Wyna Liu & Erik Agard’s New York Times crossword—Amy’s write-up
Maybe Wyna and Erik should partner up on all the puzzles. Their joint byline is shorter than Brendan Emmett Quigley’s solo byline! Plus, they each do amazing work individually, and their joint efforts are equally good.
Fave fill: “ROGER THAT,” “IT’S NOT A RACE,” MADE IT WEIRD, DIA DE LOS MUERTOS, “CHECK, PLEASE,” CLOSE SHAVES, SUIT UP, and “I DON’T GET IT.”
Clue action of note:
- 8d. [Bound to follow], LEGAL LIMIT. Bound is a noun here, not an adjective.
- 61a. [Figureheads?], MATHLETES. As in those with a head for numbers.
- 6d. [___ Lawson, W.N.B.A. star-turned-coach for the Boston Celtics], KARA. I think I missed that news last summer, that this Olympic gold medalist joined the Celtics as an assistant coach.
- 34d. [Auto correction], TUNEUP. I’ll excuse the overlap with SUIT UP because I really like this clue and that entry.
- 50d. [It gets a licking], CONE. As in ice cream. If your ice cream cone takes a licking and keeps on ticking, drop it and run.
I didn’t quite know that KALE SALAD was a [Dish often topped with goat cheese and cranberries]. Can I get the cheese and cranberries on some different salad greens, please?
Also did not know that Beyoncé has recorded in Spanish before encountering 7d. [“___ Gitano,” Spanish-language hit for Beyoncé and Alejandro Fernández], AMOR. You can listen to the song here if you like.
Not too keen on RED SEA near USSR with its [Red states, once] clue. Yeah, yeah, we know the NYT editing team doesn’t give a rat’s 26-Across about such overlaps, but it does bother a number of solvers.
Doug Peterson’s Universal crossword — “Sundae Supplement”
A delicious offering from Doug Peterson today!
THEME: Types of cherries are at the “top” of familiar phrases.
- 3D [*1990 Laura Dern film about love on the run] WILD AT HEART.
- 5D [*Fallout from the 1919 World Series] BLACK SOX SCANDAL.
- 9D [*Photo seeker’s alternative to Google] BING IMAGE SEARCH.
- 26D [Unexpected and welcome bonus, and a hint to the starred answers’ starts] CHERRY ON TOP.
Can’t expect much more from a universal- a nice, clean grid with an accessible theme. The AHA moment was gentle and pleasant, and it helped me to fill in BING, since BING IMAGE SEARCH is not something I use. Come to think of it, I don’t think I’ve ever used BING at all! I can’t picture the page layout.
An enjoyable start to the puzzling day.
Randolph Ross’ Wall Street Journal crossword, “Where Am I?” — pannonica’s write-up
Pressing question, as I am late for an engagement and won’t have time this morning for a full go.
We’re being very literal when it comes to location:
- 23a. [Where to find Bono?] CLOSE TO THE EDGE.
- 32a. [Where to find a church ceiling?] ABOVE THE FOLD.
- 49a. [Where to find the conductor’s baton?] BY THE SCORE.
- 67a. [Where to find a camel blanket?] OVER THE HUMP.
- 82a. [Where to find an offensive tackle?] NEAR THE END.
- 98a. [Where to find winter on a calendar?] AFTER THE FALL.
- 113a. [Where to find the Washington Post’s circulation?] BEHIND THE TIMES.
- 17d. [Where to find Adam and Eve?] IN THE FIRST PLACE.
- 43d. [Where to find a list of supporting players?] BENEATH THE STARS.
Will try to expand on the write-up this afternoon. Feel free to discuss the crossword.
Sheryl Bartol’s LA Times crossword – Derek’s write-up
This is not a familiar byline to me, but we are evidently on the same wavelength, since I finished this in under 4 minutes! This might be the fastest I have EVER finished an LAT Saturday puzzle! Nothing in here is really tough, but that is fine. I think some people think that a rapid solve is no fun for the solver, but the joy is still there. It just goes quicker sometimes! This is a smooth construction, and I have another setter that I would like to meet! 4.3 stars today.
- 1A [Program shutdown of last resort] FORCE QUIT – I have had to do this more than once on my Mac. This is mainly a Mac term, isn’t it?
- 10A [Like hair needing more rinsing] SUDSY – I had SOAPY in here at first; suds is beer!
- 20A [“The Office” actress Ellie] KEMPER – I know here more from The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt on Netflix. She has unbelievably straight teeth!
- 41A [Home of the Curve, the Pirates’ Double-A team] ALTOONA – What else would it mbe
- 44A [“Bye!”] “SEE YA LATER!” – Great casual phrase!
- 55A [In direct competition] MANO A MANO – Not too tough, even without an indication that it is a Spanish phrase.
- 58A [Senior’s elaborate ask] PROMPOSAL – This was in a puzzle last Saturday! Don’t remember which one, though. NYT perhaps?
- 7D [Michigan’s __ Peninsula] UPPER – They speak funny up there, but this is about a 5-6 hour drive from my house. The air is unbelievably clear up there. This is a vacation destination that might be possible even in this pandemic.
- 26D [Work on hooves] RESHOE – Don’t they do rubber ones now? I don’t know horses.
- 30D [Mayonnaise and salad dressing] EMULSIONS – This is all mayos, but I don’t think all salad dressings are this. Still easily gettable.
- 36D [“Empty Nest” actress Manoff] DINAH – I don’t know who this is off hand, but I remember this show, and she was evidently in Grease with Travolta and Newton-John back in the ’70s!
That is all! Next LAT writeup for me will be on Tuesday!
Matthew Sewell’s Newsday crossword, “Saturday Stumper” – Derek’s write-up
This was a Stumper! Well over twenty minutes on this solve. Some of these clues seem quite vague, maybe almost a stretch, but in the end, that is what a Stumper is supposed to be! Yes, I learned a new word or two, and there are a couple of really great entries in here that made me smile. I have never met Matt, but I am hoping to someday at one of these crossword tournaments. The ACPT is in September, but will we be back to normal by then? Hard to say. I hope so, but in my heart I doubt it. I miss all of you! 4.6 stars for this super toughie.
Lots to discuss:
- 1A [Expression of ancestor worship worldwide] TRIBAL MASK – Worldwide? This clue seems vague. It doesn’t seem that rampant to me, but what do I know?
- 17A [Frequent ”TV Guide” advertiser of old] RECORD CLUB – I was in the Columbia club back in the day! And yes, the ads were in the TV Guide quite a bit. I ordered tapes in the early ’80s; now it is all Spotify or whatever these days!
- 23A [”Rubbish!”] “MY EYE!” – I thought it might be CROCK or PSHAW at first look, but this is much better
- 28A [Meals-on-wheels service] UBER EATS – DOOR DASH fits! POSTMATES doesn’t, and GRUBHUB is too short. Did I miss any? ;-)
- 57A [Mixed up] NOT IN ORDER – I had OUT OF ORDER in here, which caused problems!
- 10D [Red state operative] KGB AGENT – Look at all of those consonants!
- 26D [SAT, on baggage tags] SAN ANTONIO – Believe it or not, this was the first thing I filled in!
- 27D [Three-movement work for three instruments] TRIO SONATA – We own a Sonata! Not that we drive anywhere these days!!
- 35D [Characters lacking depth] CARTOONS – I had AIRHEADS in here. It still works!
- 42D [What two triangles can symbolize] REWIND – This is a great clue. Tough at first, then it was like “Oh yeah!”
- 45D [Visited casually] RAN IN – This is another one of those that seems vague. They don’t say this in the Midwest. You STOP BY or RUN BY, you RUN IN criminals!
Have a safe and healthy holiday weekend!