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Sailing The S̶e̶v̶e̶n̶Five Seas (Meta)

· By benchen71 · Published 2024-02-15T06:00:33.462Z

Meta Prompt
The answer to the meta is a type of boat
When Cap'n Rick won the most recent Crosshare midi crossword contest and chose "The Sea" as the theme for the new contest I thought I should submit an entry both in homage to him as a meta constructor and also to see if I could cram a meta into an 11x11 grid. The answer to the meta is a type of boat. Answer & explanation:
Nudges, in order of increasing blatancy:
  1. There is a hint in the grid: 20A. Prefix for boats powered by steam, unlike the meta answer which, like some entries in this grid, takes a more "nautical" prefix
  2. Did you notice that in this grid one letter is conspicuous by its absence, given the puzzle title?
  3. There are no Cs in the grid. 5 symmetrical entries can take a C as a prefix.
  4. It's time to play the "alternate entries" game!
Check out "The MOAT MEOW Mashup Pack" here: US$10 gives you access to 14 metas that don't always abide by the "rules" of the game. You won't quite know what to expect: asymmetry, 2-letter words, uncrossed letters, sometimes all of those, and sometimes none! One thing is for sure, these are some of the more creative metas my brain has been able to come up with. And there's more: this time there's a mega-meta!
Checking for previous play data...

Leaderboard (updated hourly)

  • kieranjboyd solved 2024-02-15T06:19:12.231Z
  • Darth solved 2024-02-15T06:46:19.862Z
  • SeamusOL solved 2024-02-15T06:46:45.071Z
  • Schmeel solved 2024-02-15T09:56:27.483Z
  • LarsCaine solved 2024-02-15T13:07:35.562Z
  • Pair O Ducks solved 2024-02-15T13:59:39.934Z
  • Capn Rick solved 2024-02-15T14:09:27.694Z
  • Meg solved 2024-02-15T14:15:48.135Z
  • MatthewL solved 2024-02-15T15:16:01.467Z
  • boharr solved 2024-02-15T15:18:07.497Z
  • hoover solved 2024-02-15T15:52:32.831Z
  • BarbaraK solved 2024-02-15T15:57:07.159Z
  • markhr solved 2024-02-15T16:03:44.559Z
  • Hector solved 2024-02-15T16:04:20.462Z
  • Mg305 solved 2024-02-15T16:05:53.256Z
  • JM solved 2024-02-15T17:08:48.486Z
  • Anonymous Crossharer solved 2024-02-15T17:59:40.362Z
  • Tuffy solved 2024-02-15T18:09:46.899Z
  • ajk solved 2024-02-15T18:34:22.364Z
  • Cindy Weatherman solved 2024-02-15T19:24:01.790Z
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  • dannyvee solved 2024-02-20T14:51:27.554Z
  • Jaclyn solved 2024-02-20T16:42:36.534Z
  • Tyrpmom solved 2024-02-24T15:01:04.007Z
  • Anonym00se solved 2024-03-25T11:53:40.122Z


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  • kieranjboyd 🤓2:42 · 2024-02-15T06:19:51.618Z
    Turns out you can fit a meta into an 11x11 grid! Well done
    • benchen71 constructor · 2024-02-15T07:00:30.515Z
      You could almost call it a 2-step meta, too! :D
    • Darth 8:27 · 2024-02-15T06:47:50.140Z
      Nice! Thanks, Ben.
      • Meg 3s · 2024-02-15T14:16:47.801Z
        No nudges necessary! Looked up the Fermi paradox. Good to learn something.
        • Capn Rick 6:33 · 2024-02-15T14:12:56.071Z
          Well done, Ben! I appreciate the tribute, and as you know, I LOVE this metanism type. You even managed to get my wife ERIN's name in the grid! Good luck with the contest! You have my vote! 😄
          • ajk 🤓4:31 · 2024-02-15T18:37:35.939Z
            For the record, as someone who holds an Irish passport, whose parents grew up in Dublin, whose extended family all still live in Dublin, and who has been to Ireland ~50 times, I don't think I've ever heard anyone refer to it as ERIN'S Isle 😂 (though of course it was inferrable)
          • MatthewL 🤓3:52 · 2024-02-15T15:17:47.063Z
            Sailed into port with no bumps. Thanks for the extra puzzle, Ben!
            • ajk 🤓4:31 · 2024-02-15T18:35:52.345Z
              solved without nudges. very spiffy, thanks. Knew what to do almost right away, but took me several passes to find the alternates (especially CLEAVE/UNITE).
              • woozy 7:29 · 2024-02-15T20:58:43.284Z
                But who the heck is Tag? and what were the alternatives for Cleave, Close, and Clear? Unite, Tight, and Erase?
                • benchen71 constructor · 2024-02-16T01:16:26.794Z
                  Tag was Rachel's young, ultra-handsome assistant with whom she had a brief fling. Not the most well-known of Friends characters, I know, but I couldn't get Treeger (their building's superintendent) into the grid! :D And yes, Cleave -> Unite, Close -> Tight, Clear -> Erase.
                • KayW 🤓5:16 · 2024-02-15T21:07:16.238Z
                  Fun one, thanks!
                  • whimsy 8:05 · 2024-02-16T02:20:11.561Z
                    Thanks, Ben! Great contest entry and just the right size for me on vacation!
                    • Laura M 🤓6:00 · 2024-02-16T08:50:58.614Z
                      Very nice!
                      • Sendhil Revuluri 2:41 · 2024-02-16T14:51:20.042Z
                        Very nice meta mechanism — once I used ALL the nudges and STILL didn't quite get it and revealed the meta answer, I mean 🤪
                        I did get stuck at the 32A / 33D cross — still not sure who TAG is and only could think of APO and FPO. But I now see that it's part of the meta (which probably should have been something I made use of better before resorting to the nudges).
                        • Abide 13:22 · 2024-02-16T19:31:57.972Z
                          Nice midi! Intentionally or not, a chandler is a person who supplies boats or ships.
                          • benchen71 constructor · 2024-02-17T00:11:01.477Z
                            I was aware of that definition but it was merely a happy coincidence in this case. As a die-hard "Friends" fan, I was always going to clue it that way!
                          • DrTom 11s · 2024-02-17T17:04:45.202Z
                            WOW, did I ever try to overthink this! I was adding S.S. (since SS is steamship but S.S. or S/S is Sailing Ship) water (watertight, waterhandler) until I finally said OK, there is something I am missing - and I was. I really should NOT have but I was! Nice one Ben, well constructed and a Cap'n specific honor!
                            • HeadinHome 🤓7:55 · 2024-02-20T12:34:45.081Z
                              Great way to start my Tuesday… quick and clever. No nudges needed, but it did take me a bit to see “C” as “sea.” Of course!
                              • BarbaraK 🤓5:24 · 2024-02-24T02:33:50.574Z
                                Very nice fitting all that into a midi!
                                • Tyrpmom 13:36 · 2024-02-24T15:06:28.136Z
                                  Very appropriate answer.
                                  1. 1A
                                  2. 6A
                                    Fail to win
                                  3. 10A
                                    TV financial adviser Suze
                                  4. 11A
                                    Horse opera
                                  5. 12A
                                    Pitched roof feature
                                  6. 13A
                                    "Where are all the aliens?" paradox
                                  7. 14A
                                    Columbus campus (abbr.)
                                  8. 15A
                                    Easiest section of a song to sing along to, probably
                                  9. 17A
                                    Subj. for some immigrants
                                  10. 19A
                                    Back muscle, briefly
                                  11. 20A
                                    Prefix for boats powered by steam, unlike the meta answer which, like some entries in this grid, takes a more "nautical" prefix
                                  12. 21A
                                    Person who directs the activities of a spy
                                  13. 24A
                                  14. 26A
                                    Apt acronym for "Ukrainian Youth Ensemble"
                                  15. 27A
                                    With 38A: Neighbourhood in which much of the Port of Los Angeles can be found
                                  16. 29A
                                    Wild Central Asian equines
                                  17. 32A
                                    "Friends" character, well-known to Rachel
                                  18. 34A
                                    ___ fisted (stingy)
                                  19. 35A
                                  20. 37A
                                    French beings
                                  21. 38A
                                    See 27A
                                  22. 39A
                                    "The Owl and the Pussycat" poet
                                  23. 40A
                                    Falcon-headed Egyptian god
                                  1. 1D
                                    Nike's swoosh, for example
                                  2. 2D
                                    Wipe, as a whiteboard
                                  3. 3D
                                    Surprise attack
                                  4. 4D
                                    Kilmer of "Top Gun"
                                  5. 5D
                                    Fed. power dept.
                                  6. 6D
                                    Ophelia's brother
                                  7. 7D
                                    Another, in Madrid
                                  8. 8D
                                    Round of four
                                  9. 9D
                                    ___ Isle (Ireland)
                                  10. 11D
                                    Butcher's discards
                                  11. 16D
                                    Tribal leader
                                  12. 18D
                                    One yucking it up
                                  13. 22D
                                    Russian refusals
                                  14. 23D
                                    For mature audiences
                                  15. 24D
                                    Roadside lodging
                                  16. 25D
                                    Join together
                                  17. 28D
                                    Micronesian nation with a flag consisting of a blue background with a white star under a horizontal yellow line
                                  18. 30D
                                    Indian tourist city with a famous mausoleum
                                  19. 31D
                                    Second-year student
                                  20. 33D
                                    Mailing ctrs.
                                  21. 36D
                                    "The Matrix" protagonist