"Stress Test" - July 3, 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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JennyByrd
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Re: "Stress Test" - July 3, 2020

#381

Post by JennyByrd » Mon Jul 06, 2020 1:50 pm

Tony S wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 12:45 pm
SewYoung wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 11:04 am
Bird Lives wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 10:54 am
I got this one right away. I had a hunch the stress in the title referred to stressed syllables, and BAC-WORDS confirmed it. So I never got to thinking about the clues. But when the entries unusual combinations that make so little sense, the chances are that the gimmick lies in the grid, not in the clues.

But I never found the Saturday variety puzzle or crossword. They're not on the Website. Were they in the print edition?
As Saturday was a holiday, there was no WSJ issue, therefore no puzzle. Hoping for a good variety puzzle this week to make up for it. Is it Cryptic week?!!
By my reckoning there should be a Cox/ Rathvon cryptic this coming Saturday. In Canada's National Post there is a Cox/ Rathvon cryptic every Saturday. It doesn't have an unusual twist like their WSJ puzzle but they are solid crosswords worth checking out.
natpostcryptic.blogspot.com

I was expecting a HEX cryptic too this weekend! Very disappointing that they didn’t publish the Saturday puzzle on Friday.

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fuggedabowdit
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#382

Post by fuggedabowdit » Mon Jul 06, 2020 1:54 pm

Another route to the island.
All three long answers have double letters(SS, LL, CC) as does STRESS(SS) in the title. Only one clue, 42 acroSS, contains all 3 of these letters in the order in which they are presented in the grid (S-L-C). Coincidence?? or bassackwards?? A-Plus meta
Never trouble trouble til trouble troubles you !

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DrTom
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#383

Post by DrTom » Mon Jul 06, 2020 2:04 pm

Wendy Walker wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 10:11 am
KscX wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 9:06 am
To the more experienced solvers- is the alliteration in the long answer clues an intentional red herring, an accident, or just the antics of the witty wordsman?
This experienced solver spent hours counting the "A's" in Achy African Animals and the "W's" in Who Writes Wittily While, not to mention the "P's" in Philippines, and trying to do something with them ... especially since the hint contained a word that sounded like a number ("for") ...
Well here my lack of experience (and what caused me to miss the "Number of Creatures" MGWCC "i"s forever) kept me out of that particular rabbit hole. The wording of the answers was SO bizarre I felt that was the key and during my repeated mumblings of the first one at some point my ear heard AntSeur! So, I then realized I had STRESSED the syllables and went on to for it for answers two and three. I did of course try to spell ISLAND backwards for a bit, and decided that Mike was not about to award me a national park when I had the "wasn't there an Island mentioned int he clues" moment.

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DrTom
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#384

Post by DrTom » Mon Jul 06, 2020 2:11 pm

Bob cruise director wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 6:57 am
DrTom wrote:
Sun Jul 05, 2020 11:02 pm
Bob cruise director wrote:
Sun Jul 05, 2020 9:49 pm

and Good Night Mrs. Calabash wherever you are.
Inka Dinka Doo Bob, Inka DInka Doo (can't tell you how many times I have had to tell younger colleagues who "that gravelly voiced guy singing Frosty the Snowman" was....

I'm sad that with the passing of Carl Reiner we now have one less old vaudevillian in our midst. I mean there are some good new comedians, but very few who could work "clean" and still get a laugh.
Those kind of commedians were what made Hollywood Squares so great
I would LMAO watching that. Their ability to come up with quick comebacks made me envy them, and often try to emulate them. Oh, and by the way, the sassy comebacks don't work as well if you are not a famous comedian, take it from me and a collection of searing stares and extended digits.

Laura M
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#385

Post by Laura M » Mon Jul 06, 2020 2:16 pm

I'm still kicking myself for not pushing more on this meta. I knew that my "answer" didn't feel right, but I didn't totally understand the idea (which happens sometimes, though usually these days only with unfamiliar constructors) and thought, what if this is all there is to it? The hint, "The answer to this week's contest crossword is what you'll get for a correct answer" seemed tautological to me, like "you get what you get," and nowhere did it say that the answer should be a word or phrase.

I'd like to think that I would have kept working on it if the hint had been phrased more like "The answer to this week's contest crossword is what you deserve if you solve the meta." But I guess mostly I knew I didn't have much time to work on it this past weekend, and I didn't have a streak to protect, so I didn't care much. But it turns out that my ego is still a bit sore :-)

Anyway, I can still appreciate that it was a very clever and well-executed meta, and those who solved it should be proud!

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DrTom
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#386

Post by DrTom » Mon Jul 06, 2020 2:18 pm

BrianMac wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 8:58 am
43E50210-B7E0-4276-A1EB-2BD066C678EB.png


Matriculating Eeyore -- wonderful!
Sounds TRICKY to me!

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DrTom
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#387

Post by DrTom » Mon Jul 06, 2020 2:24 pm

fuggedabowdit wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 1:37 pm
Another route to the island.
All three long answers have double letters(SS, LL, CC) as does STRESS(SS) in the title. Only one clue, 42 acroSS, contains all 3 of these letters in the order in which they are presented in the grid (S-L-C). Coincidence?? or bassackwards?? A-Plus meta
? SULPA has no C in it, around it maybe, but not in it? I must be missing a part of the alternative route.

EmilyW
Posts: 36
Joined: Thu Apr 23, 2020 10:03 pm

#388

Post by EmilyW » Mon Jul 06, 2020 2:44 pm

Wendy Walker wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 10:19 am
I want to share two of my hilariously off-target rabbit holes:
(1) Substitute other appropriate words for the theme answers -- Antelope Masseur becomes Tiger Balm. Pretty good, huh! Tried mightily to do something with Lindsey Lohan for the second theme answer."

I tried to go in that direction as well and my replacement for Antelope Masseur was Gnu Rubber :lol:

I also tried looking for something to do with stress relief (masseur, spas, facemask), and tried to find a treadmill mechanism. The thought of stressed syllables never came to mind.
Last edited by EmilyW on Mon Jul 06, 2020 2:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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LadyBird
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#389

Post by LadyBird » Mon Jul 06, 2020 2:44 pm

When I noticed that there were 3 theme answers, I initially wondered if it would be a 3-letter answer. MUG would be nice!

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Wendy Walker
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#390

Post by Wendy Walker » Mon Jul 06, 2020 3:25 pm

DrTom wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 2:24 pm
fuggedabowdit wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 1:37 pm
Another route to the island.
All three long answers have double letters(SS, LL, CC) as does STRESS(SS) in the title. Only one clue, 42 acroSS, contains all 3 of these letters in the order in which they are presented in the grid (S-L-C). Coincidence?? or bassackwards?? A-Plus meta
? SULPA has no C in it, around it maybe, but not in it? I must be missing a part of the alternative route.
Dr. Tom, I think he's talking about the clue, not the answer. But after this weekend my brain hurts (and I don't even drink!) so I could be wrong! See you on Tuesday night I hope.
Good luck, fellow Muggles! I'm happy to give nudges, but only if you're still stuck on Sunday.

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Wendy Walker
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#391

Post by Wendy Walker » Mon Jul 06, 2020 3:28 pm

LadyBird wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 2:44 pm
When I noticed that there were 3 theme answers, I initially wondered if it would be a 3-letter answer. MUG would be nice!
Off topic -- but I wanted to mention to you, LadyBird, that there's an adult and a juvenile bald eagle in the pasture behind my house (rural Pennsylvania). The local hay guys have just mowed, and the eagles, hawks and vultures are having a "field day" spotting all the displaced critters. So marvelous that the bald eagles have made such a comeback. Such magnificent birds!
Last edited by Wendy Walker on Mon Jul 06, 2020 3:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Good luck, fellow Muggles! I'm happy to give nudges, but only if you're still stuck on Sunday.

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Wendy Walker
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#392

Post by Wendy Walker » Mon Jul 06, 2020 3:31 pm

Laura M wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 2:16 pm
I'm still kicking myself for not pushing more on this meta. I knew that my "answer" didn't feel right, but I didn't totally understand the idea (which happens sometimes, though usually these days only with unfamiliar constructors) and thought, what if this is all there is to it? The hint, "The answer to this week's contest crossword is what you'll get for a correct answer" seemed tautological to me, like "you get what you get," and nowhere did it say that the answer should be a word or phrase.

I spent considerable time trying to back-solve for "checkmark," "extra credit" and "gold star."
Good luck, fellow Muggles! I'm happy to give nudges, but only if you're still stuck on Sunday.

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MarkL
Posts: 384
Joined: Fri Apr 12, 2019 8:44 am
Location: Tampa Bay, FL

#393

Post by MarkL » Mon Jul 06, 2020 3:42 pm

fuggedabowdit wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 1:37 pm
Another route to the island.
All three long answers have double letters(SS, LL, CC) as does STRESS(SS) in the title. Only one clue, 42 acroSS, contains all 3 of these letters in the order in which they are presented in the grid (S-L-C). Coincidence?? or bassackwards?? A-Plus meta
bass-ackwards! Love it!! A golden oldie!
'tis... A lovely day for a Guinness!

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MarkL
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Joined: Fri Apr 12, 2019 8:44 am
Location: Tampa Bay, FL

#394

Post by MarkL » Mon Jul 06, 2020 3:47 pm

Wendy Walker wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 10:19 am
I want to share two of my hilariously off-target rabbit holes:
(1) Substitute other appropriate words for the theme answers -- Antelope Masseur becomes Tiger Balm. Pretty good, huh! Tried mightily to do something with Lindsey Lohan for the second theme answer.
(2) Add a word between the two words of each theme answer and then change a letter -- Tobacco Tin Woodsman.
As you can imagine it was not a pretty weekend here in the Walker homestead, but it's been a VERY GOOD Monday morning indeed.
Not to mention MEASURE or PLEASURE hiding among the antelopes. At one point, I had some really odd anagram results. But there's no anagram in WSJCC (maybe some crying, on occasion), or leaving the answer swaying in the breeze. Never happens. ;)

Until Thursday,
Be safe and be good!
Last edited by MarkL on Mon Jul 06, 2020 7:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
'tis... A lovely day for a Guinness!

Carla
Posts: 41
Joined: Mon Apr 22, 2019 10:37 am
Location: WA State

#395

Post by Carla » Mon Jul 06, 2020 3:58 pm

So when I read the solution and it still takes a while for me to understand it, I am LAS on another planet, in another universe!

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whimsy
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Location: Hopkinton MA

#396

Post by whimsy » Mon Jul 06, 2020 4:06 pm

EmilyW wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 2:44 pm
Wendy Walker wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 10:19 am
I want to share two of my hilariously off-target rabbit holes:
(1) Substitute other appropriate words for the theme answers -- Antelope Masseur becomes Tiger Balm. Pretty good, huh! Tried mightily to do something with Lindsey Lohan for the second theme answer."

I tried to go in that direction as well and my replacement for Antelope Masseur was Gnu Rubber :lol:

I also tried looking for something to do with stress relief (masseur, spas, facemask), and tried to find a treadmill mechanism. The thought of stressed syllables never came to mind.
And now for your entertainment: Confessions of an inexperienced wannabe meta solver.
I went in the same wrong directions as many others. And it was great reading about the inventiveness of others that I never even got as far as considering.
How about Stressballs for relief?
Blind Alley kept popping out at me from the middle entry - and we all know where those lead. But it did prompt me look for about 2 minutes in the other two for Dead End and Lost Cause! And I kept wanting to make the bottom entry into Tobacco Road (but Mark Twain didn't write that!) Facemask I linked up with a little Swab in the SW corner, but quickly abandoned that when I couldn't seem to locate hydroxycholoroquine anywhere in the grid! :D

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whimsy
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Joined: Sun Jun 21, 2020 9:51 am
Location: Hopkinton MA

#397

Post by whimsy » Mon Jul 06, 2020 4:13 pm

Oh, and I thought "discouraging words" (euphemism?! ;) ) were seldom heard where Antelope are at play. But I bet they weren't so mutually exclusive in a lot of our "homes" the last few days! :)

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FrankH
Posts: 173
Joined: Sat Apr 13, 2019 4:15 am

#398

Post by FrankH » Mon Jul 06, 2020 4:14 pm

Too bad the island is Sulpa not Gum. I suppose WSJ isn't so generous.

Tom Wilson
Posts: 129
Joined: Thu Apr 11, 2019 8:07 pm
Location: South Williamsport, PA

#399

Post by Tom Wilson » Mon Jul 06, 2020 4:15 pm

Wendy Walker wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 3:28 pm
LadyBird wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 2:44 pm
When I noticed that there were 3 theme answers, I initially wondered if it would be a 3-letter answer. MUG would be nice!
Off topic -- but I wanted to mention to you, LadyBird, that there's an adult and a juvenile bald eagle in the pasture behind my house (rural Pennsylvania). The local hay guys have just mowed, and the eagles, hawks and vultures are having a "field day" spotting all the displaced critters. So marvelous that the bald eagles have made such a comeback. Such magnificent birds!
I recently watched a pair of bald eagles, fishing at a dam on the West Branch of the Susquehanna River. (Well, one of them fished while the other perched on a nearby transmission tower, waiting for the dinner bell!) Majestic and mesmerizing.

I can't help but ask, albeit randomly, if anyone saw one of our favorite WSJ Crossword Puzzle Contest celebrities among the answers in Sunday's NYT acrostic.

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Cindy
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Location: Matthews

#400

Post by Cindy » Mon Jul 06, 2020 4:28 pm

Bird Lives wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 10:54 am
I got this one right away. I had a hunch the stress in the title referred to stressed syllables, and BAC-WORDS confirmed it. So I never got to thinking about the clues. But when the entries unusual combinations that make so little sense, the chances are that the gimmick lies in the grid, not in the clues.

But I never found the Saturday variety puzzle or crossword. They're not on the Website. Were they in the print edition?
NO wsj on Saturday Due to holiday. So no variety puzzles.

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