Friday, November 28, 2014

Friday, November 28, 2014, Tracy Gray


Unusual to have a rebus on a Friday, but we'll take it! And perhaps because it is so unusual, it took us a good long while to realize what was going on. We had gotten quite a ways in when finally it just became obvious, and three of the rebuses were filled in almost simultaneously. The fourth, E[SALE]N (64A: Big Sur institute) was only gettable thanks to my Dad referring to ADAM[SALE] (50D: Water) a lot when we were kids. He also familiarized us with the expression "Shank's Mare" for walking, which has also come in handy once or twice while doing crosswords.

So anyway, aside from E[SALE]N, TOT (33A: Small amount of liquor), and EILAT (43A: Gulf of Aqaba resort city), which were unknowns, the rest was pretty darn clean. Sure, SYST, RIA, and SHMO (4D: Ordinary guy: Var.) might get a "hmph," but really, there's quite a bit of good stuff that overshadows anything hmphable.

We love any reference to a TESLACOIL (32D: Electrical transformer), and right beside that, ADMISSION (31D: What a ticket is good for) was one of my favorite answers, just because it is so obvious! I was putting in TEAKETTLE (12D: It whistles while it works) at the very moment Frannie was putting on our tea kettle for a late morning cup, and it's interesting to learn that ADELE is the "2D: Singer who was awarded an M.B.E. in 2013." I kind of like WORDS as a term for "3D: An argument," and BEGAT is a similarly old-timey-seeming word for "29A: Fathered."

The pairs of "Expert" clues (OLDPRO, VETERAN) were fun, as was the BED/COT cross-reference.

In all, it was quite enjoyable. I'm considering making one online purchase today, but so far, nothing else has been bought. We're saving the bulk of the shopping for "Small Business Saturday" tomorrow!

- Horace


  1. 16:09. Finished with Cece and my mother. I put ERICCARLE in first, and, with confidence, started to enter SPRINGS... something, when I was brought up short. I thought at that moment: "Maybe it's a rebus," especially since my first instinct for 12D was "Steam engine", which would have required a rebus in the first square. So when my mother said TEAKETTLE for that one, I gave up on the idea, up until the point where we had _MSLO_ for Stephen King's book, and wanted ROsEPARKS for 30D (even though it didn't seem quite right). Then the light bulb went off, and everything else went relatively quickly.

    Did not like NOID and ROI (fairly random clue). Otherwise I'm fine with the rest. Few really tricky clues for a Friday.

  2. 45:09
    Like Colum, I first ran into trouble when I saw that SPRINGS was forming with only two letters to spare. I got the revealer before getting any of the squares to which it referred, but once SPRING[SALE]AK went in, the rest fell in short order. I thought it was a strong start with MAW (1A Gaping opening). I don't know ERICCARLE, but I do know BARDOT (44A "...And God Created Woman" actress), though not that reference. We could've had some Huygens material with (HOTLICK) at 21A, but alas, the clue wasn't. ALOHAS was a pleasant reminder of our Hawai'i trip. Excellent Friday. I always enjoy a rebus, so I'd take one on any day.