September 08, 2005


...That's more like it. Fabulous NYT puzzle from Kyle Mahowald. Not to be all spoilery, but to pack all that yummy fill into a single puzzle? Delicious! You've got your KRZYZEWSKI and ANTICHRIST, DO AS I DO and TELL ME MORE, TSK TSK and ZSA ZSA, JAZZ AGE and ICE CREAM SODA, ARCTIC CIRCLE and FROM A TO Z. Not to mention the clues! My favorites were "Picked teams, perhaps" = GAMBLED, "Product in mint condition?" = CERTS, "Special creator?" = CHEF, and "Boat trailer?" = WAKE. The puzzle started off slowly—I began with EARS and ERIS on opposite sides. That final I led me to Coach K, though, and then the rest moved smoothly.

Patrick Berry's Weekend Warrior in the NYS was a tad easier for me, but no less fun. Retro chic with two song titles from the '70s; botanical trivia I didn't know but should have (the BOX ELDER); the GREAT MEN subtheme of ED NORTON, MAGRITTE, and VAN DAMME (I just can't include BENIGNI here); the MAXI SKIRT/TAXI STAND combo; LIQUOR STORE and TATTERSALLS; IMMORAL plus IMPURER; DECEITS plus ROBBERY (awesome clue: "Taking things badly?"). Who knew Q-TIPS used to be called Baby Gays? THIRTIES and BIG TOE were good fill, too.


Manny Nosowsky's WSJ puzzle is another good one. The theme entries fought me a little, since I'd never before realized that New Deal sounds like "nude eel" and Beefeater sounds like "bee feeder." I haven't got time right now to single out the best clues, but I assure you, there are plenty of fresh and interesting ones.

WSJ 10:23
PI 7:10
NYT 6:46
NYS 6:00
LAT 4:47
CS 3:36