Sunday, 2/21/10

NYT 16:34 (SethG)
Reagle Untimed
LAT 17:44 (SethG)
BG Untimed
CS 6:59 (SethG)

And…it’s ACPT Day 2. Amy and the gang are still in Brooklyn, one more SethG day. See the current standings here .

Eric Berlin’s New York Times crossword, “Words from the White House”

nyt100221A nice, easy Sunday puzzle to end what had been a weekend of difficulty.

Today’s theme: A bunch of short words which, when sounded out, sorta sound like a UNITED STATES PRESIDENT.

  • 23A. [Anatomical pouch / Run on TV / Consume / Feel sick / Oral history]. SAC / AIR / EAT / AIL / LORE, Zachary Taylor.
  • 44A. [Christmas season / Greet a villain / Speak aloud / Query / Monthly payment]. YULE / HISS / SAY / ASK / RENT, Ulysses S. Grant.
  • 67A. [Least smart / Kitchen worker / Towel word / ___ Fein]. DUMBEST / CHEF / HERS / SINN, Thomas Jefferson. His face appears on the NICKEL.
  • 86A. [Trash / Victories / “Get it?” / Do some math / Runs smoothly]. JUNK / WINS / SEE / ADD / HUMS. John Quincy Adams.
  • 113A. [Most shaggy / Hotel offering / Actress Goldie]. HAIRIEST / ROOM / HAWN. Harry S. Truman. What do he and Grant have in common? Middle names. In other middle name news, James A. Garfield’s is ABRAM.

Other tie-ins include FDR’s mom, SARA, JUL clued as the [Birth mo. for Coolidge, Ford, and G. W. Bush], USN clued as [Org. for Jimmy Carter, once], Washington and LEE University, and Eisenhower’s “PEACE and Prosperity” slogan. Not tied in: TITO Jackson. And Eric gives himself a name check with NIE, [Never, in Berlin].

Anything else to note? Nothing really stuck out as a tricky area. The applet mangled the clue for PARABOLA, showing it as [What’s represented by x2 = 4py]. I coach the math team at Edina High School, and I had no idea what it was talking about without several crosses. (Yes, that Edina. We’re going to states!)

I’d have clued BOL with Manute instead of Braz. APU and DOH are near each other without a Simpsons mention, OBI crosses KENOBI without a WAN, and I’m about to go [Open] a bottle for a friend’s birthday. More puzzles tomorrow!

Updated Saturday morning:

Merl Reagle’s syndicated/Philadelphia Inquirer crossword, “A Crossword Grows in Brooklyn (2)”

pi100221Brooklyn Puns. If there’s dems and dosers, this 20×21 puzzle is for the dissers. Theme entries are DIS- words, which when spoken sound like a phrase someone from Brooklyn would say:

  • 16A. DISHONOR: “Look, she’s freezing! Put this on her
  • 20A. DISTORTER: “I can’t believe this daughter of mine is all grown up”
  • 25A. DISTRESSING: “Oh boy, ranch! I love this dressing
  • 32A. DISCONSOLATE: “A defector? Not in this consolate
  • 52A. DISAFFIRM: “As mattresses go, is this a firm?”
  • 54A. DISARRAYED: “Are you here for a beer, officer, or is this a raid?”
  • 60A. DISCIPLINARIAN: “‘Q: [Is] this a planarian?’ A: ‘No, a paramecium'”
  • 72A. DISPERSION: “I’m allergic to cats, and this Persian is no exception”
  • 74A. DISINFECT: “This in fact is my mother, not my sister”
  • 86A. DISINTEGRATE: “This isn’t a great album, but it’s very good”
  • 98A. DISCOTHEQUE: “Relax, this could take a while”
  • 108A. DISAVOWAL: “I can’t read your writing. [Is] this a vowel?”
  • 112A. DISPOSAL: “Once I got the theme, this puzzle wasn’t so tough”

In fact, once I got the theme, this puzzle wasn’t so tough. My biggest problem, I think, was finding the extra letter in discotheque. And I couldn’t think of who [Civil Rights crusader Wilkins] was until I remembered that I was in the Roy Wilkins Auditorium just recently. Roller Girls!

Mike Peluso’s syndicated Los Angeles Times crossword, “White House Insiders”

lat100221Let’s continue Presidents’ Day Week by embedding Presidential MONOGRAMs.

The theme:

  • 23A. [Obligation payable within a year (37)] is SHORT TERM NOTE, and the 37th president was Richard Milhous Nixon.
  • 38A. [Ceremonial, as Anglican ritual] is HIGH CHURCH, Herbert Clark Hoover.
  • 54A. Grant was 18, and a CHORUS GIRL is a [Line dancer?]. Dance: Ten; Looks: Three.
  • 75A. FDR repealed prohibition, and he perhaps celebrated with a [Double martini, e.g.] In any case, some kind of STIFF DRINK.
  • 92A. One [AOL service] is WEB HOSTING, and Obama is 44.
  • 110A. The PAINTED DESERT is an [Arizona attraction], and Ike was the 34th president.
  • 16D. If you’re [Hurting for money] you’re perhaps CASH STRAPPED. If you’re the 33rd president of the United States, you’re perhaps Harry S. Truman.
  • 60D. WILBUR WRIGHT was a brother and an [Aviation pioneer]. I have a Reagan dartboard from his days as governor.

Are ALLENS really [Some L-shaped wrenches]? I’m about to redo my bathroom, so I guess I’ll need both pipes and pipes.

Henry Hook’s Boston Globe crossword, “Contrarians”

bg100221The theme entries are famous people whose last names have opposites, clued as if the opposite was their actual name. Sorry about the awkward sentence, editor Amy.

Theme entries:

  • 23A. [Mormon leader?] isn’t Brigham Young, it’s BRIGHAM OLD.
  • 29A. In our alternative world, STEPHEN QUEEN is best selling author. You’ll find his works near Ellery King’s. This threw me a bit as king and queen aren’t really opposites, while the other theme reversals are more so.
  • 32A. BUDDY POOR made a lot of money drumming. I was also a bit confused when I got to the 72A impressionist RICH “not little but” BIG–I wondered if there was some kinda chain going on, but I think it’s just a coincidence.
  • 65A. Maybe the real SIR THOMAS LESS wrote a Dystopia.
  • 68A. The [“20/20” man] wasn’t HUGH UPS.
  • 76A. I’ve never heard of “Miss Lonelyhearts” or its author, who was not NATHANAEL LEAST. I have heard of Cabaret, but not the 112A. pianist who was not BOBBY TALL.
  • 116A. COURTNEY HATE, maybe the aptest opposite, I know well. She went to school, in Olympia.
  • 123A. Finally, Bette White should host SNL, but VANNA BLACK is not a [Game-show VIP?].

Speaking of Brooklyn, A TREE grows there. And if I’m reading the results right and the rules haven’t changed, Anne gets the tiebreaker over Tyler for third place in the finals, joining Dan and Howard. Excitement!

Randolph Ross’ Washington Post/CrosSynergy “Sunday Challenge”

cs100221Some stuff and stuff:

  • 18A. SVENGALI is a [Malevolent manipulator]. My friend Dave B referred to his kid (before birth) as Svengali B. His second kid–the first had been called Boutros-Boutros B. Was Howard B ever called BARKS?
  • 23A. I THINK was the [Cartesian premise]. Cogito. Followed by ergo sum, therefore I am. Also, put Decartes before de HORSE. When sum hungry, I COULD EAT A one of those.
  • 48A: Fred GWYNNE was the [Actor Fred who played the judge in “My Cousin Vinny”]. I love that movie, yet my first thought here was Fred Savage. Vinny was from Brooklyn.
  • 61A. Is REESE’S a [Piece maker] or is it just Reese? Reese was a guy, REESE’S is neither a guy nor a company. It’s just a brand name.
  • 33D. LAY ON is an [Order to Macduff]. I just don’t know what you’re telling Macduff to do or who Macduff is.
  • 14D. KEITH Richards and KEITH Moon were rockers. Last time I was at the big IMAX it was to see the Rolling Stones, and a 50-foot tall close-up of Keith Richards’ face is…really something. Next time I will go to the IMAX will be in twenty minutes, when we leave for Avatar.

It’s been a pleasure hanging out with y’all. Safe travels back from Brooklyn, and I’ll e-see you soon!

This entry was posted in Daily Puzzles and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Sunday, 2/21/10

  1. sbmanion says:

    Here is an excellent and surprisingly simple explanation of how the formula for a parabola is arrived at:

    I found this puzzle to be somewhat of a grind–not hard–but not one that it was easy to fill in the long entries.


  2. @ sbmanion – very interesting link. Directrix was new to me. Thanks!

    Very nice, easy puzzle. The names were true groaners though.

  3. Tuning Spork says:

    Thanks for posting the link to the standings, Seth. (I thought they didn’t post that ’til Sunday morning.)

    I see our hostess is at a very impressive 16th place, and 10 minutes (barring errors) out of the finals.

    Come on, Amy! Finish Puzzle 7 in three minutes and yer in!

    Other notes:

    Looks like Trip made an error on Puzzle 6. He had to go for the extra minute to tie with Kiran and have a chance at the finals. It was crunch time and he took the risk. Oh well. Can’t blame him for that.

    Tyler Hinman and Anne Erdmann are tied for third. This oughta be good. Haven’t had a gal in the finals since Ellen’s victory — though Stella Zawistowski looks like a contender. (She’ll have to jump over two of the five players ahead of her, though. Same with Heaney.)

    Dan Feyer looks like the creep to beat. I mean, really. Looks like it’s gonna be Howard and either Anne or Tyler against perhaps the most dedicated solver who ever lived.

    It’s always too soon to predict anything, but Dan may win six in a row if he wants to. He’s that determined to be the best at this.

    Good morning and good luck to all contenders!

  4. Barry G says:

    Great puzzle and, on the whole, easy. I did have one sticking point, however, at the crossing of ATHOL and ALE. Never heard of McSorley’s establishment nor Mr. Fugard. Fortunately, there is a little town her in Massachusetts called ATHOL, which let me at least guess something plausible…

  5. Jeffrey says:

    Hi from Brooklyn. The Fiend crew is doing well with Amy 16th and joon right behind in 17th. joon leads B, C and rookies.

    I’m 63rd, and leading foreign division.

  6. S.D. Price says:

    11 Down: Even through “Friend of Pooh” was an owl, a better answer would have been WOL, the character’s name.

  7. Jeffrey says:

    Trophies for Amy, joon, Sam and me. The Field crew clean up.

  8. Bruce S. says:

    Well done Fiend crew. Thanks for all the writeups this weekend Seth, excellent job.

  9. Dan says:

    “Allen” wrenches are another name for “hex key” wrenches.

    If you have every put anything together from IKEA, you know what a hex nut wrench is.

    They are commonly referred to as “allen wrenches” in the tool biz. Fortunately, they are almost never used in plumbing or general construction, so you probably won’t have to go out and get a set for your remodel. Although now that I think about it, if you put in cabinets that are prefab you might need a good ol’ Allen wrench to do it.

Comments are closed.