"Endnotes" - January 22, 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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MikeMillerwsj
Posts: 127
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 2:46 pm

#461

Post by MikeMillerwsj »

We are extremely impressed with the large number of solvers who cracked this contest (since it stumped us at Contest Central, where we saw the clues ending with notes, but missed the DO RE MI notes hiding at the end of the theme-entry words). We had 1556 entries, about 79% correct., right in line with our usual accuracy level.

Some big votes for a few other 6-letter musical words, suggesting that other solvers got part way along the tangled trail: OCTAVE (61), SCALES (47), CHORAL (32), FINALE (17), CHORDS (11), ADAGIO (7), CMAJOR (6), and several others.

Congrats to this week's winner: Carol Lynne of Simpsonville, Ky.! (The third winner in her family, per a post above!)
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C=64
Posts: 364
Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2020 8:29 pm
Location: PDX, via NH/VT

#462

Post by C=64 »

One last thing about puzzles requiring anagramming: Mike Shenk has never constructed one; he hands them off to Marie Kelly.

Because MARIE KELLY is an anagram for REALLY MIKE.

*forehead slap*
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DrTom
Posts: 1424
Joined: Sat Apr 20, 2019 6:46 pm
Location: Jacksonville, FL

#463

Post by DrTom »

ky-mike wrote: Tue Jan 26, 2021 7:47 am
DrTom wrote: Tue Jan 26, 2021 2:22 am
ky-mike wrote: Mon Jan 25, 2021 10:44 am Trifecta!

After my daughter won a mug a few years ago and I won one last year, my wife (not on the forum) is today's mug winner. Congrats to her!
Please tell me you do not have pets that are solving the meta, I'd like a shot at a mug sometime this decade!

Congratulations to the family - must be a hoot when you are all working on the META(s), is it a contest?
My daughter's win happened when she was home from college one weekend and helped work the puzzle. She really never got into it, though. My wife and I have somewhat of a contest each week to solve the meta. I gave a copy to the cat once, but he just coughed up a hairball and walked away.
Well my cat pooped on mine - I guess that is called a cat ass trophy? (sorry, I have NO control!)
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.
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ky-mike
Posts: 473
Joined: Thu Apr 11, 2019 4:22 pm
Location: Near Louisville Ky

#464

Post by ky-mike »

bill the cat.jpg
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KscX
Posts: 119
Joined: Sat May 02, 2020 12:09 pm
Location: Charlotte, NC

#465

Post by KscX »

Should there be a new MELODY category for “two paths to solve” like PAGEANT “halfway solve”? This seems unprecedented in my short experience. What were some other elegant/messy puzzles?
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C=64
Posts: 364
Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2020 8:29 pm
Location: PDX, via NH/VT

#466

Post by C=64 »

KscX wrote: Tue Jan 26, 2021 10:36 pm Should there be a new MELODY category for “two paths to solve” like PAGEANT “halfway solve”? This seems unprecedented in my short experience. What were some other elegant/messy puzzles?
"Stress Test" July 3, 2020 had the meta answer sitting almost in plain sight, but the mechanism was a complicated pronunciation thing.
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Al Sisti
Posts: 1374
Joined: Thu Apr 11, 2019 1:28 pm
Location: Whitesboro NY

#467

Post by Al Sisti »

KscX wrote: Tue Jan 26, 2021 10:36 pm Should there be a new MELODY category for “two paths to solve” like PAGEANT “halfway solve”? This seems unprecedented in my short experience. What were some other elegant/messy puzzles?
There was one called "Border Crossing" (June 8, 2018), where the discussion between the two camps of answers led to the two answers being accepted (Maine, the one that Matt Gaffney intended, and New Mexico, the one the other group argued for).
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C=64
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#468

Post by C=64 »

Al Sisti wrote: Tue Jan 26, 2021 10:50 pm
KscX wrote: Tue Jan 26, 2021 10:36 pm Should there be a new MELODY category for “two paths to solve” like PAGEANT “halfway solve”? This seems unprecedented in my short experience. What were some other elegant/messy puzzles?
There was one called "Border Crossing" (June 8, 2018), where the discussion between the two camps of answers led to the two answers being accepted (Maine, the one that Matt Gaffney intended, and New Mexico, the one the other group argued for).
Good grief, the letters in MAINE appear randomly scattered in the grid and need to be unscrambled for the final step! I give up. 🙄
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cbarbee002
Posts: 296
Joined: Fri Apr 24, 2020 6:02 pm
Location: Philly Area

#469

Post by cbarbee002 »

I just listened for the first time to Dimash, at the suggestion of several Muggles on last night's zoom call. Words can't describe the talent this young man has. If you haven't listened to one of his performances, I strongly urge you to do so.
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Al Sisti
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#470

Post by Al Sisti »

cbarbee002 wrote: Wed Jan 27, 2021 11:57 am I just listened for the first time to Dimash, at the suggestion of several Muggles on last night's zoom call. Words can't describe the talent this young man has. If you haven't listened to one of his performances, I strongly urge you to do so.
He really is unbelievable...
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KayW
Posts: 734
Joined: Wed Apr 10, 2019 12:10 am
Location: Chicago

#471

Post by KayW »

C=64 wrote: Wed Jan 27, 2021 1:35 am
Al Sisti wrote: Tue Jan 26, 2021 10:50 pm
KscX wrote: Tue Jan 26, 2021 10:36 pm Should there be a new MELODY category for “two paths to solve” like PAGEANT “halfway solve”? This seems unprecedented in my short experience. What were some other elegant/messy puzzles?
There was one called "Border Crossing" (June 8, 2018), where the discussion between the two camps of answers led to the two answers being accepted (Maine, the one that Matt Gaffney intended, and New Mexico, the one the other group argued for).
Good grief, the letters in MAINE appear randomly scattered in the grid and need to be unscrambled for the final step! I give up. 🙄
I remember that puzzle! I had stumbled into the Maine camp quite accidentally. Another Rosie Ruiz miracle. Hmmm I seem to have a history of those...

Anyway, I had been solving the WSJ crosswords and metas from day one but always lurking, never posting. That was the week that finally lured me out of the shadows to join the NM/ME debate.

Back then muggles dwelt in the WSJ site; and BTW it looks like conversations that far back are now scrubbed from the interwebs. Another reason to rejoice and give thanks for BrianMac and this ever-expanding forum!
Wilder
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Nov 14, 2019 9:40 pm

#472

Post by Wilder »

I admit to not having read all of the posts so I apologize if this was already said (or was obvious to everyone else), but I think Mike gets a ton of credit for using this double solution method so that we didn't have to use an anagram to solve it. I did anagram of course because I didn't see it until he posted his solution on Monday. Anyway, the DO-RE-ME s hidden in the long answers correspond to notes in the C scale. Those notes correspond to the lettered clues like "IMAX 3-D." If you then use the last letters of the answers to the lettered clues in the order of the DO-RE-MI scale (leaving off the F) it spells MELODY in order. I am astonished as usual.
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BarbaraK
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#473

Post by BarbaraK »

I hope that some day Mike will do another live Q&A and that when he does I'll remember to ask about this puzzle and how he intended it to work.

My guess is that he started building it, and assumed that people would start solving it, with the do-re-mi's in the theme answers. He'd done that before, in the June 28, 2017, puzzle, where translating do-re-mi's to C-D-E's spelled the answer (BADGE). This time, he started with that and then took it a step further by not stopping with the C-D-E's themselves but using them to get to the next step.

I'd guess that either his test solvers did the same and didn't even notice that you could skip the whole do-re-mi part, or that at least they thought it unlikely that many people would do that. In fact, I think if he realized how many people would go straight to the notes at the ends of the clues, he would have hidden them better, maybe just having them as the last letter of a word instead of capitalized single letters.

But it's entirely possible that I'm just assuming that other people see things as I do (which I really do know better than!) And only Mike knows what he was thinking. So I hope one day he'll share that with us.
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FrankH
Posts: 242
Joined: Sat Apr 13, 2019 4:15 am

#474

Post by FrankH »

It could be avoided if there is also a clue that ends in F (e.g., composer of Concerto in F) thus completing the notes in the scale, and that the meta answer has a repeated letter.
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