Monday, April 17, 2017

BEQ 7:00 (Jenni) 


LAT 3:02 (Amy) 


NYT 2:49 (Amy)  


WSJ untimed (Jim)  


Peter Gordon’s New York Times crossword — Amy’s write-up

NY Times crossword solution, 4 17 17, no. 0417

We dedicate this theme to Arnold Horshack of Welcome Back, Kotter, with his “Ooh—ooh—ooh ooh” trademark. Each theme answer starts with a *U*U or *OO*OO reduplication:

  • 17a. [Big name in athletic wear], LULULEMON.
  • 23a. [Jellystone Park toon with a bow tie], BOO-BOO BEAR.
  • 35a. [Assortment of appetizers at a Polynesian or Chinese restaurant], PUPU PLATTER.
  • 49a. [Amorous look], GOO-GOO EYES.
  • 58a. [Noisemakers at the 2010 World Cup], VUVUZELAS.

Choo-choo train and cuckoo clock (if there are two spellings for a 5-part theme, no real reason not to allow a third) are omitted. Hyphenated words, closed-up words, and closed-up portions of longer words are all in the mix. Is there some other level to the theme that I’m missing? LBGPV doesn’t mean anything to me.

BUDGETER is maybe passable. SNARLER feels pretty useless. And the plural AMUSERS is just one step away from my favorite fake example of a roll-your-own word, REAMUSERS.

Five more things:

  • 9a. [H.S. class for a future doctor, maybe], A.P. BIO. Yeah, my kid will be taking that next year.
  • 27a. [“Girlfriend” boy band], N*SYNC. Here, we register our objection to the use of “boy band” to describe a group of male vocalists who aren’t playing musical instruments, when “girl group” often gets applied even to bands like the Go-Go’s, who play their own instruments. Alliteration overpowers logic.
  • 64a. [Some squishy balls], NERFS. I call ’em Nerf balls. Is there anyone who calls them NERFS?
  • 10d. [Backup strategy], PLAN B. Would love to see this clued as the emergency contraceptive brand.
  • 59d. [Sport-___ (rugged vehicle)], UTE. I don’t know anyone who uses UTE this way outside of crosswords.

3.5 stars from me.

Harold Jones’s Wall Street Journal crossword, “Cabinet Department” — Jim’s review

It’s Monday and it’s the day before your taxes are due, so 63a is there to remind you to stop procrastinating and FILE.

Actually, the clue is [What you can do to all of the starred answers], and so in essence, our theme is, “Things you can file.”

WSJ – Mon, 4.17.17 – “Cabinet Department” by Harold Jones (Mike Shenk)

  • 18a [*Certain actions] CIVIL SUITS. Wow, that’s a pretty generic clue.
  • 27a [*Targets for clippers] FINGERNAILS
  • 43a [*They have brackets] INCOME TAXES. There it is. Did anyone else try TOURNAMENTS here? Because it fits.
  • 54a [*Pen holders?] PRISON BARS. Presumably, if you failed to pay your taxes, this information might come in handy. Good clue, too.

Pretty straightforward Monday theme.


Eyebrow raisers:

  • 1d [Unappetizing ladleful]. GLOP. I prefer GLOB to GLOP.
  • 15a AROSE crossing 6d ARISEN. But to avoid the duplication, 15a is clued as a partial [“___ by any other name would smell as sweet”].
  • Proper names: VERN Mikkelsen, ERIK Satie are the harder ones, then there’s Courteney COX, Michael CAINE, Celine DION, and OMAR Khayyam
  • 13d [Yiddish plaints]. OYS. Oy.
  • 27d [Cream of Wheat makeup]. FARINA. I’ve heard the word but didn’t know what it meant. Per Wikipedia, it is a form of milled wheat. This clue takes me way back to the days when mom would make me breakfast. I loved Cream of Wheat with a touch of syrup. Mmmm.

Straight and simple puzzle. Have you filed your taxes yet? If not, get to it!

Bruce Haight’s Los Angeles Times crossword—Amy’s write-up

LA Times crossword solution, 4 17 17

I had no idea what the theme was till I reached the revealer: 58a. [Highway segment for slower traffic … and, literally, what 17-, 24-, 37- and 47-Across each has], RIGHT LANE. Put the word lane to the right of the second word in those four themers, and you get lovers’ lane, bowling lane (which feels awkward to me—there are lanes at the bowling alley, but I don’t say “bowling lane”), memory lane, and Penny Lane. The themers are DOG LOVERS, LAWN BOWLING, SELECTIVE MEMORY, and a PRETTY PENNY. Works well enough, though “words that can precede or follow X” themes don’t do much for me.

Surprising to see in a Monday puzzle: ST. LO, A DUE, ALIT, ERIES, ASP.

Fave fill: LITE FM, “DO THE MATH,” flu corner where ACHES and CHILLS meet.

Not keen on TD PASS as an entry, though it’s probably “in the language” among more attentive football fans than I.

3.4 stars from me.

 Brendan Emmett Quigley’s website crossword – “Themeless Monday #410” — Jenni’s review

A day late and a dollar short (more than a dollar – we did pay our taxes…)

This was a good puzzle overall. I was just about Natick’ed at one spot – I had to go through the alphabet until I got Mr Happy Pencil – because I am old. More on that below.

BEQ 4/17, solution grid

  • 15a [Bike bag] was my first entry. I don’t ride, but David does, and I know a PANNIER when I see one.
  • 20a [Big name in blanket sleepers] is the adorable, classic DR DENTON. Love.
  • 31a [Player with the first million-dollar contract in the NHL] follows my rule: three-letter answer + “hockey” in the clue = ORR.
  • 45a [On-field move] is not DEKE, because hockey is not played on a field. The answer is JUKE.
  • 53a [Taped] is NOT LIVE. Which of course brings this to mind.

The one that gave me trouble: 26d [Dawson Leery’s soulmate on TV] crossing 26a {Horseshoes-like lawn game, once]. I filled in DARTS for the lawn game and realized DOEY PORTER  didn’t make sense. Turns out its JARTS and JOEY. OK.

What I didn’t know before I did this puzzle (aside from that): [A Tribe Called Quest posse cut]. I didn’t know that A Tribe Called Quest was part of a posse, and I didn’t know that they recorded SCENARIO with members of Leaders of the New School. My dad always said it was a good day if you learned something.

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6 Responses to Monday, April 17, 2017

  1. Nene says:

    I never heard of PUPUPLATTER, but it sure doesn’t sound appetizing.

    • Norm says:

      It’s delicious.
      But how can a Hawaiian goose not have encountered one?

    • Steve Manion. says:

      I was the victim of a great practical joke in my senior year in college in Boston. We were celebrating something and went to a Chinese restaurant and ordered several pu pu platters for our group. Everyone was ordering exotic drinks to go with it and I ordered a scorpion, which is normally served in a scorpion bowl:

      Except they had apparently run out of scorpion bowls, so mine was served in one of those large bowls that used to hold matchbooks. It was gigantic and I feared that I couldn’t pay for it. My roommate, a lifelong Boston resident, said he would take care of it. The bill for the drink was $32.50. He fixed it all right. It was actually only $2.50, but got the waitress to go in on the joke. When the dust settled, we all ordered another one.


  2. Bruce Haight says:

    Wow – Amy – you rang me up for BOWLING LANE and TDPASS, and you think ASP is a bit inappropriate for a Monday. Would it have helped if I had bought you a drink at the ACPT? :) Bruce
    PS Congrats on #26 at the big dance

  3. Bruce Haight says:

    Psst…..Amy…..sorry for that comment…..please don’t tell anyone I stopped by…..

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