TUESDAY, May 11, 2010 — Jeff Chen

Theme: In the Loop — Theme answers are two-word phrases with the initials CC.

Theme answers:
  • 17A: Cough cause (COMMON COLD).
  • 27A: Courtside coverage (COLOR COMMENTARY).
  • 41A: Captain's concern (COLLISION COURSE).
  • 55A: Contract clone (whose abbreviation hints at this puzzle's theme) (CARBON COPY).
Overslept this morning, so let's get right to it. A solid Tuesday offering from Mr. Chen. Did you notice that the theme clues are all CC phrases as well? Nicely done. A little bit of crosswordese here and there, which you expect in an early week puzzle, and then you come across some sparkle like DITZY and GAUDY (34A: Like a birdbrain / 40A: Flashy). Throw in LEMON LAW and CASBAH (3D: Statute that protects car buyers / 41D: Section of Algiers) and you've got yourself enough interesting fill to call this a decent puzzle. You know what's coming. And I know you know what's coming. And you know I know you know what's coming. So we're all in agreement, right? Excellent.

  • 62A: Red Rose (PETE). Great clue for Charlie Hustle.
  • 63A: More than chunky (OBESE). All I could think of was peanut butter. There's creamy and there's chunky and … there's something else?
  • 12D: Loan shark (USURER). Have you been paying any attention to the "payday lenders'" opposition to financial reform? The guy who's leading the charge — arguing that the payday lender industry is too poor to be regulated — is absolutely and completely filthy rich. On one of his properties he even built himself a football stadium. And hosted a college football there! Really!
  • 25D: Legendary female warrior (AMAZON). Also an online book retailer that I think might really take off one of these days.
  • 36D: Multicountry union using the same currency (EUROZONE). Don't recall seeing this in a puzzle before.
  • 55D: One with a beat (COP). And now, ladies and gentleman, your antidote to the Clash.

Crosswordese 101 round-up:
  • 15A: Rod in a hot rod (AXLE).
  • 20A: Ambient music pioneer Brian (ENO).
  • 50D: Double-reed woodwind (OBOE).
Everything Else — 1A: Pinochle plays (MELDS); 6A: Lure (BAIT); 10A: Arced line connecting two musical notes (SLUR); 14A: Construction girder (I-BEAM); 16A: Sniffer (NOSE); 19A: School reunion attendee (ALUM); 21A: Madeline of "Blazing Saddles" (KAHN); 22A: Cathedral top (SPIRE); 23A: Not at any time, in verse (NE'ER); 25A: Flew a plane (AVIATED); 31A: Sources of fiber (BRANS); 32A: Blackens, as tuna (SEARS); 33A: Puts in stitches (SEWS); 35A: Rip (TEAR); 39A: Grand Canyon pack animal (BURRO); 46A: Consecrates with oil (ANOINTS); 47A: Germany's von Bismarck (OTTO); 48A: Police operation (STING); 49A: Central points (FOCI); 51A: Microwave (ZAP); 54A: Insect wound (BITE); 58A: Agreement from the flock (AMEN); 59A: Two-tone cookie (OREO); 60A: Office machine powder (TONER); 61A: One of a matching pair (HERS); 1D: Scampering squeakers (MICE); 2D: Black, in verse (EBON); 4D: Public works project (DAM); 5D: Camel users? (SMOKERS); 6D: "Goldberg Variations" composer (BACH); 7D: Neural transmitter (AXON); 8D: Not well (ILL); 9D: Bill's "excellent adventure" partner (TED); 10D: Be short with (SNAP AT); 11D: Nabokov nymphet (LOLITA); 13D: Cure (REMEDY); 18D: 55-Down in a bust (NARC); 22D: Breaks a commandment (SINS); 24D: Ages and ages (EONS); 26D: Quite (VERY); 27D: Its eye is on TV (CBS); 28D: Refinable rock (ORE); 29D: Egyptian god of the dead (OSIRIS); 30D: Part of MGM (METRO); 34D: Pledge target (DUST); 35D: Lacking slack (TAUT); 37D: Promos (ADS); 38D: Deli loaf (RYE); 39D: Soft-voiced Crosby (BING); 40D: Started liking, as a hobby (GOT INTO); 42D: Prompt (ON TIME); 43D: Hang around (LOITER); 44D: Tablecloths and more (LINENS); 45D: Designer Chanel (COCO); 49D: Guitar ridge (FRET); 52D: Big galoots (APES); 53D: Combustible pile (PYRE); 56D: "We __ the World" (ARE); 57D: Corn unit (COB).



Another nice Tuesday puzzle from Jeff Chen.
Thanks, Jeff.
I guess the theme is just any two words that form CC’s.
I didn't notice it until Puzzlegirl mentioned it that the theme clues are also CC's.
I thoroughly enjoy Puzzlegirl's writeups... a big thanks goes to you too.

Thought NOSE followed by the COMMON COLD was VERY cute.
And SMOKERS for the clue “Camel users” was awesome.
I’ve been accused of being a “Birdbrain”, but never DITZY… I think that word is reserved for Blondes.

"Meet me at the CASBAH" Who was it who said that? Some old movie I think. Bogie maybe?

We get EMO, EMU, ELO, and ENO so often, I thought it might be nice to hear a clip from this dude, Brian ENO. It’s definitely new-agey, but is a relaxing prelude to a pleasant Tuesday morning.

The Grand Canyon used to be home to the wild BURRO, a descendant of animals brought in by prospectors and miners. Because they caused trouble by competing for habitat with the native species and they created their own trails that led unwitting hikers far off the usual trails, the National Park Service removed the burros from the canyon in the early 1980s. They now use only domesticated mules for pack animals. Mules are big animals and should not be confused with donkeys or burros, which are quite a bit smaller.

Time to get going… big breakfast with my neighbor guys. Noooo BRANS!


When Madeline KAHN died in 1999 we lost a terrific comedienne and actress.
Director Mel Brooks, who directed her in four very funny films, said: "She is one of the most talented people that ever lived... I mean, either in stand-up comedy, or acting, or whatever you want, you can't beat Madeline Kahn."
ITA, and I'll never forget her appearance on the Johnny Carson Show---

Sfingi said...

@John - Thanx for BURRO history. I thought first of 20-Mule Team Borax and the show Death Valley. Many stories of mules in Sicily and SE USA.
I looked up your CASBAH quote. It was supposed to be in Algiers (1938) said by Charles Boyer, but was really said in Looney Tunes.

DITSY and GAUDY got me for a minute (for Rex, that would be a second). Had GAUch first. Thought DummY? DottY?

Didn't know what PETE Rose had to do with red. Was he a communist? No way.
"After-Googled" (my new expression) and discovered his team was the Cincinatti Reds which were called the Big Red Machine! Hope I remember.

Stefania said...

Momentarily very confused. The San Jose Mercury ran tomorrows puzzle by David Cromer.

Good Times.

Tinbeni said...

FUN Tuesday offering.

Didn't let those WaterWorld bad guys, the SMOKERS, slow me down.
No LOITERing allowed.

Learning moment, the musical SLUR.

lit.doc said...

Wow, my brain is as powerful as a 4 cc engine this morning. Very nice Tuesday puzzle, and I was on a roll north to south. COMMON COLD, ok, then COLOR COMMENTARY—pat on the head, I already got the theme. Circled both COMMONs and continued. Then COLLISION COURSE? And CARBON COPY? WTF?

I actually hadn’t figured it out by the time I got here. Geez.

@Puzzle Girl, thanks for clearing that up.

Anonymous said...

When i was in Algiers I asked the tour bus driver "Take me to the casbah" he told us there was no such place. Just in movies I guess. Nice write up PuzzleGirl. Golfballman. 12,055 and counting


Anonymous said...

Stefani, that threw me too, further complicated by this blog being headed as May 12th...

So I'll hold my raspberry about 58D until tomorrow.

chefbea said...

Easy Tuesday puzzle. I didn't realize the clues were cc either til I got here.

imsdave said...

@pg - my wife buys peanut butter designated extra crunchy, though I think this is just to torture me as I am awaiting a tooth implant.

I liked this one just fine, though I over thought it a bit. After COM/COL, then COL/COM, then COL/CO?, I plopped in the M (questioning the really sophisticatied theme I was still trying to figure out). Not to be, but good stuff with a nice reveal.

shrub5 said...

@PG Thanks for pointing out the clues are CCs also! I hadn't noticed that. Very cclever.

EUROZONE new to me. too. I looked this up in wiki: The European Union has 27 member countries while the Eurozone has 16. Four Western European countries chose not to join the EU: Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland and Iceland, although now Iceland has applied. There is a nice little animated map on the EU wiki page showing the countries and adding them in the order that they joined.

Nice job -- thanks, Jeff Chen, for this fun puzzle.

mac said...

Good puzzle, and beautifully consistent. Iceland wants to join the EU? Of course, it is broke.

Sfingi said...

@Mac - my thought, exactly.

@Imsdave - I'm worse. I buy coffee ice cream because Hubster doesn't like it. But there's a good reason. I eat ice cream a little every day, in a dish. He'll stand in front of the fridge and eat the whole thing at once. At midnight. And call it a Dixie Cup.

shrub5 said...

@Sfingi: Sad to say I am LOL at your husband's ice cream habit!! It's tough having an ice cream addiction. I try to draw the line at half a tub...

Did you ever notice on those small pint cups of Ben and Jerry's it says: servings 4. Hah!

Puzzle Mom said...

Everyone in Puzzlegirl's family loves her write-ups and we're all enormously proud of her. But, today, a little disappointed that she failed to highlight in any way Madeline Kahn's performance in Paper Moon. Trixie Delight is well known to the Puzzle family, and Paper Moon is one of the family's all time favorites.

AKA: PuzzleGram