Selasa, 12 Juli 2011

07.12 Tue

July 12, 2011
Bill Thompson

Theme: Miller Time — The last word of each theme answer can follow (i.e., chase) the word "beer" in a familiar phrase.

Theme answers:

  • 17A: Type of government spending typified by the Bridge to Nowhere (PORK BARREL).
  • 25A: "Two Tickets to Paradise" singer (EDDIE MONEY).
  • 37A: (At) maximum capacity (FULL BLAST).
  • 51A: Classic candy bean (JELLY BELLY).
  • 62A: Brew after a shot (and, in a way, what the end of 17-, 25-, 37-, or 51-Across can be) (BEER CHASER).

Starting off our Tuesday with a fun little romp. Cute theme. Obviously a type of theme that's been done a million times but that's perfect for a Tuesday. The great thing about the execution of the theme today, though, is that the theme phrases are all interesting and lively. I particularly like FULL BLAST. I'm not sure I've ever seen that in a puzzle before and it made me chuckle.

The triple stacks of 7s in the northwest and southeast corners are pretty flashy too. ALPACAS / LEONORA / LARCENY are all great entries (1D: Llama relatives / 2D: "Il Trovatore" soprano / 3D: Grand or petit crime). And I think it's possible there's a mini-theme going on in that other corner with BREASTS, "I LOVE IT!" and T-SHIRTS (45D: Chicken choices / 46D: "That's perfect as is!" / 47D: Casual tops). Just sayin'.

Two answers were complete unknowns to me.
  • 55A: Michelle of "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" (YEOH). I hope her name is pronounced like "Yow!"
  • 5D: Birds' bills (NEBS). Pretty sure I've never seen this word before. Good to know.
Those two answers could have derailed the fun, but the crosses were all totally solid and that's how it should be.

The only other thing I have to mention — and I apologize in advance for this — is that 22A: Disco __ (ERA) brought to mind an unfortunate association for me. Again, so sorry ….

Crosswordese 101 Round-up:
  • 64A: Poet Khayyám (OMAR).
  • 8D: "SNL" alum Cheri (OTERI).
  • 26D: "Splendor in the Grass" director Kazan (ELIA).
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Everything Else 1A: Detective Pinkerton (ALLAN); 6A: Bug-eyed with excitement (AGOG); 10A: Formally give up (CEDE); 14A: Let, as a flat (LEASE); 15A: Place for doves, not hawks (COTE); 16A: x or y line (AXIS); 19A: Tach measures: Abbr. (RPM'S); 20A: Very old: Abbr. (ANC.); 21A: More furtive (SLIER); 23A: Unlike Wabash College (COED); 29A: "Gunsmoke" star James (ARNESS); 31A: "We're outta here!" ("LET'S GO!"); 32A: Doctor's request (SAY AH); 33A: Studio warning (ON AIR); 36A: Long, long time (EON); 40A: "Because I said so!" elicitor (WHY); 43A: Bad time for a procrastinator (TODAY); 44A: Planet's path (ORBIT); 48A: Big honey brand (SUE BEE); 50A: Fishing line tangles (SNARLS); 56A: 57-Across brand (LEE); 57A: Casual pants (JEANS); 59A: Bird: Prefix (AVI-); 60A: Flat-topped rise (MESA); 64A: Poet Khayyám (OMAR); 65A: Beige shade (ECRU); 66A: Absorb a loss, slangily (EAT IT); 67A: Responsibility (DUTY); 68A: Eyelid affliction (STYE); 69A: Spars on board (MASTS); 4D: Look for answers (ASK); 6D: Pungent (ACRID); 7D: Injured in the bullring (GORED); 9D: Hair-holding goo (GEL); 10D: Metaphorical incentive (CARROT); 11D: Broad area (EXPANSE); 12D: Lower, as lights (DIM); 13D: Twisting shape (ESS); 18D: Quaffs in tankards (ALES); 22D: Rock music's __, Lake & Palmer (EMERSON); 24D: Unwilling to listen (DEAF); 27D: Self-esteem (EGO); 28D: Over there, to Milton (YON); 30D: Sleep, informally (SHUT-EYE); 33D: Like the hills? (OLD); 34D: Miami Heat gp. (NBA); 35D: Prince __ Khan (ALY); 38D: Leopold's co-defendant (LOEB); 39D: Butler's carrying aid (TRAY); 40D: N.Y. financial paper (WSJ); 41D: Color (HUE); 42D: Bawls out (YELLS AT); 49D: Clouded, as vision (BLEARY); 50D: Harmony (SYNC); 52D: Unique button in 007's Aston Martin (EJECT); 53D: Suspicious (LEERY); 54D: Oater star Lash (LARUE); 58D: Noah's firstborn (SHEM); 60D: Stylish, in the '60s (MOD); 61D: Outback runner (EMU); 62D: Teachers' degs. (BE'S); 63D: Little battery (AAA).

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