WSJ Contest, Friday, November 29, 2019

Grid: 8ish; Meta: right away  

 


Mike Shenk’s Wall Street Journal contest crossword, “Leftovers”—Laura’s review

This week, our answer is what some people try after Thanksgiving. Let’s see what’s on the menu.

WSJ Contest - 11.29.19 - Solution

WSJ Contest – 11.29.19 – Solution

  • [17a: Some Thanksgiving leftovers (5,6)]: LIMA BEANS
  • [50a: Some Thanksgiving leftovers (3,7)]: WHITE MEAT
  • [10d: Some Thanksgiving leftovers (2,8)]: CANDIED YAMS
  • [25d: Some Thanksgiving leftovers (4,1)]: CREAMED CORN

Wanna bet those parenthetical numbers are enumerations of letters in the answer? Turns out, CANDIED is very similar to another entry: CANDID. And lo, each word in the themers corresponds to another entry in the grid, which are those themer words plus a letter, like so:

LIMA = [3d: Hurried flight]: LAM + I (5)
BEANS = [48a: Collars]: NABS + E (6)
WHITE = [29d: Spillane’s “___ Jury”]: I THE + W (3)
MEAT = [15a: Maggie’s sister-in-law in “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof”]: MAE + T (7)
CANDIED = [24d: Not posed]: CANDID + E (2)
YAMS = [53d: Sister of Jo, Meg and Beth]: AMY + S (8)
CREAMED = [42d: Flower cluster on a single stem, like that of the lily of the valley]:
     RACEME + D (4) Note: I’d argue that this is a very uncommon word, and not
likely to be used as a entry unless the meta mechanism demands it, which it does.
CORN = [56a: Servant of Saruman]: ORC + N (1)

Put those extra letters in order according to the enumerations, and you get:

NEW DIETS

which is, apparently, what some people try after Thanksgiving, and our answer. Sure, try a new diet if you’d like, and if you think it will help you feel healthier, rock on. But don’t deprive yourself or feel guilty for enjoying a feast. Everything in moderation, right? There is no shame in liking delicious food and drink, and in celebrating with family and friends, or in cooking fine edibles for your own damn self.

[15a: Maggie’s sister-in-law in “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof”]: MAE reminded me of a song. Here’s bluegrassy sister act Larkin Poe covering it:

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3 Responses to WSJ Contest, Friday, November 29, 2019

  1. LuckyGuest says:

    Sorry – not meta-related – but I love Larkin Poe! Good call…

  2. Mr. G says:

    I got this one right before the deadline after three days of mulling over the solved puzzle, so definitely not “right away” for me. I quickly noticed the “candid”/“candied” closeness, but it was only when it finally dawned on me that the set of numbers after the theme clues were the complete set 1 to 8 inclusive that I began to make progress. I enjoyed this one for all the wrong rabbit holes it sent me down and then finally seeing it.

    • Crotchety Doug says:

      Not immediate for me either. I shared this meta with my daughter over the Thanksgiving holiday. Working together we finally came upon the right path after going down several rabbit holes. Sent in our answer emails Saturday afternoon. First WSJ meta success in a while. Loved it and the working together to solve it.

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