I chose a new canvas this week, the paper tablecloth at this place I'm at. I was unable to find out whom to credit, but the bartender thinks maybe Marcal.
I think I agree with Greg about this being the most exciting week of the season (barring a final that ends in a blitz playoff), just like the NFL conference semi-final week.
Dallas vs. San Francisco:
This jumble includes seven-letter words in the preliminary for, I believe, the first time ever. But after all these years (how many?), I felt it was time to raise the intellectual level.
Rio Grande vs. New York:
I mentioned I've been the official TD at the New York team's matches this year. This can really unbalance one's perspective, because I was unaware of all the other matches each week and I'm not even sure I've heard of the Rio Grande team. How can "Rio Grande" be a team, for that matter? Isn't it a river? I guess it's some sort of unifying, universalist-type idea, as in "Americans and Mexicans may have their differences from time to time, but let us all proud of this wonderful river we share".
I am not going to pick a winner, because maybe I'll have to rule on something. Touch-move, or whatever they argue about today. I don't think I'll pick the other matches, either, beyond what the jumble itself may seem to imply. But maybe you're reading it wrong. Be grateful you were able to read it at all. I will try to upgrade my canvas yet again next week.
St. Louis vs. New Jersey:
Miami vs. Manhattan:
I might still add more and delete this end note and just generally make this post better but I do want to get this post up in case access at home is unavailable, as they are about to close here. It empties out fast on open-mic nights once the microphone is unplugged. I may expand and/or expound more on that phenomenon as well. Later.
(Later)I'm editing now. Mostly to go back and paragraph, having just rediscovered that lost art. Also, I'd like to explain that the preliminary words in each jumble are the only valid ones according to the anagram engine at wordsmith.org . There are always more inclusive dictionaries out there, but if you wish to verify an answer, that is the place.
Btw, I have discovered a supply of plain white, unlined paper at home, so that is what I'll use next week.
FAQ: "Am I going crazy, or is something subtly different from before?" Yes.