05.08 Sun

May 8, 2011
Mel Rosen

[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: "Market Woes" — Humorous negative stock market headlines.

Theme Entries:
  • 23A: "How's your Ticonderoga stock?" answer? (PENCILS HAVE LOST POINTS).
  • 42A: "How's your Johnson & Johnson stock?" answer? (TALCUM HIT BOTTOM).
  • 65A: "How's your Ginsu stock?" answer? (KNIVES ARE SHARPLY LOWER).
  • 88A: "How's your Mo√ęt & Chandon stock?" answer? (CHAMPAGNE IS FLAT).
  • 109A: "How's your Aqua Lung stock?" answer? (SCUBA GEAR IS GOING UNDER).
Hey, puzzle fans. It's Sunday, so this is Doug again. Before we get started, I'd like to do one last plug for the puzzles from the Crosswords L.A. Tournament. If you're interested, you can buy eight fabulous puzzles for $5. Five of the puzzles were solved by competitors in last week's tournament, and the other three are bonus warm-up puzzles. Click here if you want to purchase them. Constructors include Andrea Carla Michaels, Alex Boisvert, Elizabeth Gorski, Tyler Hinman, and many more. And all proceeds go to the charity Reading to Kids.

Today's puzzle has a theme that would be right at home in the weekly Wall Street Journal crossword. It might have been fun to do some positive entries too, like BALLOONS REACH NEW HIGHS. Anyway, onward to bullets.

  • 1A: Do what Michelle Wie did before age 16 (GO PRO). She's a golfer who was once dubbed "the female Tiger Woods." Yeah, back when that was a compliment.
  • 34A: Deliverer of text messages? (APOSTLE). I think I like this clue. I assume it refers to the epistles of the Apostles.
  • 47A: Old frosh topper (BEANIE). According the Wikipedia, "in the 1950s and possibly beyond, beanies were worn by college freshmen and various fraternities as a form of mild hazing." Doesn't get much milder than that.
  • 72A: Janvier, across the Pyrenees (ENERO). January in French & Spanish.
  • 15D: Kvbrick opvs? (MMI). The movie "2001" in Roman numerals. Awesome clue.
  • 55D: Surrey town in which George Harrison lived in the '60s (ESHER). Weirdest answer of the day for me, but I'm not a big Beatles fan. Do Beatles experts know this?
  • 61D: Actress Sarah Michelle ___ (GELLAR). Star of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer." It seems like a show I'd be into, but I never watched it. 
  • 77D: Two seater, maybe? (USHER). Great clue.
  • 101D: Hall of Fame slugger Ralph (KINER). He's also an announcer known for his malapropisms. "All of the Mets road wins against the Dodgers this year occurred at Dodger Stadium."
I wish I had a little more to say about this puzzle, but I'm done. I'm off to see "Thor" in IMAX 3-D. Mjolnir!


CoffeeLvr said...

I forgot that Doug does the comments on the Sunday syndicated, and was looking forward to a picture from PG of some RIPPLY body builders. I wanted RIPPed there, but had to let it go.

I had a leisurely solve on paper, and eventually keyed the answers in online. I did not get the "window shade" indication of a perfect solve, and had to re-parse the first theme answer from PENCIL SHArE LOST POINTS to the correct one.

APOSTLE was my last entry, crossing TATAMIS, which is only vaguely familiar to me.

Agree with you, Doug, could use some positive company reports, but some of these theme answers did give me a chuckle, especially FLAT CHAMPAGNE.

fermatprime said...

Hi Doug,
The artist's name is ESCHER, not ESHER!
Enjoyed the BEANIE reference.

Anonymous said...

I'm really lost on that "usher" one. If the clue were "to-seater" I could see it. But "two-seater"?

Tuttle said...

I liked the cluing for 15D, but it's still really, really weird.

Yes, Latin inscriptions used a V instead of a U. But they also only used K in front of an /a/ sound and never used CK together since Cs were always hard. And with the rounded U in Kubrick they would most likely have used a Q for the hard C sound at the beginning.

I imagine "Qvbric Opvs" would have been just a mess to figure out though.

Does remind me of a line from Mel Brooks' History of the World; "You're nuts! N-V-T-S, nuts!"

Doug P said...

@Anonymous - I assume the usher is showing two people to their seats, so he's a "two-seater." Yeah, it's a little iffy, but I liked it.