August 23, 2005

I just realized I hadn't done last weekend's Washington Post puzzle, "How the Secret Got Told," by Stella Daily and Bruce Venzke. I found it to be unusually challenging and liked the preponderance of vague and misleading clues that eventually all came together into a solid puzzle. Notable bits: "Title since 1952" = MISS USA (with the I crossing an Afghan airline—yeesh), "Gypsy, maybe" = TAXICAB, "Reprimanded one's place?" = CARPET, "Cozy place?" = TEAPOT, "Kind of heat?" = HANDGUN, "Billy the Kid's deeds" = OUTLAWRY (now there's a word you don't see much), "Like some displays" = REARLIT, "Undraftable, in a way" = FEMALE. Good stuff, good stuff.

The best entry in the CrosSynergy by Mel Rosen? "Priest, in an Ogden Nash poem" = ONE L LAMA. Second place goes to "Macho exhortation" = BE A MAN. And, hey, the puzzle's a pangram! I always like a good pangram. The puzzle is further livened up by shout-outs to Cheech and Chong and "The Daily Show."

Before I saw the USA at the center of Lynn Lempel's theme entries, I wasn't sure where she was going with CRUSADE and JERUSALEM, THOUSANDS and...SAUSAGE? She seemed to be telling a coherent story until SAUSAGE popped up. 46A is one of those trap entries with two equally plausible answers that have a few letters in common: "___ Bowl" could be SUGAR or SUPER, and I opted for the wrong one first.

Comments, anyone?

WaPo 12:03
LAT 3:21
CS 2:57