused by Hoover of being a communist.

My son has fixed the laptop I spilled coffee on and we'll be switching as soon as we get out to Brookline.

Tinbeni said...

PHOTO synonyms; SHOT, PICTURE, SNAP to FINISH a lame Monday puzzle.

Mini-theme; Syn.fabric: LYCRA & GORETEX

WETNAP is what I call them. Probably means its use isn't common. LOL

Also had the dieoff before DIEOUT.

Seems to me @Lit.doc and I had a discussion about TAEBO about a month ago. Then it showed up again the next day.

Fave ans. 5D, SYLPH, graceful woman.

Though easy to get, I dislike clues like 42D, 62-Down sib & 62D, 42-Down sib, that only refer to each other (for the BRO & SIS).

@Rex Your wife's grid was enough write-up for this one.
She prints pretty good. My printing looks like it was typed. Result of 35+ years as an accountant.

Rex Parker said...

I would like to comment on the "Wonderword" puzzle (partially pictured). I like the backwards interlocking string of FRANK, KISSING, and GERM. There's a parable in there somewhere.



INAWAY the NYT WAS a little more challenging than the LAT, but my solve times (5:12) were a PHOTO FINISH.

Wet-Nap® is a very common brand name for pre-moistened towelettes.
I thought the Urban Dictionary had the best definition--- Wet Nap: Similar to a wet dream, only shorter.

First time I heard of SYLPH was from the Alfred-Edward Chalon painting of Marie Taglioni as the SYLPH in 'La Sylphide', c.1832.
But, it was also in a puzzle a few months back. I suspect it will soon become a CW101 ITEM.

Sandy said...

If I'd known it was going out to the world, I'd have used my best handwriting. I had nothing against the theme - certainly better that in another puzzle I did this morning.

Also, look at the end of Gil Thorp there. "Slim Chance and the Long Shots" only a $4.00 cover!

Tinbeni said...

My printing is the result of an occupational hazard.
Back in the early 70's we did all spreadsheets on paper. Neatness counted.

The WonderWord looks to be a dyslectic dream puzzle.

I have complimented many graceful women using SYLPH.
About half the time they gave me a look like they wanted to slap me.
The others I wanted to date.
Having a vocabulary is very sexy.

captch: teedsums (as in "he teed sums golf balls in the trap.")

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Sfingi said...

@John - very funny, wetnap.
My father often created raunchy definitions or stories. (My mother would say, "When I married you, you were a gentleman!") When I asked him what SYLPHlike meant, he said, "It means you have Syphilis.
I'm sure y'all wanted to hear that.

My captcha is shlobbyr. Is that Yiddish, or a hint.

lit.doc said...

@Sandy, you solve in ink? Does Rex fuss? I ask only because I recall his ranting about People Who Solve In Ink a few months ago.

Tinbeni said...

How else am I going to get my weekly Rorschach Inkblot Test if I don't solve in INK?

(It's not called the Tinbeni Graphite Pencil Blot Test!)

@Rex: The more I looked at it, this was one of your best write-ups of an easy Monday offering.
I just wish you had shown more of the WonderWord.

mac said...

Decent Monday puzzle, but so far this is not a great puzzle day....

Is Frank a singer?

gespenst said...

What's wrong w/ solving in ink?
I can write lightly in ink to facilitate writeovers ;) This requires a ball point, not a felt tip.

Easy enough Monday puzzle, but not really exciting.

Loved the writeup ;)

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Toady said...

When the discussion starts about which writing tool to use I always think of Jon Stewart in "Wordplay" getting all macho about it and escalating from pencil to fountain pen and in the end threatens to use a glue stick to solve the puzzle.

C said...

Smooth puzzle, nice start to a Monday. I liked TRACHEA for some reason.

As to puzzle solving utensil, my rule is if it writes, it works for me. Ink, pencil, charred end of a stick, whatever it takes to make the puzzle grid complete.

Anonymous said...

Isn't it Madd Magazine, not Mad Magazine? I think they clued it wrong.

Alfred E. Newman said...

@Anon 10:31
MAD Magazine!

MADD is Mother's Against Drunk Drivers



lit.doc said...

@Tinbeni, you think your puzzle gets messy? I solve with a felt-tip, and when I have to erase a lot--which I usually do--the screen ends up being one big smear.

gespenst said...

Oh, sorry about duplicate posts. Apparently google sign-in was messin' wit' me.

Van55 said...

Fun, mostly fresh, puzzle for me.

Rube said...

I found this a fairly boring Monday puz despite the interesting theme words and some sparkly fill like TRACHEA and GORETEX. Again there was nothing new that was of interest.

However, In Maureen Dowd's column today she used a Latin expression I had not heard of and that has huge potential as crosswordese. In reference to the latest brouhaha about the Catholic church and some unfavorable comparisons, she used the expression, "Ne ease ibi", which roughly translates to "Don't go there". That's 9 letters with 6 vowels, an S, and a very "au courrant" expression!

Rube said...

Sorry, that was Sunday's NYT editorial by Maureen Dowd.

Sandy said...

I don't think Rex cares if you write in ink or not, but he probably doesn't like People Who Boast About Writing In Ink.


Yeah Sandy, I agree with Rex on that, and I also don't like People Who Boast About Their Solving Times.

Orange said...

Oh, come off it, John. The people I know who report their solving times are doing exactly that—reporting them. We are not boasting. It's mere fact. It's fact that can be used to inform an opinion about the relative difficulty of a crossword. If a Monday puzzle takes me over 3:30, either it's tougher than usual or I am really off kilter. If a Saturday LAT takes me less than 4 minutes, it's a good bit easier than I expect it to be, and someone who usually takes a few hours to do the same puzzle is likely to finish it faster than usual, too.

Tinbeni said...

@Sandy & @JNH
Doing the puzzle, in Ink, is just the way I do the crossword.
Probably been my habit for 30 or 35 years.
It slows me down a bit since I tend to check the crosses before making an entry.
Plus, on newsprint, pencil doesn't show up very well.

I also don't consider it boasting any more than those who relate their solving times.

Rex, Orange and PuzzleGirl do mention those quite often, and their times are impressive, but I never considered it pretentious.
I agree with Orange that her stating the time gives me a sense of difficulty level.

The only times I have ever mentioned were 'cups of coffee' and I still don't know what that means.

So "ink" is a habit.
"Times" show difficulty level.
Nothing more, nothing less.

Sfing said...

I write in various pastel pens and correct with darker colors.

My husband's flatmate at Syracuse Law became the lawyer for the NYC opera and ballet. About 6 yrs. ago, the soprano, Deborah Voigt was fired from her role as Ariadne (auf Naxos). She had a gastric bypass and was hired back. Now the opera will never be over.

Ariadne wasn't a sylphid or a maenad/Bacchae, though she hung out with the later, but the clothes and movements pointed to agility, thus being sylphlike.



I guess you totally missed my SPOOF.
If you noticed in my first line this morning I "boasted" my solve-time.

PuzzleGirl said...

@JNH: 5:12? That was a boast? :-)

Orange said...

@JNH: I dunno, I've been feeling mighty skeptical since you posted a Saturday solving time that was faster than mine.

Jeffrey said...

I'm shocked that someone would write something on a crossword blog that may not have been 100% accurate.

lit.doc said...

I most assuredly was not boasting about using a felt-tip pen to solve in Across Lite on my computer screen.

lit.doc said...
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Tinbeni said...

5:12 would probably be an all-time record for me.
I like to let my coffee cool off a bit as I slog through any puzzle.

Now if we were talking SUDOKU times, that would be another story.
I do have this "freaky thing with numbers" in more ways than one. LOL

You're cracking me up.
Does pencil work on your screen?

Finally, I am glad @Rex did not add anything to today's write-up.
For Monday, it was perfect.

chefwen said...

I was sitting next to a guy a few years ago and he commented about me doing the NYT in ink. I said "yeah, it gives me a feeling of confidence", he said, "If you ask me, it looks more like arrogance". I moved to a different seat.

Hand up for DIE off and I had acme before APEX. Other than that, a fun little Monday.


WTH does that mean?
That an old man like me can't beat you once in a while?
Sometimes even a Saturday puzzle just clicks with me, sometimes being old helps, and maybe sometimes you're just not on the top of your game.
It saddens me that you feel a need to compete with me, because "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a..."
I guess I won't be posting my times anymore either.

I used to always do mine in ink (because of my eyesight), but then I was using up too much white-out and realized that erasers were cheaper than white-out. I've come to like #2 Papermate Sharpwriters.

Yes, for me 5:12 was a "boast".
Maybe when you get to be 73 y.o., you'll boast with those times too.
BTW, that's pencil and paper at 4 o'clock in the morning. I find that doing it online generally cuts my time almost in half, but then at that time I'm not really in a hurry.

I'd rather focus on content, novelty, learning, discussion, and fun rather than speed-racing... to the best of my knowledge, crosswords are still not an Olympic event.

a guy said...

Given that 5:12 was a "boast", is it really that surprising that people are skeptical of the 4:06 you claimed for a Saturday?

I'd think it's not that you were fast, rather that you were so atypically fast. Congrats on solving it quickly, and I'm sorry the difficulty wasn't up to your standards.

Rex Parker said...

PG with the unexpected burn!


Still no LAT access via cruciverb ... not sure what's going on.

CrazyCat said...

Wow! For a rather boring puzzle and no write up, this was a lively discussion. The puzzle took me 18 minutes. Nothing to play the KAZOO about. Too much wine with Easter dinner I think. Baja earthquake was disturbing.

@JNH Those are the pencils I use. They have great erasers.

Chief George said...

They don't let us have anything but crayons here at the institute.

choirwriter said...

To all bloggers with a sense of humor,
Please remember that sarcasm, innuendo, irony, and all other clever forms of humor are indiscernible in online chats by those who criticize you. Do not feel bad if others mistake your dry wit for literal commentary. I was greatly enjoying your wry observations today until some folks started taking them way too seriously. Lighten up -- these are puzzles! Brag or don't brag, and use anything that works for you when solving, without fear of reprisal. Embrace your leisurely pastime!

gespenst said...

Eh, for me, writing in pen isn't a boast either, it's just the way I do it.

1) I don't have many pencils, and never one handy
2) erasing tends to smudge the newsprint
3) I find it easier to write very lightly w/ a ballpoint and then write firmly when I'm more secure of a word.
4) the only problem is when something I was *sure* about turns out wrong, then I write over it really dark and thick ;)

In no way does solving in pen = incredible puzzle solver in my case.

I do, however, admit to feeling humbled by seeing solving times posted ;)