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.
INROAD: Meh. 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
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. Omitted words: PANDORA, PAPI, DARPA, NARD, NORAD
Absolutely frustrating when genius level is at 57 points. Like, seriously? The article about the Spelling Bee was published yesterday, and the first one out is this one?
Anyway, as accurately predicted, there were a lot of answers I missed yesterday.
IMAM: Sorry LAMA: That’s two spiritual leaders in a row. LAMINA: Oh! This is a layer. You know, like how you laminate. OK. I see you, NYT Spelling Bee. LAMINAL: I don’t know nearly as much about phonetics as some in my Tuesday night board games group do, but now I know one more thing than I did before! This is where you put your tongue to the roof of your mouth to make consonant sounds in words like LamiNaL. LIMA: The type of beans kidneys look like. LIMINAL: Relating to a transitional or initial stage of a process. LIMN: First reaction is that this is not a word. Second reaction is that HORCHATA absolutely should have been a word and that I’m insulted that a word that means to depict or describe in painting or words is more important than something tangible such as a delicious beverage. MAIM: fine. MAMMALIAN: Seriously? They wouldn’t take MAMMALIA, they wouldn’t take ANAMALIA, but they take MAMMALIAN. Unconscionable. MANIA: Yeah! MILITIAMAN: But no TILLMAN, PITMAN, MILLMAN MINI: oh. TAILLAMP: all right. TATAMI: wow. I missed this yesterday. Clearly didn’t stick with me.
Today I started out with the pangram. I think there is only one. I finished with the minimum necessary for genius level.
Final score: 17 words (!) for 57 points (!) Genius minimum: 57 points (!) First word: ALCHEMY Omitted words: CALAH, CHYEAH, CHACHA, ALEYCHEM, MALACHEY, ELYAN, MELECH, HAMLACHYM