My time: 37:05.
I hated this puzzle by Howard Barkin. Hated its lack of Thanksgiving theme, hated its tricky numerical theme, hated how hard it was for me. I'm a curmudgeon and a sore loser!
So, expecting a fun holiday theme, I ran into instead a sort of disjointed numerical theme. "Halftime show" is THIRTY MINUTES, because "Sixty Minutes" is a show that exists. "Double feature" is SIX AMIGOS, because Three Amigos is a movie that exists. "Triple play" is RICHARD IX, because... etc. "Fourth estate?" is not an ordinal but a fraction, so Twelve Oaks, the fictional Wilkes plantation in Gone With the Wind, becomes THREE OAKS. This theme is just so all over the place and messy. "Fifth act" is similarly fractional, not ordinal, and so it's THE JACKSON ONE. So the theme is not in any sequential order, and covers music, TV, drama, film, and books. And there's no capper. Got it.
And now for the rest. It wasn't so bad, actually --- it's just that unexpected and uninteresting theme that got me.
I don't like ACIDY for "a little sharp." ACRID for "sharp" is exact, though.
"Booker or Tester" are SEN. That is, Senator Corey Booker of New Jersey and Senator Jon Tester of Montana, respectively.
"Smallpox victims of the 1500s" are INCA.
"Good word to know if you love Latin?" is AMAS. That's "you love," so I get the sort-of joke, but I think the answer should be AMO.
Never heard of it department: JODECI, 1990s R&B act with five #1 hits. It's named after the four male members. They're maybe most famous for the songs "Come And Talk To Me" and "Forever My Lady." Not really my thing.
I didn't know the "bit of doctoral graduation regalia" on their heads was called a TAM. But it is!
Did you know Bobby ORR was the youngest player ever to win the Calder Memorial Trophy? I didn't even know it was a hockey trophy. Or that it existed. It is the NHL Rookie of the Year award.
For "extra conditions" is put *ADDS but it's ANDS.
I didn't know xi came after nu. I should really memorize the Greek alphabet if I'm going to be a puzzle maven. I'm not sure I like the plural XIS.
For what "The Office" originally was I put *BRITISH but it's the coinage BRITCOM.
I don't know my chemical compounds, that's for sure. C2H6 is ETHANE, which is a colorless, odorless gas chiefly used to make other compounds which make plastics, mostly.
On November 7, ACRE was defined as chains and furlongs, apparently. Here, ACRE is clued as 4,046.86 square meters.
Clever clues: "What plays to both sides?" is STEREO. "A new one is nearly invisible" is MOON.
Whew. I need to TAKEI break.
My time: 6:43 . -- Benjamin Kramer serves us up an ace of a puzzle with this VOLLEYBALL-loving grid. The themed answers LIP SERVICE, th...
My time: 11:43 . -- Today we are treated to a themeless by Sam Ezersky. It's nothing jaw-dropping, but it's a solid Saturday. ...
My time: 17:47 , just one minute too slow for the record! -- Ross Trudeau collected a series of cryptids from divers geographical areas ...