FRIDAY, June 4, 2010 — Kelsey Blakley

Theme: The I's Have It — Theme answers are familiar phrases with the letter "I" added to the end, creating wacky phrases clued "?"-style.

Theme answers:
  • 17A: College administrator's cocktail? (DEAN MARTINI).
  • 30A: Still in love with a legendary giant? (NOT OVER YETI).
  • 47A: Vehicle delivering the weekly checks? (PAYROLL TAXI).
  • 63A: Equine teacher of Japan? (HORSE SENSEI).
See? Now this is what I'm talking about. Love this puzzle. So much fun. Not the most creative type of theme out there (add-a-letter), but the base phrases are well-known and the resulting phrases are funny and cleverly clued. If I was going to complain about anything, it would probably be ENDUE (14A: Invest, as with a quality) or maybe the MANURE / AUTOPSY cross (9D: Soil enricher / 21A: Inspection requiring scales). ENDUE is really supposed to be imbue, am I right? And the other, well … ew. But I'm not going to focus on that today. This puzzle is full of good words, scrabbly letters, and enough crosswordese to be helpful without being tiresome.

Good stuff! Let's talk about it!
  • 1A: Voting group (BOARD). Wanted bloc here and the fact that the B worked really flustered me.
  • 15A: Navigational aid (LORAN). I always associate this with sonar but don't know enough about them to know if they're actually similar. LORAN = LOng RAnge Navigation. SONAR = SOund Navigation And Ranging. Probably in the same ballpark.
  • 19A: Product name derived from the German word for peppermint (PEZ). Have you guys ever seen that show "Pawn Stars"? I guess they had some kind of "Pawn Stars" marathon on the other day because every time I walked through the living room it was on. There was one guy who came in with a collection of Pez dispensers and was completely disgusted that he couldn't get as much as he wanted for them. They were pretty cool.
  • 37A: Romance novelist Roberts (NORA). I can't say that I've ever read a Nora Roberts book, but I know someone who was in a writing group with her at one time and I understand she's super nice, super smart, and an excellent writer. Who knew?
  • 43A: White House middle name (ABRAM). I'm gonna guess this is Chester A. Arthur's middle name. Hold on … Crap. That's not it. His middle name is Alan. … Oh, James A. Garfield. So now I know.
  • 50A: Alien's subj. (ESL). Not an alien from outer space, an alien from, I don't know, Mexico maybe? ("Papers please!")
  • 51A: Joey's mom (DOE). I once considered getting a tattoo of the name "Joey." Not that I was in love with a Joey, or had even ever met a Joey. I just thought it was a cool name. It also might have been because that was Ray Liotta's character's name on "Another World."
  • 67A: Firth (INLET). The things you learn!
  • 69A: Mag wheels? (EDS.). I hope you've been hanging around here long enough that this didn't stump you for too long, if at all. EDS. in this case is an abbreviation of editors who are big "wheels" at MAGazines.
  • 3D: Entry-level legal jobs: Abbr. (ADAS). Assistant District Attorneys. This is one of those cases where I over-complicated things because I knew too much. I'm all "paralegals? legal assistants? docket clerks?" I've clearly spent too much time around lawyers.
  • 13D: Osbourne of Black Sabbath (OZZY). I love names in my puzzles, I love Zs in my puzzles, and I love OZZY.

  • 22D: 1971 John Lennon song (OH YOKO). I don't think I know this song (if I do know it, I don't know that this is its title), but it was easy enough to infer from crosses.
  • 34D: Chip maker (INTEL). I have a feeling this was supposed to make us think of snack chips, but my mind went straight to poker chips. Not sure what that says about me.
  • 56D: Tag determiners (UMPS). Oh man. I hope Armando Galarraga isn't solving this puzzle because that would just be harsh. (Although, I have to say I almost feel sorrier for the ump. Can you imagine how much it must suck to be him?)
Crosswordese 101: I read "As I Lay Dying" in college. I haven't read it since then, and that was like a hundred years ago, so I don't remember any details. I recall that a man and his children are traveling with their dead wife/mother (she's in a coffin — this is Faulkner, not "Weekend at Bernie's"). I also remember that I thought it was hilarious. Probably worth another read. Anyway. the husband/father's name is ANSE (44A: Addie's husband in "As I Lay Dying") and you'll probably need to know that again someday if you continue to solve crossword puzzles.

Other crosswordese in this puzzle that we've already covered includes:
  • 27A: Former Secret Service weapon (UZI).
  • 2D: Most fit for drafting (ONE-A).
  • 57D: Della's creator (ERLE).
  • 65D: DDE's arena (ETO).
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Everything Else — 6A: Big splash maker of the '60s (SHAMU); 11A: Bit of a tryst exchange (COO); 16A: Wood-shaping tool (ADZ); 20A: Requiring less effort (EASIER); 23A: Henpeck (NAG AT); 26A: Encouraging sound (RAH); 35A: Old Chevy (NOVA); 38A: Bagel order, maybe (DOZEN); 39A: Blusters (CROWS); 41A: Phone bk. listings (NOS.); 42A: Christmas tree adornment (SKIRT); 46A: Generous offer (ON ME); 52A: Eastwood's 1978 "co-star" Clyde, e.g. (ORANG); 54A: "I wouldn't lie!" ("TRUST ME!"); 58A: E. Sicilian peak (MT. ETNA); 62A: Verb for Popeye (YAM); 66A: Sleep, in Sussex (KIP); 68A: Without face value, as stock (NO PAR); 70A: "We don't see __ ..." (EYE TO); 71A: Not bland (TASTY); 1D: Eliot's "Adam __" (BEDE); 4D: Clash (RUN-IN); 5D: Put down (DEMEAN); 6D: 35mm camera choice (SLR); 7D: Like sauce with a kick (HOT); 8D: Rossini specialty (ARIA); 10D: Cirque du Soleil costumes (UNITARDS); 11D: Sadie Hawkins Day creator (CAPP); 12D: "__ of Solomon": religious works (ODES); 18D: About 1% of the Earth's atmosphere (ARGON); 24D: Unkeyed (ATONAL); 25D: Leafs' home (TORONTO); 27D: Open, as a brew (UNCAP); 28D: Anthony Quinn title role (ZORBA); 29D: Old billiard ball material (IVORY); 31D: Poughkeepsie college (VASSAR); 32D: Surfer's read (E-ZINE); 33D: Sentence lengths (TERMS); 36D: Arbitration decisions (AWARDS); 40D: Blended fruit drink (SMOOTHIE); 45D: They may be physical (EXAMS); 48D: Like some meringue (LEMONY); 49D: Rapt (INTENT); 53D: Columbus's birthplace (GENOA); 54D: Small fry (TYKE); 55D: Debugging agent? (RAID); 59D: Dosage abbr. (TSPS.); 60D: Bang-up (NEAT); 61D: Like breezeways (AIRY); 64D: Headstrong (SET).


Rex Parker said...


Very rough for me. Loved the grid. The clues, not very much. ENDUE / ADAS = ugh. ADAS? Is that supposed to be ASSISTANT D.A.S? Also, [Joey's mom] = boooo. I had ROO, of course. Tough cluing on NEAT, ON ME, SKIRT, BOARDS, ODES, etc.

Why I knew ABRAM instantly, I have no idea.


Tinbeni said...

Figured out the Theme from HORSE SENSEI since (again) I worked from the bottom up.

Thought it was Song of Solumn, but the crosses insisted it was ODES.
A "Put down" is to DEMEAN, so that endow must be ENDUE.
Then I realized I was over-thinking.
Sauce with a kick is HOT
Surfer's read is an EZINE
Not bland is TASTY
Mag Wheels are EDS
Damn, the crosses were doing a getter job than I was.

OH YOKO, UNITARDS all crosses.

ON ME and TRUST ME, Hmmm, there is probably something about this but they work for ME.

FUN Friday level puzzle.

Anonymous said...

Never think of the Xmas tree skirt as an ornament?! Isn't an ornament something one hangs on the tree?

Elf said...

An ornament IS something ou hang on a Christmas Tree.

The clue asked for Christmas tree ADORNMENT.

Anonymous said...

The clue was adornment, not ornament

Orange said...

4:08 for me. I liked the theme, but PuzzleGirl, I think you're on crack today. In what world are LORAN, ABRAM, INLET, and ADAS *good* stuff?

Tinbeni said...

You're right, of course.

LORAN for Navigational aid
INLET for Firth

Aren't "good" stuff, they're GREAT stuff.

Reference to President Garfield's middle name is a bit obscure.
We do always say 'Chester A. Authur, we don't always say James "A" Garfield.

Asst.D.A.'s ... ADAS was a stretch!

*David* said...

That SHAMU clue seemed odd, I suppose the orca was around in the 60s and... Had never heard of LORAN and that ENDUE section screwed me up never heard of that word and it feels like ENSILE.

The rest of the puzzle I made steady progressthrough, I don't think it took me too much more time then yesterday. This was mainly due to the themes being easy. Oh yes I don't think of a YETI as a giant, a hairy furball, yes.

Mark said...

I liked this puzzle. I made a mess in the northern part of tbe grid and that was before I found the MANURE!

Rex Parker said...

I love how Amy has returned to her old stomping ground just to throw rotten tomatoes at her former colleague. "Hey, Angela, you call that a blog entry? More like MANURE!"

Seriously, though, no one should ENDUE ADAS with credibility. Down with ADAS and all other dental associations and Nabokov heroines.


lit.doc said...

For the first little while, I was sure I was going to totally shred this one. The theme answers were funny and came easily (except 30A, more in a moment), as did the fill. NE corner, easy (though isn’t there a convention that blocks are supposed to have more than one entry point?). And then that diagonal running down through NE took as long as all the rest of the puzzle.

LORAN? Screwed. Of course LEOTARD was correct. Screwed. Grinding halt at NOTOVER_E__. YETI didn’t occur to me foreeever, as I’ve always seen them depicted in commercials and “reality” shows as being of distinctly wookyish proportion, not giants at all. Never heard of OH YOKO, as I didn’t follow the boys much after she broke up the band (Thanks, Yoko!). And my brain just did not want to accept that a clue like “Chip maker” could possibly not be slant in some way.

No spoilers here, of course, but if you’ve already done the NYT, how ‘bout that dupe answer/dupe position?

@Orange, what’s with this harshing on the Puzzle Girl? It can be pretty hard to find good stuff in the LAT puzzle. Maybe she was just being nice.

C said...

ENDUE? New word for me. Learning is good.

ADAS is a stretch based on cluing, I would say paralegal or legal researcher is more of an entry level legal job than ADA. I would put public defender ahead of assistant district attorney as well. Not a good clue, stick with the dentists or Nabokovs, sometimes the classics are a classic for a reason. Yeah, sour grapes on my part but it feels good to get off my chest.

Overall, I liked the puzzle as it didn't"click" for me and I had to work for things. Good stuff (except for ADAS .....)

SethG said...

ADA is rock solid for Assistant District Attorney. And ADAs works for more than one ADA. But...ADAs are people. You can have a job as a teacher, and teachers have jobs as teachers, but [Education jobs] are not TEACHERS.

syndy said...

so if i had embue/aba -and who doesn't think a law office needs a business manager's asst-i giving myself half points.if goliath was a giant @ 6'4" surely Yeti counts!Also pretty sure solomon wrote songs not odes =I bet you need to be a contortionist to get into a unitard

Unknown said...

What's ESL again?

KJGooster said...

Didn't like it much -- hard to say exactly why though. I like a tough puzzle, but this one just felt blah. ENDUE didn't help. I also really didn't like the incomplete partial 70A: We don't see ___..." If the answer was EYETOEYE, sure, but not EYETO.

@Ambler: ESL=English as a Second Language, for aliens legal, illegal, OR extraterrestrial.

CrazyCat said...

Tough Friday puzzle for me. I couldn't parse NOTOVERYETI. I guess because like@lit.doc I don't think of YETI as a giant. Actually I have no idea what a YETI looks like. Not crazy about ENDUE. I also had ENDOW at first. ENDUE sounds like something you want to avoid stepping in. Didn't know Adam BEDE either. I did get the theme at DEAN MARTINI at least. The clueing for ONEA confused me. Most fit for drafting instead of "the draft" had me thinking it had something to do with architecture or engineering d'oh. I also thought the clue for SHAMU was odd. SHAMU is still A big splash maker in 2010. Don't they call all the orcas at Seaworld SHAMU when they're performing? MANURE and AUTOPSY were a little yucky. Hand up for Joeys mom ROO.
@PG I don't think you're on crack : )

Tuttle said...

Not my fave.

A YETI isn't a Giant. A YETI is a YETI. Jotuns, Fin Macool, and Mel Ott are legendary Giants.

I've always referred to female Kangaroos as 'flyers' not 'DOEs'.

A Firth can be a bay or even a strait. Only Orkney Islanders use it to only refer to INLETs.

TRUSTME should be clued as "F@*% You, in L.A.".

Al said...

Umm... Roo is the Joey. His mom is Kanga.

Anonymous said...

Umm... Roo is a roo.

andrea carla michaels said...

Kelsey probably wrote/submitted this a long time ago, great minds think alike, etc...
but, just for the record, Tony Orbach and I did a Sunday NY Times puzzle just this past January called "Keep an Eye on it" with all four of these same entries!

(plus four or five more)

How soon they forget! (sigh)

mac said...

Well, I enjoyed this one. Wanted bloc as well, and am so surprised at the origin of Pez!

I've been a (legal) alien for many years in this country, but never took ESL.

70A, a partial partial, is the worst of the worst.

And yes, Andrea, I remember your and Tony's puzzle well!

Burner10 said...

This puzzle was like soup for me. Didn't finish this morning - left simmering with the whole section from UZI to PAYR incomplete (okay, I had NOVA). Got on tonights bus and finished cooking. But oops a few wrong letters - kept IMBUE - and yet - the experience was still delish.

Anonymous said...

Fun puzzle but am I the only one who didn't like "yam" for VERB for popeye?? I yam! Kept wanting to put "eat." Live and learn.

CrazyCat said...

@anon@8:19 I didn't like YAM either.

shrub5 said...

Fell into many of the same traps as others above but I have to stick up for ADAS. I have a couple of friends who, after graduating law school and passing the bar, had entry level jobs as ADAS. It's a very common abbrev. and frequently a first job for new lawyers. I think paralegals and researchers are more often not lawyers (yet).

A loud Bronx cheer for ENDUE. Had ROO before DOE so now have learned a female roo can be called a doe, a flyer or a jill. Males are bucks, boomers, jacks or old men! Kangaroo group terms include mob, troop or court. Just thought you'd like to know. (wiki)

I hadn't heard of KIP, a British term for nap/sleep. Can be a noun or a verb.

Liked this toughish puzzle for its abundance of Scrabbley letters. I had lots of write-overs but eventually got it done with only one google to confirm LORAN.

Hey @PG: If you want to get back at Amy for her crack crack, you could call her ORANG.

Rex Parker said...

Umm... I wasn't referring to Milne. ROO is often clued as a short form of "kangaroo." [Aussie hopper], [Outback critter], etc.

Ratty said...

Wow, really hated this one. I guess I'm in the minority. SKIRT? ODES instead of SONG? I don't think of a YETI as a giant. Still don't get "We don't see EYE TO" What's that even mean? I could go on. Sometimes crossword puzzles make me mad, like I wasted my time on something stupid. And this one made me mad sorry to say.