April 10, 2011
[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: "Heavy Duty" — Theme entries in which each word can follow the word TAX (115-Down) to make a familiar word or phrase: tax year, tax books, tax service, tax break, etc.
- 22A: *Memorabilia at a reunion (YEARBOOKS).
- 33A: *Venus's undoing, perhaps (SERVICE BREAK).
- 41A: *Reason to agree to a pact (TREATY BENEFIT).
- 68A: *Political platform buzzword (PRO-LIFE).
- 89A: *One profiting from bad debts (BILL COLLECTOR).
- 98A: *Frequent health care event (RATE INCREASE).
- 113A: *Contract seeker (FREE AGENT).
- 25D: *Sales promotion component (REBATE FORM).
- 60D: *Many a bank record (CREDIT FILE).
- 1D: With 115-Down, make a required contribution (PAY).
- 115D: See 1-Down, and word that can precede both parts of the answers to the starred clues (TAX).
Some of the phrases work better than others. SERVICE BREAK leads to "tax service" and "tax break." Those are both fine. But PRO-LIFE gives us "tax pro" (OK) and "tax life" (huh?)
- 21A: Sand's "which" (QUEL). George Sand was a French novelist. "Quel" is French for "which," I assume. Yikes.
- 33A: *Venus's undoing, perhaps (SERVICE BREAK). "Venus" is Venus Williams and a service break is something that happens in tennis. Let me check. OK, it's "a tennis game won on the opponent's service." It seems like that could be a good thing or a bad thing for Venus, depending on whether or not she's serving. I'm confused. Can we get back to the baseball clues?
- 11D: John P. Sousa, e.g. (U.S.M.C. VET). At first I thought this had something to do with McDonalds: U.S McVet. Yeah, I'm tired.
- 16D: Move, as a restaurant patron (RESEAT).
Sorry, that's all I can do tonight. My posts will be longer after April 15th! Actually taxes are due on April 18th this year, but you get the idea.