Sunday, May 5, 2013

Sunday, May 5, 2013, Alan Arbesfeld



Another fun Sunday puzzle. Even though there were several answers that I just didn't know (ORIBIS (30A: Small African antelopes) (how many of those are there?), OYER (49A: Court hearing) (wanted "oyez"), ESNE (35A: Feudal laborer) (wanted SERF, of course), SEATO (89A: Defense grp. that disbanded in 1977), RUDI (105A: Designer Gernreich), MRES (125A: G. I. rations) - and that's just the acrosses! - we still enjoyed this one. And have you ever heard "tapas" in the singular? (114A: Toledo tidbit / TAPA) or heard anyone say 87A: Not give ____ ARAP? (I like how the C sitting just above tries to correct the saying...) As I look through it now, there really does seem to be a lot of crosswordese, but even with all that, we still smiled a lot more than we frowned while solving this.

77A: Jobs in technology (STEVE), 39D: Nursery gift? (GREEN[THU]MB), 106D: 50-page book, maybe? (U[SAT]LAS), 6A: Turning point at the station? (GASCAP), and 43A: Food to go? (STE[WED]EDPRUNES) were all quite good. And Frannie was happy to get ONEON (13D: Situation after a leadoff single) on her own.

Enjoyed the pairings of SPATS (1A: Fancy footwear) and SPATE (75D: Flurry), and 22D: Amérique du ___ (SUD) and ETAT[SUN]IS (94A: ____ d'Amérique). I'm never sure, but I like to think that pairs like that are done on purpose. Maybe thinking that spats/spate was intentional is pushing it, but, well, I'm still entertained...

Lastly, ONELLAMA (59A: Priest, in an Ogden Nash poem) was a gimme for us, as my dad likes to recite that poem from time to time. Any puzzle that mentions Nash, SYD (5D: Barrett of Pink Floyd), BETTY[FRI]EDAN (93A: Big name in feminism), and CRIS (111D: Sportscaster Collinsworth) is all right in our book.

- Horace


  1. I enjoyed the rebuses; hit THU first, because I knew Houdini was born in Hungary, which then led to getting SAT (had CATCHATRAIN there for a while until I got the rebus), and FRI led to BETTY[FRI]EDAN quickly. However, there was a lot of crosswordese that I feel could have been avoided. OCTADS? ORD and ORO... ERY. I'm still not sure whether 123A is EYRIES or EERIES (which doesn't work), but then the English would write apnea as APNOEA, not APNOYA.

    1. Oh. AERIES. My bad. I have no idea what IGAS is.

  2. I'm a little surprised you've never heard of IGA markets. You're right, though, the more I looked at this puzzle, the more I noticed the crosswordy junk. I didn't really notice it or mind it so much, though, while we were working on it, so I didn't end up hating it.

  3. As a former semi-GI, I knew that MRE is "Meals Ready to Eat," a loose term made true only because the MRE kits contained a tiny bottle of corrective Tabasco sauce. The fancier ones had a little packet into which one could pour water that created fantastic heat to cook the meals steaming hot in a separate bag.

  4. Very interesting. Love the idea of "corrective Tabasco sauce." I think Frannie might start using that term.

  5. Does the "corrective" refer to improving the flavor or to cleaning out your bowels?