8.19.2009

WEDNESDAY, August 19, 2009—Samuel A. Donaldson



THEME: "Closing Acts"—As 58-Across's clue hints at, four theme entries end with the names of musical performers

Theme answers:
  • 17A: Pleased plus (TICKLED PINK). I...don't think I've ever heard a Pink song, but I hear good things, and I love the phrase TICKLED PINK. Okay, I wandered over to YouTube and watched the "Stupid Girls" video, which mocks things like breast implants and vapidity—alas, embedding has been disabled so I can't post that video here.
  • 25A: Piece of royal wealth (CROWN JEWEL). It's rather sad to have just a single CROWN JEWEL, but the singer/songwriter/poet is named Jewel, so what are you gonna do? I looked at some Jewel videos on YouTube but they made me want to rest my eyes for a bit. Snzzzz.
  • 36A: Official corporate stock imprint (COMPANY SEAL). Seal is the guy who's married to Heidi Klum of Project Runway fame. My friend Amy says Heidi appears to have the personality of a sponge. I cannot verify this as I've never seen the show. Here's Seal's "Kiss from a Rose":


  • 48A: Kiss seeker in a fairy tale (FROG PRINCE). Fantastic crossword answer! Plus, The Artist Once Again Known as Prince is a bonafide musical genius. It saddens me that he doesn't allow his videos to appear on YouTube, because I'd be quite content to post three Prince videos here and call it a day.
  • 58A: What the last words of 17-, 25-, 36- and 48-Across could be considered, relative to the phrases in which they appear (CLOSING ACTS). Wouldn't it be incredible if there were bands named Tickled, Crown, Company, and Frog, and we could actually buy tickets to a Tickled/Pink or Frog/Prince tour?
Crosswordese 101: Today, we turn our focus to a dreaded TLA (three-letter abbreviation): 53A: UN workers' rights gp. ILO today. The 1969 Nobel Peace Prize was bestowed on this worldwide workers' group. If the clue's about worker safety, you probably want OSHA, but for workers' rights, it's ILO all the way.

This puzzle's by Sam Donaldson—no, not that Sam Donaldson. I left town for my birthday last weekend and Sam filled in for me at Diary of a Crossword Fiend on Sunday. It doesn't necessarily shine through in a set of crossword clues, but he's a funny guy. I don't know his age, but I'm guessing he's on the younger side given the particular pop culture slant of his theme today.

And now, my favorite clues and answers:
  • 16A: Bad way to go? (APE). They say once you go ape, you never go back.
  • "I'm sorry. I recant everything. Please accept my sincerest apogee." 33A: Take back (RECANT) / 46A: "My bad" ("I'M SORRY") / 12D: Orbital point (APOGEE) / 29D: 46-Across, e.g. (APOLOGY).
  • "Aye, aye, sir!" 50D: Respectful refusal (NO SIR) crosses 63A: Group of gods ruled by Odin (AESIR).
  • I've never heard of this 64A: Arkansas city called OZARK, but I do recall the Ozark Mountain Daredevils from the '70s. My sister and I bought the 45 of "Jackie Blue":



  • 37D: Lakers coach who trademarked the term "three-peat" (PAT RILEY). He was also famous as the coach of the Knicks and the Miami Heat. He and his hair product have made an impact throughout the NBA. Don't you like it when a first and last name are joined together in a crossword entry? I do.

Everything Else — 1A: Make like (MIMIC); 6A: Biblical king and a captain (AHABS); 11A: Spoil the finish of (MAR); 14A: Long operatic solo (SCENA); 15A: Gouged-out fairway piece (DIVOT); 19A: Shear (off) (LOP); 20A: Song from the choir (HYMN); 21A: Shade of green (PEA); 22A: Nicolas of "Next" (CAGE); 23A: "Eureka!" ("AHA!"); 28A: Slap cuffs on (MANACLE); 31A: Slapstick actors, e.g. (ZANIES); 32A: __ coin: decide randomly (FLIP A); 39A: Draw support from (LEAN ON); 40A: Spots on the tube (TV ADS); 43A: Prove successful (PAN OUT); 51A: __-Xer (GEN); 52A: Teeny (ITSY); 54A: Man Friday, e.g. (AIDE); 57A: New Mexico tribe with a Sun symbol (ZIA); 62A: Night school subj. (ESL); 65A: Numbered rd. (RTE.); 66A: Austin Powers portrayer Mike (MYERS); 67A: Make good on (REPAY); 1D: Yr.-round setting in most of Arizona (MST); 2D: Here, to Henri (ICI); 3D: Tuning pro (MECHANIC); 4D: Like an octopus's defense (INKY); 5D: Devoid of wind (CALM); 6D: Recipe verb (ADD); 7D: African heavyweight (HIPPO); 8D: Miller's "__ From the Bridge" (A VIEW); 9D: Forty-niners' strikes (BONANZAS); 10D: Wall St. buy (STK.); 11D: Mozambique neighbor (MALAWI); 13D: Wards off (REPELS); 18D: Something sent with a ltr. (ENCL.); 22D: Peso fraction (CENTAVO); 23D: Big letters in bowling equipment (AMF); 24D: "I'm sorry, Dave" speaker of sci-fi (HAL); 26D: Showed again (RERAN); 27D: Jackson and Reno (JANETS); 30D: Was mentioned (CAME UP); 34D: Brian of ambient music (ENO); 35D: Critic of the selfless (CYNIC); 38D: Mutual fund designation (LARGE CAP); 41D: Rap's Dr. __ (DRE); 42D: Thesaurus wd. (SYN.); 43D: Maker of Lipitor and Celebrex (PFIZER); 44D: Con __ (ARTIST); 45D: Old cash register key (NO SALE); 47D: Ill-tempered (MEAN); 49D: Words from one who's defeated (I LOSE); 55D: "Young Frankenstein" role (IGOR); 56D: Knock silly (DAZE); 58D: Pic taker (CAM); 59D: E-file org. (IRS); 60D: Singing syllable (TRA); 61D: It's over your head (SKY).

29 comments:

PARSAN said...

This was fun! After getting --PINK and --JEWEL it was obvious where this was going. SW gave me some erasurers -(itty as in itty-bitty?, tiny?, finally ITSY; payout for PANOUT; sia before ZIA. "A VIEW From the Bridge" is a very good play. Got the answer on 1d. but don't know what MST is. Easy puzzle and good comments!

shrub5 said...

This was a very enjoyable Wednesday puzzle. I liked LARGECAP, MANACLE, PATRILEY -- and the African heavyweight HIPPO made me laugh! There were a couple of answers that had me scratching my head: AESIR and ZIA, but I got both from crosses. FYI, the ZIA Sun symbol is on the New Mexico flag.

I figured out the theme after I got the third clue but thought that the theme-explaining clue 58A seemed awkward. TICKLEDPINK and FROGPRINCE were a kick to figure out. I had difficulty getting the pharmaceutical co. PFIZER because I had put WINOUT before PANOUT. And I knew that Arizona was an oddball regarding Daylight Savings Time but didn't know those folks were mostly on MST. (@PARSAN - Mountain Standard Time)

Terrific write-up, Orange! You might have heard Pink's single "Get the Party Started." It was used extensively by the NBA for national promo spots during the 2002-2003 season.

GLowe said...

Charles Wang, founder of CA, told a funny story about speaking in China. His live, real-time interpreter was starting actually anticipate what he was going to say, so Charles stopped and said "I'm tickled pink to have this opportunity to speak to you", or so the story goes.

He says "... I saw a look of pain come across my interpreter's face... later found out it came across as 'speaking here is like being scratched raw ...'".

mac said...

Enjoyed this puzzle. I remembered ILO from a puzzle a couple of days ago, which helped. I think this is an example of an easy but fresh puzzle, not too much crosswordese.

I saw a lot of Pat Riley when he managed the Knicks, and what I remember most were his Armani suits.

Anonymous said...

Approved. :o)

SethG said...

I caused myself lotsa problems for I'm not sure what reason.

I filled in TICKLED PINK right away, but then erased the end to fill in RHINO. Then, when I'd filled in CROWN JEWEL and SEAL and PRINCE I couldn't figure out how PINK fit in with the obvious royalty theme.

The NYT once quoted a former modeling agent who said Heidi had "the personality of a German sausage", while AskMen.com says she's "well-known for her down-to-earth personality." I don't know anything about Seal's personality.

Burner10 said...

I'm still a rock star is a fabulous song that every self respecting girl chick should hum to herself frequently!

Burner10 said...

I'm still a rock star is a fabulous song that every self respecting girl chick should hum to herself frequently!

PurpleGuy said...

Really fun and easy middle-of-the-week puzzle.

Always enjoy your writeups,Orange. Thank you !

Only writeover was "so SORRY" for IMSORRY. Came to light with 35d-CYNIC.

sfingi said...

Very nice puzzle. Is he THE Sam Donaldson?

Pink really rocks."So what." She's gorgeous, hot-blooded, no skinny weakling with a whimpy, whiney sound. Her whole act is original. So, to all geezers, give her a look-see.

Which reminds me. a while ago I Googled a crossword definition, and the first answer was, "Wait til tomorrow."
'Course, I didn't. Went right here.

Carol said...

Thanks, Orange, for explaining the theme. I've never heard of Pink, Jewel, or Seal and had no idea that they were one-named singers! Have heard of Prince, but then, who hasn't? The one named singer I'm most familiar with is Cher! It just so happens that she and I are the same age.

Anyway, still managed to fill out the puzzle as it was pretty well-clued. I have used "tickled pink" often and kissed my share of "frog princes" in my younger days!

Anonymous said...

Didn't care for 'zanies', but otherwise a very enjoyable midweek puzzle. Fun fill and clues.

jazz said...

AESIR and ZIA were pretty exotic for me...got 'em from crosses.

Liked it...never heard of SEAL (not to be confused with Seals and Crofts from my younger days)...

Anonymous said...

MST -- Mountain Standard Time -- Arizona does not subscribe to Daylight Savings Time, so they are always on standard time.

The Seal song was nice. I saw him once on Oprah (with his wife) -- they were adorable, very lovey-dovey.

I loved FROG PRINCE!

Denise said...

I made a comment about MST, and didn't put my name in -- sorry.

ddbmc said...

Had lots of fun with today's cwp! Saw Prince in concert and wow!Great show-he had live gold fish in his boot heels.... Pink's "Get The Party Started" along with Stupid Girls, is terrific. Seal's "Kiss on a Rose" was used in the 1995's "Batman Forever," with Val Kilmer...For some reason, had trouble with the SW corner today! Kept wanting ENG for night school subj. and kept thinking Con -- was some Spanish dish! (lol). Scena was a new one for me. I've seen Odin in cwp, but Aesir was new. @Orange, always wondered who had sung "Jackie Blue!" recently heard it on the radio, but the DJ didn't mention the group. Thanks for the video!

podobo said...

We can always hope for a Ratt/Poison tour...

Charles Bogle said...

I share the majority view, eg @shrub5, @mac, @purple guy. Did anyone else get into trouble putting PAYOUT instead of PANOUT and ITTY for ITSY-what a head-scratch. Liked: RECANT, MANACLE, BONANZAS, CYNICS...anyway yesterday I neglected to share a new twist on VINCENT VAN GOGH, whose "Sunflowers" in Arles was clued yesterday...new evidence reported not long ago in the paper record--he may not have lost that ear by self-infliction. Seems he and close buddy Paul Gaugin had a lovely courtesan in common...one night outside her "house" Gauguin got jealous; he was quite a swordsman (stay w me here) and unsheathed his sword to menace van Gogh away from the working girl--but, he inadvertently got too close and lopped off vg's ear...now dueling etc were big crimes then in France...Gauguin had to flee to the South Pacific and van Gogh, not wanting to rat out his buddy, fled to Arles, where he did "Sunflowers" et al!

Bohica said...

"Once you go ape you never go back" LOL. Orange you are a peach! Love this blog <3

chefwen said...

Great puzzle, great write-up, and great music choices.

I saw SEAL in concert a few years ago, I couldn't see anything because I'm built pretty close to the ground, one of the friends we were with grabbed my hand and his wife's hand and powered us up to the front of the stage, we were so close I could see his pores. I'm tellin' ya, that man is HOT, my heart is still aflutter.

My only write over was FLIP A over toss A. Didn't we have this the other day?

choirwriter said...

LOL @ podobo and Ratt/Poison tour!

If there was a group named "Pie," you could have a triple ticket of Boston/Cream/Pie. I'm just sayin'.

And of course the Traffic/Police tour.
And the Styx/Stones tour.

I feel a new meme a-stirring...

John said...

Great Brenda Lee, Orange!!!!
That song is a total Fav!
FYI for anybody that cares "Tickled Pink" was the name of a pet Alligator in a short lived series called "Key West" on Fox, I think.

PuzzleGirl said...

It's late, but I just wanted to pop in to say I LOVE this puzzle! I just enjoyed it all the way through. Love the theme, love the fill (I have some zia earrings I got when I lived in New Mexico -- I think I'll wear them tomorrow!). Also, Jackson and Reno! Could there be a less likely pair of Janets?? No. No, there could not.

mac said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
john said...

this is today's NY Post puzzle as well....

Anonymous said...

@Charles Bogle Where did you see the reference to Gauguin/Van Gogh? I also noticed PARSAN had the same problems with the S/W corner that you did. So did I, along with eng instead of ESL. Too tired to post this last night!

Orange said...

@Anonymous 7:02: Charles Bogle has a rich imagination. I enjoy the stories he cooks up about various artists of yore.

Anonymous said...

@Orange - Thanks, I'm new to this. Does he do politicians? What's his take on the Birthers?

Orange said...

Ooh, I don't think this is a good place for Bogling on the Birthers! Crossword fans come in all political stripes, and we probably get along best if we don't take to scrapping on the issues of the day. I just might go make up my own stories, though...