MGWCC #581

crossword 3:24 
meta 0:15 


hello and welcome to episode #581 of matt gaffney’s weekly crossword contest, “Apple Core”. the instructions this week are to name a New York City attraction. what are the theme answers?

  • {Like many of Shakespeare’s sonnets} ELIZABETHAN. this clue seemed oddly too specific. why the sonnets? many of his plays are elizabethan as well, and they are surely more famous.
  • {1983 hit by one-hit wonders the Tubes} SHE’S A BEAUTY. didn’t know this song or band. i can’t tell if the video was always in poor taste or just hasn’t aged well, but i can tell that at least one of those things is true, so i won’t link you to it.
  • {Peggy Parish’s most famous character} AMELIA BEDELIA.
  • {Made sense of} DREW A BEAD ON.
  • {Order ending with Z} ALPHABETIZE.

all five of these answers have an odd number of letters with ABE in their exact middle, so the nyt attraction we’re looking for is lincoln center. in the title, “apple” refers to new york and “core” refers to center, so that’s a pretty good title. and the meta seemed just right for a week 2—you don’t need to go hunting in the grid for anything you might not have noticed, but there is a small leap to be made from ABE to lincoln before the answer becomes manifest.

i was at lincoln center two months ago to see my fair lady with laura benanti and harry hadden-paton. it was very good! i think that’s the only time i’ve been to lincoln center.

other things:

  • {___ house (structure built primarily to annoy a neighbor)} SPITE. i have not heard of this term.
  • {Maker of the $2,299 CM 6350 Countertop Coffee Machine} MIELE. this was also unfamiliar to me. at that price, it should brew the coffee and then inject it straight into your veins. it would literally be cheaper to have a starbucks in your garage and drop $6 there every day for a year.
  • {Flavor of Savannah Smiles Girl Scout cookies} LEMON. hard pass. why do people want lemon in their sweets? lemon doesn’t taste good.

that’s all i’ve got this week. hope to see many of you at boswords this sunday in boston!

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21 Responses to MGWCC #581

  1. David Hanson says:

    Right on everything except the lemon. Lemon with its acidity is an excellent flavoring for desserts.

  2. pgw says:

    > lemon doesn’t taste good

    This is complete and total insanity.

  3. Mutman says:

    Much better than my Lincoln Tunnel entry.

    • Daniel Barkalow says:

      I started out thinking visually, and was picturing the Lincoln Memorial, but that’s in DC. I actually got as far as asking myself, “What attraction in New York City has Lincoln in the center?” before the penny dropped.

  4. Joshua Kosman says:

    {1983 hit by one-hit wonders the Tubes} SHE’S A BEAUTY. didn’t know this song or band.

    I don’t remember this song, but I do remember the band. Their lead singer took the (presumably stage) name Fee Waybill, which about seven years later I suddenly realized was a play on “way feeble.” Whether this was intentional or just a serendipitous bit of wordplay I never discovered.

    • Margaret says:

      I guess I’m showing my age when I say I’m VERY familiar with The Tubes, having seen a few of their legendary stage shows. White Punks on Dope was quite an anthem when I was in high school. And no one else remembers Don’t Touch Me There? Or What Do You Want from Life? For once my San Francisco upbringing helps!

      By which I mean, I had to get help from my husband for Lincoln Center, I was googling NYC attractions to no avail (for one thing, I was positive ABE was going to be an abbreviation, like American Ballet… uh, Exhibit? or something?) He finally suggested Lincoln Center because of the honors just being announced. But that’s the Kennedy Center, not Lincoln, I said. We finally realized that the Lincoln Center was actually also a thing lol.

      Also, lemon squares and all lemon desserts are delicious, yum

      • Small Wave Dave says:

        The Tubes were also fairly popular in their home state of Arizona.
        Talk to ya later!

        This meta seemed so simple that I was surprised to see wrong entries coming in, but then realized that Lincoln Tunnel was a potential gotcha.

      • Margaret says:

        Forgot to mention that I liked the meta and thought it was a perfect Week Two!

  5. Thomas says:

    Laura Benanti is so close to fitting the theme. Devastating that she does not.

  6. Wayne says:

    joon, Take yourself on a field trip to Hull Street in the North End:

  7. Norm H says:

    Oh man, what a fail on my part. Not only did I jump the gun and submit LINCOLN TUNNEL, I also had the gall to chide Matt for referring to it as an “attraction”. If ever I deserved a snarky. comeback, this was the time, but Matt’s too classy for that.

    • Qatsi says:

      I also went with LINCOLN TUNNEL. When my name didn’t show up in the leaderboard I realized my mistake.

  8. I spent way too long grepping my word lists for a NYC attraction that had the letters ABE exactly in the center. The only thing I could come up with that was actually a place in NYC was SAINT ELIZABETH’S CHURCH, which (a) is not notable; (b) repeats the ELIZABETH from 17A; and (c) isn’t even it’s proper name — per Wikipedia, it’s either St. Elizabeth Church (no ‘s) or Church of St. Elizabeth. Once I took a step back the real answer became obvious.

    • Amy L says:

      Same here. I kept thinking there must be a museum with ABE in its name. Finally, I thought of Lincoln Center. Worse yet, I submitted this answer and saw that Matt had updated the leader board about an hour after I had submitted it and my name wasn’t there. I could not figure out how Lincoln Center could not be the answer. I fretted for quite some time, until I checked the leader board later and found my name. Puzzles can really tie you up in knots.

    • Katie M. says:

      My search came up with Abe Lebewohl Park. I didn’t know if it would be considered an attraction. I was getting worried since I’ve had bad luck with NYC metas. Then I looked at several lists of attractions and finally found Lincoln Center.

  9. Steven Spiegel says:

    Miele is a German manufacturer of home appliances. We bought a house that has a Miele Microwave/Oven combo and a Miele dishwasher. It turns out these are rather expensive items. (Of course, not on the same level as our sub zero refrigerator.)

  10. Seth says:

    There’s a specific style of sonnet called an Elizabethan sonnet, as opposed to, say, a Petrarchan sonnet. I don’t think an Elizabethan play is as specific of a thing.

  11. Jim Schooler says:

    I don’t think I’ve had as a good a “lock” on one of Matt’s metas in a long time. However, it did take me three days to get it, then right between the eyes. Very satisfying Week 2.

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