Today’s NYT Connections Hints (and Answer) for Wednesday, November 1, 2023Reading Time: 5 minutes
Here are some hints to help you win NYT Connections #143.
If you’re looking for the Connections answer for Wednesday, November 1, 2023, read on—I’ll share some clues, tips, and strategies, and finally the solutions to all four categories. Along the way, I’ll explain the meanings of the trickier words and we’ll learn how everything fits together. Beware, there are spoilers below for November 1, NYT Connections #143! Read on if you want some hints (and then the answer) to today’s Connections game.
If you want an easy way to come back to our Connections hints every day, bookmark this page. You can also find our past hints there as well, in case you want to know what you missed in a previous puzzle.
Below, I’ll give you some oblique hints at today’s Connections answers. And farther down the page, I’ll reveal the themes and the answers. Scroll slowly and take just the hints you need!
There are some pop culture references and a few things you might have learned in home ec, but only one thing I’m going to call out specifically:
RATCHED is not to be confused with a ratcheting device (a cog or tooth on a track that can move one way but not another) nor to the slang term ratchet. RATCHED, with a D at the end, can only refer to Nurse RATCHED from One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.
Here are some spoiler-free hints for the groupings in today’s Connections:
- Yellow category – Smash that notification bell!
- Green category – Stitch.
- Blue category – This one is doctored.
- Purple category – Um um um I’m having trouble with this one.
Just the usual attempts to confuse you with ambiguity; nothing related to the words’ spellings or pronunciation today.
Ready to hear the answers? Keep scrolling if you want a little more help.
We’re about to give away some of the answers. Scroll slowly if you don’t want the whole thing spoiled. (The full solution is a bit further down.)
- A WELL might be a water source for a HOUSE, but today you’ll want to think of it as a companion to UM.
- LIKE can be a filler word, or a verb meaning that, you know, you LIKE something. It can also be a thumbs-up on social media.
- DARN can be a mild oath (‘DARN you straight to heck!’) but it’s also a technique for using thread to patch a hole in cloth. It works particularly well on socks, where a DARNing egg can be used to give you a firm surface to run your needle against.
What are the categories in today’s Connections?
- Yellow: SOCIAL MEDIA ACTIONS
- Green: USE A NEEDLE AND THREAD
- Blue: SHOWS SET IN HOSPITALS
- Purple: EXPRESSIONS OF HESITATION
Ready to learn the answers to today’s Connections puzzle? I give them all away below.
The yellow grouping is considered to be the most straightforward. The theme for today’s yellow group is SOCIAL MEDIA ACTIONS and the words are: FOLLOW, LIKE, SHARE, SUBSCRIBE.
The green grouping is supposed to be the second-easiest. The theme for today’s green category is USE A NEEDLE AND THREAD and the words are: DARN, HEM, SEAM, SEW.
The blue grouping is the second-hardest. The theme for today’s blue category is SHOWS SET IN HOSPITALS and the words are: ER, HOUSE, RATCHED, SCRUBS (That’s ER as in E.R., but even in the original they just styled it ER.)
The purple grouping is considered to be the hardest. The theme for today’s purple category is EXPRESSIONS OF HESITATION and the words are: ERM, UH, UM, WELL.
UM, LIKE, and WELL are all things I say far too much, at least when I’m recording my voice for any reason. Sorry to every podcast I’ve ever been on. Overall I see at least six or seven things that we often say between words, so I can’t get this category just yet.
When I don’t know where to start, I find words that can only have one meaning. ERM can only be a filler word, so there’s definitely a group of those. RATCHED, with that spelling, can only be the fictional nurse.
But! LIKE could serve multiple purposes. I noticed that it fits right in with FOLLOW, SHARE, and SUBSCRIBE. ???? And HEM doesn’t need to be a filler (even though one can HEM and haw); it can be a sewing technique, like DARN, SEAM, and SEW. ????
Now we finally know what to do with RATCHED; she goes with HOUSE and SCRUBS, which are hospital dramas. (I didn’t know Nurse RATCHED had her own show, but apparently she does.) Where is the fourth—aha, it’s ER, as in E.R., for Emergency Room. ????
Finally we can get the full collection of filler words: UM, UH, ERM, WELL. ????
I have a full guide to playing Connections, but here’s a refresher on the rules:
First, find the Connections game either on the New York Times website or in their Crossword app. You’ll see a game board with 16 tiles, each with one word or phrase. Your job is to select a group of four tiles that have something in common. Often they are all the same type of thing (for example: RAIN, SLEET, HAIL, and SNOW are all types of wet weather) but sometimes there is wordplay involved (for example, BUCKET, GUEST, TOP TEN, and WISH are all types of lists: bucket list, guest list, and so on).
Select four items and hit the Submit button. If you guessed correctly, the category and color will be revealed. (Yellow is easiest, followed by green, then blue, then purple.) If your guess was incorrect, you’ll get a chance to try again.
You win when you’ve correctly identified all four groups. But if you make four mistakes before you finish, the game ends and the answers are revealed.
The most important thing to know to win Connections is that the groupings are designed to be tricky. Expect to see overlapping groups. For example, one puzzle seemed to include six breakfast foods: BACON, EGG, PANCAKE, OMELET, WAFFLE, and CEREAL. But BACON turned out to be part of a group of painters along with CLOSE, MUNCH, and WHISTLER, and EGG was in a group of things that come by the dozen (along with JUROR, ROSE, and MONTH). So don’t hit ‘submit’ until you’ve confirmed that your group of four contains only those four things.
If you’re stuck, another strategy is to look at the words that seem to have no connection to the others. If all that comes to mind when you see WHISTLER is the painting nicknamed ‘Whistler’s Mother,’ you might be on to something. When I solved that one, I ended up googling whether there was a painter named Close, because Close didn’t fit any of the obvious themes, either.
Another way to win when you’re stuck is, obviously, to read a few helpful hints–which is why we share these pointers every day. Check back tomorrow for the next puzzle!
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