March 12, 2006

Poniedziałek (Monday for John Paul II)

Gary Steinmehl's Sun puzzle, "Mind Your P's and Clues," is a good 'un (bonus points for anyone who can tell us what the apostrophe's doing in "good 'un"). Seven theme entries, X's and Z's in and out of the themers, some good 8-letter fill. And it amused me when I almost completed 17 Across without reading the clue, since I had the first five letters and what else could it be but a hallucinogenic mushroom? Heh. (Said hallucinogen doesn't show up in the Cruciverb database, so it's yours for the taking, constructors...)

Bernice Gordon's NYT was also peppered with tasty X's. Scads of retro stuff (although not BOBBYSOX)—IRMA, REMUS, HENNY, and TELEGRAM—perked up with the newish verb PHISH. I know a lot of folks shrink from cross-referenced clues, but (1) I don't, and (2) I liked the "TRIX is for KIDS" combo.

NYS 3:43
CS 3:30
NYT 3:19 on the timer when I finished (what is with the applet these days?)
LAT 2:54
Newsday 2:48 (on paper)