T U E S D A Y   October 5, 2010
Jeff Chen

Theme: Solving la puzzle loca — Theme answers are familiar phrases that mix Spanish with English words.

Theme answers:
  • 17A: Site for flashy couples dancing (SALSA CLUB).
  • 28A: Annual college football game in Arizona (FIESTA BOWL).
  • 38A: Spicy deep-fried stuffed appetizers (JALAPENO POPPERS).
  • 45A: Nap period, in Latin America (SIESTA TIME).
  • 62A: 2004 Adam Sandler movie, and a hint to the puzzle theme found in 17-, 28-, 38- and 45-Across (SPANGLISH).

More wrestling stuff today for PuzzleGirl, so SethG here with a quick summary.

The theme concept is nice, the execution mostly nice. The phrasing on the FIESTA BOWL clue is a little weird--this isn't what the game is called just in Arizona, this is actually the game's name. But that, SALSA CLUB, and JALAPENO POPPERS are all phrases that have entered the American vernacular. SIESTA TIME, on the other hand, is not a phrase I'm familiar with. Do they actually call it that in Latin America? If not, this is not actually Spanglish, it's just a made-up phrase that combines Spanish and English. Even if they do, this is the only theme clue that requires an "in Latin America" modifier. I was gonna say -1/10 from the East German judge, but there's no more East Germany and why would he be judging Spanglish, anyway?

I never saw the movie. I've heard it's mediocre. Was it?

  • 1A: Houlihan portrayer in 5-Across (SWIT)/5A: Korean War sitcom (M*A*S*H). Blogger spell-checker doesn't like "portrayer". I got to 1A, couldn't think of anyone named Houlihan, moved on to 5A, said "oh", then went back to fill in Loretta SWIT first. Played by Sally Kellerman in the movie, by ink in the Richard Hooker novel. I didn't look any of that up. If PuzzleGirl were here, this would be a video fer sher.
  • 20A: Popular swim briefs (SPEEDOS). If PuzzleGirl were here, this would be a picture fer sher.
  • 24A: Group of street toughs (GANG). Calling them "toughs" does not make them sound tough.
  • 53A: "Ain't happening!" (NO SIREE). Usually said to Bob. I had to think for a bit to see if this was part of the theme.
  • 57A: Emulates Jell-O (WIGGLES). See also: JIGGLES.
  • 61A: Bar, in law (ESTOP). This means to legally prevent, not that a happy-hour hangout where lawyers meet programmers is an e-stop.
  • 66A: Poet Lazarus (EMMA) was tired, poor, and a huddled mass yearning to breathe free.
  • 24D: "Start that job now!" (GET ON IT). Usually said to Lt. Tom Kazansky or a catapult officer.
  • 35D: The "m" in E = mc2 (MASS). Also the MA.
  • 53D: Giraffe's trademark (NECK). I like giraffes, and giraffes like me.
  • 57D: "Living" payment (WAGE). See also: JAGE.
  • 59D: Salinger heroine (ESME). With all his f-a-c-u-l-t-i-e-s intact. If you haven't read this, read this. This.
Crosswordese 101: We covered IONA, but not yet IONE. IONE may be the heroine in "The Last Days of Pompeii", or one of the Nereids, which are apparently Grecian sea-nymphs. Most of the time, though, the clue will be like today's 56D: Actress Skye. Her name is Ione Skye. She's been in lotsa stuff, but she's probably most well-known for her role as Diane Court in Say Anything. Her dad is Donovan, and they quite rightly call him mellow yellow.

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Everything Else — 5A: Korean War sitcom (MASH); 9A: Reading aids (LAMPS); 14A: __ Major: Great Bear (URSA); 15A: Actress Hayworth (RITA); 16A: Native Alaskan (ALEUT); 19A: Confiscate (SEIZE); 21A: Issue an embarrassing retraction (EAT CROW); 23A: Foul caller (REF); 25A: Competed in a race (RAN); 34A: Physics bit (ATOM); 36A: Ending for absorb (-ENT); 37A: Supreme Court justice Sotomayor (SONIA); 42A: Crop up (ARISE); 43A: Indian bread (NAN); 44A: Takes to court (SUES); 48A: Paid athlete (PRO); 49A: Sign over a door (EXIT); 50A: Sign before Virgo (LEO); 64A: Bridal registry category (CHINA); 65A: Impulse (URGE); 67A: Musical Carpenter (KAREN); 68A: Word with pressure or review (PEER); 69A: Gush (SPEW); 1D: Figure (out), in slang (SUSS); 2D: Conclude, with "up" (WRAP); 3D: Castaway's place (ISLE); 4D: Shocking weapon (TASER); 5D: Appliance brand that helps you wake up? (MR. COFFEE); 6D: Suffers (AILS); 7D: "The Simpsons" disco guy (STU); 8D: __ corpus (HABEAS); 9D: Like a desperate effort (LAST-GASP); 10D: Actor Guinness (ALEC); 11D: Israel's Golda (MEIR); 12D: "The Godfather" author Mario (PUZO); 13D: Goulash, e.g. (STEW); 18D: Summer drink (ADE); 22D: Tiny army member (ANT); 25D: Indian nobles (RAJAS); 26D: Centipede video game creator (ATARI); 27D: "Cross my heart!" ("NO LIE!"); 29D: Lodge (INN); 30D: Hits on the noggin (BOPS); 31D: Outdo (ONE-UP); 32D: Electrician, at times (WIRER); 33D: Steer catcher (LASSO); 39D: Broadway flier (PETER PAN); 40D: Nonstick spray (PAM); 41D: "I just flew in, and boy are my arms tired!," e.g. (ONE LINER); 46D: Tree feller (AXE); 47D: Snarls, as traffic (TIES UP); 51D: Scrambled fare (EGG); 52D: Makes eyes at (OGLES); 54D: Fed. workplace watchdog (OSHA); 55D: Cookbook verb (STIR); 58D: Hobble (LIMP); 60D: "Pygmalion" playwright (SHAW); 63D: Season opener? (PRE-).


Sfingi said...

Easy, just not on my wavelength: Sports, hot spicy food, Adam Sandler. Call me when it's over. Never heard of JALAPENAPOPPERS or SALSACLUB.

I had a problem with hobble. According to the dictionary, the first meaning is the one used in this CW, an intransitive verb. This meaning must have emerged since WWII, since to me it is a transitive verb, and something that is done to animals or slaves to keep them from escaping involving cutting a sinew. But I'm a fogy.

Tinbeni said...

SethG, Great write-up. Thanks for filling in for our PuzzleGirl, fer sher.

Had the theme early after SALSA CLUB, looked for the reveal, said to myself "I don't know Adam Sandler movies!" but I do remember seeing SPANLISH. Hey, I'm a Téa Leoni fan.

FUN Tuesday offering Jeff.

IONE Skye, we've seen her before, thanks for the info, I'll forget her by noon.

Had jiggles before WIGGLES ... jage for living WAGE made no sense at all.

@Sfingi, I probably wouldn't recognize a transitive-v-intransitive verb if I tried. Esp. not before at least two mugs of coffee.

Just curious, ONE UP / TIES UP both in the grid. Is this kosher?


A very original theme. I had not seen the Adam Sandler movie “Spanglish”, but I knew it was the language that’s evolving in the U.S. in the Hispanic community… mixing English words with Spanish words. I think back in the days when we had the European and Asian immigration, we referred to that as “pigeon English.

I agree with @Sfingi on “Hobble”. But, I think of it as something that impairs your walking, like what they did to animals, or like a HOBBLE SKIRT, whereas a LIMP is more of a tippy type of walking.

Overall I liked this Jeff Chen puzzle.

And thanks, @SethG for subbing with a very nice writeup.

Time to get the old MR. COFFEE going.

Have a nice day y’all !

Van55 said...

Very solid puzzle. No cavils here.

hazel said...

Though I absolutely loved this concept for a puzzle, I'm not feeling the SPANGLISH in it - SPENGLISH maybe, not SPANGLISH. These "phrases" are pretty well-established, and look like something you'd see on the menu at Chili's or otherwise talk about while you were there.

When I think SPANGLISH, I think of something that might actually be spoken by Hispanics - like in The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz, which has remarkable SPANGLISH on almost every page. Very colorful, words, phrases, and sentences that jump off the page.

I thought the non-theme fill was much livelier.

Jeff said...

Hi all:

This puzzle was conceived while I was traveling in Bolivia in May, with a group of people from Global Partnerships:


We all worked on it together, and were hoping that it would generate a little publicity for a non-profit that does a lot of good in the world of microfinance.

Anyway, just a little background! Check out GP if you have time.

Happy Tuesday,

C said...

Enjoyable, simple puzzle. I now have the jell-o song running through my head better than seasons in the sun, I guess.

John Wolfenden said...

I've always seen HOBBLE as a transitive verb. Like Kathy Bates did to James Caan. Ouch!

I wonder if Ione Skye and Cheri Oteri are aware how often they appear in crosswords due to their names being vowel-heavy.

CrazyCatLady said...


SPANGLISH was a mediocre flick.

Thanks Jeff - fun puzzle.

Thanks Seth G. I love the GIRAFFE pic.

Anonymous said...


Fiesta Bowl is played yearly in the state of Arizona. Glendale, to be exact. I have no quibbles with its cluing.

KJGooster said...

1 Spanish word + 1 English word = Spanglish, I guess. Like others have said, these theme answers don't strike me as true Spanglish any more than MACARONI SALAD is Ital-glish. That being said, I still enjoyed the puzzle.

And, two FIESTABOWL wins in the last four years for Boise State University. Lemme tell ya, growing up in Boise I would have never thought that possible.

El Hookah said...

Spanglish is a Spanish word that has been Anglicized; an·gli·cize(n)
To make English or similar to English in form, idiom, style, or character. Usually when no Spanish word exists to describe an action or item. It is not a phrase containing one English and on Spanish word.