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Author Topic: Tue., 10/14 Jacob Stulberg  (Read 1429 times)

magus

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Tue., 10/14 Jacob Stulberg
« on: October 14, 2014, 09:34:22 AM »
THEME:   both words of a phrases can precede WATER
   
GOOD ONES:     
1954 Oscar… {& theme}   ON THE WATERFRONT ["in front of" water]   
   
BTW:   
A shame that such a clever theme is set in so pedestrian a puzzle.   
   
   
RATING: :'(   
Three grins = Loved it; Two grins = Enjoyed it; One grin = A bit bland for my taste; One teardrop = Not much fun   

Thomps2525

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Re: Tue., 10/14 Jacob Stulberg
« Reply #1 on: October 14, 2014, 02:32:27 PM »
One of the theme answers is HARDBACK and was clued with "Like unabridged print dictionaries". Both parts can precede the word "water." However---and this is me being picky again---the word "hardback" is a misnomer. "Hardbound," referring to a book with hard covers, entered our language in 1926. "Hardback" came along in 1952. Both sides of a hardbound book, and not just the back, have a hard cover. "Paperback" is likewise a misnomer. We all know what the words "paperback" and "hardback" refer to but the words are still inaccurate.

I don't think the puzzle was pedestrian. It can't be easy to find several two-word theme answers where each word can be combined with another word to form a new phrase. In all my puzzle-solving life, I don't think I've seen more than five or six such puzzles. By the way, On The Waterfront won eight Academy Awards, including best picture, best actor (Marlon Brando), best supporting actress (Eva Marie Saint) and best director (Elia Kazan). And sixty years later it becomes a crossword theme. Brando would have been proud.

magus

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Re: Tue., 10/14 Jacob Stulberg
« Reply #2 on: October 15, 2014, 08:54:13 AM »
I don't think the puzzle was pedestrian. It can't be easy to find several two-word theme answers where each word can be combined with another word to form a new phrase.

Difficulty of construction does not make, at least for me, the solving more fun.  Rather, cleverness of cluing and evocative and challenging words and phrases are what pleases.

Thomps2525

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Re: Tue., 10/14 Jacob Stulberg
« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2014, 05:40:26 PM »
I agree that a puzzle is more fun---and more challenging---when it contains several cleverly-worded clues, each of which can suggest two or three possible answers. Some clues contain a word that can have more than one pronunciation and/or more than one meaning, such as TEAR. Clever clues don't appear very often, though---usually only when there are clever answers, such as puns or seldom-used words. There aren't many ways for a puzzle maker to be creative when he's writing clues for ALE and SPA and IRE and LEI and UKE and the dozens of other short words that appear in several puzzles each week. ATRA is usually clued with "Gillette brand" or "razor brand" and ALOHA is usually clued with "Hawaiian hello" or "Island greeting."  The clues have become almost as repetitious as the answers. If the crosswords contained more creative answers, I think we'd also be seeing more creative clues.

 


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