Saturday, July 20, 2013

Training camp (Sunday brunch: July 21, 2013)

Wouldn't you like to be in a nice cool ice rink on a very hot weekend?

The State Games of America are just two weeks away now, so the Mitchell participants are working themselves into top form.  Sabers is at his training camp, doing fencing-related activities eight to twelve hours a day.  Bangle and The Other Doctor Mitchell are at the rink most of the day: two to three hours of skating each day and an off-ice class.

They all have some additional competition prior to State Games: a home fencing tournament and the Lehigh Valley Sportsfest this weekend and Skate Wilmington next weekend.  Me?  I get to write the checks and do the laundry.  I'll do two puzzles a day too.

This weekend's puzzles start with a Section Eight by Patrick Berry in the Wall Street Journal.  I posted some hints earlier in case you get stuck.  Don't resort to them too soon.  If you get some of the ring 1 sections completed and figure out a few of the middle ring words, you can get an approximate location and direction for those middle rings.  Then the rest of the ring 1 sector will give you a letter bank for the rest of the middle ring word.

The New York Times variety puzzle (behind the paywall) is a diagramless by Fred Piscop.  Deb Amlen calls it “sensible.”  I'll be back with a solution after I get my copy.  Update: the solution is posted.

Nathan Curtis has a Pathfinder up for us this week.  I like these puzzles a lot.  When they're constructed well, one answer leads to another and it's a challenging but smooth solve.

Falcon reports that the Hex cryptic at the National Post got him up on his feet.

Xanthippe has another new British cryptic: xii if you're counting.

Finally, we say "thank you" to Aries, who is laying down the pencil after creating 117 Rows Gardens.  That's enough for a couple of books: it would be great if he could find a publisher for them (maybe Puzazz?)
Danger!  Saber fencer!

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