Dealing with phonies can be tough sometimes. It makes us think because we are not sure with our own suspicion. We have doubts. But there are times when phonies are easy to deal with, even if we still don’t have a pretty good idea of the validity of the word in question. Here we have one of those situasions. Look at the diagram (the same board as in ‘Hotspot – the idea ’, only on some earlier stage).
When things going or looking too easy, maybe it’s about time to take a second look—just in case we miss something ‘interesting’. Here the game had been going halfway. I was Blue, with some 50-point lead and a bingo (UNEQUAL) ready to fire. Easy game? Check again.
A 50-point diff is no big deal when about 40 tiles are still in the bag. And my so-called bingo just didn’t even have a place to materialize—homeless, as some people might say. What, then? I’d still got to dump QU, one way or another. And it’s obvious that 6F: QAT is out of the question, since it would leave me with 2 U’s (which in turn if I drew the last U from the bag could make my blank really look like a stranger).
The most obvious way to some decent score by using U might be F2: QUA (32). But, wait! With some A’s still missing, there’s a good chance that Red would hook this with AQUA along the first column—might as well with the DLS and TWS all at once. No way!