Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Tuesday's New York Times crossword puzzle solved: September 18, 2018

My time: 8:05.


Greg Johnson had a real gas constructing this puzzle, in which several gases are answers.  The kicker is that each answer corresponds to a cluster or row of circles letters that represents that gas's molecular structure.

So for example CARBON MONOXIDE is referenced in October 14, 2017 answer AMOCO: O-C-O.  METHANE is represented in the puzzle as C with four H atoms on each cardinal point, in WITH CHEESE crossed with the down answer AHCHOO.  And Sixteen Candles director JOHN HUGHES contains N with H on either side, H-N-H, with one more H on the south side from UH-UH ("no way, José").  This is the chemical structure of AMMONIA.

This puzzle is scienterrific!

In the fill, European capital SOFIA is clued as having a "name most people incorrectly accent on the second syllable."  It's pronounced by Bulgarians with the accent on the first syllable: SOFF-eeya.

NBA coach Steve KERR is an eight-time champion, both as a player (with the Bulls and the Spurs) and as a coach.

The lowest-numbered avenues in Manhattan are on the EAST SIDE.  I once knew this, but it's been a long, long time since I was a New Yorker.

Apparently JORDACHE has a horse head logo.  I'm not a fashion maven.

Sporty autos are GTS, short for Grand Tourer, or Gran Turismo in the original Italian.

Clever clues: "!!!" is OMG.  "group in a pit" is ORCHESTRA. 

I'm really not sure why this took so long.  I knew a lot of the more obscure stuff, like what an OBI is and what MALAR means and the ETO in WWII and that CARE is an NGO.  Maybe it's because it was late at night and I was lying in bed.  Maybe it was the nonspecific clue for the gases.  Either way, this is a slow Tuesday time.  Maybe I should JUG this whole project.  I'm kidding.  ISH.


  1. Your times are getting pretty zippy. Mine aren't, especially, and they're complicated because Mrs. & I do Thursday through Sunday together -- the first three of the week are, well, beneath her.

    I filed this one under "irrelevant theme" -- the kind where I am aware that there is some theme action, and doubtless it was clever on the part of the creator, but I solve the puzzle without any reference to it.

  2. Yes, there's no way it would help even if you knew the theme in advance, because who knows the chemical structure of methane?


Sunday's New York Times crossword puzzle solved: August 9, 2020

                              My time: 19:28 , not too shabby for a Sunday! Theme: SHIPSHAPE, as shown when you connect the "dots"...