g'day, mates, and welcome to the 46th installment of matt gaffney's weekly crossword contest, "I Can't Deal With This."
what about the metapuzzle? the instructions tell us that this week's contest answer phrase consists of two interlocking words in this puzzle's fill, and explains the source of the theme entries. These two words total eleven letters. these instructions, and the hint from the puzzle's title, point us towards the common endings that the theme answers have: GOOD AND EVIL, THE CLOVERS, I'M A CHANGED MAN, BLACK AS TAR, and LAUNCH A RIOT. what are those boldface things? why, they're tarot cards (hence the "deal" in the title) that are named (as opposed to, say, the eight of cups or the deuce of swords). is there a name for the named tarot cards? indeed: they are MAJOR ARCANA, and that's the answer to the contest. MAJOR is in the grid clued as [Huge], in the colloquial sense. and ARCANA is [Obscure stuff].
i may have had an inadvertent advantage in sussing out the meta, because i spent a good long while staring at THE_LOVERS before finally filling in that last square (which required changing the incorrect RATA to RATO). once i convinced myself that the theme wasn't rodin's les portes d'enfer, tarot was the next thing on my mind.
i thought this was a highly pleasing metapuzzle, but as usual, there was lots else to like in the grid:
unfamiliar names (other than THE CLOVERS):
that's all, folks. see you next week for april's evil finale.
April 21, 2009