Samuel A. Donaldson’s New York Times crossword, “Collision Courses” —Nate’s write-up
Happy weekend! Thanksgiving (within the US a minimum of) isn’t too far off, after which we head into the house stretch for the calendar yr. With all of the food-filled celebrations to return, this Sunday’s puzzle serves as an ideal primer to combine up some tasty concoctions!
– 22A: P(OLICE) [Band whose final album, “Synchronicity,” was their most popular, with “The”]
– 4D: D(RIVE)L [Claptrap]
OLIVE meets RICE
– 26A: G(O ASH)ORE [Disembark]
– 7D: (SQUAT)TER [Unlawful occupant]
OAT meets SQUASH
– 24A: (MAÑANA) [24 horas from now]
– 15D: (BANGO)R [City NW of Bar Harbor]
MANGO meets BANANA (or, actually, MAÑGO meets BAÑANA right here)
– 96A: (COMATO)SE [Like a very heavy sleeper]
– 89D: (TORN)ADO [Relative of a waterspout]
CORN meets TOMATO
– 113A: (CHIME)S IN [Pipes up]
– 105D: (LIVE)R [Unpopular food that’s rich in minerals]
CHIVE meets LIME
– 107A: (MEET)S [Measures up to]
– 101D: (BELON)G [Fit in]
MELON meets BEET
– 62A: FRANKEN FOOD [Lab-engineered fare, facetiously … or a hint to the six crossings of shaded squares]
– 73A: BUMPER CROPS [Bountiful harvests for farmers … or another hint to the crossings of shaded squares]
In every pair of crossing theme entries, the shaded squares may be learn from (west to middle to south) OR (from north to middle to east), every path revealing a kind of meals. These meals share a typical letter within the center, and are thus (because the title of this puzzle implies) programs (bits of meals) that collide to type, in every pairing, a FRANKEN FOOD BUMPER CROP.
This was a enjoyable theme for me, and I appreciated the added element of pairing meals that I’d really wish to eat collectively! Each pairing of meals felt like the bottom of a scrumptious recipe, and I in all probability ought to have solved this after dinner so I wasn’t so hungry. That mentioned, the remainder of the remedy typically felt a little bit of a slog – for the reason that grid was largely segmented into 10 areas, every area felt like its personal mini puzzle with only a few brief entries with which to realize footholds. A couple of of these areas (particularly within the backside third of the puzzle) had quite a lot of stodgier entries, which additionally made the puzzle a bit much less joyful total for me. YMMV.
Other random ideas:
– 1A: PEDDLE [Sell, as bicycles?] – This was a cute option to begin off the puzzle!
– 13A: LIBIDO [What might prompt a run for congress?] – I do know what this clue is doing, but it surely nonetheless reads as creepy to me, particularly given the variety of politicians who find yourself in intercourse scandals. This was extra icky than cute for me.
– 43A ELLES and 74D ELLA felt like a dupe that might have been prevented?
That’s all for now. I hope you take pleasure in the remainder of your weekend and have the prospect to combine up some scrumptious meals and taste mixtures of your individual! Don’t neglect to tell us within the feedback what you loved in regards to the puzzle.
Universal Crossword, “Themeless Sunday 16” by Rafael Musa — norah’s write-up
- FIEND 20A [Demon] (Look ma, we’re within the puzzle!)
- MOO 33A [(Hi, I’m a cow!)]⭐
- MATERIALGIRL 25A [1984 Madonna hit about her desire for affluence]
- TIMEWILLTELL 42A [“We’re gonna have to wait and see”]
- HOUSEMUSIC 56A [Genre often played at nightclubs]
- IMONAROLL 11D [Comment after successive successes]
- FALAFEL 20D [Fried ball in a pita]
- ITFIGURES 30D [“That’s no surprise”]
- BATMOBILE 31D [Vehicle parked at Wayne Manor]
- CYCLE 50D [Observe Bike to Work Day, say]
This one fell actually quick for me (probably a Universal themeless pr?). IMONAROLL (11D) clued as [Comment after successive successes] may simply describe our constructor at this time; Rafa appears to have had a minimum of one print puzzle per week for the final six months or so. While this grid doesn’t excite me *personally* as a lot as a few of his different current themelesses, it’s clear and clued properly, resulting in an satisfying remedy. I first crammed in 34A as EmAIL with out taking a look at both clue, and at that time I had IM… phrases at 7D and 11D already; I used to be anticipating some form of mini theme to disclose itself at 30D. While that (clearly) didn’t occur, it does nonetheless really feel like IMNOTREALLYSURE, IMONAROLL, and TIMEWILLTELL are telling a narrative.
- Rainbow Kitten Surprise. BAND (12D [Rainbow Kitten Surprise or U2]) An different rock band from North Carolina. This is a enjoyable approach for a constructor to get one thing that’s necessary or fascinating to them right into a puzzle that could be utterly unfamiliar to solvers. (It’s can be a 21…)
Thank you Rafa!