38 thoughts on “LA Times Crossword 24 Jun 22, Friday”

  1. Well, no errors. But it was a grind.
    I got the theme soon enough. But the crosses were killers for me.

    Never heard of SHAKE SHACK or KENS steak house dressing. Then SYRAH wine really threw me.

    Chicago has a MIDWEST accent? What is that? I’m from the Midwest. There is no accent. Maybe that’s the joke?

    1. I grew up in Southern California, then spent a decade in Southern Arizona, and now I find myself in Minneapolis. Trust me, there’s definitely a Midwest accent. Trust me.

    2. You must have never left the Midwest. We sound nuts!! Watch the Beanie Babies doc on HBO and tell me we don’t have an accent. Doc is based out of Chicagoland. I’m from Detroit. Good day buddy!

    3. You must’ve never left the Midwest then. We sound nuts!! Watch the Beanie Babies doc on HBO based out of Chicagoland. I’m from Detroit and all of my friends from other parts rip on me. Good day!

  2. It would be so nice to have a puzzle without idiot MISSPELLED STUPID WORDS!!!! I cannot state how I despise this kind of puzzle!!! Once again, I take, and pay for, the print edition mainly for the crossword and word jumble. This idiocy makes me question whether I want to continue doing so. Just put puzzles in the paper that uses correctly spelled words, in ENGLISH!

    1. Aw, lighten up, Mary. Take a chill pill. All the cutesy devices, including themes and all those clues ending with question marks, challenge us to think outside the boxes. I submit that such puzzles, even if at times vexing, are more beneficial to our intellectual health than the plain vanilla puzzles you seem to crave. If you disagree, perhaps you should go to the store and purchase a (any) book of crossword puzzles, full of BO-ring puzzles.

      For what it’s worth, I do not enjoy trying to come up with the name of some SFB HTGT pop idol, but that’s just me…

      Anyway, I do enjoy reading your comments, you old curmudgeon! Stay well.

      1. Ditto from me Engineer, and for (what seems like) the millionth time… NOTHING was misspelled in the solution to yet another puzzle. Ciao.

    2. I don’t mind these types of puzzles, esp on a Friday. I grokked the theme (although never heard that word). I don’t know if all versions indicate where the center words are, but Wash Post print edition had circles around the letters that made up the center words. I don’t agree that there are misspelled words. (Mary).

  3. Ridiculous puzzle! All of the “special” clues were definitely a S-T-R-E-T-C-H. Even when seeing the answers, it was still a bit iffy! (Is that a word?)
    Enjoy the weekend! 😊

    1. Iffy is in the OED. The two first quotations are from FDR, in the 40’s.
      I was hung up on Midwest accent (yes, everyone has an accent) and ACE.
      I always thought of the Q as questioning or querying, so I made it into Ask – which spoiled my accent!

  4. This puzzle was so far out in left field the only people that got it was the constructor and Bill…stupid is as stupid does ….this was a stupid one !!!

  5. PUZerrorZLE! The long-recognized mark of midwest speech is that it has no accent. Also fmi, where in the USA is a “Shake Shack” that would be of common knowledge?

    1. Funny part is that most people anywhere in the world don’t think they have an accent until they travel and get all the “why do you sound weird?” questions. I gathered it’s a same experience for everyone elsewhere in the world too.

      I will say for my experiences, the midwest accent is definitely seen as exotic to some of the people I encountered when I got to visit Europe, or when I’ve done audio over the net to ones there.

  6. 17:34

    This was a real exercise! When I saw the embedded CRISIS start to form, I GROKked the theme. I’m pretty sure “grok” lasted about as long as “groovy”, even among nerdy weirdos like me. Speaking of weirdos, I played ACCORDIONS (well, just one at a time) regularly through high school. I occasionally found opportunities to play afterward. I still have it, but some of the reeds are stuck and I never got around to fixing it.

  7. 1::00:50 no errors…since Patti Varol started editing these puzzles they seem to be much tougher and also much more obscure clueing 👎
    If CAB is an abbreviation why isn’t it noted as such, I was looking for something like Uber or Lyft…maybe it’s just me?
    Stay safe😀

  8. Clever theme, painstakingly put together… but apparently not a hit with most solvers. Constructor’s self-indulgence? If so, there’s wrong with it, I reckon. Who doesn’t enjoy showing off a little now and then?

    1. Gimmick puzzles, like this one, are typically only a hit with a very very small percentage of solvers, yet they keep happening. I gather what most editors actually hear are only from the 1% of the crowd that doesn’t mind these things, and not from the majority of their audiences.

      Personally, I’ve found a lot of gimmick puzzles are grokked simply from experience doing them versus anything intuitive. I’ve had plenty of experience doing these and saw this one for what it was trying to do. Ultimately though, I can see why they are poor experiences for most solvers simply because you have the feeling of the constructor “playing dirty” or “fooling” you. I’ll admit even after knowing most all the trickery to expect that I still don’t get a lot of joy out of doing gimmick puzzles, and they always are (like this one), just something to be endured and be glad you’re over with.

  9. 16:00 or thereabouts, DNF. This was an awful puzzle, both for the many inane clues and for the mid- gadget. Complete waste of time

  10. 35+ – but really a DNF because of cheats/check grids.

    I can’t really disagree with most of the concerns about this puzzle’s construction that were voiced today.

    But (aw, you knew a “but” was coming) I actually thought quite highly of the construction. Yes, there were a few “strange” clues (Cab/SYRAH, Grasp/GROK, etc) but overall, a nifty puzzle. I’m “way far” from good at this, but I still enjoyed it.

    I got the theme very early on, but was just not good enough to get the crosses and the rest of the puzzle. I originally thought it might be a REBUS, but got it figured out quickly.

    Someday, perhaps, I will be able to complete a puzzle like this without help.


    Be Well

  11. I didn’t even try this one; after reading the comments, I guess I’m
    glad I didn’t. Better tomorrow I hope.

  12. 31:30, 2 errors (had Serah instead of Syrah, once again didn’t pay attention to the horizontal).

    I really don’t understand all the complaints about this one. IMO the theme was enjoyable and clever, seems like one of those obvious wordplays that has been independently been done at least once before. It was especially tricky I think because the obvious Chicago answer is something having to do with the Midway.

  13. IMHO this puzzle was not stupid, but it was certainly a big S-T-R-E-T-C-H for way too many times – – along with it being unfair in several instances. If the puzzler uses an abbreviation then there has to be some sort of notation that it is an abbreviation. And “rust” is a specific kind of oxide that must also use the word “iron,” just as “urchins” must have a modifier. EDM? Obscure to the max. Who knew, but I arrived at the answer from crosses. Diaries are not always locked. Finally, the answer to 13A is fine, but the word “invocation” is incorrect. Bill used the correct word in his blog. Where is the Puzzle Editor these days?

  14. 20:59 with revisions of: AMEN>ABRA, SCAR>CHAR, CANTFINDME>DONTMINDME.

    New items/names: SYRAH, Scott LANG, “coquito,” “Euphoria,” “Emily Harrington,” WNBA SKY. Didn’t know that Coco is a scent. Took a while to recall GROK and whr EDM might mean.

    Figured out the theme with at 26A – mid-term exam. Knowing that helped with the other theme answers.

    Definitely took a little work, and a little guessing, to solve it all. The last area to fill in were the top left and middle sections.

  15. I totally agree with all the negative comments. Didn’t even get half way through before I threw in the towel. Tough is one thing and I enjoy thinking outside the box but when there are so many little known names, foreign words , and outright over-the-wall (okay, stupid) clues, these puzzles cease to be entertaining or even mind-expanding. All this on top of the worst golf round of my life. Sheesh!

  16. Pretty tricky Friday for me; took 39:11 with about 10 “check-grids” to get to the finish. I liked the theme, even if I didn’t get the 1st and 3rd theme answers.

    I did actually know EDM (and SYNTH), GROK and even SKY (only by chance) as well as SHACK (there’s one nearby, but I still like In-N-Out) and I knew a little about Euphoria…so I should of done okay. Sadly I didn’t know LANG, ACE, COIF, CACOA or OCTET and a few other things, like the rating for Euphoria.

  17. This was incredibly stupid. Many of them made little sense or like someone else said, were SUCH a stretch (that I won’t even bother doing any of her other puzzles is they come up). Lame. Been doing crosswords for 40 years and never have I felt like this was an exercise in futility. What is she getting at? Only something in her mind but no one else’s. Baby Aspirin? Adult ADHD? Seriously? You would have to be a mindreader to come up with some of these. No way of knowing otherwise.

    1. Well sure, if someone gave me baby(blank) and said fill it in, aspirin wouldn’t come to mind too fast probably, but they’re called crosswords for a reason… I solved that one like countless others…after a few letters from the “ cross words” filled in, there’s aspirin.

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