(Updated at 11:45am Sunday)
Hey, everyone. PuzzleGirl here with you again, filling in for the vacationing Orange. It's been a rough couple of days for me, but Monday is just around the corner and I dare say you will be impressed with my early-week times. So I've got that goin' for me.
When you saw Elizabeth C. Gorski's byline on the New York Times crossword you knew you were going to be impressed, didn't you? I sure did, and I sure was. The centerpiece of this puzzle, titled "Laughing All the Way," is a line of HOs stretching from top to bottom on the center vertical. That didn't sound exactly the way I wanted it to, but you all know what I mean. We've got JOLLY ST. NICK a/k/a KRIS KRINGLE a/k/a Father CHRISTMAS in the puzzle, landing on your HOUSE and causing all kinds of mayhem. There's also room for three French HENS, and a reference to the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), which is closed on Christmas Day. Any other Christmas-y stuff I missed? Let me know in the comments!
Stuff I thought about while solving this puzzle:
On the 95th anniversary of the crossword, Merl Reagle's Philadelphia Inquirer puzzle pays tribute to "those old crossword words that just never seem to go away." He's taken familiar phrases and changed one completely normal word into one of those ucky crossword words that we all know and love.
Mark Feldman's L.A. Times crossword, "You're Out!," takes the letters URE out of familiar phrases to create new amusing phrases.
A couple of those seem a little off to me. The al on GEOMETRICAL feels redundant. I've always thought a FEATURE FILM was one thing and a DOCUMENTARY another. But the phrase used in the puzzle gets 55,000 Google hits, so I guess someone uses it somewhere.
Martin Ashwood-Smith's CrosSynergy "Sunday Challenge" has a cool-looking grid with some nice fill. The 15s aren't particularly sparkly, but there sure are a lot of them. DELICATE BALANCE is nice.
December 21, 2008