Ah, the vagaries of the English language and its spelling oddities. Some of you may have heard of George Bernard Shaw's alternative spelling for the word "fish," namely "ghoti." "Gh" as in "enough," "o" as in "women," and "ti" as in "tradition."
It's also a deep mine to delve in for our beloved crossword constructors. Today, Ms. Lempel, who is a past master at creating beautiful smooth early week puzzles, has used TOBEORNOTTOBE as a way to nod at the difficulties of recalling whether a B is doubled in a word or not. Her examples of either direction are the last word of the first two theme answers and the first word of the last two - a nice bit of symmetry there.
At first, to be honest, though, I wondered whether it should have been "three B" for BRERRABBIT and PEBBLEBEACH. But I'm not one to pick nits here. The trick still works. And of course, I'm all in favor of the TREBLECLEF. What various mnemonics did people have for that E-G-B-D-F sequence? I recall "Every good boy deserves fudge." The ALTO and the ENTRACTE right next door fit into the musical allusions.
In other areas, I don't really take a THINMINT, myself. I'm much more partial to Samoas. It's that time of year, so we've already demolished the one box we allowed ourselves. Honestly, our next door neighbor Girl Scout is now 15 or 16, so I'm not sure how much longer it's going to go on for anyway. There's simply no way in the world to obtain Girl Scout cookies without a neighbor, right?
Fun words today include APLOMB, BELGIANS, and SCAMPI. And in the good clue section, there's 6D: Try, try again? (REHEAR), referring to court rooms. But cleverly it crosses RUGBY, where one is always trying for a try.
Here's hoping your APR is not too full of CPAS.