01.16 Sun

S U N D A Y (syndicated)
January 16, 2011
Jonathan Black

[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: "Put Me In, Coach" — The word "ME" is added to familiar phrases and words to create wacky entries.

Theme answers:
  • 23A: King of workouts? (HENRY THE FIRMEST).
  • 45A: Belittle Short? (DEMEAN MARTIN).
  • 96A: Rogaine-induced reverie? (DREAMED LOCKS).
  • 119A: Institution for Shrek and Fiona? (HOMELY MATRIMONY).
  • 15D: Footballers who draw flags? (DIRTY LINEMEN).
  • 48D: Purloined sirloin? (MEAT HEIST)?
  • 51D: Zoo area for dromedaries? (CAMEL ZONE).
  • 64D: Silent cowboy flick? (MIMED WESTERN).
Hey, folks. It's Sunday, so that means you have to put up with me (Doug) again. Let's get to it.

If I'm not mistaken, this is Jonathan Black's debut puzzle. Congratulations! Considering the title, I'll bet Mr. Black is John Fogerty fan:

Only 29 days until pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training!

Today's theme is straightforward, and the title describes it to a tee. HENRY THE FIRMEST, HOMELY MATRIMONY, and DIRTY LINEMEN are all excellent. But you might have noticed that the two shortest theme entries were more difficult to figure out: MEAT HEIST & CAMEL ZONE. In each case, ME is added to a word, and then that word is split to form two new words. "Atheist" becomes MEAT HEIST and a tasty "calzone" becomes CAMEL ZONE. (Technically, "midwestern" & "dreadlocks" are words too, but it's easier to see the splits in those two.) So what do you think? Do you like those short entries, or are they unfair? "Purloined sirloin?" is a pretty sweet clue, so I'm OK with the MEAT HEIST.

  • 19A: Man of La Mancha (SENOR). I'll let imsdave provide the video for this one. He's our resident Broadway expert.
  • 63A: Fragrant resin (ELEMI). This is a tough entry that shows up every now and then. I sometimes confuse it with another similar entry. I won't tell you what it is, because you'll get confused too.
  • 94A: Hasenpfeffer, e.g. (STEW). Rabbit stew. I learned this word from Bugs Bunny cartoons.
  • 125A: "-zoic" things (ERAS). We currently live in the Cenozoic Era.
  • 8D: Churchill's "so few": Abbr. (RAF). Short for the Royal Air Force. "Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few" is a famous line delivered by Winston Churchill during the Battle of Britain.
  • 32D: 1970s-'90s Toyota (TERCEL). They don't make Tercels anymore? I had no idea. I was born without the "car gene" that most guys have. I have no interest in cars, period. I barely know what kind of car I own.
  • 74D: Beat (ROUTE). This one confused me at first, because I was thinking the verb "beat" and the answer ROUT. Then I figured out it was the noun "beat," like a cop on the beat.
  • 80D: Saroyan's "My Name is ___" (ARAM). Hey, "a ram" is one of the zodiac symbols, and I'm sure most of you have heard that our familiar zodiac signs have all shifted. (How's that for a segue?) And there's a new 13th sign, right? Uh, I'm sure that's fascinating. I know a guy who used to write horoscopes for one of the major syndicated newspaper astrology columns. He turned them out in batches of 300. They'd tell him something like "give us 300 on relationships, 300 on jobs, and 300 on finances." And here's the part that might shock you: they were then assigned randomly to the zodiac signs. The good news is that they won't have to change their system to accommodate the new signs.
  • 121D: "Are we there ___?" (YET).

Be sure to come back on Monday. PuzzleGirl has a couple of big surprises in store for us next week, and you're going to love them. See ya next Sunday.

Crosswordese 101 Round-up:
  • 1A: Toward the ship's rear (ABAFT).
  • 20A: Asian nurse (AMAH).
  • 55A: Hip bones (ILIA).
  • 62A: Commander in Arabic (EMIR).
  • 126A: Cork's home (EIRE).
  • 129A: Coastal raptors (ERNS).
  • 9D: Key letter (PHI).
  • 16D: O, in old radio lingo (OBOE).
  • 18D: "... ___ he drove out of sight" (ERE).
  • 112D: Brio (ELAN).
  • 114D: Capone harasser (NESS).
  • 120D: "Catch-22" pilot (ORR).
Everything Else—6A: It may be rolled out (TARP); 10A: Sandler of "Big Daddy" (ADAM); 14A: Really dig (ADORE); 21A: Steam (up) (RILE); 22A: River to the Tyrrhenian Sea (TIBER); 26A: Cache (TROVE); 27A: Jam time (SESSION); 28A: Balaam's mount (ASS); 29A: Upscale groups (ELITES); 31A: Swore (ATTESTED); 34A: By far (EASILY); 36A: Seed protector (ARIL); 39A: Isolate, in a way (ENISLE); 41A: Green sides (SALADS); 50A: __ Victor (RCA); 52A: Country where Baha'i was founded (IRAN); 53A: Lab subject (DNA); 54A: Bully (COERCE); 57A: Milky Way phenomenon believed to occur almost weekly (NOVA); 58A: Delay (LAG); 59A: Bullet that leaves a trail (TRACER); 60A: Wordsworth works (POEMS); 65A: "My mama done __ me ...": song lyric (TOL'); 66A: One paying a flat fee (LESSEE); 67A: Earned (MADE); 68A: Creep (INCH); 70A: Good in the 'hood (BAD); 71A: Bowler's assignment (LANE); 73A: Cup part (BRIM); 76A: Parting shot, say (RETORT); 79A: La __ (PAZ); 81A: Chimborazo's range (ANDES); 85A: Bank deposit (LODE); 86A: Beauty pageant prize (TIARA); 87A: Pounds (THROBS); 89A: "__ fallen ..." (I'VE); 90A: Word most often heard around midnight (AULD); 91A: Talk with one's hands (SIGN); 92A: A lot of thinking is done in them (CRANIA); 93A: Truck capacity unit (TON); 95A: Antitrust law enforcer: Abbr. (FTC); 99A: Mezzo Berganza (TERESA); 101A: They have reservations (HOTELS); 103A: Quaker's pronoun (THEE); 104A: Confined (SHUT IN); 106A: Most austere (BLEAKEST); 111A: Compound used to stabilize perfume (KETONE); 113A: Charlotte-to-Raleigh dir. (ENE); 115A: Self-playing instrument (PIANOLA); 118A: Like some floors (TILED); 124A: Bestow (AWARD); 127A: Bistro bill of fare (CARTE); 128A: Fool (NINNY); 130A: Artistic impressions, briefly? (TATS); 131A: See 2-Down (KNEES); 1D: Lenten symbol (ASH); 2D: With 131-Across, greatest thing (BEES); 3D: Writer Tyler (ANNE); 4D: On eBay, e.g. (FOR SALE); 5D: Assignation (TRYST); 6D: California border lake (TAHOE); 7D: Words of agreement (AMENS); 10D: Guns (ARMS); 11D: Semi filler (DIESEL); 12D: Capone and Capp (ALS); 13D: Allots, with "out" (METES); 14D: Fifth-century scourge (ATTILA); 17D: Guns (REVS); 24D: Little bird (TIT); 25D: Pie cuts, essentially (RADII); 30D: Dr. Cuddy on "House" (LISA); 33D: Come in (ENTER); 35D: Mountain homes (AERIES); 36D: Discombobulate (ADDLE); 37D: Kidney-related (RENAL); 38D: Candidate's concern (IMAGE); 40D: Threw barbs (SNIPED); 42D: Pizzeria attraction (AROMA); 43D: Longtime Seinfeld collaborator (DAVID); 44D: Catch (SNARE); 46D: Join the cast of (ACT IN); 47D: "__ any drop to drink": Coleridge (NOR); 49D: "Giovanna d'__": Verdi opera (ARCO); 56D: __ Altos, California (LOS); 61D: Caribbean, e.g. (SEA); 66D: Delt neighbor (LAT); 69D: PC component (CRT); 70D: German chancellor, 1969-'74 (BRANDT); 72D: Like Willie Nelson's voice (NASAL); 73D: Great time (BLAST); 75D: Dynamo's antithesis (IDLER); 77D: Discipline involving slow movement (TAI CHI); 78D: Web address ending (ORG); 79D: "Wheel of Fortune" category (PHRASE); 82D: Abandon (DITCH); 83D: Arouse (EVOKE); 84D: Taste, e.g. (SENSE); 87D: Immune response component (T-CELL); 88D: Nod, maybe (BID); 95D: Man-goat deity (FAUN); 97D: Mutiny (REBEL); 98D: It can help you relax (OTTOMAN); 100D: Poorly made (SHODDY); 102D: Like some bands (ONE-MAN); 105D: Giggle (TEHEE); 107D: Like soldiers and their families, usually (APART); 108D: Toys with tails (KITES); 109D: Ring bearer? (EAR); 110D: Small cut (SNICK); 111D: Smallest ratite bird (KIWI); 116D: Traditional wisdom (LORE); 117D: A chip, maybe (ANTE); 118D: "The Joy Luck Club" author (TAN); 122D: "Mamma __!" (MIA); 123D: "Absolutely!" (YES).


imsdave said...

"So it is written, so it shall be done"

I see why you backed off on this one sensei. An hour into YouTube and not thrilled - the best stuff is audio only (not going to post it, but the Placido Domingo stuff is great). Most the the videos are from, probably, the worst movie musical ever made. If you've ever seen the show, the overriding feeling of always being in an Inquisition prison cannot leave you. For some reason, the producers decided to open this one up, with all kinds of scenes occurring outside the prison - this is a fatal flaw (Peter O'Toole and Sophia Loren are horribly miscast, but that's another story). Calling Greene.

Best I can do is the incomparable Brian Stokes Mitchell from the Tony Awards:

The Impossible Dream

Actually, the clip I wanted to post was this one (just skip the ad I saw while previewing my post):

A Chorus Line

Note - don't search for this one the way I did (by song title)

Enjoyable puzzle and a fine debut - thanks Mr. Black.

Oh, while searching around, I found this. I had a Korean exchange student several years ago, and will send him the link to this post. He's in the army now (mandatory service), and I wish him Godspeed:

For Sang-Woo


Excellent puzzle!
Congrats Mr. Black... a great start.
This puzzle took me awhile (espec. the NE corner), but I did finish and got it 100% correct without resorting to Google.
Now I'll just kick back on the OTTOMAN and read a good book.
Thanks Doug, for a very enjoyable writeup.
Y'all have a nice holiday tomorrow!

Avg Joe said...

Hardly a smooth solve for me, but it was completed. Had the same issue as you Doug with ROUTE (and the same rationalization to justify it). ABAFT came with great effort, but that made KNEES fall into place immediately. For STEW I really, really wanted HARE. Finally got over it. Probably the worst entry in the puzzle is SNICK.

The theme was amusing. Really liked DREAMEDLOCKS! But then I'm folically challenged.

Thanks for the writeup, Doug. Have a great afternoon all. And Go Seahawks. (This week only, next week I'll take the other side. Yay Pack).

Orange said...

Love the theme! I kinda liked the atheist/calzone splits the best.

Doug, that's fascinating about the horoscope writer!

Avg Joe said...

Off topic. Daily tune. Just surfing and came across this song, and suffered fond memories.

What's Up

CarolC said...


Thanks for the writeup and comments. I really didn't understand ROUTE although I did fill it in, so thanks for the explanation.

I enjoyed the puzzle. Congrats on a good first effort. Both clue purloined sirloin? and answer MEAT HEIST gave me a chuckle, but HOMELY MATRIMONY was really funny. Maybe even "hylsful". my captcha.

Rube said...

I'm late, but have to comment on 3 things: 1) the new format... looks good; 2) there are now 3 sunday puzzles?; and, 3) thanks for the shout out JB, although I'm usually invoked only at midnight on New's year eve.

Personally, I got the best chuckles from MEATHEIST and CAMELZONE. Maybe 'cause I'm getting hungry.

Unfortunately, had 3 Googles, mostly because I was getting tired in the south and wanted to finish: ratite, ORR, & hassenpfeffer. Still, an enjoyable puzzle.

Rube said...

Sorry, there are only 2 Sunday puzzles. The third is the Monday morning Donna Levin.

Eric said...

Back to my usual for this part of the week: slow, laborious (but enjoyable) solve, and some Googles -- in this case, two adjacent words, ARAM and PHRASE.

My Name is Legion I know 'cause it's Roger Zelazny, and ... Asher Lev I know from crosswords, but never heard of ... ARAM -- or Saroyan for that matter.

Yeah, I too had HARE instead of STEW, and wanted ROUT with no E.

On top of those, I had MYRRH instead of ELEMI. Turns out they're from the same botanical family, the Burseraceae, aka Torchwood. So is frankincense. No two of the three are in the same genus, though.

Liked "A lot of thinking is done in them" -> CRANIA.