April 27, 2011
- 17A: One of a pool table pair (SIDE POCKET).
- 24A: Illegal football tackle involving grabbing the inside of the shoulder pads from behind or the side (HORSE COLLAR).
- 36A: Album holders (RECORD SLEEVES).
- 48A: Seafood entrée (LOBSTER TAIL).
- 58A: Item featuring the ends of 17-, 24-, 36- and 48-Across (DRESS SHIRT).
It's still a little nuts around here because there are a few random moving details to take care of this week, but for the most part we're in our new house and it's awesome. This is gonna be a great house for us and I'm excited about being here. But, hey! Let's talk about the puzzle!
Today we have a very nice Wednesday offering from Judge Fleming. The theme wasn't immediately recognizable to me because I had to skip over the HORSE COLLAR theme entry, having no idea what that might be from the clue. I had the HO in place early and assumed the answer would start with HOLD, but that didn't last long. So I had SIDE POCKET and RECORD SLEEVES first, then jumped back up to the northeast and filled in HORSE COLLAR and by then the theme was clear. (Wait. Do dress shirts typically have tails? Discuss.)
- 14A: Sex educator Hite (SHERE). I always have to think about how to spell her name. I can never remember how to spell SHERI/SHARI Lewis either.
- 20A: Franken and Gore (ALS).
- 29A: Trick (CON). Was it yesterday we had the PRO/CON puzzle? (I'm a little behind….)
- 31A: Head, to Cécile (TÊTE). French!
- 47A: Big name in stationery (EATON). Once, a long time ago, I commented that I always wanted the stationery answer to be CRANE and it never was. Amy took that opportunity to teach me that there are so many other ways to clue CRANE, it would never be clued as the stationery company. Good point!
- 62A: Major-__ (DOMO). This was honestly the first thing that came to mind, but I didn't think it would be right. I don't even really know what this means. Something computer geeky. I remember seeing it back in the Usenet days. Or, what was the thing before Usenet? It had initials. A couple Rs maybe?
- 64A: Part of SSS: Abbr. (SYST.). I don't have time to look it up, but I'm gonna say this stands for Selected Service SYSTem.
- 1D: Battery partner (ASSAULT). I'm really bad at figuring out these types of clues. I always think about it the wrong way around. Like, I was thinking "Battery and _____" and wasn't coming up with anything. Obviously.
- 3D: Voting map designation (RED STATE). This is a great entry.
- 4D: Infuriation (IRE). Not thrilled about seeing both IRE and IRATE in the same grid (54A: Foaming at the mouth, so to speak).
- 11D: Jacket features (LAPELS). Bonus non-theme theme answer!
- 13D: Aristocracy (GENTRY). This made me chuckle. I hardly ever think of Vic Fleming without also thinking of his sometime collaborator, friend, and all-around lovely woman Bonnie GENTRY.
- 25D: Where to study mathématiques (ÉCOLE). More French!
- 32D: One walking in front of a train (BRIDE). Me: "Dumb-ass?"
- 34D: Fashion monogram (YSL). Ya know what? I'm gonna count this as even more French!
- 35D: Like "Nip/Tuck," rating-wise (TV-MA). Mature Audience? Again, that's just off the top of my head.
- 38D: Humbly takes the blame (EATS DIRT). Raise your hand if you tried EATS CROW first.
- 47D: Inventor Otis (ELISHA). Of elevator fame. Not to be confused with ELIHU Yale. I say that because I often confuse them. Well, I don't actually confuse them, I just forget which one of them has which first name.
- 52D: AOL communications (IM'S). Instant Messages. Do people still use AOL? I guess they do.
- 58D: Bridge installer's deg. (DDS). Ha! I went to the dentist yesterday. Nothing serious, just a regular old six-month check-up. I swear to God, though, while I was there I heard the song 63A: "HERE I Go Again": Whitesnake #1 song. Coincidence? Yeah, probably.
Everything Else — 1A: Stinging (ACRID); 6A: Texas Rangers CEO Nolan (RYAN); 10A: Go, as through mud (SLOG); 15A: Billion add-on (-AIRE); 16A: Hobbler's support (CANE); 19A: Take the stage first (OPEN); 21A: Old-fashioned wedding vow pronoun (THEE); 22A: Inhabited, with "in" (DWELT); 23A: Final: Abbr. (ULT.); 27A: Prevaricators (LIARS); 30A: Bond, for one (SPY); 32A: M16 attachment (BAYONET); 40A: Practiced with the platoon (DRILLED); 41A: When repeated, a food fish (MAHI); 46A: Citrus drink (ADE); 53A: Shipping lane milieu (SEA); (IRATE); 55A: Prefix with sphere (HEMI-); 56A: Sot's syndrome, briefly (DT'S); 57A: Moore of "Ghost" (DEMI); 65A: Part of a process (STEP); 66A: Starlike flower (ASTER); 2D: More in need of a sweater, say (CHILLIER); 5D: Ocean-bottom areas (DEPTHS); 6D: Indy entrant (RACER); 7D: "Uh-oh!" ("YIKES!"); 8D: "__ you for real?" (ARE); 9D: Court divider (NET); 10D: Displeased look (SCOWL); 12D: Quarter-mile, maybe (ONE LAP); 18D: "Gotcha!" ("OHO!"); 22D: Charity, e.g. (DONEE); 26D: Funnel-shaped (CONED); 28D: Stamp for an incoming pkg. (RECD.); 33D: Freud contemporary (ADLER); 37D: Get on the soapbox (ORATE); 39D: Shape-maintaining insert (SHOE TREE); 42D: Agitated (IN A STIR); 43D: Skips over in pronunciation (ELIDES); 44D: Extremely (SORELY); 45D: First family (OBAMAS); 49D: Clown heightener (STILT); 50D: Most crosswords have one (THEME); 51D: Fabulous fellow? (AESOP); 59D: Rubbish (ROT); 60D: "For __ a jolly ..." (HE'S).