Tag Archives: Byron Walden

NYT Crossword Puzzle 9-4-21 Complete (contains spoilers)

I pulled out 22A Govt. plant inspector: OSHA because I had put USDA there. For a couple years I was on an audit client in El Segundo. Not far from that client was a US Department of Agriculture Plant Inspection Station & Animal Import Center. I’m not saying the clue is wrong because they’re talking plant like concern, but I always kinda hoped to see some lions or whatever being brought to that office while I was on an afternoon walk. I started going on those walks when my pants stopped fitting due to the long days, bad eating habits, and lack of exercise. I never saw lions there, but I did lose some weight.

No theme this puzzle. But it was obscure in a not-fun way. I guessed a lot of this puzzle, and things fit. Not the most fun. The NYTXW has been overall disappointing as of late.

Finished this one in 30:12.

DayThis WkBestAverage4-Wk AvgStreak

NYT Crossword 6-9-21 Complete (contains spoilers)

Three days in a row of crosswords. Really feels like old times. As you can see from the featured image, I solved this one on my phone.

Now, I have a bone to pick with UPS. I got an email that a package I have to sign for will be delivered between noon and 2pm. I watched the live map as the truck spiraled around the area. It got close and then moved away. At about 2:30, the map updated to inform me that the package was downgraded to “In Your Area” status from “Almost There,” and delivery will be made before 7pm! Very frustrating.

I pulled out 3D Espressos “stained” with a bit of milk: MACCHIATOS because I made a joke the other day about the Ford Mustang Mach-E. While they currently only have a few colors, I decided I’d take way too long and make a Caramel Mach-E Auto. Totally worth the pun.

I’m not a Photoshop expert, and that’s fine because I don’t have Photoshop. I use GIMP for my image manipulation. It’s not exactly Photoshop, but it does what I need it to!

Very proud!

Today’s theme had to with something we’re very familiar with!

20A Kibitzing passenger: BACKSEATDRIVER.
41A Blabbing informant: STOOLPIGEON.
51A Dilettantish know-it-all: ARMCHAIREXPERT.

I finished this one in 14:17.

NYT Crossword 12-1-20 Complete

I went straight to the Congratulations! screen with this Tuesday puzzle. I took it slow and steady, since I did it right while I was waking up. It’s fun to complete something so early in the morning.

I highlighted 32A Sweet’s counterpart: SOUR because it raises a question that I’ve discussed every so often. If you have an opinion on the topic or a reaction, please comment on this post.

What is the opposite of sweet? Is it sour? Is it salty? Is it savory? Is it foul? Is it bitter?

I don’t think the opposite of sweet is sour. While they are nice to contrast in areas like sweet and sour meatballs, sweet and sour chicken, and Mega Warheads candy, my feeling is that they are individually fun tastes. I set the child standard here. If I liked this as a child, they’re not opposites.

So, too, with salty. I like salty potato chips. I like mixed nuts. And as for things that are sweet and salty? Salted caramel. Kettle corn. Not opposites.

I disagree that it’s savory because the definition is that it is more than one kind of taste. It does not qualify on that count. Also from lexico, the definition is” “(of food) belonging to the category that is salty or spicy rather than sweet.” Sweet is omitted and used as a contrast. Also salty is part of savory, and I’ve established that salty isn’t the opposite, so savory fails there.

As for foul, my feeling is that it’s the opposite of flavorful. Foul is bad overall. My point is opposite of sweet specifically.

That leaves us with bitter. You know, because the list I put together is all encompassing.

I posit that bitter is the opposite of sweet. As a child, I did not like bitter flavors. In the Passover seder, bitter herbs are incorporated because they’re unpleasant. But Passover aside, how many people like IPAs? I do, but I didn’t like IPAs as a child. And I probably would not have liked them if I had had access to them as a child.

A huffpo thing I found interesting to read is Hate IPAs? It’s Because Your Genetics Programmed You To Dislike Bitter Beers. Hipster Courtney Iseman writes that while the human brain has a long history of using the bitter flavor to indicate that a thing should not be eaten (and cites another huffpo piece), we can train ourselves to like bitter stuff.

I can’t vouch for the research up until the training yourself to like bitter things part. I now enjoy IPAs.

I didn’t have to train myself to like the other types of flavor.

In an unusual move for this puzzle’s, I got the answer to the theme clue and used that to help me get theme answers.

17A *Many a Silicon Valley business: SOFTWARECOMPANY
Note: I have started picking up on learning Python again, and I may start a weekly progress blog about Python. I’m thinking Thursdays for that, but we’ll see.
39A *Devastating event in a real estate bust: HOMEFORECLOSURE
61A *Question suggesting “That just about sums things up”: WHATMORECANISAY
7D *Highly stressful situations, metaphorically: PRESSURECOOKER
10A *Like a guesstimate, by nature: IMPRECISE

33D Community sports facility … or a hint to the answers to the five starred clues: RECCENTER.

You know, because REC is in the center for the answers.

Finished this one in 7:40. Very flawed NYT Crossword statistics page has my average Tuesday at 13:56. My Tuesday record is from August of this year at 5:52.