Saturday, May 12, 2007

Sunday, May 13 - Jim Page

This was just a delightful puzzle. Not too easy, but nothing major that tripped me up. We're not going to mention the recent puzzle that did.

The theme--Two Times Three--applies to the nine asterisked clues in the puzzle, each of which has a sequence of three letters repeated two consecutive times in the answer.

23A: What someone who looks at Medusa does (turns to stone)

32A: 1850 American literature classic (The Scarlet Letter)

42A: Demonstrate the method (show how it's done)

70A: Push aside (shove over)

94A: Walk in the park, say (simple pleasure)

103A: Put at bay (paint into a corner)

119A: Miami baseball list (Marlin lineup)

15D: Toothless South American animal (giant anteater)

55D: Not so important (less essential). This was the first one to fall into place, although I didn't quite get the theme at that point. Two times three equals six, and S only appeared four times. Once I got the Medusa clue, though, it all came together...quite beautifully.

Several gimmes. Most of them short, but they either confirmed a guess or let me know I was way wrong.

12A: Copper head? (Abe). Also one of the most clever clues.

56A: It has gutters on each side (lane).

69A: Agnus __ (Mass prayers) (Deis). Not usually plural, but easy enough to know that's what they wanted.

81A: Hair-raising cry (eek). Just having the K in place made me remember that Kim was Mrs. D.

85A: Becker on "L.A. Law" (Arnie). One of my favorite 1980s TV shows, along with Hill Street Blues and thirtysomething.

Several fill-in-the-blank gimmes, including 27A: "__-La-La" (Al Green hit) (Sha), 37A: From __ Z (A to), 52A: __-mo (slo), 73A: TV's "__-Team") (The A), 98A: Wouldn't __ Loverly?" (it be), 114A: __ Schwarz (FAO), 115A: "Well, look __!" (at you), 123A: Have __in mind (a goal). And those are just the acrosses not mentioned earlier. Several downs, notably 7D: "Steady __ goes" (as she) and 86D: "__ life!" (get a).

Some of the fill was eminently guessable, with just a letter or two in place. I'd never heard of Erroll (66D: "Misty composer Garner"), but I had the double R in place, as well as the L from 90A: __ 88 (Olds). I was also unfamiliar with 84A: Boxer Trinidad (Tito), but was able to guess from the I and O. Didn't know 12D: McMurry University site (Abilene) but figured it out with the A and L.

Other easy-to-guess answers: 46D: Son of Cedric the Saxon (Ivanhoe) and 82D: Kinetoscope inventory (Edison). I haven't heard of a kinetoscope, but with the E in place, I knew that had to be the right inventor.

60D: Place for a star (tree top). I had theater at first. That and heavens would both be good wrong guesses.

94D: Lush fabrics (sateens). I had velvets as first--definitely more lush than sateen, IMOO.

Nails is back (106D: Accomplishes perfectly, as a dismount), as is eerier (68D: More chilling).

We've had an Olaf before, but I'm not sure if he and 44D: Sainted king called "the Stout" (Olaf II) are one and the same. I have finally learned that if a word ends in II, it doesn't necessarily mean that something's amiss.

Oh, there are just so many more good things to say about this puzzle, but I'll have to leave it at this. My husband would probably enjoy spending some time with me. He has suggested that the hours I spend on the computer--both here and at work--might be a cause of the pain that kept me flat on my back all of yesterday. Except for the time I was blogging, and reading other blogs...

To mothers everywhere -- Happy Mother's Day. And to the rest of you -- be sure to give someone the break she deserves.

Linda G


Rex Parker said...

Please explain the [Copper head] ... oh @#$#$#!!!! I just got it...

yes, clever

barrywep said...

You have seen OLAF many times before, usually clued as some ariant of "Norwegian King". The only trick is that it is often spelled OLAV.

Linda G said...

Why is it that these things often become clear when we're writing it out to ask WTF it means. That happened to me the other day (yesterday?) with ETS.

Barry, I generally go with OLAV first, but that wasn't getting me anything where AD FEE belonged.

DONALD said...

Valued your opinion of today's puzzle and enjoyed the warmth of your writing!

Liked the Medusa clue and the ensuing TURNSTOSTONE.

Ultra Vi said...


Happy Mother's Day to you!!!

Linda G said...

Donald, thanks for the nice comment. I've always been more conversational in my writing than, say, academic. I think that does come across as warm and inviting.

I imagine that's also the reason I work with the homeless.

Vi, if you come back -- thanks for the good wishes. Happy Mother's Day to you.

Anonymous said...

Hi, V-Family,
Just stopping by to say "Hello".


Anonymous said...

I filled in the entire May 13 puzzle, and saw the repeating motifs, but still couldn't figure out the "hook." Thanks for explaining.