Selasa, 21 September 2010

T U E S D A Y   September 21, 2010 Robert A. Doll

Theme: I've got this property in Arizona I'd like to sell you …. — Theme answers start with words that can come after the word "beach" in a familiar phrase.

Theme answers:
  • 17A: Top banana (HEAD HONCHO).
  • 23A: Unstable situation, metaphorically (HOUSE OF CARDS).
  • 37A: Huge mess (BALL OF CONFUSION).
  • 45A: Gregarious fun lovers (PARTY ANIMALS).
  • 58A: Valuable shore property, and a hint to what the first words of 17-, 23-, 37- and 45-Across have in common (BEACH FRONT).
Not a lot to say about this one. The theme is fine, the fill is decent, and it's just about the perfect difficulty level for Tuesday. I'm off to a job interview this morning, so I'll tell you a few things that jumped out at me and then I'll leave it to y'all to talk it out in the comments.

  • 6A: Zip (ZERO). I tried NADA first.
  • 30A: Louise's gal pal (THELMA). This clue makes it sound like they're just a couple of everyday gals going out to the mall or something.
  • 40A: "Danny and the Dinosaur" author Hoff (SYD). This clue for SYD is used more often in late-week puzzles. On Mondays and Tuesdays, we're usually treated to SYD Barrett.
  • 43A: Blood fluids (SERA). Ew.
  • 52A: Assumed name (ALIAS). I never got into this show. (Yes, I know the clue doesn't refer to the show, but that's where my brain took me.) I used to read television show recaps on a site called Mighty Big TV (now Television Without Pity) and the write-up for Alias's pilot episode made it sound so dumb that I couldn't really ever watch it again. ("She's a CIA agent! She's a college student! She's a CIA agent!")
  • 63A: Sacher treat (TORTE). I've Ne-ever heard of this before, but it's kind of interesting.
  • 10D: Kid's make-believe phone (TIN CAN). Last time I saw a tin can used as a phone was just the other day when Jon Stewart used one as a prop in the bit where he announced his Rally to Restore Sanity. (I'm so there.)
  • 18D: Its flagship sch. is in Stillwater, west of Tulsa (OSU). Oklahoma State University. Their wrestling team holds the record for most national championships. But it's only a matter of time ….
  • 23D: Oates's musical partner (HALL).

  • 27D: One-horse carriage (SHAY). Have I ever mentioned how much I love the Nickelodeon kids' show "iCarly"? I have? Well, Carly's last name on that show is SHAY.
  • 32D: Performers' union: Abbr. (AFTRA). American Federation of Television and Radio Artists.
  • 35D: Letter after theta (IOTA). Someday I'm going to memorize the Greek alphabet. And the Jewish months. And the European rivers.
  • 1D: "High Hopes" lyricist Sammy (CAHN). A little surprised to see both Sammy CAHN and 38D: "Misery" actor James CAAN in the same grid.
  • 49D: "Miracle on 34th Street" setting (MACY'S). Was just there today! I don't know if their customer service is getting better or if my standards are just getting lower. I used to hate going in there, but the last few times it hasn't been that bad. At least it's been a while since I got trapped in a fitting room because someone shoved two big rolling racks of clothes in front of the door and I had to scream until another customer helped me get out. I guess it's all uphill from there.
Crosswordese 101: The 19A: Depilatory brand NAIR is very popular in CrossWorld. It's generally clued (like today) straightforwardly as a popular (or top-selling) depilatory (or hair removal) brand (or product or option). It is also likely to be clued as an alternative, competitor, or rival of the other popular hair removal product, NEET. Occasionally, the clue for NEET will indicate "bygone" or "once" because the product is now called VEET, which for some reason never shows up in puzzles.

Other crosswordese in the puzzle that we've already covered:
  • 15A: Country on the tip of the Arabian Peninsula (OMAN).
  • 26A: Workplace inspection org. (OSHA).
  • 2D: Top draft status (ONE-A).
  • 9D: John __ Lennon (ONO).
  • 50D: Rhine whine? (ACH).
  • 56D: Editor's "leave it in" (STET).
  • 60D: Future fish (ROE).
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Everything Else — 1A: Briquettes (COALS); 10A: Country music pioneer Ernest (TUBB); 14A: "As a result ..." ("AND SO …"); 16A: Spot in the ocean (ISLE); 20A: '60s-'70s war site, briefly (NAM); 21A: "Now it makes sense!" ("I SEE!"); 22A: Cake finish (ICING); 29A: Comportment (MIEN); 33A: Buzzing swarmers (BEES); 34A: Performed (DID); 41A: Court postponement (STAY); 42A: Ancient Greek military power (SPARTA); 44A: Veggies studied by Mendel (PEAS); 53A: Defensive spray (MACE); 54A: Marx's "__ Kapital" (DAS); 57A: Thin curl of smoke (WISP); 61A: Third man (ABEL); 62A: High-strung (EDGY); 64A: Goodyear product (TIRE); 65A: Member's obligation (DUES); 66A: What matzo lacks (YEAST); 3D: Father of 61-Across (ADAM); 4D: '60s "trip" drug (LSD); 5D: Early gas company based in Cleveland (SOHIO); 6D: Districts (ZONES); 7D: Roast host (EMCEE); 8D: Bleachers cry (RAH); 11D: Carrier that added "ways" to its name in 1997 (USAIR); 12D: Duck hunter's cover (BLIND); 13D: Cold-water hazards (BERGS); 22D: Freezes over (ICES UP); 24D: Divine sign (OMEN); 25D: Feudal domains (FIEFS); 26D: Gambling parlors, briefly (OTB'S); 28D: Had in one's hands (HELD); 31D: Strolls (along) (MOSEYS); 33D: Tarzan's son (BOY); 34D: Awful (DIRE); 36D: Genetic info carriers (DNA'S); 39D: Easy targets (SAPS); 43D: Swingline fastener (STAPLE); 45D: Touch, cat-style (PAW AT); 46D: Accused's excuse (ALIBI); 47D: Choir platform (RISER); 48D: Likeness (IMAGE); 51D: Sandy Koufax or CC Sabathia (LEFTY); 54D: The first Mrs. Copperfield (DORA); 55D: Insects on farms (ANTS); 58D: B&B part (BED); 59D: College URL ending (EDU).

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