MGWCC #183

crossword 4:16
puzzle -1:00 (approx) 

hello and welcome to episode #184 of matt gaffney’s weekly crossword contest, “See The Trick?”. our task this week is to identify a world capital. this first-week puzzle has a gentle trick indeed. theme answers:

  • {Sarcastic expression of sympathy} is CUE VIOLINS. ha, crossword snark. love it.
  • {“Amen!”} is “YOU SAID IT!”. i don’t believe i have ever said this, so don’t tell me “you said ‘you said it!'”.
  • {1982 #1 hit with the line “And the last known survivor stalks his prey in the night”} is EYE OF THE TIGER.
  • {Reading material for a fortune teller} is TEA LEAVES. here’s your $0.25 word of the day: tasseomancy.
  • {1970s “Saturday Night Live” catchphrase} is “OH NO, MR. BILL!”. before my time, i’m afraid—indeed, i needed to figure out the meta before i finished solving this clue. this reminds me only of fire marshal bill, who (despite the title of that clip) originated on “in living color”, not SNL.

so, do you “c the trick”? each theme answer begins with a homophone for a letter: cue you eye tea oh = Q U I T O, so quito is the answer to the meta. nice and easy, sure, but a fun one nonetheless.

quick fill roundup:

  • {Stands for the opening kickoff} are TEES. did you think this was a verb phrase? tricky for the very first clue in the first puzzle of the month.
  • {{Stands for the opening kickoff} for 1-across, e.g.} is the clue for CLUE. how very … *whips off sunglasses* meta.
  • {Carmaker that sounds like a bellybutton} is an AUDI. speaking of homophones.
  • {“Picasso at the ___ Agile” (play written by comedian Steve Martin)} LAPIN. never heard of this, but it sounds interesting. lapin agile, by the way, is french for “nimble rabbit”, which seems redundant. it’s also the name of an actual bar in montmartre, paris.
  • {Non-American Idle?} is briton ERIC.
  • {Cheese that rhymes with chedda} is FETA. this reminds me of the quimby “chowda” scene from the simpsons.
  • {Like Swedes or Turks} EURASIAN. remember?
  • {Sort of type} is ITALIC. a veritable type of type, if you will.
  • {Fleshy plants} are ALOES. succulents, i believe they’re called. (grr.)
  • {Website where “The Shawshank Redemption” is rated the greatest film of all time (!)} is IMDB. didn’t know that, but then, i don’t much go for ratings.
  • {Funny first name for a guy whose last name is Moore} would be LES, especially if he became a minimalist.

that’s all for me. see you in the comment thread.

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19 Responses to MGWCC #183

  1. Paul Coulter says:

    I found this puzzle a tasty appetizer. Reminds me of a conversation I overheard one morning at my local diner:
    First Customer: U F N-E M?
    Second Customer: G, I 8 Z M B-4. S D-¢.
    Counterman: 4 U, V F X, 2.
    Customer: OK, L F M N X… O, N T.

  2. Scott says:

    It was so easy I thought I might have it wrong!

  3. Matt Gaffney says:

    407 correct entries, just three shy of the record.

    Curse you, 10 entrants who sent in the wrong answer!

  4. Matthew G. says:

    I’m a bit too young for OH NO, MR. BILL! myself, but my father (whose name was Bill) liked to quote that phrase when he screwed something up. So it’s deeply implanted in my brain nonetheless.

  5. Scott says:

    @Paul – I remember reading that in Reader’s Digest a couple of decades ago. That was fun to read again. 10-Q!

  6. Tony says:

    Although it didn’t fit the meta, I REALLY wanted to see “Jane, you ignorant slut!” for the SNL quote as that was one I remember mostly from the 1970s era

  7. sps says:

    Mr. Bill was this twisted, hysterical home-movie-esque little bit, with a clay figure who always dies some horrible death at the end, screaming, “Oh no Mr. Bill!”

    And my last time on stage was as Charls Schmendiman, a minor character in Lapin Agile, Martin’s play about Einstein meeting Picasso at a cafe in Paris at the turn of the 20th century. I actually even grew muttonchops for the role…

  8. pannonica says:

    …and curse me, for not bothering?

  9. Matt Gaffney says:

    Thou art doubly-curs’d, pannonica!

  10. Lois says:

    What’s with all these curses, Matt? I’ll be scared to enter and not to enter. I had the fourth variety (getting it right, getting it wrong, not bothering and), not knowing! It was good, though.

  11. Matt Gaffney says:

    These curses are but jests…

  12. Dannoz says:

    Famous Grave Marker:

    “Here lies Lester Moore
    Four slugs
    From a .44.
    No Les
    No More.”

    Easy meta, awaiting Friday. Thanks, Matt!

  13. mitchs says:

    “Whips off sun glasses…Meta” Hysterical image, Joon. By the way, I kicked your BUTT on the meta: :56 (approx)

  14. Old Geezer says:

    Mr. Bill is the one who made the exclamation, and all he said was, “Oh, no!!!!!!” (usually as his fate was immenent).

    Sometimes the narrator said his name, and may even have occasionally said, “Oh, no, Mr. Bill.” But that particular 4-word sentence was not the catchphrase.

  15. joon says:

    mitchs, perhaps you misread: i solved the meta in negative one minute, i.e. 1 minute before finishing the crossword.

  16. mitchs says:

    Joon, um, say, come to think of it, that’s what I meant, too. Yeah.

  17. Scott says:

    So Joon wins since -1:00 comes 4 seconds before -0:56.

  18. AV says:

    I had it at Q! (and did not submit)!

  19. While my instinct was that the full phrase OHNOMRBILL wasn’t said terribly often, the Internet (via Google) sure seems to remember it that way.

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