"A Sail of Two Cities" - June 18, 2021

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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SReh26
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#341

Post by SReh26 »

I hear cruises are great for doing puzzles on 😀
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KscX
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#342

Post by KscX »

I was convinced we’d need to do a “sounds like” switch at the end (SAIL instead of TALE). RHINE to LINE (which also anagrams to NILE!) in the first long answer dragged me down that and other rabbit holes. Ugh.
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Flying_Burrito
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#343

Post by Flying_Burrito »

hcbirker wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 10:00 am And did anyone else research types and names of sails? That took me down some interesting holes.
Yep, I tried Genoa in some many different ways, but also realized that the answer had to be simpler than that
Senor Guaca Mole :mrgreen:
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TeaJenny
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#344

Post by TeaJenny »

gatogato wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 8:11 am I cannot find any way to measure Bonn, Germany, and Basel, Switzerland as 302 miles apart. Being unable to get beyond that I did not even get to the point of trying to find the next step.
I wasted a lot of time on that, too. I kept questioning whether I had the correct cities. The closest I got was 307 miles by adding up navigable distances along the Rhine.
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Flying_Burrito
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#345

Post by Flying_Burrito »

This puzzle reminds me of my favorite Italian author (Alessandro Manzoni), who used to say "Del senno di poi ne son piene le fosse". Its translation ("the pits are full of hindsight") does not do real justice to the original meaning, but you get the point. Kudos to the solvers, especially the ones on page 1!
Senor Guaca Mole :mrgreen:
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John77
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#346

Post by John77 »

gatogato wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 8:26 am
LadyBird wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 8:24 am
gatogato wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 8:11 am I cannot find any way to measure Bonn, Germany, and Basel, Switzerland as 302 miles apart. Being unable to get beyond that I did not even get to the point of trying to find the next step.
I didn't get too caught up in the actual distances. I figured that Matt was using those so that people would realize that it was Rome, NY not Italy. Although I did pore over Google Maps at first trying to find an Italian city near Rome named Tica.
I probably would have done the same except all the rest were spot on with the tool I was using to look at the distances. I couldn't get past it being the only one which wasn't exact, especially when I couldn't find anything to put it within 10 miles of being correct.

In hindsight I wish I had just taken it for what it was, it's a really cool puzzle.
The distance from Basel to Bonn would be 302 mi traveling the Rhine, and not by air.
For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong. —H. L. Mencken
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TeaJenny
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#347

Post by TeaJenny »

Interestingly, if you add up all of the miles in parentheses, you get 7,420, which is the distance in nautical miles from New York City to Honolulu via the Panama Canal. Made me wonder for a while if the answer was ALOHA.
kamashdas
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#348

Post by kamashdas »

Joepickett wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 9:36 am I did get the mechanism and then the right answer by looking at the past puzzles as I had hoped. But it was a Mike Shenk creation that helped me out. Sound Investment from 2/22/2019 used the mechanism of sandwiching the final letters in pairs of letters from the previous step. That was my aha!
I had translated M Sea to EMCEE earlier and I was stuck there for a bit before my breakthrough.
Also similar to Matt's 5/24/2019 "Location, Location, Location". Of course, that was hindsight and didn't help at all this week as I had to rediscover the mechanism again...
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DrTom
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#349

Post by DrTom »

Joe Ross wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 10:03 am
Bob cruise director wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 9:02 am Having grown up in upstate NY and having four years of trekking to Syracuse with our daughter, I drove by Utica a lot and went with Mohawk River as it is natural. And there are canals associated with all the other bodies of water so I felt going with one canal when there was an option, was inconsistent. That added more than a little time to the search.
Maybe not having local knowledge helped, here.

Two things:
  • On interweb maps, Erie Canal seems the obvious choice, visually.
  • Having sung Low Bridge (15 Miles on the Erie Canal) too many times when a twerp, I couldn't fathom another answer.
Wow, the depths some people will go...Joe has gone plomb loco - but it is sound reasoning.
NUDGES! If you see that I have solved, feel free to PM me, along with what you have done so far, and I'll be happy to nudge you onto the right track.

This is a community, feel welcome, and never feel uncomfortable asking a question.
Magistra
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#350

Post by Magistra »

DrTom wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 9:43 am
FuminCuban wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 7:20 am I said FJORD to complete the sequence of waterways. I like my answer better, but grant that I'm a sore loser.

There's always next week!
I'm Afjord that is incorrect, oh well, water ya gonna do...

Sorry couldn't let that flow by without making a pun.
I also went with fjord because I found Oslo within the grid. Although there was no second city, I reasoned that it didn't matter as the fjord appears to be the only water route out of Oslo.
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LadyBird
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#351

Post by LadyBird »

I'm not as Google Earth techy as some of you. I finally resorted to old school.
20210621_083611.jpg
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HunterX
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#352

Post by HunterX »

Before I finally figured out the correct second step, I got caught up in the "Find an anagram of the [word] in other clues with one letter extra/off" rabbit hole. I noticed that there are anagrams of 'SEA' and 'LAKE' with one letter to change, and 3 for 'OCEAN'. Kept searching for 'CANAL' and 'RIVER' until my eyes went blurry.

Then tried looking for alternate bodies of water for each of the types. 'APIAN ANTICLIMAX' kept making me see 'ATLANTIC' as well as a broken up 'PANAMA'.

Also found the SE(L)INE river, NILE backwards, Lake (Loch) NESS.... And so much more.

I got a little held up when I looked on Google Maps and saw "Pools Brook Canal" between Utica and Rome. After finding RWR (and slapping my forehead), I knew it must be the Erie Canal, of which Pools Brook Canal is apparently a part(?).
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Cindy N
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#353

Post by Cindy N »

hcbirker wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 9:58 am After finding all the different bodies of water, I saw "Panama" spaced out at 22 Across, and thought for sure I was on to something. Then found "Seine" at 16 across. So I deduced that I had to find another ocean, sea and lake. Nothing. ...
I've found that two is a coincidence, three becomes a pattern and worth a deeper work. Sometimes it's hard to let go of those really perfect "two" though.
Guy
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#354

Post by Guy »

Magistra wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 11:02 am
DrTom wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 9:43 am
FuminCuban wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 7:20 am I said FJORD to complete the sequence of waterways. I like my answer better, but grant that I'm a sore loser.

There's always next week!
I'm Afjord that is incorrect, oh well, water ya gonna do...

Sorry couldn't let that flow by without making a pun.
I also went with fjord because I found Oslo within the grid. Although there was no second city, I reasoned that it didn't matter as the fjord appears to be the only water route out of Oslo.
I went with fjord also thinking sequence was the path. I stranded on "Lem" at the bottom left, which is kinda near a fjord in Denmark, though I could not find a second city.
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mheberlingx100
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#355

Post by mheberlingx100 »

Wendy Walker wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 9:23 am I Googled cities and distances on the Rhine so much in the past few days that -- judging from what now pops up at the top of my Google searches -- Viking River Cruises has me down as an incandescently hot prospect. My WAG was going to be GENOA, a (1) sail that (2) also has a city name.
Also a delicious salami!
MikeMillerwsj
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#356

Post by MikeMillerwsj »

This contest was a Matt Gaffney special, taking solvers down an elegantly tangled trail with several steps. It appeared to be a bit tougher than usual--we had 952 entries and only about 56% correct. Lots and lots of incorrect watery 5-letter guesses including ROLLS (26) and ROILS (7) -- what was going on there? Also CANAL (18), OCEAN (10), ATLAS (6), SLOOP (6), FERRY (5), SHORE (4) and many others.

Congrats to this week's winner: Greg Roberts of Fayetteville, GA!
Nlobb
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#357

Post by Nlobb »

Oh, my! I thought sure the mug would come to my house this week!! When I got the answer, I called out to my husband, "I don't believe it. More water??" This exclamation was brought about by the fact that the river which we live by was currently flooding and we had a foot of water running under the house.
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BrianMac
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#358

Post by BrianMac »

Wow, best mug-winning odds we're likely to see for a while!
MikeMillerwsj wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 11:20 am Lots and lots of incorrect watery 5-letter guesses including ROLLS (26) and ROILS (7) -- what was going on there?
River
Ocean
[something... :x :x :x Spent some time here myself]
Lake
Sea
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Cindy
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#359

Post by Cindy »

BrianMac wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 11:26 am Wow, best mug-winning odds we're likely to see for a while!
MikeMillerwsj wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 11:20 am Lots and lots of incorrect watery 5-letter guesses including ROLLS (26) and ROILS (7) -- what was going on there?
River
Ocean
[something... :x :x :x Spent some time here myself]
Lake
Sea
And yet, we didn't win.......
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KscX
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#360

Post by KscX »

HunterX wrote: Mon Jun 21, 2021 11:07 am Before I finally figured out the correct second step, I got caught up in the "Find an anagram of the [word] in other clues with one letter extra/off" rabbit hole. I noticed that there are anagrams of 'SEA' and 'LAKE' with one letter to change, and 3 for 'OCEAN'. Kept searching for 'CANAL' and 'RIVER' until my eyes went blurry.

Then tried looking for alternate bodies of water for each of the types. 'APIAN ANTICLIMAX' kept making me see 'ATLANTIC' as well as a broken up 'PANAMA'.

Also found the SE(L)INE river, NILE backwards, Lake (Loch) NESS.... And so much more.

I got a little held up when I looked on Google Maps and saw "Pools Brook Canal" between Utica and Rome. After finding RWR (and slapping my forehead), I knew it must be the Erie Canal, of which Pools Brook Canal is apparently a part(?).
I did ALL of that too. Maddening.
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