My time: 8:36.
Bruce Haight gets tricky today. In fact, downright DEVIOUS, read as D.V.-ious, as in the initials. Five themed answers are two-word phrases that start with D and V: DEATH VALLEY ("lowest point for Americans?"), DARTH VADER, DEMO VERSION, DEEP VOICE, and DODGE VIPER ("American made sports car with a V-10 engine").
How delightfully villainous!
I also enjoyed the conversational fill DAD BODS, I'LL BITE, I HOPE SO, NO CAN DO, and SAY WHEN.
"Yeshiva leader" is RABBI, which I would have put faster if I'd known exactly what yeshiva is. It's a school for Talmudic study or to become a rabbi. There is also a Yeshiva University in New York state.
CALLA lily also slowed me up, as I've never heard of it. It is also known as bog arum, marsh calla, wild calla, squaw claw, and water-arum. I love names for things.
Did you know PENN is the southernmost of the Ivies? Did you care?
I was not quite sure if ETNA was an insurance company as well as a mountain, but it is: Aetna, with the ash æ.
DE NOVO, "from the beginning" in Latin, is used in law as well as science.
"Postdebate area" for SPIN room is a good clue.
One of the most troublesome spots of this puzzle to me was CLEMSON, which I did not know had the sports team the Tigers. Also, CLEMSON is in South Carolina!
Mel OTT, who appeared December 25, 2017, comes up again as the first NLer to hit 500 home runs. He hit his 500th dinger in 1945. Good job, Master Melvin!
EVIE Wilcox is a character in Howard's End. I'm not sure that's guessable even with half fill except to a very small number of people.
New term to me: ORONYMS, or phrases that sound approximately like, such as "ice cream" and "I scream," or "a name" and "an aim." A good way to remember this is to think, did you mean this, or that which sounds alike?
The Native American (or "Indian," as the Times puts it, somewhat stodgily) tribe that lived on the plains is OTOE, which appeared August 13, 2017.
I didn't solve it fast, but it was fun. That's it. I'm OUT!
Tuesday, February 6, 2018
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 ...