Selasa, 10 Agustus 2010

T U E S D A Y   August 10, 2010 C. W. Stewart

Theme: Let's Wrap It Up — Theme answers are familiar phrases that begin with a word that can also be a word for an outer garment/accessory known as a wrap.

Theme answers:
  • 17A: Southernmost tip of South America (CAPE HORN).
  • 21A: Smacked someone when they least expected it? (STOLE A KISS).
  • 40A: Deadly squeezers (BOA CONSTRICTORS).
  • 57A: Family crest (COAT OF ARMS).
  • 66A: Director's shout, and hint to the starts of 17-, 21-, 40- and 57-Across (IT'S A WRAP).
I've always been a fan of C. W. Stewart's puzzles (even before I met her last year at the ACPT and discovered she's a lovely, lovely woman!) and this is a great example of what a Tuesday puzzle should be. A coherent theme with a great reveal clue, some crosswordese to help the solver along, and smooth fill. Love it. And it's a good thing because I was pretty miserable while I was solving it. We're on vacation in Colorado and oh my God, the hike we went on yesterday! It wasn't even two miles but we gained 1,000+ vertical feet and for this middle-aged, out-of-shape woman it was painful. Breathtakingly beautiful, super super fun but, in the end, well let's just say we stopped and bought a full bottle of ibuprofen on our way back to the house.

Back to the puzzle!
  • 26A: Sew with loose stitches (BASTE). I seem to recall some discussion about this last time it popped up, although I don't remember if it was here or at Rex's blog. In any event, this is a totally legitimate clue even if it's something you've never heard of. Trust me on this.
  • 31A: It's plighted in marriage (TROTH). "Plighted" sounds bad. Too much like "blighted" I guess.
  • 35A: Mid-size Nissan (ALTIMA). PuzzleHusband had one of these for a while. Man I hated that car. It was loud and uncomfortable and couldn't handle snow At All.
  • 68A: Ghostly gathering (SEANCE). On Sunday night, the PuzzleFamily went over to the Stanley Hotel (the big, creepy hotel where they filmed "The Shining") to hear ghost stories. And yesterday on our hike, I'm pretty sure we saw the ghosts of Mr. and Mrs. Stanley! Our hike took us up to Gem Lake where we stopped and ate lunch and the PuzzleKids waded around a little bit. There was an older couple there when we got there. When we heard thunder in the distance, we high-tailed it down the trail. The couple was still at the lake finishing up their lunch when we left. After we'd been hiking down 10–15 minutes or so, guess who we see just standing there calmly on the side of the trail. That same couple! The only explanation I can come up with is … ghosts! [Okay, this is even creepier. I was going to include a picture where you can see these two people in the background. I showed it to my husband last night. And now I can't find it! It's disappeared!]

  • 3D: Goof for good, e.g.? (TYPO). I always like this kind of clue for TYPO.
  • 6D: Respectful bow (CURTSY). I always thought a CURTSY and a bow were two different things, but I can see where a CURTSY is simply a type of bow.
  • 8D: Biblical tower site (BABEL). I saw the movie "Babel" a few years ago when it first came out. If you're in the mood for an emotionally horrifying, completely depressing movie with Brad Pitt in it … this is the one for you.
  • 11D: Singer __ Dee (KIKI). But enough about depressing things ….

  • 22D: King Julien XIII in "Madagascar" (LEMUR). I've never seen the movie, but I guess it found its way into my consciousness enough that I knew this answer right off the bat.
  • 41D: Lively Cuban dance (SALSA). Also a delicious tomato-based accompaniment to tortilla chips.
Crosswordese 101: OCAS (also known as "okas" or "New Zealand yams") are the tuber of an annual plant called Oxalis tuberosa. According to Wikipedia, "The plant was brought into cultivation in the central and southern Andes for its tubers, which are used as a root vegetable." Clues you might see for OCA include "Andean stew vegetable," "South American tuber," or 53A: Edible Andean tubers. Every once in a while, usually in a late-week puzzle, OCA is clued as "wood sorrel."

Other crosswordese in the puzzle that we've already covered:
  • 44A: Young newt (EFT).
  • 70A: Gold, south of the border (ORO).
  • 5D: Jagged, as a leaf's edge (EROSE).
  • 32D: Bassoon relatives (OBOES).
  • 59D: Lab gel (AGAR).
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Everything Else — 1A: Box-office smash (HIT); 4A: Hug and smooch (NECK); 8A: Robbins's partner (BASKIN); 14A: Wrigley Field feature (IVY); 15A: "No lie!" ("TRUE!"); 16A: It can be formal or informal (ATTIRE); 19A: Jolly-good mates (BLOKES); 20A: Fort with billions in bullion (KNOX); 23A: Gender-neutral possessive (ONE'S); 25A: Besides (ELSE); 29A: Thanksgiving veggie (YAM); 37A: Have dinner (SUP); 39A: Arthur of "The Golden Girls" (BEA); 45A: La Brea goo (TAR); 46A: Like many CIA ops (COVERT); 47A: Dance components (STEPS); 50A: Building site (LOT); 52A: Actor Davis (OSSIE); 55A: Reason to swear (OATH); 61A: Track figures (ODDS); 65A: Pressing (URGENT); 69A: Like some dorms (CO-ED); 71A: Luggage lugger (PORTER); 72A: CPR experts (EMT'S); 73A: Stroke lovingly, or the object of a loving stroke (PET); 1D: Hayseed (HICK); 2D: "Terrible" 16th-century leader (IVAN); 4D: Utmost degree (NTH); 7D: Numbers game (KENO); 9D: Finally (AT LAST); 10D: Furnace room worker (STOKER); 12D: Tees off (IRES); 13D: Suffix with kind or fond (-NESS); 18D: Like some dancers (EXOTIC); 24D: Verne captain (NEMO); 26D: Innocents (BABES); 27D: Floating on high (ALOFT); 28D: Country division (STATE); 30D: N.L. Central player (ASTRO); 33D: Country singer Gibbs (TERRI); 34D: Impulsiveness (HASTE); 36D: Critter on a hill (ANT); 38D: Snapshot, briefly (PIC); 42D: Old geezer (COOT); 43D: NBC offering (TV SHOW); 48D: Strong (POTENT); 49D: Decorative wall light fixture (SCONCE); 51D: Source of oater drumming (TOMTOM); 54D: Later than (AFTER); 56D: Liability offset (ASSET); 57D: Zodiacal border (CUSP); 58D: One may be dipped in milk (OREO); 60D: Paddy product (RICE); 62D: Lead-in for cloth or kick (DROP); 63D: Challenge (DARE); 64D: Brit's bit of tea (SPOT); 67D: Super Bowl highlights? (ADS).

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