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Saturday, May 17th, 2008

Time Event
12:21a
The Magliozzis of Crosswords
I've never had a driver's license but sometimes I listen to NPR's Car Talk. The Magliozzi brothers are a hoot, even though they're talking about something I have no interest in. The spirit of this show now can be found in the puzzle world.

I often Google for mention of crosswords and shortly before the tournament found the blog Ryan Faces the World. Ryan did not appear to be facing the world very well and, based on the difficulty he was having with the NYT puzzles, did not seem ready for the big time of the ACPT. But the writing was lively and funny and I bookmarked the site.

I did not meet Ryan in Brooklyn, but he was there and, well...at least he didn't finish last. But he kept on blogging, joined by his pal Brian (who was also there and wasn't last) in the crossword-specific blog Ryan and Brian do Crosswords. The guys may not be the best crossword solvers around (sometimes they resort to Google), but they are entertaining. Their slogan is, "Come on brains, be more smarter!" and they frequently mention their new friend and occasional guest blogger always described as "Dan Feyer, winner of the C division" (who is ready for the big time). They've started a podcast, which I have saved for the upcoming terrace-lounging season.

A strange thing is happening. Ryan and Brian are becoming more smarter. Today (a Friday!) Brian clocked in at 12:35 and Ryan also had a no-Google Friday. I predict marked improvement in their standings next year. But even if they never crack 500th place, this is still a fun stop on the crossword blog tour.
2:03a
Come on En, be more planning ahead-er
When I was at the classical concert at Town Hall a few weeks ago, there were posters advertising a concert by Judy Collins tonight (Friday). As described here I LOVE Judy Collins, have never seen her perform live, and she isn't getting any younger so it's about time I went. But did I buy tickets? Noooooo.

I checked various discount sites and this concert was never listed. Once in a while I have to suck it up and pay full price, and I decided I'd go over to Town Hall on one of my NYT days since it's close by. But I kept not doing that and time passed and the concert was tonight.

I was meeting with someone from the Barnard Alumnae Office at 3 (discussed possible "Wordplay" showings) and after that I went downtown. I arrived at Town Hall around 4:45, opened the doors to the box office, and saw the SOLD OUT sign on the Judy Collins poster. Darn!

Concerts are always too loud anyway, right?

Speaking of sold out, yesterday was free Dunkin' Donuts iced coffee day. I went to one store on Broadway in the late afternoon, and there was a sign on the door that there was no more free iced coffee. Proceeded on to the next store 2 blocks south and found a long line out into the street. I didn't want to wait and then find out there was no decaf/skim milk; with all those people, I didn't know if they were doing customized orders, so I just skipped it.

Yesterday McDonald's was also giving away breakfast and dinner chicken dishes free with purchase of a medium soda. But I don't think they have any caffeine-free diet soda and I have totally free coupons for these items through 6/30, so I passed. I normally don't like anything at McDonald's but the calorie count of 420 is not bad.

I think there was also a free ice cream deal at Baskin-Robbins yesterday, but there aren't any on the Upper West Side.

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