Updated 12:30 pm Sunday
Surprise! It's me, PuzzleGirl! Wait, what? You knew it was me when you saw those huge numbers at the top of this post? Well aren't you observant! Amy's spending some time with her mom tonight and checking out the Chicago Marathon tomorrow morning, so she asked me to fill in which, of course, I'm thrilled to do. I do so love to ramble on and on about crossword puzzles. So let's get to it!
Rich Norris's New York Times crossword, "Change of Heart," takes a familiar three-word phrase and anagrams the middle word to create a new phrase which is then clued. (I can use anagrams as a verb, right? I didn't just make that up?)
I really struggled through this puzzle. On both Friday and Saturday this week I was totally on the constructor's wave-length so I guess I was due for a tough one today. Looking back on it, nothing really jumps out at me as particularly difficult. I just wasn't clicking I guess.
Three-letter fill I like:
Longer fill I like:
No way I can leave without mentioning:
The theme answers in Henry Hook's Boston Globe crossword are all clued with words that rhymes with stuff.
As usual, I got schooled by Henry Hook. Here's what I learned:
Odds 'n' ends:
I'll be back with more puzzles after I recover from these two. See ya later!
If I had known Merl Reagle's Philadelphia Inquirer crossword, "Columbus, the Game," was going to show up today, I might have said no to this blogging gig. Wow! A lot going on here. Let's see if I can explain it coherently.
The note tells us that "Three famous names associated with Christopher Columbus are concealed multiple times on this page." He also clues us in that one of the words will appear 14 times, another 9 times, and the last one twice. Also, if you read the note, like, 18 times to figure out what the heck it's saying, it will finally dawn on you that some of the hidden words are in the clues not just in the answers. Merl, you are diabolical. Just in case you're not sure what the three words are going to be, he throws us a bone: [Artist Al] HIRSCHFELD is our hint. Hirschfeld is the guy who's known for those really cool black-and-white drawings of celebrities and Broadway stars. He always hides his daughter's name somewhere (sometimes several places) in each drawing. His daughter's name is NINA. Aha! I bet the three famous names are Niña, Pinta, and Santa María. So, where are they?
Niña (14 times):
The last NIÑA is hidden vertically in the clues for 4, 5, 6, and 7 Down.
Pinta (9 times):
Santa María (2 times):
Obviously, there's a lot more we could talk about, but I'm afraid that talking about anything else would detract from this truly amazing work of art. Plus I'm exhausted. I'll be back in a few with the last two puzzles.
(See Merl's website for a visual of the hidden NINAs, PINTAs, and SANTA MARIAs.)
Dan Naddor's LA Times crossword, "On Finn Ice," has an awesome theme and it gave me fits the whole way through. Theme answers are familiar phrases in which a TH is changed to an F.
Rich Norris's CrosSynergy "Sunday Challenge" kicked. My. Butt. I couldn't get any traction anywhere. And it was a huge disappointment because I really expected to have a decent time on this one, which would redeem my pathetic performances on the last four. I even had a couple sentences written in my head: "Finally, a respectable time. I mean, I know Howard probably finished this puzzle in, like, 2:34, but my time is still pretty good!" But no. My time is not really very good on this one. I have no idea what kind of [Mil. groups] TPS are. Add to that the fact that I could think of ten ways to fill in the blank on [Golden _____], none of which were AGERS, and the PASY in P.A. SYSTEMS [Brief announcement medium?] looked all kinds of wrong -- well, yeah, I was stuck down there for a while.
Don't get me wrong though, I liked the puzzle.
Had a blast as usual. Enjoy the rest of your weekend!
October 11, 2008