Sunday, 1/4/09

NYT (p) 7:10 ... LAT (p) 8:35 ... MR (p) 11:25 ... 11/9 BG (p) 7:34 ... 11/16 BG (p) 7:30 ... CS (p) 5:08 ... MGCC 3:12

Very easy Times puzzle today, classic and elegant. Had an unusual amount of trouble with Reagle's puzzle -- several of the theme puns were unfamiliar, like "My Little Margie" and "The Mad Monk", and I had BEAT ONE'S BAKER instead of ...BATCH. But the final two theme entries were laugh-out-loud funny -- well, OF BISON BEN is groan-out-loud funny.

That's two straight Henry Hook Boston Globe crosswords that seemed easier than usual, but Gorski's Globe had some difficult spots. Had to make educated guesses at three letters of SHEEP MAY SAFELY GRAZE... Finally, Bob Klahn's Sunday Challenge was about average for a Klahn. Sequential pairs of clues include Pool poker/Curly poker?, PC key/Sea key, Station launched in 1986/Station launched in 1976, Getz into jazz/Group into jazz... Does he plan on these pairs while filling the grid? And is that more or less genius than coming up with them after the fact?

Matt Gaffney's "The Inversion Version" is easy breezy, and I figured out the meta-answer in only 5 minutes or so. Should have taken 5 seconds, but I'm a mediocre Scrabble player...

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