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81
General Discussion / Re: Need puzzles to publish for a new gardening publication
« Last post by mmcbs on September 28, 2014, 10:03:13 PM »
Rochelle, I'd like to thank you for the opportunity to provide the puzzle for your fall issue, and I'm very pleased that it worked out for you. Perhaps others reading this forum will try also.
82
General Discussion / Re: Unfillable Grid
« Last post by mmcbs on September 28, 2014, 10:01:07 PM »
In CC, if you're trying to fill around theme entries, you can eyeball places that look suspicious (like, you can't think of something in your head that would fit), then right click on that word to see if your wordlist has ANY suggestions. If there are none, that's a spot that needs to be fixed by rearranging theme entries, moving or adding blanks, or trying a different grid. It doesn't tell you specifically where problem(s) are.
83
Today's Puzzles / Re: Sun., 9/28 Dana Olsen
« Last post by LARadioRewind on September 28, 2014, 07:09:20 PM »
In the September 13 Los Angeles Times puzzle, SST was clued with "Former Mach 2 flier, briefly." SST appeared again in the September 16 puzzle, clued with "Bygone boomer." Today's New York Times crossword includes SST and the clue is "Orly bird, once." The reference is to the Paris airport, AĆ©roport de Paris-Orly. I wonder how many different clues for SST the puzzle makers can come up with. Or for IRE. Or ALE. Or SPA. Or LEI. Or ALOHA. Or.....
84
Today's Puzzles / Re: Sun., 9/28 Dana Olsen
« Last post by LARadioRewind on September 28, 2014, 03:41:31 PM »
"September Story" is the title of Merl Reagle's puzzle in today's Los Angeles Times/ He explains that September was the seventh month (sept- = seven) of the old Roman calendar which had ten months. When two months were added, September became the ninth month. The puzzle includes several phrases containing SEVEN or NINE. Examples: CANINETEETH, THISEVENING and GETSEVENWITH. Two answers share a clue: "What 'September' has." The answers are NINELETTERS and SEVENDIFFERENTLETTERS. Reagle really put some effort into this one!

"What, Steve? No criticisms?" Well.....the puzzle does include an overabundance of foreign words: ACH, CASA, COSA, ELEVE, HERR, OLE, SEIS, SRTA, the Roman numerals III and the Greek letter PSI. On the other hand, Reagle used five very uncommon words: BANZAI, NATTINESS, PAGINATE, RIPARIAN and TRANQUILIZE. Overall, a very impressive puzzle!
85
General Support / Honeycomb grid
« Last post by garyk on September 28, 2014, 11:32:19 AM »
I'm looking for advice from someone who has constructed a puzzle with a honeycomb grid, in which the cells are hexagons and the entries run in three directions. I have some experience with ordinary square grids, but here I'm at a loss. Since I need valid entries going three different ways, it seems I should be generous in sprinkling black cells. I also hope to fit in a few theme entries. This is intended as a gift rather than for publication.
86
Today's Puzzles / Sun., 9/28 Dana Olsen
« Last post by magus on September 28, 2014, 09:13:48 AM »
THEME:   common phrases clued partially with "me"
   
GOOD ONES:    
Title: Ah, Me!   
Is for you?   ARE [oldie but goodie]   
   
BTW:   
Condiment for pommes frites   SEL [I guess in French restaurants we see SEL, but I'd go with the Mercedes model]   
   
Bad news from home   YER OUT [would've been good, but it's "at home" in baseball]   
   
Beth preceder   ALEPH [don't know why letters in Hebrew are in the dictionary, but it's fittingly crossed by EL AL]   
   
Enjoyed a friend's mom's cooking   ATE OVER [this is substandard English]   
   
Former Disney exec   EISNER ["and virtual destroyer of the brand" should have been added]     
   
RATING:    ;D
Three grins = Loved it; Two grins = Enjoyed it; One grin = A bit bland for my taste; One teardrop = Not much fun   
87
Today's Puzzles / Re: Sat., 9/27 Mark Bickham
« Last post by LARadioRewind on September 27, 2014, 06:36:29 PM »
Okay, I admit it---I'm overly critical. I will keep my complaints of today's puzzle to just one: the inclusion of CLI for "10% of MDX." Motion pictures and tv shows use Roman numerals for the copyright year so when they're shown overseas many years later, audiences won't be so likely to notice how old the films are. I have no idea why the Olympics and Super Bowl games use Roman numerals instead of simple numbers. But I don't like seeing Roman numerals in crosswords. Roman numerals are not only foreign, they're ancient---they go back to the 8th century BC.

I liked the cluing of MARCEAU as "Only actor to speak in Mel Brooks' Silent Movie." In that 1976 film, Brooks played a washed-up producer who hoped to make a comeback by filming a successful silent movie. Yes, Silent Movie was a silent movie about the filming of a silent movie. It did have music, though. And it had what is one of the most clever gags in movie history: Brooks phoned several actors to ask if they'd like to appear in his silent film and one of them was Marcel Marceau, a world-renowned mime, who exclaimed "No!" as he slammed the phone down. It was the only word spoken in the movie. Classic!
88
Today's Puzzles / Re: Fri., 9/26 Susan L. Stanislawski
« Last post by magus on September 27, 2014, 10:28:00 AM »
Since EX is defined as the letter X, EXED follows the rule of adding -ed to a noun to make it a verb.

The use of obscure words seems part of the game: I solve around the obscurity and watch it appear. 

As for the other "fill," I don't see how it would be possible, with few exceptions, to create a puzzle without them.

Of the foreign words you listed, only CES is not used in English; the others would seem grist for the crossword mill.

You cannot mean that words unfamiliar to everyone (PHISH and PHAT) are not to be used.  That would leave only the Dolch sight word list.

LARADIOREWIND, I think you have to lighten up just a bit.  :)
89
Today's Puzzles / Sat., 9/27 Mark Bickham
« Last post by magus on September 27, 2014, 10:08:08 AM »
THEME:   none
   
GOOD ONES:    
Place to pick up some pets   NAPE   
What you once were   THEE   
   
BTW:   
Makes a decision   ACTS [I thought OPTS since to decide is not to act but to plan to act]   
   
Two baseball clues [SHAGS and HEATER] abutting each other seems rather unsporting, so to speak.   
   
Six Z's in the grid is a rarity.   
   
This one was a challenge and was fun, but it really needed a theme.   
   
RATING:    ;D ;D
Three grins = Loved it; Two grins = Enjoyed it; One grin = A bit bland for my taste; One teardrop = Not much fun   
90
Today's Puzzles / Re: Fri., 9/26 Susan L. Stanislawski
« Last post by LARadioRewind on September 26, 2014, 05:57:17 PM »
Mister magus, may I use your grading system and award four teardrops? Here are my complaints about today's puzzle:

Two prefixes: HEPTA, OENO.
Two suffixes: ERN, OMA.
Two Latinized plurals: GENII, UTERI.
Two contemporary words which are not familiar to everyone: PHAT, PHISH.
Three abbreviations: CGI, DUI, IBM.
Four informal shortened forms of a word: CAPN, EDS, NEG, PROF.
One obscure name: SEAHAG, a nemesis of Popeye.
One obscure brand name: ESSIE nail polish.
One misspelled word: EXED for "Marked, as a ballot"; it should be XED.
Ten foreign words: CES, EIRE, ERAT, ETAT, LATKE, OMERTA, REINA, SENOR (minus the tilde), SNOG, TABULA.

The only thing I liked about this puzzle is that it didn't include  ALE, IRA, IRS or SPA. The answer to 28 across was ICEAGE, which is appropriate...because this puzzle left me cold!
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