July 10, 2006


Karen Tracey's sweet and chewy COOKIES-themed NYT was the perfect antidote to the woeful excuse for a CHOCOLATE CHIP cookie I just ate (store-bought, and not by me). A fresh theme (to my eyes, anyway), some above-Tuesday fill (SALINA, REA clued as "New Deal program: Abbr."—but with easy enough crossings), and interesting fill (INVEIGLE, APOLOGIZE). And why did this puzzle take me longer than most recent Tuesday NYTs? I was multi-tasking. My husband wanted an assist with the Harvey Estes book, "Crosswords for a Rainy Day," and it's challenging to speed-solve and consult simultaneously (it's like running with ankle weights).

Patrick Berry's 15x16 Sun puzzle ("Palindromic Products, Inc.") is nicely constructed, and I like the BURSITIS RUB and REDNESS ENDER entries. Ever heard of SHARP-SET, meaning hungry? (Me neither.) I had a brief tumble into nostalgic reverie with the POLLUTE clue mentioning Woodsy Owl. Was it just me, or did other '70s kids tend to conflate Woodsy Owl with the Tootsie Pop owl?

NYS 4:54
NYT 4:05
CS 3:55
LAT 2:40