2.16.2010

TUESDAY, February 16, 2010 — Nancy Kavanaugh


Theme: Do I need to draw you a picture? — theme answers are all things that can be drawn.

Theme answers:
  • 17A: *Relaxing soak (NICE HOT BATH).
  • 26A: *Great concert turnout (LARGE CROWD).
  • 39A: *Many an exec's remuneration (SIX-FIGURE SALARY).
  • 51A: *Unlucky selection (SHORT STRAW).
  • 61A: What you can say about sketches, and about the answers to the starred clues (THEY'RE DRAWN).
This has to be super quick today. The puzzle wasn't available by the time I went to bed last night so it's Tuesday morning now and, in addition to getting ready for work, I have to get my kids ready for school! This is a glorious day!!

In other good news for me this morning, this puzzle was easy breezy. I solved acrosses (my spellcheck wants acrosses to be carouses — ha!), then downs, then acrosses, then downs, and boom! I was done.

Bullets:
  • 6A: Rice-__ (A-RONI). That San Francisco treat!
  • 15A: Binary system digits (ZEROS). See also 46A: Binary system digits (ONES).
  • 16A: Exercise unit (REP). Were we just talking about this here the other day? No, I think it was over at Rex's. Anyway rep in this case means repetition, but it's a word all on its own now.
  • 66A: NFL's Cardinals, on scoreboards (ARI). By the time I got to the T in STL, I remembered that they moved. A long time ago.
  • 28D: Kurt of Nirvana (COBAIN).


  • 41D: Corsica neighbor (ELBA). Y'all read CW101 yesterday, right? Right??
  • 61D: Pa. plant in the 1979 news (TMI). Three Mile Island.
  • 62D: Like Gen. Powell (RET.). Distinguished? handsome? Republican? tall? kinda geeky looking? Oh, retired. Okay.
Everything Else — 1A: Western Florida city (TAMPA); 11A: Air gun ammo (BBS); 14A: Catherine of "Beetlejuice" (O'HARA); 19A: Brew in a yard (ALE); 20A: "Just __ suspected!" (AS I); 21A: "... have you __ wool?" (ANY); 22A: Company whose calling is calling (AVON); 23A: Bio kin (CHEM); 29A: Sympathetic connection (RAPPORT); 31A: Cease (STOP); 32A: Blood system letters (ABO); 33A: Confirmation, e.g. (RITE); 35A: Outperforms (BESTS); 43A: Work with hair (STYLE); 44A: Pre-coll. catchall (EL-HI); 45A: Bit of Internet mirth (LOL); 49A: Pulls an all-nighter (BONES UP); 55A: Course with many problems (MATH); 56A: Hip-swiveling dance (HULA); 57A: Beachgoer's shirt (TEE); 58A: Rioting group (MOB); 60A: Former California fort (ORD); 67A: Free-for-all (MELEE); 68A: McDermott of "The Practice" (DYLAN); 69A: Soap-making need (LYE); 70A: "__ my case" (I REST); 71A: Figure out (SOLVE); 1D: Heavy weight (TON); 2D: Bigeye or yellowfin, at a sushi bar (AHI); 3D: Cheese partner (MAC); 4D: Radio signal booster (PREAMP); 5D: Sighs of contentment (AAHS); 6D: HIV-treating drug (AZT); 7D: Masonry-reinforcing rod (REBAR); 8D: Tree-dwelling apes (ORANGS); 9D: "Almost ready--be patient" ("NOT YET"); 10D: Suffix with Brit (-ISH); 11D: "Top Chef" network (BRAVO); 12D: Downstairs, at sea (BELOW); 13D: Blow, as dough (SPEND); 18D: Well driller (OIL RIG); 22D: Skin care maven Adrien (ARPEL); 23D: Uncouth (CRASS); 24D: Good thing to kick (HABIT); 25D: Hobbyist's glue (EPOXY); 27D: Westernmost Aleutian island (ATTU); 30D: Point in the right direction (ORIENT); 34D: Preceding, in poetry (ERE); 36D: Tex-Mex dip (SALSA); 37D: "Rainbow" fish (TROUT); 38D: Mythical air dweller (SYLPH); 40D: Regional plant life (FLORA); 42D: Skeptic's demand (SHOW ME); 47D: Her book is read during the Jewish holiday Purim (ESTHER); 48D: "Remington __" (STEELE); 50D: Pre-fetus stage (EMBRYO); 51D: Shallow sea area (SHOAL); 52D: Speed things up (HURRY); 53D: Song from the past (OLDIE); 54D: Three-time N.L. stolen base champ José (REYES); 59D: Gambler's concerns (ODDS); 63D: Every last one (ALL); 64D: Sound file suffix (WAV); 65D: L.A.-to-Helena dir. (NNE).

33 comments:

Gesthemine said...

What a sad little comment section. Nice puzzle, but does Purim really need the modifier "Jewish Holiday"? Doesn't Kurt COBAIN require a pass tense clue?

Orange said...

Does a LENNON clue require a past tense/death clue, or is [Beatle John] adequate? "Oh, the dead John of the Beatles, not the one who's still with the band." Clues about, say, Bob Hope or Queen Anne or Attila or Janis Joplin need not be in the past tense. Also, Nirvana ceased to be a band after Cobain's death.

shrub5 said...

Had OFF for beachgoer's shirt before TEE. Clever to have AAHS crossing NICE HOT BATH.

Drawing the SHORT STRAW was how my mom settled disputes between my siblings and me. It worked; the loser just grumpily did what had to be done.

BONES UP does not equate with "pulls an all-nighter" IMHO. Bones up to me is a more casual updating or refreshing oneself on a subject, where an all-nighter implies desperation and a deadline.

JOHNSNEVERHOME said...

An okay SOLVE, but I've seen almost all the fill in other recent puzzles... so it gets a hohum from me. ELBA? Two days in a row?? Thought the plural of zero was zeroes, and not ZEROS.
Never thought of CHEMistry as kin to BIOlogy. Had OILMAN instead of OILRIG. MAC wasn't clued as an abbrev. Didn't know what SYLPH was but according to Merriam Webster, it's a slender graceful woman or girl. I should have known that.
Got a chuckle out of the term SIX FIGURE SALAY being clued as "Many an exec's remuneration." Six figure should today be seven.

Happy Fat Tuesday y'all

chefbea said...

Fun puzzle but a bit harder than the NYT

Loved cheese partner!!!

This puzzle was certainly not my captcha... crock

That's the first real word captcha I have seen

Parsan said...

shrubb5--Agree about BONES UP. "--desperation and a deadline" and NoDoz pills, taken by most Freshmen in college when I was in school. We soon learned they made you jumpy, unfocused, glassy-eyed and so tired you did worse on exams than if you had gotten a good nights sleep. Innocent self medication before the druggy days.

I wondered why FLORA was clued as "regional", looked it up and the first definition was "to a particular region". Great, I learned something new.

A fun misdirect for me on "bio kin". Thought it might be obit, but it was CHEM. Made me laugh.

HABIT, a "good thing to kick". Not if it is a good one like eating your vegetables. This isn't a subtle hint to nuns, is it?

Thanks PG.

Burner10 said...

Had VET for Mr. Powell and went with THEY'VE. I actually thought the puzzle was fun - didn't get the connection until the very end. Don't get EL HI - but otherwise nice mix of old and new popular crosswordie fills.

Tinbeni said...

BRAVO a fun Tuesday SOLVE.
Point in the right direction, ORIENT was clever.
Liked the MOB/MELEE and binary ZEROS/ONES.
ARI for Arizona is a gimmie, they're my initials, no LYE.
Snafu with Oilman for OILRIG, easy fix.
Hmmmm, what HABIT could I kick?
Maybe entering ELBA in a crossword everyday?
Enjoyed the play on words for the DRAWN theme.

Anonymous said...

@Burner10 ELHI is a purported abbreviation for Elementary / High School. Some claim it's commonly used in educational publishing circles.

the redanman said...

Waaaaaaaaay more fun than the NYT and for me a little easier, I suppose, but definitely much more fun.

Nice to see 33A clued with other than the NYT reference @Gesthemine aludes to in his gripe session; made the idea of 'process' more clear. Funny how relatively obscure words show up in both on the same day such as this one.

Why was this more fun?

15A & 46A were a good clever pair.
33A as above, more clearly "general" not single faith "specific" process (RITE)
38D great word SYLPH - that's a rare one in Xword to me
REBAR is great word, fun to say
44A is mystery to me, maybe I'm missing the forest somewhere?
62D needed a cross as was a little vague - I say good one in retropsect, it was all there

and ...
61D (TMI) Should this be Pa. or PA? or are both OK?

60A for me was gimme, was this hard for those not familiar with CAlifornia?

Very enjoyable, notable lack of tedium compared to first puzzle of the day ...

now to finish Sunday NYT which I started late

the redanman said...

@Any-none-muss 0901 - just missed your post, thanks learned that and ATTU today

parsan said...

@the redanman--No, Ft. ORD a given. Also Gen. Powell, RET, came immediately.

Also had oilman for OILRIG.

Can someone explain 64d. WAV?

Margaret said...

Hand up for oilman instead of OILRIG.

A .WAV file means music the way a .JPG means pictures or .DOC means a word document -- they're computer file name extensions.

I agree with @johnsneverhome about ZEROS. It should be ZEROES. (I also though the title of Dan Naddor's Sunday puzzle a week ago should have been HEROES, not HEROS.)

lit.doc said...

Was absolutely shreeeding this one till I hit a brick wall in central California. Nothing. Tick tick tick. Nothing.

My personal solving lesson for the day: when that happens, check the surrounding words for altenate forms or answers. Focused entirely the unfilled areas and didn't question OILMAN for far too long.

@Orange, thank's for your temperate response to Gesthemine's "sad little" post.

@parsan, .WAV = Waveform Audio File Format (but why V?), and is a compressed file format used because audio files tend to be gigundous.

@JNH, zero can pluralize as either zeros or zeroes. Not a Dan Quail "you misspelled 'potatos' [sic]" moment. And "mac & cheese" is common usage. Can't say I've ever seen "mac. & cheese" or "mac' & cheese".

@all who've commented re "all-nighter", hell yeah. The word is CRAMMED.

@Burner, I regret to report that elhi is actually in the dictionary, though I can't imagine why.

Can't seem to get ATTU to stick in my CW101 file. It might just as well be clued "Elicits 'gesundheit' when mentioned in Alaska?" for all the good "Westernmost Aleutian island" does me.

Orange said...

Everyone will die someday.

This comments section had lost its sadness, so I thought we could all use a reminder of our mortality.

gespenst said...

@PuzzleGirl:
I think it was you who mentioned in the comments last week about going by first initial/middle name (and maybe something about hyphenating). Well, I've been waiting all week till you were the blogger of the day to say that I'm a proud F. Middle Hyphenated-Lastname myself ;) Why it was relevant in the first place I've long since forgotten, but I've wanted to post it all week so I did, LMBO. I blame preggo brain.

Oh and I've started referring to my dear husband as GespenstsMann :)

Oh, and the puzzle?? Glad you asked. I liked it fine. I enjoyed the theme. Straightforward solve. I did particularly like the ZEROS/ONES pair and the MOB/MELEE pair.

crazycatlady said...

Another fun SOLVE this morning. I finally sucked it up and paid for the NYT and thought this one was definitely easier.
@Lit.doc I had the same thought RE: CRAMS instead of BONES UP. BONES UP just sounds a little CRASS to me.

Knew Fort ORD immediately. I once went to Marina, CA just north of ORD to escape an August heat wave. I froze the entire time. Never saw the sun, could barely see the ocean it was so foggy and cold. Spent the week reading by the fireplace.

Thanks for the above explanation of WAV - an unknown for me. ELHI and PREAMP were both new as well. ORANGS was a wild guess. I remembered ATTU finally BRAVO! Hand up for OILMAN

I'm late commenting because I spent an hour at the gym with a personal trainer doing lots of REPs. Tonight I will probably need to DRAW a NICE HOT BATH.

Oh and I liked the AVON and ARPEL cross.

crazycatlady said...

@Orange - Thanks for making us sad again : )

Rube said...

Didn't anyone else have hAm before MAC?

Only 4 pinks here, but Remington STEELE is part of our culture as is the name COBAIN, (but I didn't know who he was - spelled it with a K at first). Leaving Catherine Who and Whatshisface McDermott as the only true pinks.

All gettable with crosses making it a pleasant Tues puzz.

Sfingi said...

I blew this one. I had the theme and elements - except the salary. I had "half of SALARY" rather than SIXFIGURESALARY. Thinking like a retired civil servant, "Contented wi' little and cantie wi' mair." After that, nothing would come in the middle West.
I Googled Aleutian Islands and there was a list of 150+. I picked the wrong one (Adak). I refuse to study Alaska until I'm sure Barbie won't be President.
Also, a personal Natick at DYLAN (sports) cross WAV.
Help me. WTF is WAV?

How about a mathy one, like the Roman Numeral ones wherein you translate 1101 or the like from a decimal. Unlucky number? for instance.
I could also go for hexadecimal using letters and only zero and one of the numbers.

Hubster (67) misses working. Or I'm driving him nutz. Spent a better part of the day filling out a long application for him.

Van55 said...

After finishing this puzzle I drew circles around the answers that I found annoying to me, and I had too many of them for my taste today. I'll spare everyone the list.

Positives for me were the decent theme plus (pun intended) RAPPORT, CRASS, SYLPH, DMBRYO, ORIENT and PREAMP.

lit.doc said...

@Orange, your 11:02 post leaves me both sad and angst-ridden, the latter because it makes me wonder if I misunderstood Gesthemine's early post, which I took to be a patronizing remark about Puzzle Girl's understandably brief write-up.

Tinbeni said...

@Rube
Living about 15 miles west of it, TAMPA prevented my first thought. Ham and Cheese sounds a lot better than Mac & Cheese to me.

@Sfingi
Dylan is an actor. Reyes plays for the NY Mets.
I will admit, when I see some of the more obtuse sports clues in puzzles I groan. Thinking about how my lady friends here are reacting. Then I remember some of the music stuff that stalls me.

Personally I want an ALL MATH and names of various Scotch brands puzzle.
Then I could die a happy man.

Gesthemine said...

It was simply that it was 10:30 EST and no one had posted yet. I clearly referred to the comments section, not the blog, in my post. Lonely might have better, but no offence was intended.
Orange is clearly correct about Cobain vs Lennon, but somehow "The late Kurt Cobain" is indelibly stuck in my head.

mac said...

Nice little puzzle, and thanks for the shout-out.

I liked the cross of bones (up) and trout, they do have a lot of pesky little bones. Bones up does not relay the urgency of an all-nighter to me either. Haven't we seen orient or orientate a lot the last few weeks?

I'm going to a Western Florida city the end of this month. Naples. Just to warm my bones for a few days after all the snow.

lit.doc said...

@Gesthemine, my bad. Thanks for explaining.

chefwen said...

Hand up for OILman, my only write-over. Had to get the baseball stolen base guy from crosses, so he was last to fall with the Y in THEY'RE.

Cute, little Tuesday puzzle.

JOHNSNEVERHOME said...

Going from the sublime to the ridiculous---

All about SYLPHS in the August Bournonville ballet LA SYLPHIDES

I've always liked Catherine OHARA on SCTV... a brilliant comedienne. Here's something for an after dinner chucklefest.
CATHERINE O'HARA

Sfingi said...

It's my Baltimore sister's 64th birthday, and fat Tuesday. The city still hasn't plowed their street. The cats are going nutz. They're used to warm weather.

@Tinbeni - I always say, "As long as you're up, get me a Grants," because most people are too young to know the magazine ad.
How about rum? I have a framed magazine ad of Bacardi Limon, Rocks, Tonic, Juice, Magic. Besides it's being blue and yellow, my kitchen colors, it is a picture of the Twin Towers dancing under a new moon. Turns out, they are in denial of the existence of this ad. I like it anyway.

@Gethsemane - I'm presently listening to a radio show about a new NYS law on the rights of families of the dying.
Anyway, in Italian, they say, instead of "the late..." they say "il fu..." which literally means "the was." Being a WASP, I'm not bothered speaking of the dead. The Italians usually have to include various incantations to ward off the evil eye when speaking of the dead. So, "Kurt Cobain, may he find peace."

chefwen said...

Here's another sad thing, my capcha is MEWEATER, I know @crazycatlady is NOT going to like that.

badspelller said...

There are 10 types of people in the world, those who understand binary and those who don't.

I thought the theme answers were very good for a Tuesday. But I didn't get clue before I solved it
with the fill-ins.

Kobain was a very interesting fellow. I didn't get into his music until after he died.

the redanman said...

@Tinbeni I have lived in TAMPA (Never liked the moniker TAMPAN as in the billboards TAMPANS are rushing to ...), but anyway I had a hard time trying to fit PENSACOLA into the five squares (haha) as that is a "Western FL City" to me.

I'm just trying to make a fair call here as I type in my captcha reffe

Term Papers said...

I really enjoyed reading this article.