SUNDAY, August 1, 2010 — John Lampkin (syndicated)

Theme: "Them's Fightin' Words" — Violent puns!

[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: Protective gear for public disorder? (RIOT GUARD).
  • 28A: Condiments aisle dispute? (CATSUP BATTLE).
  • 43A: Looker in a free-for-all? (THE BELLE OF THE BRAWL).
  • 67A: Hostility between pinky wrestlers? (FINGER FEUD).
  • 69A: Couple that's always at it? (CLASH MATES).
  • 90A: Grammar class skirmishes? (PREPOSITIONAL FRAYS).
  • 106A: Table game for tusslers? (SCUFFLE BOARD)
  • 117A: Pasta before an affaire d'honneur? (DUEL CARBS).
Crosswordese 101 Round-up:

  • 101A: Botanist Gray (ASA).
  • 102A: Gardner that sounds like a peer (ERLE).
  • 53D: Ret. fliers (SST'S).
  • 60D: "If I Were King of the Forest" singer (LAHR).
  • 67D: Online sidebar headings (FAQ'S).
  • 71D: Cheering in a big way (AROAR).
  • 83D: Old U.S. gas (ESSO).
  • 108D: Andy's kid (OPIE).
  • 109D: Per (A POP).
Everything Else — 1A: Stop at sea, with "to" (HEAVE); 6A: CD changers, at times (DJ'S); 9A: Tossed in (ADDED); 14A: Seasonal flue shouts (HO HOS); 19A: "The Wizard of Oz" tunesmith (ARLEN); 20A: __ race (RAT); 21A: NPR host Hansen (LIANE); 22A: Critic with an influential thumb (EBERT); 25A: Crossword components (GRIDS); 26A: Roger Bannister, notably (MILER); 27A: Handlers in a bucket (ICE TONGS); 30A: Slip (ERR); 31A: "Evita" role (CHE); 32A: Certain dancer's hope (RAIN); 33A: Ending with Japan (-ESE); 34A: Poking tool (AWL); 37A: Talk turkey? (GOBBLE); 40A: Diet guru Jenny (CRAIG); 42A: Worry (FRET); 47A: __ avail (TO NO); 48A: Monogram pts. (LTRS.); 49A: Lecture site (HALL); 50A: Dagger handles (HAFTS); 54A: Knotty situation? (NODUS); 56A: Solid alcohol (STEROL); 58A: Bookplate words (EX LIBRIS); 61A: Dogsledding gear (PARKA); 63A: Like some Byzantine art (ICONIC); 65A: Bodybuilder's target, briefly (LAT); 66A: Rep. (AGT.); 72A: Eroded, with "away" (ATE); 73A: Bit of baloney (LIE); 74A: Flap-doored homes (TEPEES); 76A: Redder inside (RARER); 77A: Agate and jasper (QUARTZES); 80A: "m" and "n" sounds (NASALS); 82A: Like 2-Down (NORSE); 84A: Binge (SPREE); 85A: Broadway successes (HITS); 87A: Pro follower (RATA); 89A: Some fuel suffixes (-ANES); 95A: Drama opening? (MELO-); 98A: Main blood line (AORTA); 99A: Golfer's "flat stick" (PUTTER); 100A: Baseball's Durocher (LEO); 103A: Kid (TOT); 104A: Double-digit sign? (VEE); 110A: Ice cream order (ONE SCOOP); 115A: It's trolled at Christmas (CAROL); 116A: Like fall air, often (NIPPY); 118A: Bizet work (OPERA); 119A: Some jazz combos (TRIOS); 120A: Uplifting garb (BRA); 121A: Boobs (ASSES); 122A: Principle (TENET); 123A: Skillful (ADEPT); 124A: Nile snake (ASP); 125A: Not a good way to come up (SHORT); 1D: Spy name (HARI); 2D: "The Red" guy (ERIC); 3D: Burn balm (ALOE); 4D: Stingray, e.g., for short (VETTE); 5D: Swallow greedily (ENGORGE); 6D: __ race (DRAG); 7D: Honey holders (JARS); 8D: Part of EST: Abbr. (STD.); 9D: Pool owner's concern (ALGAE); 10D: Tabloid fodder (DIRT); 11D: Speaker's platform (DAIS); 12D: Like minor hardships (ENDURABLE); 13D: Very blue state (DESPAIR); 14D: Bodybuilder (HE-MAN); 15D: Ultimate words? (OBIT); 16D: With 55-Down, Beatles song with the line "You may be a lover but you ain't no dancer" (HELTER); 17D: Ultimatum words (OR ELSE); 18D: Mason's assistant (STREET); 24D: Open, as a scroll (UNROLL); 28D: Toque wearer (CHEF); 29D: Anaheim stadium nickname (BIG A); 31D: Shaved to the max (CLOSE CUT); 34D: Env. directive (ATTN.); 35D: Celebrate in a big way (WHOOP IT UP); 36D: Listen (LEND AN EAR); 38D: Alphabetical orders? (BLT'S); 39D: Jeeves's boss __ Wooster, in Wodehouse novels (BERTIE); 40D: Communion cups (CHALICES); 41D: Confed. monogram (REL); 42D: Bodybuilder's target (FLAB); 44D: Village (BOURG); 45D: Tele- ending (THON); 46D: "Song of Myself" poet (WHITMAN); 51D: Like the Elks (FRATERNAL); 52D: Agate relative (TIGER'S EYE); 55D: See 16-Down (SKELTER); 57D: Mouse order (RODENTIA); 59D: T-shirt orders (XL'S); 62D: McCain's st. (ARIZ.); 64D: Empty, as a desk (CLEAR OUT); 68D: Charge card charge (FEE); 70D: Like italics (ASLANT); 75D: Tense time? (PAST); 78D: Taken-back auto (REPO); 79D: Curlew or plover (SHORE BIRD); 81D: Ballpark figure (STAT); 86D: Violin add-on (-IST); 88D: Brit's school exam (A LEVEL); 91D: Peer that sounds like a Gardner (EARL); 92D: Italian cornmeal dish (POLENTA); 93D: Apple product (IPOD); 94D: Citrus drinks (FRESCAS); 95D: Smokey Bear, e.g. (MASCOT); 96D: Beach book genre (ESCAPE); 97D: Polo designer (LAUREN); 102D: Key of four Beethoven piano sonatas (E FLAT); 103D: Lovers' liaison (TRYST); 105D: It's disposable online (E-CASH); 107D: Shout after a hook, maybe (FORE); 110D: Nuptial pronoun (OURS); 111D: Twice-monthly tide (NEAP); 112D: Ballpark figure follower (OR SO); 113D: Fräulein's upper (OBER); 114D: Sibilant signal (PSST); 117D: Corp. alias (DBA).



Wow! I solved this big 21 x 21 puzzle 100% correct in less than an hour and with no dictionary or googling. That's pretty good for me. It was fun to put together all those theme words with the cute puns, but there sure were a lot of crappy four-letter crosses to help you out.

The only cross that just doesn't look right to me (but is) is NODUS/BOURG (Knotty/Village).
So, I guess I'll just call them my WOTD's.
I wanted to put in TALITOL instead of STEROL for "Solid alcohol."
TALITOL is an alcohol crystal.

Most clever clue-of-the-week, "Double-digit sign?" (VEE).
Most clever theme phrase-of-the-week, PREPOSITIONAL FRAYS.
I thought 117A was pretty good too, DUEL CARBS... think DUAL CARBS, or Dual-carburetors.

HEAVE Ho! It's time for a nice big Sunday brunch.


There were a few alignment clues that I thought were pretty nice:
- DRAG race crossing RAT race.
- ERLE crossing EARL, with the clever clues "Gardner that sounds like a peer" crossing "Peer that sounds like a Gardner".
- Then there were two adjacent clues at 120A and 121A that sort of threw me... "uplifting garb" (BRA) next to "Boobs"... no comment!
- ERIC "The red" guy (2D) and NORSE (82A) referring back to ERIC.
- HELTER (16D) coupled with SKELTER (55D).
I was sure that @PG was going to include a clip of the Beatle's HELTER SKELTER, so here it is! Are you awake yet?

These are a few of the things that make John Lampkin puzzles outstanding.

Gene said...

Hey John, here's a word for you,"humble".8>)

backbiter said...

This was not a bad puzzle. Was not a great one either. I'm gonna gripe over Ho Hos. Anything referring to Santa Claus or The Jolly Green Giant should be Ho Ho Ho. Three Hos. Otherwise it's a snack cake. Okay, one other thing. I usually don't take the low road on these things but since Sunday has the least amount of traffic I'll indulge myself. 121 A. boobs and asses. Yes! Indeed! If there had been a clue/answer for bourbon/whipped cream one of my peccadilloes would have been completed in one grid. No offense intended. Pretty good puzzle.