Author Archives: raabidfun

About raabidfun

I'm a guy living the #raabidfun lifestyle. I figured I would create a blog about crossword puzzles I do. The idea is to do the NYT crossword and the WSJ crossword daily as much as I can. That includes when I don't finish and have clearly failed. They can be difficult. Also I am not an attorney, and any legal analysis in this blog reflects my interpretation, which means it can be flawed and should not be relied upon for use in legal matters (especially against me).

NYT Crossword Puzzle 10-26-21 Complete (contains spoilers)

I pulled out 48A Sniffed (around): NOSED because I had originally and for a long time had CASED there instead. Why wasn’t it CASED? Other than that because it was NOSED. I get the nosed-sniffed link, but meh. That slowed me down a whole bunch.

Theme!

20A Basic, practical details: NUTSANDBOLTS.
34A What expensive things cost: ANARMANDALEG.
42A Magnet for criticism: LIGHTNINGROD.

58A Doctor whose shopping list might include 20-, 34- and 42-Across?: FRANKENSTEIN. Right before the world shut down, Calah and I saw a version of Frankenstein at The Wallis in Beverly Hills. This version of Frankenstein was done by Four Larks. It was unexpected in its level of interpretation and executed exactly as intended.

Finished this one in 12:31.

Woodworking: First Cutting Board from Scratch Project (Part 1)

When Calah and I were choosing things to put on our wedding registry, Calah and I debated the legitimacy of adding a table saw. I was in favor of putting it on, as evidenced by me having done so. Calah was opposed.

So I broke down why the table saw (and other tools) were not just reasonable and appropriate.

First I asked what she had against the table saw. She took the position that the gifts on the registry are intended for both the bride and groom. I agreed and said that that’s why the table saw should be on there. She disagreed and said that that’s why it shouldn’t be on there.

So I brought up that kitchenware and cooking appliances are standard items.

I understood that I was at a slight disadvantage with this point because both Calah and I cook, so kitchen items would benefit both of us directly. I had to go the conceptual route: Generally it isn’t the case that both members of the couple are involved in baking and cooking, and that just because we’re nonstandard in that doesn’t change the fact that people are totally cool with that inequity.

“But cookware benefits both of them because food is made for both.”

Well, my woodworking projects benefit both of us. Whether it’s turning junk furniture into something good or making something from scratch, it’s not just for one of us after all.

The table saw stayed on the registry.

Woohoo!

Now, I hadn’t owned a table saw before, so I watched a lot of videos on YouTube to make sure I didn’t slice my fingers off. The chance was lower because the table saw has less than a 3/4″ cutting depth, and I was certainly going to install the riving knife assembly with the shield, but I still didn’t want to play it wrong.

What I saw over and over was that it’s beneficial to have a sled for crosscutting. Essentially, you build a tray with skis that fit into the slots on the table so you can push the piece of wood through while never putting your fingers in harm’s way.

That sounded great to me, except that with such a low cutting depth, how could I take up any of that space? I turned to reddit, and I got advice to use hard plastic or 1/8″ high-density fiberboard.

Ultimately, I turned to the world of 3D printing and asked my cousin to print a thing I had found specifically for this table saw:

Proxxon FET Guide by USG on Thingiverse.

Rather than having the board underneath, I’d just have the pusher.

Unfortunately for me, my cousin was prepping to be out of town for a month, so I’d have to wait until his return.

I went to my local hardwood supplier, House of Hardwood in West LA, and I picked up some walnut and maple from the scrap area.

Finally my cousin got back.

He printed out the pusher, and it fit right on. I mean, I had to knock off a little bit of excess plastic, but once I did that, it was perfect.

I set up the my dust collection system (aka my vacmaster), attached the table saw to my coffee table workbench, made sure all moving parts were clear of obstruction, and then I plugged everything in. I was ready to make my first cuts.

More next week.

NYT Crossword Puzzle 10-25-21 Complete (contains spoilers)

I pulled out 2D Thorny tree: ACACIA because cutting boards are important to me, and acacia cutting boards are inexpensive and in abundance. Even Williams-Sonoma has acacia cutting boards for cheap.

Not even $30 for the pair!

But as you’ll see in tomorrow’s woodworking blog post, I like other woods for cutting boards.

Theme!

17A Former CNN anchor with a true-crime series on the Investigation Discovery channel: PAULAZAHN.
24A Places where kids can feed goats and sheep: PETTINGZOOS.
40A Classic Nintendo character named after F. Scott Fitzgerald’s wife: PRINCESSZELDA.
52A Warsaw currency: POLISHZLOTY. Will they ever join the euro? No.

64A So simple … like 17-, 24-, 40- and 52-Across?: EASYPEASY. Because P Z for all the answers.

Finished this one in 4:28.

NYT Crossword Puzzle 10-24-21 Complete (contains spoilers)

I pulled out 12D One hell of a writer?: DANTE because this year’s theme for the Magic Castle is Dante’s Inferno. Well, it’s Dante’s Inferno II because the theme a decade ago was regular Dante’s Inferno, and a fire did break out, and it was bad.

But this year they have a specialty drink called El Diablo, and it comes with an awesome souvenir cup.

The title of this puzzle is Sports Nuts.

22A Your ex’s new date whom you just can’t stand?: OFFENSIVEREBOUND.
34A Kegels, e.g.?: FLOOREXERCISE.
51A First square of a crossword?: STARTINGBLOCK.
68A “I’ll be your waiter tonight,” e.g.?: SERVICELINE.
82A Conspiracy theory so wild that it can’t be aired?: UNPLAYABLELIE.


96A Plan to leave at a very specific evening time?: SEVENTENSPLIT. I learned in college the theory of how to knock down both pins. I’ve tried but haven’t been successful. I also rarely get the opportunity.
114A Blackjack dealer?: DESIGNATEDHITTER.

Finished this one in 40:01.

NYT Spelling Bee 10-23-21 final

Tonight Calah and I got our booster shots for the vaccine. How am I eligible? My lovely wife works with the infirm, and I live with her, So as scary as it sometimes is knowing that she intentionally goes into places where the people are guaranteed to be sick to the point of knowing that they need medical attention, there’s the benefit in knowing that I’m at an elevated risk of catching scary stuff. I know that tomorrow is going to be a bear, but 🤷‍♀️.

Yesterday I missed DIME, EDDIED, FIEF, HIDE, HIED, MEDIUM, MUDDIED, and MUMMIFIED.

Meatier Misses

It was a short Spelling Bee, and I didn’t miss anything too nuts.

Today’s summary

Letters: ADEIHNP
Final score: 44 words for 218 points.
Genius minimum: 213 points.
First word: ADDENDA.
Pangrams: PINHEAD and PINHEADED.

NYT Crossword Puzzle October 23, 2021 Complete (contains spoilers)

I pulled out 15A Like cranks: GROUCHY because I’ve found that the only crossword thing worse than a puzzle edited by Will Shortz is a puzzle edited by Will Shortz and written by Sam Ezersky. The NYT Spelling Bee has a lot of nonsense, and when Sam writes a crossword puzzle, it’s not much different. A lot of the words were weird, and the tougher answers weren’t rewarding.

The best part was that there was no theme for this Saturday puzzle.

Finished this one in 24:23.

NYT Crossword Puzzle 10-21-21 Complete (contains spoilers)

More later, but I’ve run out of time and have an early morning. Go Dodgers! Two more to win to get to the World Series 😮 😮 😮

I pulled out 20A Number of Emily Dickinson poems, out of the 1,700+ she wrote, that were published during her lifetime: TEN because I find it amazing that she only had 10 items published while she was alive and people are talking about her a century later. Meanwhile I’m nearing 1000 posts on this blog, and I have no illusions that people not related to me will know about me a quarter of a century after I’m wormfood.

Finished this one in 24:11.

DayThis WkBestAverage4-Wk AvgStreak
Monday7:413:499:235:3979
Tuesday7:105:2213:118:603
Wednesday15:527:3817:0317:4220
Thursday24:1112:1228:2022:156
Friday10:2930:5817:3019
Saturday20:1132:4831:5919
Sunday15:1152:4140:336