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Joseph Greenbaum author page

5 puzzles by Joseph Greenbaum
with Jim Horne comments

TotalDebutLatest
58/21/20215/28/2022
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
0001022
Scrabble
1.57
Joseph Greenbaum
Sat 5/28/2022
ASAPOCHREDJED
PAPERTRAILYOGA
PASTASAUCESHOD
BEAVSTEPSONS
LETHEHIND
IAMRATWAXRAG
TRAVELEDINSTYLE
ARRIVESONTHEDOT
LIVEINTHEMOMENT
ODEETSTAONEO
LAWSSANTA
WORSHIPSEVES
DIVEORATORICAL
IKEAWATERSLIDE
SIRSSNERDAGED

Jim here, sitting in for Jeff who is rewinding his overdue Blockbuster tapes.

ASAP at 1-Across is an "Order with four periods." Really? Well, at the NYT it is. In fact, at the NYT, NYT is N.Y.T.

When I worked there, the style guide had a complicated section on the question of whether to include periods. It involved the length of the abbreviation and whether it was an acronym (pronounced as a single word like LASER) or an initialism (spelled out like A.S.A.P.) The oddest example (now finally abandoned) was that IBM had to be I.B.M., even though the official company name was IBM and the letters officially no longer stood for anything. Traditions evolve slowly.

PASTA SAUCE on bow ties is an amusing image. Obvious misdirects can still be humorous.

Saturday puzzles often include a category of clues I call "Fun facts you don't actually have to know." If you're not familiar with zardozi embroidery, the clue asking where to find it (48-Down) feels impossible. But it's probably a country name. Four letters, so that narrows it down. 47-Across gives you the starting I, so that leaves two options. Zardozi sounds, what? Persian maybe? IRAN is more likely than IRAQ anyway, so in it goes. Who was the British poet-laureate in 1668 (two years after the Great London Fire)? Who knows, but it's a better clue than "old-timey British poet you've heard of that fits the squares." Similarly, let's imagine you're the type of person unfamiliar with the exact percentage of the world's wood various companies use, but 1% is a lot, and that points to an easy answer. There. I've gone from complete ignorance of three important clue elements to learning three interesting facts.

Stacked grid spanners go in and out of style, and today we get three outstanding answer phrases dead center. The long answers throughout are excellent. Bravo.

Wed 4/20/2022
SLAPSIRSTHEME
MADRECUEWAXED
USAINBOLTILIAD
GEMSTONESNOTTY
TISZEKE
PRINCEFIELDER
NAANHELPMEROB
ANSELYASSPRAY
BATENOKISLOSE
MARGARETCOURT
ARSERBS
SIPTEAPHOTOIDS
ANAISTIMDUNCAN
STINTONOSEEYA
SONGSOKSESTOP
Fri 2/4/2022
AKALIESTOSWUM
VERMONSTERUHNO
LIFEONMARSMADD
AREASENRONTEE
BADREPDONOHARM
AYESIRTADS
OMBGOONSTREET
REASONSTOOTALL
LACHOYMIROLLC
SKISRIPEST
TURNEVILRHOMBI
OROYIPESATEAT
TINTSPACEBALLS
ENYAALGALBLOOM
MGMTSEEMLYNOE
Fri 11/5/2021
STARDOMSPOUSE
MINORCACHURROS
ODDDUCKAUTOBOT
GASGUESSTIMATE
LOSPLUSTEN
LAYOPENOHSO
FLUIDVETTEIOU
DONTOVERTHINKIT
ICISENSENOELS
CHOOGOTPAST
NATTALLABC
TURKEYWRAPSAHH
OPENSEAYALELAW
POPULARECONOMY
ONSTARRAGTOPS
Sat 8/21/2021
BURPEESMAHATMA
OREILLYEPOCHAL
WINGMENLOSTART
ELEVATORPITCH
EWERPUNTHEE
PSATSSRSVOILA
DABDYEDSEXT
FULLOFSURPRISES
EENYCAITTRY
IRENEAKINAHAS
DENBTENONES
THEWARONDRUGS
AEROGELAUTOPIA
GAGREELTHEROCK
SLYNESSERRATIC