"Head Count" - June 12, 2020

A place to discuss the weekly Wall Street Journal Crossword Puzzle Contest, starting every Thursday around 4:00 p.m. Eastern time. Please do not post any answers or hints before the contest deadline which is midnight Sunday Eastern time.
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MarkL
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Re: "Head Count" - June 12, 2020

#361

Post by MarkL » Tue Jun 16, 2020 1:07 pm

Bob cruise director wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 11:45 am
Here are some charts. The good about Excel is that you can plot anything against anything once you have the data in the files. The question is whether the information is of any value. I will let you decide if this or anything else is more than idle curiosity.
I see a rabbit in the first graph...
'tis... A lovely day for a Guinness!

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MarkL
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#362

Post by MarkL » Tue Jun 16, 2020 1:31 pm

Quick tally of my fails shows 18 cries of "Uncle" to Mr Gaffney, and 9 to Mike/Marie; full disclosure, there was an additional P. Berry in there. Earlier prediction was 3:2 ratio.

For the new muggles. my first full year, 2018, I manged to reach shore just under 70% of the time, 81% in 2019, and batting 0.875 so far in 2020.
In 2018, eight surrenders to Matt and seven to Mike/Marie; in 2019, seven Matt and two for Mike; in 2020, only three to Matt, so far!

Experience and learning the 'tells' of the instructors can be attained by keeping at it.
'tis... A lovely day for a Guinness!

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tim1217
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#363

Post by tim1217 » Tue Jun 16, 2020 1:51 pm

Bob cruise director wrote:
Mon Jun 15, 2020 7:55 am
I got hung up on "head" meaning bathroom for the longest time...
...and that's why you're the 'cruise' director!
No man steps into the same river twice.
Because it is not the same river,
And he is not the same man.
Heraclitus

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Bob cruise director
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#364

Post by Bob cruise director » Tue Jun 16, 2020 2:34 pm

BrianMac wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 12:31 pm
hcbirker wrote:
Mon Jun 15, 2020 11:35 pm
How did your Zoom meeting go? I was going to join but right before my son announced they had bought their first house and I was totally engulfed by text messages and updates to the situation. Hope it went well!
It was great! Nice to put some faces (and voices) to names. There was only a handful of us, but we had a nice talk about everything from solving techniques, to crossword tournaments, crossword constructing and the difference between Gaffney and Shenk. Thanks to Sal for setting it up. He mentioned that he might try to set up another one next week, which I hope he does. Hopefully we can get some more people to join...don't be shy!!
I missed it but would like to join the next one. My laptop camera does not work so you may be stuck with a picture of me doing a crossword which is what I have used for other zoom meetings
Bob Stevens
Cruise Director

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Wendy Walker
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#365

Post by Wendy Walker » Tue Jun 16, 2020 3:42 pm

BrianMac wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 12:31 pm
hcbirker wrote:
Mon Jun 15, 2020 11:35 pm
How did your Zoom meeting go? I was going to join but right before my son announced they had bought their first house and I was totally engulfed by text messages and updates to the situation. Hope it went well!
It was great! Nice to put some faces (and voices) to names. There was only a handful of us, but we had a nice talk about everything from solving techniques, to crossword tournaments, crossword constructing and the difference between Gaffney and Shenk. Thanks to Sal for setting it up. He mentioned that he might try to set up another one next week, which I hope he does. Hopefully we can get some more people to join...don't be shy!!
I concur with Brian's remarks. The Zoom Muggle meeting was good fun. Sending thanks to Sal for organizing it!
Good luck, fellow Muggles!

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Jacksull
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Location: Scottsdale AZ

#366

Post by Jacksull » Tue Jun 16, 2020 4:59 pm

I was looking through the “hints and tips” thread today and came across this one (just about one year ago):


16 Post by BarbaraK » Mon Jun 10, 2019 6:57 am

One more tip - if the solving process leads you to a set of numbers, look at those squares in the grid and see if the letters in them spell something.
Jack Sullivan

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DrTom
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#367

Post by DrTom » Tue Jun 16, 2020 5:26 pm

This was not a good week for me but at least I can have a little fun with my predicament. Over on the MGWCC board I told them how we Muggles are prone to rewrite songs (or create poetry) to express our delight, or as is all too frequent, our dismay. So, I have adapted a familiar tune to fit the situation, and will get double duty out of it in that it is on the MGWCC Board as well. So with no further adieu, with apologies to Sir Andrew Lloyd Weber and T.S. Eliot, and with the lilting notes of Memory from Cats playing in the background:

Midnight, not a thought in my whole brain.
I have chased all my rabbits? I’m not smiling at home.
In the lamp light the scribbled sheets collect at my feet,
And the death knell starts to tone.

Memory, all alone in my office
I can dream of the old days, life was beautiful then.
I remember, the time I knew what solutions were.
Let the memory live again.

Every timepiece seems to beat, a fatalistic warning.
An idea flutters, ends up in the gutter, and soon it will be morning.

Midnight, I must put off the sun rise,
I must think of a new plan, and I mustn't give in.
When the dawn comes, this META will be a memory too,
And a new streak will begin

Burnt out ends of #2 pencils, the stale cold smell of morning.
An idea dies, another night is over, another day is dawning.

Nudge me, its so easy to nudge me
All alone with the memory, of my days in the sun.
If you nudge me, I may yet understand what happiness is.
Look, a new week has begun.


Oh, and I would have loved to do a Muggle Zoom but I was saving lives and stomping out disease this week (God I hope I did not get those two reversed), but NEXT week should the opportunity arise Tuesday - Thursday I will certainly try to "hop" in!

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Meg
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#368

Post by Meg » Tue Jun 16, 2020 5:44 pm

Wendy Walker wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 3:42 pm
BrianMac wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 12:31 pm
hcbirker wrote:
Mon Jun 15, 2020 11:35 pm
How did your Zoom meeting go? I was going to join but right before my son announced they had bought their first house and I was totally engulfed by text messages and updates to the situation. Hope it went well!
It was great! Nice to put some faces (and voices) to names. There was only a handful of us, but we had a nice talk about everything from solving techniques, to crossword tournaments, crossword constructing and the difference between Gaffney and Shenk. Thanks to Sal for setting it up. He mentioned that he might try to set up another one next week, which I hope he does. Hopefully we can get some more people to join...don't be shy!!
I concur with Brian's remarks. The Zoom Muggle meeting was good fun. Sending thanks to Sal for organizing it!
I just simply forgot!! Let’s do it again!

SewYoung
Posts: 229
Joined: Sun Apr 14, 2019 9:25 pm
Location: Meridian, MS

#369

Post by SewYoung » Tue Jun 16, 2020 5:55 pm

Meg wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 5:44 pm
Wendy Walker wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 3:42 pm
BrianMac wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 12:31 pm

It was great! Nice to put some faces (and voices) to names. There was only a handful of us, but we had a nice talk about everything from solving techniques, to crossword tournaments, crossword constructing and the difference between Gaffney and Shenk. Thanks to Sal for setting it up. He mentioned that he might try to set up another one next week, which I hope he does. Hopefully we can get some more people to join...don't be shy!!
I concur with Brian's remarks. The Zoom Muggle meeting was good fun. Sending thanks to Sal for organizing it!
I just simply forgot!! Let’s do it again!
As Brian said, it was good to actually see and speak to a few other Muggles. Enjoyed it very much and appreciate Our Pal, Sal for setting it up.

ReB
Posts: 42
Joined: Sun Mar 29, 2020 9:34 pm
Location: East Tennessee

#370

Post by ReB » Tue Jun 16, 2020 6:57 pm

Curious coincidence: Finally finished Saturday's cryptic puzzle (Digital Conversion), and one of its answers was this weeks meta answer (tally).

Nlbil
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Joined: Fri Jun 12, 2020 5:31 pm

#371

Post by Nlbil » Tue Jun 16, 2020 7:03 pm

My best dog ever was named Tally. But I still didn't get the meta...

Andrew Bradburn
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#372

Post by Andrew Bradburn » Tue Jun 16, 2020 9:34 pm

I used to post in here, but stopped after spending a couple of months basically just posting 'On shore' or words to that effect every week. After many years of trying, I finally won the coveted mug! I wanted to let all the Muggles who haven't yet won to know 1) don't give up, you will break through at some point, and 2) now that I have finally won a mug, I will no longer be sending in my answer (though I will continue to try to solve the meta each week), so you will all have (ever so slightly) better odds of winning.

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TPS
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#373

Post by TPS » Tue Jun 16, 2020 9:57 pm

Andrew Bradburn wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 9:34 pm
I used to post in here, but stopped after spending a couple of months basically just posting 'On shore' or words to that effect every week. After many years of trying, I finally won the coveted mug! I wanted to let all the Muggles who haven't yet won to know 1) don't give up, you will break through at some point, and 2) now that I have finally won a mug, I will no longer be sending in my answer (though I will continue to try to solve the meta each week), so you will all have (ever so slightly) better odds of winning.
Hey - thanks for posting that. It’s really appreciated.

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Bob cruise director
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#374

Post by Bob cruise director » Tue Jun 16, 2020 10:06 pm

Andrew Bradburn wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 9:34 pm
I used to post in here, but stopped after spending a couple of months basically just posting 'On shore' or words to that effect every week. After many years of trying, I finally won the coveted mug! I wanted to let all the Muggles who haven't yet won to know 1) don't give up, you will break through at some point, and 2) now that I have finally won a mug, I will no longer be sending in my answer (though I will continue to try to solve the meta each week), so you will all have (ever so slightly) better odds of winning.
Congratulations on winning the mug
Bob Stevens
Cruise Director

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hcbirker
Posts: 485
Joined: Thu Apr 11, 2019 7:24 pm
Location: Studio City, CA

#375

Post by hcbirker » Tue Jun 16, 2020 10:13 pm

Andrew Bradburn wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 9:34 pm
I used to post in here, but stopped after spending a couple of months basically just posting 'On shore' or words to that effect every week. After many years of trying, I finally won the coveted mug! I wanted to let all the Muggles who haven't yet won to know 1) don't give up, you will break through at some point, and 2) now that I have finally won a mug, I will no longer be sending in my answer (though I will continue to try to solve the meta each week), so you will all have (ever so slightly) better odds of winning.
I am quite jealous because I live next door to you in Studio City! Enjoy your prize! Happy solving!
Heidi

SusieG
Posts: 62
Joined: Sat Feb 01, 2020 9:20 pm
Location: Arkansas

#376

Post by SusieG » Tue Jun 16, 2020 11:22 pm

Andrew Bradburn wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 9:34 pm
I used to post in here, but stopped after spending a couple of months basically just posting 'On shore' or words to that effect every week. After many years of trying, I finally won the coveted mug! I wanted to let all the Muggles who haven't yet won to know 1) don't give up, you will break through at some point, and 2) now that I have finally won a mug, I will no longer be sending in my answer (though I will continue to try to solve the meta each week), so you will all have (ever so slightly) better odds of winning.
Congratulations Andrew! Appreciate the pep talk.

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yourpalsal
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#377

Post by yourpalsal » Wed Jun 17, 2020 12:32 am

hcbirker wrote:
Mon Jun 15, 2020 11:35 pm
yourpalsal wrote:
Mon Jun 15, 2020 7:34 pm
REMINDER: Zoom meetup for members of the XWord Muggles Forum today at 5p PT/8pm ET. Hoping for a healthy TALLY!

YourPalSal’s Beach & Ship Zoom Cafe
Jun 15, 2020 05:00 PM Pacific Time (US and Canada)
Join Zoom Meeting:
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86538717219
How did your Zoom meeting go? I was going to join but right before my son announced they had bought their first house and I was totally engulfed by text messages and updates to the situation. Hope it went well!
It was so nice! A small but solid beginning to a warm gathering, may it grow. I was delighted to meet Lisa from Mississippi, Wendy from Philly and Brian from Connecticut. We chatted about epic metas, constructors, strategies that worked and others that didn’t, and I learned from Brian that tournament puzzlers finish Monday NYT grids in 2 minutes! I can’t write that fast. Muggles, we are a congenial lot. And with Bob’s permission I’d like to rename it yourpalsal’s Muggle Meetup. Next week we’ll try it on Tuesday when we’re all tuning in for the stats, a great idea from Wendy. Looking forward!

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yourpalsal
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#378

Post by yourpalsal » Wed Jun 17, 2020 12:42 am

SewYoung wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 5:55 pm
Meg wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 5:44 pm
Wendy Walker wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 3:42 pm


I concur with Brian's remarks. The Zoom Muggle meeting was good fun. Sending thanks to Sal for organizing it!
I just simply forgot!! Let’s do it again!
As Brian said, it was good to actually see and speak to a few other Muggles. Enjoyed it very much and appreciate Our Pal, Sal for setting it up.
I started another thread by mistake, but it’s a good’un. It was delightful to meet these smart and interesting individuals who love puzzles. There is certainly a difference between text and zoom. It reminds me of Walker Percy’s The Moviegoer. I read it decades ago in college, but I recall the narrator’s joyful relief upon meeting a movie star in person because it was somehow a confirmation that the world beyond our surroundings, the one we glimpse in movies, or media or a muggle forum, is real. Look forward to meeting you fellow Muggles!

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yourpalsal
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#379

Post by yourpalsal » Wed Jun 17, 2020 12:52 am

92F06098-BD2D-42CB-97C8-93402AD9B8AE.jpeg
p.s. Today’s my birthday. My family and I delivered care packages created by Our Big Kitchen LA (a nonprofit that creates service projects based on delivering healthy food), to front line responders. We had a special memory today and I highly recommend this plan for birthdays!

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yourpalsal
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#380

Post by yourpalsal » Wed Jun 17, 2020 3:00 am

Bob cruise director wrote:
Tue Jun 16, 2020 11:45 am
Here are some charts. The good about Excel is that you can plot anything against anything once you have the data in the files. The question is whether the information is of any value. I will let you decide if this or anything else is more than idle curiosity.
Wow! The shore vs. WSJ% chart is epic. What a great piece of work Bob, and how interesting the outliers are. I wonder if those metas have something in common?

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