An easy puzzle from Norma Johnson, with an easy-to-see theme. Since they didn't give it a title, I'm calling it... Make it snappy!
The three theme answers were all gimmes, so that made for a fast solve:
20A: Deeply hurt (cut to the quick)
36A: Ramadan observance (religious fast)
54A: Gulliver's creator (Jonathan Swift)
Despite the easy theme, there was some fresh fill...a couple that bordered on exceptional.
I always like to see multiple word answers in the grid, and there are plenty of them in this puzzle.
41A: Be testy with (snap at)
48A: Attached, in a way (tied on)
5D: "Come on, that's enough!" (oh, stop!)
49D: "Finally finished!" (I did it!). I remember that feeling when I completed my first Sunday New York Times puzzle.
I guess 6D: Doll for boys (GI Joe) also counts as a multiple word answer. For that matter, so does 3D: Semiformal (black tie), 39D: Excursion diversion (side trip), and 44D: Bit of humor most people can't get (in joke).
Clever cluing at 23A: Benevolent fellow (Elk), 33A: Ark complement (pair), and 40D: Cel character (toon).
I wonder about 26A: Quitter's cry (uncle). Has anyone ever heard anyone cry that...other than in a movie?
It was nice to see 13D: Pulitzer winner studs (Terkel) in the grid. I don't remember any details, but I know I heard his radio show when I was growing up. I just looked him up at Wikipedia...he's 95 years old and had open heart surgery at the age of 93. He probably has more energy than I do.
The Scots appear twice in the puzzle clues...attire at 64A (kilt) and turndowns at 68A (naes). I would definitely turn down a man wearing a kilt.
I just noticed 32A: Partner of poivre (sel). I didn't have a clue but got it from knowing all of the downs. I know Spanish...somewhat. I'm guessing this is French for salt, the partner of pepper.
And I have to point out a favorite word. 22D: Drink heartily (quaff). It's just such a cool word...partly because of the Q, partly because of the double F.
I've finally gotten back to the ACPT puzzle packet that's been sitting on my desk for months now. There's no deadline for returning them, so I might as well finish them and send them off. Today I did puzzle #5, with a clever theme that I figured out PDQ. I finished what I knew in about 22 minutes, but spent the last 8 staring at three or four answers that just eluded me. I don't know if the level of difficulty increases with each puzzle, but this one didn't seem as difficult to me as some I'd already done. Maybe they just mix it all up...you know, so you don't get burned out.
It's only 9:00, but I think it's time to call it a night. Hope to see you tomorrow.