April 22, 2011
Whassuuuppp, my crossword peoples! SethG here today, filling in for PuzzleGirl and her mobile family. SethG is also mobile--I've been busy, so I'm a bit behind on my puzzles. This is the first newspaper puzzle I've done in almost two weeks, so if it turns out that the same theme ran elsewhere yesterday or something don't expect me to mention it. I'll catch up soon, and I'd bet this theme didn't run elsewhere yesterday.
Theme: Spernooisms, aka THE OLD SWITCH ER OO — Theme answers switch the letters ER for OO in common phrases to make less common but wackier phrases.
- 5D: The poop deck is a partial deck above a ship's main afterdeck. Below the beforedeck is the [Convicts' level on a prison ship?], the PERP DECK.
- 11D: Vitus Jonassen Bering was the Danish explorer in the Russian Navy who discovered Alaska. The people who already lived there could see Russia from their igloos. They were less than enthralled, and they yodeled mean stuff at him or something. Anyway, that's why the [Narrow passage where catcalls are heard?] came to be known as The BOOING STRAIT.
- 24D: A tattoo artist inks, while a TATTER ARTIST is a [Creative user of worn-out clothes?].
- 41D: When you BOOT Bert LAHR, you [Evict a "Wizard of Oz" actor?].
- 7D: Deceptive swap that literally resulted in 5-, 11-, 24- and 41-Down (THE OLD SWITCHEROO). This is 16 letters, which is why this puzzle is not a square.
- 1A: (SHEEP) were Bo-Peep's [Victims of a storied loser]. She was una perdedora.
- 10A: [Björn Ulvaeus's group] was ABBA. I assume "Ulvaeus" didn't help you much here. Swedish music!
- 45A. 47A. Speaking of Alaskan passages, The ARCTIC is the [Northwest Passage ocean], the SOVIET was an [Old Russian council].
- 66A. May, June, July, and August are the only months with no Rs in their names, and oysters apparently like cold. That's why [Like non-oyster months, traditionally] are R-LESS.
- 38D. 38A. It's cute to cross a cross reference, so you get [See 38-Down] for 38-Across. But that's totally not enough reason to give a pass to CONV. CTRS. being [large pol. arenas]. Ugh.
- Slate is an E-mag with EDS, birds that CAW would live in a Corvine, and KONG isn't a donkey, and the PEBBLE isn't fruity. Any questions?