Tag Archives: NYT

NYT Spelling Bee 10-23-20 final

Back to the trend of short puzzles! Calah beat me in total score today, so that was pretty cool.

I missed some annoying ones yesterday.

ALLAY: I’m afraid I missed this.
ARRAY: And I use Excel!
AWRY: Like how some of this puzzle went for me.
DRAY: I missed this beer cart again!
DRYAD: I missed this tree nymph again!
DRYWALL: It turns into steam when fire hits it. Who knew?
DYAD: Part of the misses in this area.
KAYAK: I miss kayaking. I went with my cousins a while ago.
YAWL: A two-masted fore-and-aft-rigged sailing boat with the mizzenmast stepped far aft so that the mizzen boom overhangs the stern.

Final score: 24 words for 84 points.
Genius minimum: 79 points
First word: HITCH
Missed opportunities: TIKTOK (doesn’t have an H), THOT, THICC, CHOOCHOO, HIPHOP

No crosswords today because I was busy working on the thing for Tuesday’s series about woodworking.

NYT Spelling Bee 10-22-20 final

And we’re right back to the short puzzles that are make you feel like you’re someone Trump owes money to: Go for it, but you’re probably not going to get much for your work.

Yesterday I missed a bunch!

Good news is that I got all the pangrams.

COCCI: I know I’ve missed these spherical bacteria before.
CODDLE: I don’t even like this word.
CODDLED: So of course I don’t like this one.
CODICIL: It’s like an amendment to a will.
COLLIE: I left the dogs out. Now we know.
COMEDIC: Others would say I usually leave this out, too.
COOED: This one’s for the birds.
DECO: And I like art deco 😦
DEICE: I didn’t know even what I was looking at. It’s to remove ice from. DE-ICE. Typical SoCal guy over here.
DEICED: The past tense of what I still have never done in my life.
DEICIDE: There’s no killing what can’t be killed!
ECOCIDE: According to Purple Hands McConnell, this doesn’t exist.
OLEIC: Fat chance I miss this one again!

In the roughness of today, I eked out a genius result.

Final score: 18 words for 98 points
Genius minimum: 91 points
First word: AWAY

NYT Crossword 10-22-20 DNF

I’m calling it. I should have a long time ago, but now that’s it.

I couldn’t resolve everything, and my guesses didn’t get me anywhere. There are probably a lot of things wrong on this, but this is as far as I’ve gotten. I’ll revisit it another day, but that’s it for today.

I really wish I could have gotten the answer to 61A, and usually I figure the one out that brings them all together after figuring out the thread and the other answers, but none of that happened today. Better luck tomorrow, right?

NYT Spelling Bee 10-21-20 final


If that had been the only one I missed yesterday, I would be livid. It wasn’t the only one I missed yesterday, but it was pretty close.

Today’s puzzle was super long! And with at least three pangrams. I guess for all those who are new to the puzzle, it was a bait-and-switch. As if to say: “Here are a bunch of short, boring ones. Now try one where the minimum genius level is 200.

I didn’t spend all day on it. I think total time was may be 45 minutes. I had work to do that includes removing a bunch of stripped screws from that end table I’m working on. More on that will be in a blog post on the new woodworking miniseries on my blog with entries coming out on Tuesdays.

Here’s what I missed yesterday.

EPEE: I really gotta stop missing this word.
PAYEE: This is Trump’s America. What does this term even mean?
PFFT: Unbelievable.
TEPEE: The same thing as a TEEPEE but with one fewer letter. Hooray alternate spellings.

Today’s score will mean tons of words in tomorrow’s list.

Final score: 43 words for 207 points
Genius minimum: 200 points
First word: DOMICILE
Absent word: CELLIE, COOLIO

NYT Crossword 10-21-20 Complete

A moment of silence for quibi.

That’s over, so here’s today’s crossword.

Now that the election is less than two weeks away, I do find the humor in
48A Like Barack Obama’s presidency: TWOTERM. With Trump trailing by nearly 10 points (archived here for the future), it certainly seems like a dig.

Today’s long answers were puns based on place names.
17A Ways to cross a river in Switzerland?: BERNBRIDGES. Bern is arguably but not officially the capital of Switzerland, another clear demonstration of how evasive the country really is.
28A First showing at a film festival in France?: CANNESOPENER. Because Cannes’s second claim to fame is its film festival. For sure its proudest thing to boast is that it’s a sister city of Beverly Hills.
44A Census taker in India?: DELHICOUNTER. Nobody ever gets tired of a Delhi/deli joke.
58A Police dragnet in South Korea?: SEOULSEARCH. Same goes to Seoul/soul. Who hasn’t seen the South Korea’s Got Seoul T-shirt?

I had a typo in this one that I finally resolved. Finished in 19:04. Average Wednesday 17:50.

NYT Spelling Bee 10-20-20 final

Today’s was fun mostly because I got to compete with Calah. She has her own subscription now, so that lets me compete with her. You know, friendly competition. I eked out a win today, but she reached genius for the first time. It’s only going to get tougher for me from here.

Other than that, it was a weird short puzzle along the lines of what I’ve been grousing about the last few days.

But I missed some yesterday, and some of those I really thought I had gotten. So I don’t know what happened.

DUNNO: I didn’t realize this was a word that was acceptable in this way.
ODOR: It really stinks that I missed this one.
ROAR: I really thought I’d gotten this, but nope!
RONDO: My initial thought is 2020 NBA Finals Champion Rajon Rondo, but it’s a musical term whose definition is: A musical form with a recurring leading theme, often found in the final movement of a sonata or concerto.

Final score: 23 words for 89 points
Genius minimum: 71 points
First word: PAPAYA
Omitted words: PEEPEE, TAPPET

NYT Crossword Puzzle 10-20-20 Complete

I did this puzzle on my phone (while watching Love Is Blind–I really like Kenny-Kelly and Cameron-Lauren), but I’m writing this post on my computer.

First off, either I’ve been out of the game for too long or SPLIFF is a new addition to the crossword. I’m just imagining a generation of people who are introduced to the term through the crossword.

The theme of this puzzle is the answer to
38A Like goods that are temporarily out of stock … or a hint, alphabetically, to the answers to the starred clues: BACKORDERED. Took me a moment, but I realized that the answers to the starred clues are in reverse-alphabetical order. And why isn’t that omegapsiacal order?
17A *Followed warnings: TOOKHEED (DEHKOT)
18A *Materialistic sort, stereotypically: YUPPIE (EIPUY) Also the etymology of yuppie is from the acronym of Young Urban Professional and dates back to the Reagan era.
23A *Marijuana cigarette, informally: SPLIFF (FILPS)
24A *Posted inflammatory blog comments, e.g.: TROLLED (DELORT)
50A *Chewbacca, e.g.: WOOKIEE (EIKOW)
52A *Autonomous cleaner: ROOMBA (ABMOR)
59A *”L’chaim!”: TOLIFE (EFILOT)
62A *Like toddlers in high chairs, often: SPOONFED (DEFNOPS)

I did this one on my phone, so it was a little slower than if I’d done it on the computer. The time was 12:49. Average for Tuesday is 14:02, so go figure.

NYT Spelling Bee 10-19-20 final

Another brief puzzle! I think there was a series of short ones toward the end of August(?) that kinda bothered me, but this I think it’s weird that right after there’s an article about the Spelling Bee that they publish a series of lame ones. Is it because they think the short ones are attractive to newer audiences? Because I do not agree. I think there’s a happy medium between impossible and interminable. Lull people into a false sense of fun and then get them with the long one that I personally like and the short ones that I detest.

And now for yesterday’s missed words.

ANDIRON: I guess it’s also known as a fireplace log grate. ANDIRON is a way less descriptive name. Don’t worry, the etymology is even weirder:
“fire-dog, one of the pair of metallic stands used to support wood burned on an open hearth,” c. 1300, from Old French andier “andiron,” which is of unknown origin, perhaps from Gaulish *andero- “a young bull” (source also of Welsh anner “heifer”), which would make sense if they once had bull’s heads cast onto them. Altered by influence of Middle English iren (see iron (n.)).
ANON: I keep missing this one. I don’t know why. It’s so easy.
APIARIAN: I’ll let GOB handle this one.

NAAN: My bad. Still, what happened to HORCHATA?
NAIAD: A Greek mythology water nymph. I think I’ve missed this one before, too.
NONPAID: Like a quarter of America right now, AMIRITE?!
PARADOR: I can’t even with this one. It’s a hotel in Spain and owned and administered by the Spanish government. But, again, no HORCHATA, no TORTA.
PARADROP: I don’t fault myself for missing this one.
RAPINI: A Mediterranean turnip.
RIPARIAN: Relating to or on the banks of a river. Cool.

Final score: 24 words for 81 points.
Genius minimum: 71
First word: JUROR

NYT Crossword 10-19-20 Complete

I’m trying to start up the crossword portion of my blog again, and here’s today’s. I finished slower than my average for a Monday because I got stuck trying to resolve a single answer.

39A Make catty remarks from the side. I had put SNIDE, even though I hadn’t heard that used as a verb. It sounds right, right? And 30D Big name in dog food? I don’t have a dog, so I don’t have too good a knowledge of that aisle at the supermarket. Turns out the dog food isn’t ALDO but ALPO. And ALPO is a Purina brand. SNIPE makes more sense anyway.

Today’s theme was emotions/senses in drawn comics, and they weren’t all across answers!

16A Anger, in the comics: STORMCLOUD
59A Nervousness, in the comics: SWEATDROPS
15D Odor, in the comics: WAVYLINES
26D Idea, in the comics: LIGHTBULB

Not my best effort on time at 13:16. My lifetime average for Mondays is 9:42.

NYT Spelling Bee 10-18-20 final

This puzzle was… fine. I barely got to genius, but I got there. I feel like there’s a third pangram, but also I don’t. How’s that for being conclusive?

Here’s what went wrong yesterday:

HALE: strong and healthy… if you’re an old person.
HEMAL: relating to blood. You know, like hematoma.
HEME: More blood stuff!
LECH: lust
LEECH: I thought I’d gotten this one. I know I got LEACH, but I thought I got LEECH, too. NOPE!
MAYHEM: That reminds me! I should watch Sons of Anarchy all the way through, right?
YECCH: On a scale of logical to go-away-and-never-come-back, this rates six Will Shortzes.
YECH: The above word but spelled the way a normal human being would spell it.

Today I found two pangrams. Is there a third? I don’t know. We may never know. I took a break partway through the day and found the second pangram immediately upon returning.

Final score: 43 words for 183 points
First word: PARANOID, and I don’t know what it means for me that I found that word well before I found RAINDROP.