Thursday, March 15, 2018

Thursday's New York Times puzzle solved: March 15, 2018

My time: 18:48, which ain't great.


Joe DiPietro celebrates THE IDES of March in this puzzle.  This is a clue that four answers also contain the contraction I'd: I'D TAKE THAT, I'D BETTER GO, I'D RATHER NOT, and I'D BE HONORED.

Confusingly, there is also a row at the south end that contains"A New Leaf" actress and director ELAINE MAY (Mike Nichols' old partner) and APRIL ("when the regular NBA season ends").  There doesn't seem to be any reason for this.

For tail-shedding lizard I kept wanting to put *GECKO but it's SKINK.

NATAN, a variant of Nathan, is a name meaning "he has given" or "he will give" in Hebrew.

"All the cabaret shows" are in "GAY PAREE," according to the song of the same name by Henry Mancini and Leslie Bricusse, sung by Robert Preston in the movie Victor/Victoria.

"Arithmetic series symbol" is SIGMA, which is a symbol, Σ, that indicates one should sum the numbers according to the notation.  I originally put *SUMMA, which is sometimes how people refer to ∫, the integral symbol.

I'd never heard of these, but T-TOPS are cars with two sunroofs, one on each side, so a "quasi-convertible."

NUT-LIKE ("hard and crunchy, maybe") really took me a while to fill in.

I'm terrible at geography.  I know of the existence of OAXACA and Veracruz, but I couldn't place them on a map.

I'm terrible at sports.  For a good long while I had *RED FLAG for soccer penalty rather than RED CARD.

I've heard of a BREN machine gun (fun fact: its name comes from a corruption of the Czech city of Brno), but I could not have told you it had an "air-cooled barrel."

Although I knew it was a women's military corps, I had a hard time putting together the specific letters for WAACS.  It's the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps.  Later it dropped the Auxiliary and just became the WAC.

I have never heard the term BEAR PIT for the trading floor, although it obviously makes sense.

I don't like "weakness" as a clue for ANEMIA, but there it is.  Also I'm not that familiar with SIMP as "dimwit," but it's short for simpleton.

The pretentious ET ALII appeared January 29.

Clever clues: "One with a no-returns policy?" is TAX DODGER.  "Where plays are discussed" is HUDDLE. "Sponge alternative" is THE PILL.

YEA, I finally finished this!  It was a toughie, Y'ALL.


  1. So back when I learned you were doing this, I thought you myself, I thought, "Maybe I should start doing the Times puzzles in the newfangled online fashion myself. " It took me a while to get organized. But this week I've been whuppin' on it. I did this one in 32:26, but about 10 of those were scanning for mistakes. Mrs.5000 helped with that part. I liked the Ides theme, and I knew who Elaine May was from a recent crossword puzzle I did.

    1. Fantastic! Welcome to the club. The scanning for errors does take up a lot of time.


Saturday's New York Times crossword puzzle solved: August 8, 2020

                              My time: 10:25 , less than half the Saturday average!  That's more like it! No theme on Saturdays, but I w...