Author: Damon J. Gulczynski
Solving time: 18:00 flat
Okay, at first I thought this was going to be the EASIEST THURSDAY EVER. I sped through about 90% of the puzzle in five minutes.
Then I spent 13 minutes not realizing that I'd made a few key mistakes which made solving the rest of the puzzle hellish. Case in point: I had AMEND instead of EMEND. I had no idea what the consonant before the S in 4D might be, so I was staring at AMI-RATE. Not useful. A similar thing happened with ENTAILING, which I had as REQUIRING... causing lots of problems.
Sadly, that really accounts for almost all of my trouble with this one-- moving too fast and not noticing my mistakes. I can only spot three things in here that I didn't know to start with:
OCREA - the tubelike covering around some stems, particularly buckwheat, according to the dictionary. Also a greek legging.
LISLE - a suburb of Chicago; novelist Holly; and a fine, strong cotton (or linen) thread used in making knit undergarments.
ESKERS - a long, winding ridge of sand and gravel, according to Wikipedia. They form above and in between glaciers. There are apparently some large ones up in Maine.