Immediately after the match, Liz and I weren't talking about the game, but rather the mind-scrambling Paul the Octopus story. BEQ, ever the cynic, wasn't buying it because of all the anthropomorphization needed to make Paul's story even remotely plausible. That is to say, we have to believe an octopus understands the concepts of countries, understands the concept of flags, can differentiate between two flags, understands the rules of soccer, understands what the World Cup is, understands that eating from one box is to be interpreted as making a choice for whatever team represented by the flag on the box, etc. Liz, ever the scientist, wasn't having any of it as well, because she felt the charade of his "decision" wasn't consistently performed in a controlled environment. Basically, we both called bullshit. Having said all that, if we were to suspend disbelief just for a minute, isn't this the closest example, yet, that we've had to support the Infinite Monkey Theorem?
Anyway, I wanted to go for the cleanest fill in a 64-word grid (!) that I could have gone for with today's grid. I hope you agree. I think the clues are a little more on the medium side of hard with this one. But definitely more in the medium wheelhouse than a straight-up hard. Let me hear it, if you feel otherwise, in the comments.
Share the puzzle. New one on Thursday.