"Less and Less" - August 21, 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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RichA2
Posts: 32
Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2020 4:22 pm

Re: "Less and Less" - August 21, 2020

#301

Post by RichA2 » Mon Aug 24, 2020 3:44 pm

NEGLIGENT and AMORPHOUS both have obvious -less synonyms, and started me on the search for -less counterparts for the other four theme entries. After I found all six (for some reason restless for IMPATIENT was hardest for me), I tried to make a six-letter verb from the letters of the -less synonyms, to no avail. I was about to put the puzzle aside for awhile, when I thought to look at the non-theme answers. In an aha moment, the D used to form CADRE (out of care(less)) jumped out at me, and the other five letters of the meta solution followed as I worked my way down the grid. I had been using shapeless as the synonym for AMORPHOUS, but FORUM told me it formless instead.

I join others who marvel at the brilliance of Mike’s construction.

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DBMiller
Posts: 176
Joined: Wed Apr 10, 2019 8:59 pm
Location: New Hampshire

#302

Post by DBMiller » Mon Aug 24, 2020 3:45 pm

I couldn't think of a gentle nudge for this one, but I guess I would have said, "If thus weren't a meta puzzle and the long answers all had eight letters instead of nine, what would your answers be given the puzzle's title?"

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pamster
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun May 31, 2020 7:21 pm

#303

Post by pamster » Mon Aug 24, 2020 5:26 pm

I took a roundabout swim to shore on this one. I couldn't get anything from the grid, so I focused on the six theme clues. I wondered if they all had "-less" words associated with them and made a list, hoping their first letters would spell out the solution. That didn't work, so I wondered if the "-less" words might be hiding in the grid. I found them, and didn't even notice they were in the same rows as their associated theme answers. Whatever gets you there, right?

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femullen
Posts: 78
Joined: Fri Feb 28, 2020 1:02 pm
Location: Shenandoah Valley, Virginia

#304

Post by femullen » Mon Aug 24, 2020 5:34 pm

I've just emerged from a part of the northeast US that has nada for internet connectivity and couldn't wait to look up this week's solution. I never got time to look at the meta, and boy am I glad. It's one of those weeks (there are, alas, many) where I say, "I'd have never thunk of that in forever."

How's the cabernet holding up, Isaac?

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TPS
Posts: 479
Joined: Sun Mar 15, 2020 2:19 pm
Location: Florida

#305

Post by TPS » Mon Aug 24, 2020 6:43 pm

RichA2 wrote:
Mon Aug 24, 2020 3:44 pm
I had been using shapeless as the synonym for AMORPHOUS, but FORUM told me it formless instead.
I did the exact same thing.

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Thurman8er
Posts: 190
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 3:05 pm
Location: Fresno, CA

#306

Post by Thurman8er » Mon Aug 24, 2020 6:59 pm

Bob cruise director wrote:
Sun Aug 23, 2020 9:08 pm
Our final report has 37 on the ship and 99 on the shore

And a warm welcome to our newest muggle - Mord

New to the ship since lunchtime are
joequavis
matthewB
Brian D
Dennis
Jenny
Nalugirl
Mord
and LittleGood

and making it to shore are
Emmajane
Jeremy
cherikee
the Thurman8er
Guy L
Burak
Ed S
copperriver
Patty
jimbo
JimJim
Andrew B
FLT
and HeadinHome

One final administrative piece of advice - after the initial submissions, I do my updates by starting with the last submission and working backwards until I get to where I run into people I have entered as ship or shore on the spreadsheet. If you edit your post to say you are now on the shore, I may or may not pick it up. My suggestion when you go from the ship to the shore is to create a new post. Thanks

Good luck to all who are submitting. I will be on the ship either in the bar or tending the garden with MaineMarge
Thanks for the "the" Bob. It makes me feel very Schwarzeneggarian.

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yourpalsal
Posts: 124
Joined: Fri Feb 07, 2020 2:28 am

#307

Post by yourpalsal » Mon Aug 24, 2020 7:09 pm

To quote Brian... :D

YourPalSal began hosting Muggle Zoom meetings a few weeks ago, and they are a blast. We've been getting around 20 participants a week, and generally discuss the crossword puzzles of the week, quickly digressing into any number of other interesting topics. Whether you are a veteran Muggle or new to the site, it's a great way to meet lots of other members and put names and voices to avatars. The call occurs Tuesdays at 7:30 p.m. Eastern (4:30 p.m. Pacific) and lasts about an hour and a quarter. The Zoom link information is below:

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89184367093

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BarbaraK
Posts: 860
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 2:37 pm
Location: Virginia

#308

Post by BarbaraK » Mon Aug 24, 2020 7:23 pm

pamster wrote:
Mon Aug 24, 2020 5:26 pm
I took a roundabout swim to shore on this one. I couldn't get anything from the grid, so I focused on the six theme clues. I wondered if they all had "-less" words associated with them and made a list, hoping their first letters would spell out the solution. That didn't work, so I wondered if the "-less" words might be hiding in the grid. I found them, and didn't even notice they were in the same rows as their associated theme answers. Whatever gets you there, right?
I did the same thing, but after I’d solved it I went back and highlighted the solution in the grid. (Who me,OCD?) It was only then I noticed that the 5 letter words that needed one less letter to make the -less words were all on the same line.

EVJ
Posts: 37
Joined: Thu May 02, 2019 6:40 pm
Location: Idaho

#309

Post by EVJ » Mon Aug 24, 2020 11:10 pm

Hidden in 3D wrote:
Mon Aug 24, 2020 12:37 pm
EVJ wrote:
Sun Aug 23, 2020 10:09 pm
I am on shore with S-I-L. It’s a good thing she came to my rescue. I couldn’t have done it without her. Two heads are better than one indeed! She reports she was drinking a Sangria while we texted back and forth across state lines to double-team this 100%er
Good luck to anyone still trying to come in under the wire!
So who gets the mug? You or your SIL? :lol:
I know! Right?
We need to win a second one!!

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Al Sisti
Posts: 871
Joined: Thu Apr 11, 2019 1:28 pm
Location: Whitesboro NY

#310

Post by Al Sisti » Mon Aug 24, 2020 11:11 pm

woozy wrote:
Mon Aug 24, 2020 1:07 am
...I can *never* hear the name "Ruth" without thinking of the Firesign Theater joke ("I wonder where Ruth is tonight") ...
ANNOUNCER: Out of the fog, into the smog...

NICK: (cough, cough)

ANNOUNCER: Relentlessly... ruthlessly...

NICK: I wonder where Ruth is?

ANNOUNCER: …doggedly… (bark bark)

NICK: Eh, get away from me…

ANNOUNCER: ... towards his weekly meeting with... the unknown.

Classic!!

woozy
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Aug 10, 2020 12:40 am

#311

Post by woozy » Tue Aug 25, 2020 2:06 am

Al Sisti.

Yep, that.

I can't help but think of that *every* time I hear the name "Ruth".

In a much later album (one the last if not the last) he gets a dog he names Relent.

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Larrry
Posts: 12
Joined: Fri Jul 17, 2020 2:25 pm

#312

Post by Larrry » Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:27 am

This was a complete miss for me. I tried several paths and I thought the most promising (that I havent seen anyone else mention) was the last two theme clues contained an anagram of another word in the grid plus a real word:

IMPATIENT = INMATE + PIT
CUTTHROAT = TRUTH + COAT

I wasnt encouraged that "PC" may not make sense in a word but it seemed like it couldnt be a coincidence and surely there might be another step, and.... of course it led nowhere.

Oh well. I decided that I will change my avatar for each streak. Larry Fine made it for several weeks. Here is hoping that Larry David sticks around.

EVJ
Posts: 37
Joined: Thu May 02, 2019 6:40 pm
Location: Idaho

#313

Post by EVJ » Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:55 am

Regarding the winning of the mug:

Thank you for all your congratulations!
First, I’d like to thank my mother and father, my husband, my children, my grandchildren, and all my friends, for all their love and support over the years.
I’d like to send a special shout out to my crossword puzzle friends Cheryl, Peter, and Marsha for introducing me to the WSJ Friday Crossword Puzzle Contest, and to the world of crossword metas three years ago. And a final deep appreciation to my sister-in-law, Nancy, who let me introduce her to this crazy cult and who has become my partner in solving most of the Friday metas. It was Nancy that found our way into the mechanism of the LESS AND LESS contest. Once she cracked that door ajar it was a clear path for me to the final answer.
I’d also like to thank Bob, our cruise director, for the fine work he does to keep track of and encourage all the Muggles. Thank you to Isaac for always listening, always pouring whatever we ask for, and never judging, or laughing at the rabbit holes we get stuck in.
And to all the Muggles that inspire me on the blog each week. I love reading all the entries. I’ve learned so much from the group. Keep up the good work and good humor!
At this point I’d like to make some political statements but I see someone emerging from backstage with a large shepherd’s crook so I’m going to scamper off stage and wait for my mug to be delivered.

Sent from Eve Marostica

KscX
Posts: 33
Joined: Sat May 02, 2020 12:09 pm

#314

Post by KscX » Tue Aug 25, 2020 11:23 am

EVJ wrote:
Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:55 am
Regarding the winning of the mug:

Thank you for all your congratulations!
First, I’d like to thank my mother and father, my husband, my children, my grandchildren, and all my friends, for all their love and support over the years.
I’d like to send a special shout out to my crossword puzzle friends Cheryl, Peter, and Marsha for introducing me to the WSJ Friday Crossword Puzzle Contest, and to the world of crossword metas three years ago. And a final deep appreciation to my sister-in-law, Nancy, who let me introduce her to this crazy cult and who has become my partner in solving most of the Friday metas. It was Nancy that found our way into the mechanism of the LESS AND LESS contest. Once she cracked that door ajar it was a clear path for me to the final answer.
I’d also like to thank Bob, our cruise director, for the fine work he does to keep track of and encourage all the Muggles. Thank you to Isaac for always listening, always pouring whatever we ask for, and never judging, or laughing at the rabbit holes we get stuck in.
And to all the Muggles that inspire me on the blog each week. I love reading all the entries. I’ve learned so much from the group. Keep up the good work and good humor!
At this point I’d like to make some political statements but I see someone emerging from backstage with a large shepherd’s crook so I’m going to scamper off stage and wait for my mug to be delivered.

Sent from Eve Marostica
:lol: :lol: :lol: :P

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Bob cruise director
Cruise Director
Posts: 1698
Joined: Thu Apr 11, 2019 2:38 pm
Location: any golf course that will take my money

#315

Post by Bob cruise director » Tue Aug 25, 2020 12:56 pm

Thurman8er wrote:
Mon Aug 24, 2020 6:59 pm
Bob cruise director wrote:
Sun Aug 23, 2020 9:08 pm
Our final report has 37 on the ship and 99 on the shore

And a warm welcome to our newest muggle - Mord

New to the ship since lunchtime are
joequavis
matthewB
Brian D
Dennis
Jenny
Nalugirl
Mord
and LittleGood

and making it to shore are
Emmajane
Jeremy
cherikee
the Thurman8er
Guy L
Burak
Ed S
copperriver
Patty
jimbo
JimJim
Andrew B
FLT
and HeadinHome

One final administrative piece of advice - after the initial submissions, I do my updates by starting with the last submission and working backwards until I get to where I run into people I have entered as ship or shore on the spreadsheet. If you edit your post to say you are now on the shore, I may or may not pick it up. My suggestion when you go from the ship to the shore is to create a new post. Thanks

Good luck to all who are submitting. I will be on the ship either in the bar or tending the garden with MaineMarge
Thanks for the "the" Bob. It makes me feel very Schwarzeneggarian.
And "the Therman8er" has to be said with a very deep voice
Bob Stevens
Cruise Director

RobM
Posts: 15
Joined: Thu Jun 04, 2020 6:29 pm

#316

Post by RobM » Thu Aug 27, 2020 6:45 pm

Andrew Bradburn wrote:
Mon Aug 24, 2020 11:07 am
Did anyone notice that the first letters of the first six Across clues spelled out SHIRTS? A six-letter word (!), just not a verb. An accidental meaningful acrostic of six letters is very rare, I would think.
I did, and I chased the rabbit far down that hole. In particular, I was looking for significance in the placement of T's (as in t-shirts) in the grid.

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