TUESDAY, July 6, 2010 — Donna S. Levin

Theme: Magazines — Theme answers are familiar phrases that begin with a the name of a popular magazine.

Theme answers:
  • 20A: Five-time "Sports Illustrated" swimsuit cover girl (ELLE MACPHERSON).
  • 33A: 1982 song title items that "live together in perfect harmony" (EBONY AND IVORY).
  • 40A: Key opening? (O SAY CAN YOU SEE).
  • 53A: Great experience (TIME OF ONE'S LIFE).
  • 58D: Newsstand buy, for short—one begins each of the four longest puzzle answers (and also ends the last one) (MAG).
Cute theme. I couldn't believe it hadn't been done to death, so I poked around on the Cruciverb.com database a little and found four occurrences, the most recent was a Monday New York Times puzzle by Mark Feldman (9/21/09). Then the website seemed to freeze up on me and I stopped looking. I'm guessing it's in there a few more times. But Donna is a pro and, as usual, she put together a nice smooth Tuesday for us. The only really "Huh?" moment for me was at BELL THE CAT (3D: Accomplish a daring feat). I've never heard that phrase before! From the clue I could obviously figure out exactly what it means and it's pretty cool, so there's my learning moment of the day. Oh, and I did throw terrier in where SHARPEI goes (9D: Wrinkly dog). Have I mentioned that I'm not a dog person?

Do you all know what a porkpie is? I only know it from the song "Goodbye Pork Pie Hat," a song written in memory of saxophonist Lester Young which my high school jazz band performed. But that was, like, a hundred years ago and I'm pretty sure I've never heard it mentioned since. So that's pretty random. Oh, and check this out! Lester Young's nickname was PREZ, as in 35D: Prez's backup (VEEP). Speaking of music in the puzzle, if you were just going through the acrosses, you probably smiled like I did at AXEL followed by ROSE. Well, you either smiled or, I don't know, winced or something (14A: Cousin of a toe loop / 15A: Levitated). (Yes, I know that's not how Axl Rose spells his name, but still.)

Talking Points:
  • 17A: Stitch's adopter, in a Disney film (LILO). Was "LILO & Stitch" a big enough deal that childless people have heard of it?
  • 51A: Jawbone source for Samson's weapon (ASS). Any time I see ASS in the grid I raise my eyebrows a little. But today it's even better considering 44D: Cheek (SASS)!
  • 52A: SASE, e.g. (ENC.). Self-Addressed Stamped Envelope, which is something you might ENClose when submitting a manuscript.
  • 60A: Actor Rickman (ALAN). I feel like I should know who this is … d'oh! It's Snape!
  • 6D: Veg-O-Matic maker (RONCO). You know what's coming.

  • 28D: Kris Kringle's employer of film (MACY'S). I believe this is a reference to the Christmas classic "Miracle on 34th Street."
  • 30D: Marilyn Monroe's "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" role (LORELEI LEE). This is one of those movies that I think I should see only I can't remember if maybe I did once, but maybe didn't see the whole thing. Or maybe I'm just getting it confused with "Some Like It Hot." Do you have movies like that?
Crosswordese 101: I can hardly believe we haven't covered Joan MIRÓ yet (21D: Joan of art). He's right up there with ARP and ERTÉ in the highest echelons of crosswordy artists. You will see MIRÓ clued as a Spanish/Catalan (Barcelona-born) surrealist painter, who was a contemporary of Picasso, Calder, and Dali. Titles of his works that might pop up in clues include "Carnival of Harlequin," "Dog Barking at the Moon," and "Still Life with Old Shoe."

Other crosswordese in the puzzle that we've already covered:
  • 14A: Cousin of a toe loop (AXEL).
  • 39A: Lake on four states and a province (ERIE).
  • 11D: Northern European capital (OSLO).
  • 31D: He put the "O" in Jackie O (ARI).
  • 54D: "Picnic" playwright (INGE).
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Everything Else — 1A: Spider creations (WEBS); 5A: Porkpie feature (BRIM); 9A: Fern-to-be (SPORE); 16A: Wears (HAS ON); 18A: Burden (ONUS); 19A: Sky holder of myth (ATLAS); 23A: Tennis match part (SET); 24A: Wedding promise (I DO); 25A: Nathan Hale, e.g. (SPY); 26A: Stick (to) (ADHERE); 28A: Tiny arachnid (MITE); 30A: Mad scientist's milieu (LAB); 36A: Type size (PICA); 38A: Bill, once passed (ACT); 45A: A-Team muscleman (MR. T); 46A: Benevolent order (ELKS); 47A: Port in SW Italy (NAPLES); 50A: Heidi's high hill (ALP); 58A: City bonds, for short (MUNIS); 59A: Latvian capital (RIGA); 61A: Tense feeling (ANGST); 62A: Settled on a branch, say (ALIT); 63A: Departed (WENT); 64A: Silly ones (GEESE); 65A: Applications (USES); 66A: Butterfly catchers (NETS); 1D: Polish Solidarity hero Lech (WALESA); 2D: Like the storied man without a country (EXILED); 4D: __ gin fizz (SLOE); 5D: Make wider (BROADEN); 7D: "The jig __!" (IS UP); 8D: Interlock, as gears (MESH); 10D: Dupe (PATSY); 12D: Reddish horse (ROAN); 13D: USN rank (ENS.); 22D: Cornerstone abbr. (ESTD.); 27D: Auction venue with a four-color logo (EBAY); 29D: Enjoying a lot (INTO); 32D: Tournament edge (BYE); 34D: Union soldier (YANK); 36D: Fluffy toy dog, familiarly (POM); 37D: Syr. neighbor (ISR.); 41D: Woman's name meaning "heavenly" (CELESTE); 42D: Dog food choice (ALPO); 43D: Beats, as an incumbent (UNSEATS); 48D: "Terrible" child, in Toulouse (ENFANT); 49D: Olfactory stimuli (SCENTS); 50D: Slightly off (AMISS); 51D: 1973 Rolling Stones chart-topper (ANGIE); 53D: Adjust for pitch (TUNE); 55D: Munich missus (FRAU); 56D: Quiets, as a squeak (OILS); 57D: Croquet venue (LAWN).



Nice puzz, Donna. I’m sure I’ve seen the MAG theme before, but it’s still fun and just the right level for a Tuesday. I worked it so I could get the puzzle key (MAG) first. Of course I knew ELLE MACPHERSON right off and so then the theme became obvious and away I WENT. The other easy fill-in was LORELEI LEE… who could forget that movie? Lots of super words, like: SHARPEI, CELESTE, SPORE, and BELL THE CAT. Oh and of course our most favorite is ANGIE (Puzzlegirl)… BLESS HER !!! What a fun writeup today.

My all time favorite play was “Picnic” by INGE, and the movie with Kim Novak and Bill Holden was absolutely delightful. I remember writing a theme paper on that movie while in college… what a cool assignment! BTW, Kim Novak was my neighbor, where I grew up in Chicago and she and I both attended Wright College in 1958.
A very HOT SCENE from Picnic… the Moonglow dance scene.

I guess I’ve found out why I like certain puzzles so much. It all boils down to one quality word: REMINISCENSE.

Gotta scram! The breakfast guys are awaiting!

Argyle said...
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gespenst said...

Wow, am I the first commentor? Which reminds me, a friend always hated the term "sports commentator" ... he said they're not commentating, they're commenting, so they should be "sports commentors." True, but it doesn't sound as good ;)

Pretty straightforward puzzle, but I *so* didn't get the theme till I got to the reveal. I was trying to figure out what the long answers had in common, and being the name of magazines wasn't on my radar. Perhaps I should have twigged at "O" as in "SAY CAN YOU SEE" but didn't.

I'm a little bored w/ "INTO" as in "enjoys a lot" ... anyone else?? I think I prefer "ONTO" but could do w/o either.

Oh, and ANGST seems to me to be more than just a "tense feeling," right? It seems more pervasive than a mere feeling to me.

I loved "The jig" IS UP!! Being a mystery buff (does that make me INTO mysteries?) that phrase amuses me :)

Ok, off to start the day ... hot hot hot. Or "hazy hot and humid" as they say ...

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Zeke said...

This puzzle has inspired me to begin the publication of Ivory, a magazine dedicated to the unique issues of white people in America. I envision covering such issues as what to do when you're in a store and need some help, but don't have 4 store employees following you around, just keeping an eye on you. When you hail a cab in NYC, which one of the 3 that stop for you do you choose? What does none do when you go to Denny's and want to hang around in the entry way for a minute or two, but the hostess insists on seating you right away?

Van55 said...

Pretty good puzzle over all, but I wasn't thrilled by the theme either.

Sfingi said...

Who Will Bell the Cat is an Aesop Fable about bravery. The mice have a meeting and decide that if the cat had a bell, everything would be OK. But no one wants to actually do it. Sounds like many a gov't. Ideas are free, actions cost.

EZ, no Google, but didn't know what some of the stuff was when I was done.

What does tournament edge = BYE mean?
Is Syracuse, as in Sicily, near ISRael in any real sense?
I never heard of a toe loop (sports), or ALAN Rickman.
oouldn't decide how to spell WALESA.
Had SmEllS before SCENTS.

@Zeke - first laugh of the AM!

Tinbeni said...

Searched out the theme reveal and solved from the SW up.

Now I'm wondering who is daring enough to "BELL THE CAT?" Maybe Aesop's mice can do the job.
Like PG, I'm not a dog person but the POM and SHARPEI were easy gets. I fed them the ALPO.

Just wondering, maybe BP thought the Gulf was squeaky and they are trying to quiet it with the OILS.

PuzzleGirl, excellent write-up.
I use my Bass-O-Matic 76 nearly everyday.

Tinbeni said...

Seems there is a snafu on the loose.
Post without your Avatar.

Zeke said...

@Sfingi - In a tournament, a BYE is where you don't have to play at one stage, you just won. SYR references Syria, not Syracuse.

Tinbeni said...

Receiving a BYE takes you to the next round in an elimination tournament. That's the "edge."
Syr. is Syria.
WALESA, had to sush out the spelling also.

You forgot to add the "care and feeding" of NASCAR beer belly's.

James said...

@Sfingi - For tournaments to come out "right", the number of participants must be some power of 2 (2, 4, 8, 16, etc). When that is not the case, some number of participants receive a first-round BYE so that subsequent rounds will have the "power of two" characteristic. This gives those participants an edge in that they have to win one less contest to win the championship. Sorry, that is about as inelegant an explanation as I can provide. :)

SYRia, not Syracuse.

James said...

Oops! My attempt to make sure the questions of Sfingi were still unanswered obviously failed.

Eric said...

@PG: LILO and Stitch? Well, as a fellow childless person, I knew the two names go together and refer to toons, but thought they were too, um, adult to be Disney, and had no idea that one adopted the other; so had to wait for a cross or two. Maybe I was confusing them with Ren and Stimpy.

@Zeke: I'll race you for it. I want to start IVORY as a magazine for collectors of antique pianos :-)

Hadn't noticed either AX(E)L + ROSE or ASS + SASS. Cute.

I'm bummed that I didn't get POM, seeing as I once knew and loved a Chihuahua/Pomeranian cross. In my defence, he wasn't particularly fluffy (got his coat from the Chihuahua side of the family, I guess), and the short form we used was "pommie". Oh, and the clue totally succeeded in misdirecting me; I was looking for a stuffed animal, not a toy *real* dog!

I did not know that ATLAS holding up the world is a later misinterpretation. It seems he was condemned by Zeus to stand *on* the earth and hold up the sky (as personified by Gaia and Uranus, respectively).

Favourite clues: "Key opening?" for O SAY CAN YOU SEE, and "He put the 'O' in Jackie O" for ARI.

Middletown Bomber said...

@Sfingi Toe loop is from Figure Skating it is a style/type of jump of jump. Alan Rickman is a fairly prolific English actor of stage and screen for the last 32 years he was in Die Hard, Something the Lord Made, Hitchhikers guide to the galaxy, Alice in wonderland, and All of the Harry Potter Movies.

CrazyCat said...

Something odd is up with the comments today. At the end of PG's write up it says there are only 3 comments, when there are actually 15. I threw in MUNIS, ANGST and GEESE and never even saw 58D MAG. I had no idea what the theme was until I came to the blog. I had POO before POM as in maltiPOO. Speaking of dogs, we had two additional visiting pooches this weekend (along with their people). What a zoo! I am now enjoying some peace and quiet.
Fun easy puzzle and a great write up. Always enjoy seeing the Bass O Matic skit.

Rube said...

Enjoyed this puzzle. Had one write-over at Pek for POM... MR T fixed that. After finishing, Googled for the magazine OSAY. Not to be had. Then Googled O SAY and found Oprah's mag. Never heard of it, but that's why I do Xwords.

FYI. For all you cat people out there, my cats love Bass filets put thru my Bass-O-Matic, err, I mean Cuisinart. I even tried pureed Bass and anchovy paste with a little olive oil on Saltines. Not bad, but I wouldn't serve it to company. Anything to use up all that bass before going to Lake Powell in August.

Masked and Anonymous said...

Deja-vuscosity of theme notwithstandin', gotta love this puz. First two theme answers were yer E-zines, but then branched out in other directions. Has there been an E-whatever theme yet?

Just set this puz alone in a quiet corner with a pencil laid on it, and it auto-fills itself in. Kinda like it like that, sometimes. After a nat-tick MonPuz wipe-out, I needed it bad.

Good job, Donna S. Levin... thUmbs Up.

chefbea said...

Easy fun puzzle. Loved Joan of Art. Miro is my favorite artist.

Tuttle said...

A missed chance here for a timely clue. The woman's name CELESTE is also a common term in Romance languages for the color sky blue. Thus the Uruguayan national football (soccer) team, who wear sky-blue uniforms, are commonly referred to as La CELESTE.

And they are playing Die Oranje (the Netherlands, who wear orange) in the World Cup as I type! And playing them well.

Anonymous said...

Not well enough.

nanpilla said...

Roans can also be "blue", when the base coat is black. The reddish roans result from a bay or chestnut basecoat. They are often referred to as "strawberry". A roan can occur in a horse of any color, with an even distribution of white hairs throughout. (Other than the head, mane, tail and lower legs)

John Wolfenden said...

A had a girlfriend in college who was a skater, and that's the only reason I know that a toe loop is basically a 180-degree jump, whereas an axel is a full 360.

Nice Celeste trivia, Tuttle. Unfortunately the Oranje were too much for them today. If anyone can beat the Germans, it's those Dutchmen.

I was all prepared to dismiss BELL THE CAT as to obscure a reference for a Tuesday, but it's actually pretty nifty.

Sfingi said...

@Zeke and Tinbeni - thanks. Don't really understand BYE, but will memorize. I guess I tend to think Syracuse for 2 reasons.

@Middletown & Wolfenden- likewise. I might see some of those movies someday. Not so likely, the sports.

@Nanpilla - beautiful. I knew there was more to that. Love horsies.

@Masked - Today the NYT has an i-theme.

@Rube - how cute - I can see those cats semi-patiently waiting while you work the machine.

In a world without us, cats and horsies do fine, small dogs not so good.

@Eric - agree those were very clever clues.

There are many illustrations for Aesop's/Fontaine's Bell the Cat, but I can't find the one we used to look at. Dore's is scary.

chefwen said...

@Rube - I did the same thing with OSAY. I have seen and heard of O magazine but pretty much erased it from my memory bank as I think it soooo self indulgent.

Fun and easy-to-do puzzle, only write over was SCENTS over smells, WENT fixed that in no time.

mac said...

Very nice little puzzle! Loved "bell the cat" and Lorelei Lee especially.

Am psyched: Holland will be in the final on Sunday, WHEN I WILL BE THERE! Parties are planned.

CrazyCat said...

@mac Have a wonderful trip and good luck to the Netherlands! Wow. This competition goes on and on!
@Rube Always think about you and your bass when I see the Bass O Matic. I'm sure my cats would like that. They like my neighbor's koi so I had to the BELL THE CATs (don't know if the fish can hear though). It does help the birds and lizards.

syndy said...

archibald douglas 5th earl of Angus was known as Archie bellthecat in the 15th century;"O" seems a little too easy for a theme entry

tkamom said...

Just got to the puzzle - only commenting because I love a puzzle with my name in it! Not many Lorelei's in the world! Good puzzle for almost midnight, didn't make the connection on the theme until I hit O. Weird, huh?

CrazyCat said...
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