SUNDAY, April 25, 2010 — Mark Bickham (syndicated)

Theme: "Missing" — Theme answers are familiar two-word phrases with the letter string ING removed from the end of the first word. Resulting wacky phrases are clued wackily.

[Note: This is the syndicated L.A. Times puzzle. It does not appear in the actual newspaper, but is available for free at cruciverb.com.]

Theme answers:
  • 23A: Admiral's tryst? (FLEET[ing] ROMANCE).
  • 37A: Water cooler gossip? (BREAK[ing] NEWS).
  • 40A: Knockoff of an Intel product? (BARGAIN[ing] CHIP).
  • 68A: Site of a surprise? (START[ing] POSITION).
  • 99A: Issue for the media? (PRESS[ing] MATTER).
  • 101A: Where insects learn to use their wings? (FLY[ing] SCHOOL).
  • 121A: Museum featuring bamboo art? (SHOOT[ing] GALLERY).
  • 3D: Golf tournament commentary? (OPEN[ing] REMARKS).
  • 14D: Voice teacher? (PITCH[ing] COACH).
  • 28D: Creek footage? (STREAM[ing] VIDEO).
  • 52D: Units for timing a track event? (MEET[ing] MINUTES).
  • 72D: First-quarter shipments? (MARCH[ing] ORDERS).
  • 75D: Angry lineman? (CROSS[ing] GUARD).
Crosswordese 101 Round-Up:
  • 49A: Morales of "NYPD Blue" (ESAI).
  • 56A: Raptor's roost (AERIE).
  • 97A: Mauna __ (LOA).
  • 108A: Isaac's eldest (ESAU).
  • 15D: Hodgepodge (OLIO).
  • 89D: Editor's mark (STET).
  • 108D: Scratched (out), as a living (EKED).
  • 116D: Buffalo's county (ERIE).
Everything Else — 1A: Confucian principle (TAO); 4A: You don't get credit for one (EFF); 7A: Do-say connection (AS I); 10A: Entrance boundary, perhaps (GATE POST); 18A: Mont Blanc site (ALPS); 20A: Graduate (ALUMNUS); 22A: Seat of Potter County, Texas (AMARILLO); 25A: Drink (POTATION); 26A: __ Alley (TIN PAN); 27A: Biz bigwig (EXEC); 28A: Atlanta-to-Miami dir. (SSE); 29A: Lea group (COWS); 30A: "Mr. Mojo __": Doors lyric that anagrams into the lead singer's name (RISIN'); 32A: Jump for joy (EXULT); 34A: Borrrring (BLAH); 45A: Sleep acronym (REM); 46A: Show co-anchored by Robin Roberts, for short (GMA); 47A: "Yes __!" (SIREE); 48A: Sussex scents (ODOURS); 49A: Morales of "NYPD Blue" (ESAI); 51A: Squalid (SEAMY); 53A: "Paradise Lost" figure (SATAN); 55A: Woeful cry (ALAS); 56A: Raptor's roost (AERIE); 58A: Sharp-tongued (ACERB); 60A: Flavor enhancer (MSG); 61A: Defeatist's words (I CAN'T); 62A: Word with match or money (MAKING); 64A: Asian lead-in (EUR-); 65A: Slip away (VANISH); 67A: Some map lines: Abbr. (STS.); 72A: Colo. is on it (MST); 75A: Usual practice (CUSTOM); 76A: "Spy vs. Spy" magazine (MAD); 77A: Put on the staff? (NOTATE); 79A: Impolite look (STARE); 82A: __-Wan Kenobi (OBI); 83A: Year in Augustus' reign (ONE B.C.); 86A: "She __ Yellow Ribbon": 1949 John Wayne film (WORE A); 87A: Bananas (LOCO); 88A: Prayer endings (AMENS); 90A: Factotum (DO-ALL); 92A: Tapers? (VCRS); 93A: Beginning (OUTSET); 95A: Like many a dirt road (RUTTY); 97A: Mauna __ (LOA); 98A: Half a laugh (HEE); 104A: "Holy cow!" ("GEEZ!"); 105A: Military camp (ETAPE); 107A: Roundup critter (STEER); 108A: Isaac's eldest (ESAU); 111A: Nods, perhaps (OKS); 113A: Valued frames (CELS); 115A: Showy, in a way (GILDED); 118A: Botswana desert (KALAHARI); 123A: More than accepts (EMBRACES); 124A: Sneaks on the court? (TENNIES); 125A: Wholly __ part (OR IN); 126A: Way behind everyone (DEAD LAST); 127A: "I'm so glad!" ("YAY!"); 128A: Good name, for short (REP); 129A: Take in (SEE); 1D: 1920s chief justice (TAFT); 2D: Weight loss brand (ALLI); 4D: Profit (EARNINGS); 5D: Andy Capp's wife (FLO); 6D: Become enraged (FUME); 7D: Building wing (ANNEX); 8D: She-demons (SUCCUBI); 9D: Expert finish? (-ISE); 10D: Memory problems (GAPS); 11D: One-celled protozoan (AMOEBA); 12D: Body art, briefly (TAT); 13D: Baseball stat (ERA); 15D: Hodgepodge (OLIO); 16D: School zone sign (SLOW); 17D: Scads (TONS); 19D: Retro photo (SEPIA); 21D: __ out: uses up, as credit (MAXES); 24D: Job (TASK); 31D: Site of Hercules' first labor (NEMEA); 33D: Metallica drummer Ulrich (LARS); 35D: Victim of Hercules' first labor (LION); 36D: Additionally (AND); 37D: Deep-bodied fish (BREAMS); 38D: Do an usher's job (RESEAT); 39D: WWII noncombat unit (WAAC); 41D: Suggests (GETS AT); 42D: Sinuous dance (HULA); 43D: Pakistan neighbor (IRAN); 44D: Attention-getting sound (PSST); 47D: Ice cream soda ingredient (SYRUP); 50D: "Richard __" (III); 54D: Latin lambs (AGNI); 57D: Happen next (ENSUE); 59D: Antacid, briefly (BROMO); 61D: "__ a bad time?" (IS NOW); 63D: Alfa Romeo sports cars (GTS); 66D: Carbonium, e.g. (ION); 69D: Bit of physics (ATOM); 70D: Author __ Louis Stevenson (ROBERT); 71D: Like dunes (SANDY); 73D: Dorm room setup (STEREO); 74D: Prickly plant (TEASEL); 78D: "Mazel __!" (TOV); 79D: Unappetizing serving (SLOP); 80D: Hit the road (TOUR); 81D: Entr'__ (ACTE); 84D: It may be carried or dropped (BALL); 85D: Becomes sickeningly sweet (CLOYS); 88D: "Don't look __!" (AT ME); 89D: Editor's mark (STET); 91D: Desperate (LAST GASP); 94D: Jargon ending (-ESE); 96D: Internal airway (TRACHEA); 100D: Island group that includes São Miguel (AZORES); 101D: Joint tenant? (FELON); 102D: Plaster, as a room cover (CEIL); 103D: "Duh!" relative ("HELLO!"); 106D: Indiana state flower (PEONY); 108D: Scratched (out), as a living (EKED); 109D: Identical (SAME); 110D: "Valentine's Day" actress Jessica (ALBA); 112D: Commercial suffix with Star (-KIST); 114D: Cookbook direction (STIR); 116D: Buffalo's county (ERIE); 117D: Fraction of a newton (DYNE); 119D: Golfer Sutton (HAL); 120D: Here, in Juárez (ACA); 121D: Chester White's home (STY); 122D: Turn to the right (GEE).



Certainly not a BLAH puzzle.
Yes, wackily clued and GEEZ, we had 13 theme words.
Mark Bickham did a masterful job!

Lots of new words for me: Mr. Mojo RISIN, POTATION (a good one for Tinbeni), BREAM, and KALAHARI.
Best clue: “Put on the staff” (NOTATE)… think musical staff.
Also, “Chester White’s home” (STY) … think breed of pig.
Worst clue: “Dorm room setup” (STEREO).

I had a lot of grief working the SW. Had AZORES/OK/KIST crosses all wrong.

In case you’re wondering what a TEASEL is, it’s a prickly invasive weed here in Illinois that was used in early America ro card wool and cotton.

Gotta get going to breakfast before the big Theatre Organ Extravaganza here in Chicagoland. YAY!


For us Metallica fans---

Van55 said...

I really liked this puzzle, especially the theme density.

For my taste this one is better than Liz Gorsky's NYT entry today.

Tinbeni said...

POTATION was a new term for drink to me. That and your info on TEASEL were Sunday learning moments.

Liked the miss "ING" and theme density.

The two counties, ERIE was an easy guess for Buffalo's, but Parker Cty, AMARILLO was a total cross/guess.

Oh, that Brit. spelling for ODOURS stunk.