LAST WEEK’S RESULTS:
What was the “Big Money” currency hidden in last week’s puzzle? Nudged (or not) by the grid’s sole theme entry, OVERCAPITALIZED at 41-across, solvers noticed that 11 letters in symmetrically-placed clues were incorrectly capitalized:
1-a [New York City} = TROY
5-a [Bits of Hydrogen] = ATOMS
10-a [One kind of Ipod] = NANO
20-a [Only Non-Spanish-speaking country in Central America] = BELIZE
22-a [Outbid someone at the last second, on Ebay] = SNIPE
34-d [MicroSoft ___ (graphics program)] = PAINT
58-a [Part of an E-mail program] = INBOX
60-a [Index denominated in Yen] = NIKKEI
73-a [New England University] = YALE
74-a ["About A Boy" actor] = GRANT
75-a [Town North of Des Moines] = AMES
Put those overcapitalized letters (emboldened above) together and you get last week’s contest answer, the CHINESE YUAN. Which is “Big Money” indeed these days, though if we default they might feel a little “overcapitalized” themselves.
Pretty sure this leaderboard’s going to keep me hooked.
Glad to hear it, and apologies to those inconvenienced by the kinks we’re still working out in the system (see below for more info on that).
Marpocky writes from China:
now that you’re off Blogspot you’re no longer blocked by the Great Firewall of China! I won’t have to use a proxy to read the instructions anymore!
JoeCab thought I’d made some mistakes at first:
And here I was about to send you an email to correct a few things…
While Dan F had no trouble at all:
As a proofreader, I saw what was going on immediately…
And neither did Jon Delfin:
I’m sure I’m not the only person who solved (or at least suspected) the meta without having entered a single answer to the crossword!
Karen from the Cape, echoing many others, kvetches:
What the heck is that S doing way over in the down clues?
I wanted to keep the symmetry of the entries in the grid, so the I-crossing was the only option there — but admittedly it looks better in the solution above than it would have during the solve since the gimmick is in the clues, not the grid. Another idea to avoid orphanizing PAINT would have been to sneak two of the down entries in the east and west middle sections, crossing OVERCAPITALIZED.
This week’s winner, whose name was chosen at random from the 222 correct entries received, is Valerie Gunderson Osiecki of Harwich, Mass. In addition to a MGWCC pen, pencil and notepad set, Valerie will also receive a signed copy of Peter Gordon’s new book Sizzlingly Hard Fireball Crosswords. Winner this week will receive the same.
LEADERBOARD, IPAD, AND OTHER GLITCH UPDATES:
Still some inevitable growing pains with the site redesign, but I think we’re getting close. Here are some updates:
1) Two leaderboard things: A) make sure you use the exact same nickname each week if you want to be counted on the leaderboard (and on Streaks and Overall as well). Capitalization and spacing count, so be careful! (If you do mess up one week, though, just e-mail me and we’ll fix it manually). B) Note that I verify all entries on the leaderboard manually, so it might take a few hours for your name to appear there once you’ve submitted.
2) Dan Easley has been working on the iPad version of xwordcontest.com and it should be much improved over last week. There still might be a feature or two that don’t look right on iPads; if there is, let me know about it.
3) I think we’ve gotten everyone entered manually who was left off somehow over the past couple of weeks, but if you should be on the Streaks or Overall page but aren’t, please e-mail me!
CAVALCADE OF CROSSWORD CONTESTS:
If you’ve never met a meta you didn’t like, then this is your week:
GORDON (subscription required; deadline is Sunday)
QUIGLEY (deadline is Wednesday)
AGARD (deadline is Wednesday)
REAGLE (registration fee required, but it goes to a good cause; puzzle released on Sunday)
I’ve already solved the first three and will be doing the Reagle on Sunday when it comes out. I dig solving metas as much as I dig writing them, so more of this please!
GET A CLUE:
Peter Gordon has a new app out for his addictive game Celebrity: Get a Clue. I played the live version at the 2011 ACPT (Joon Pahk was my partner; we won without me doing anything at all) so I can vouch for its fun-ness. Check the app out here.
THIS WEEK’S INSTRUCTIONS:
This week’s contest answer is my blood type. Submit your answer in the form on the left sidebar by Tuesday at noon ET. Note: the submissions form disappears from the site promptly at noon on Tuesday.
To print the puzzle out, click on the image below and hit “print” on your browser. To solve using Across Lite either solve on the applet below or download the free software here, then join the Google Group (1,865 members now!) here.
Solve well, and be not led astray by words intended to deceive.