“#NATIONALPUNWEEK” by Peter Wentz
Solve it here (no actually, solve it *there*)
Constructor: Peter Wentz
Theme: Twitter hashtag puns
- 16A: SELL FIEF SUNDAY – “During the weekend, I auctioned off my feudal estate. #___”
- 31A: MAN THRUSH MONDAY – “After that, I checked out some macho songbirds. #___”
- 36A: FRO BACK THURSDAY – “Later in the week, I started regrowing my bushy hairstyle. #___”
- 55A: FURLOUGH FRIDAY – “Finally, I took a vacation from my drill sergeant duties. #___”
Ben: Yeah, puns, fine. I like Twitter well enough (I’m @johnstonteacher), but this does nothing for me. MAN THRUSH MONDAY is nonsense, and SELL FIEF SUNDAY is a long way to go for an underwhelming joke. The only one I liked was FRO BACK THURSDAY, but surely it should be something that starts with TH- for consistency?
Max: I’m perfectly fine with the themers being nonsense, but I would’ve liked to have heard of all of them. Took be a loooooooong time to figure out that FURLOUGH FRIDAY was supposed to be #FollowFriday. Never heard of that, and I have a twitter I check quite often. I feel like the amount of people who know ALL of these would be very slim, so the theme falls flat for me.
This may be all I have to say about the entire puzzle, but I cannot stop laughing about calling male birds “man birds.” Just to be clear– this does not mean I like this themer; MAN THRUSH MONDAY is not even close to being a pun.
Max: On second thought, I agree. The themers being nonsense bother me, like, a lot. It’s also wildly inconsistent. It’s ALMOST “change-a-syllable-to-a-rhyming-syllable”, but FIE and FIEF don’t rhyme. BTW, I thought “fief” was pronounced “fife”, but even pronounced correctly (feef), there’s no rhyme.
Ben: The top half of the grid was cake, and then I struggled with the bottom. Probably because I completely blanked on HI HAT (33D: “With a kick, snare, kicks and ___” (classic A Tribe Called Quest lyric)).
Max: I struggled with the bottom because FURLOUGH FRIDAY. I would like to point out that A MINOR(29A: Key of Alicia Key’s first album) is legit because it’s in the title, but only one song(“Jane Doe”) is in A Minor. Also, Google sometimes lists the album as “Songs in a Minor,” which proves why capitalization is IMPORTANT!
Ben: Unusual grid design because of the 14-letter themers. To his credit, Peter’s kept everything quite clean despite a bunch of words that run through the two central themers. HVAC is the worst thing there, and it’s still totally acceptable.
Max: Yeah, not a fan of the grid design. There are a LOT of three letter words here (26), which really chops up the grid. Also, those 3 cheater-squares in the NE and SW are pretty ugly.
Ben: Liked BAY AREA (39D: Crazy expensive place to live near Silicon Valley) and the clue on 5D: Guitar hooks, back when pop songs featured guitars (RIFFS). Millennial nostalgia! It’s adorable.
Lena: Wait, guitars are obsolete? Help!
Max: …I need somebody… Help! Not just anybody… HEEEeeeeEEEElpppppp……
When I was younger, oh so much younger than todaaaaay…….
I never needed anybody’s HELP in any waaaaaay….
But now these days are gone and I’m not so self assurrrrreeed…
<I’ll stop because I needed google, or as I call it “A little help from my friend(s)”>
Ben: Does the average university grad in the USA really have $30,000 in DEBT? That’s insane. I think I paid $30,000 (Canadian, so more like $23,000 US) total for both my degrees, and government scholarships covered pretty much the whole first year. Your guys’ country is weird. 😉 Oh well, I’m sure President Trump will sort everything out soon enough.
Lena: Just wait until we all try to scramble into Canada and you have to build a wall to keep us from ruining your country too.
Max: But who will pay for it? 🙂 Kidding aside, this puzzle…. it’s clean, but that’s because of the abbreviations that infest the grid. Not the kind of cleanliness I would want.