Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Thursday, October 4 - Sheldon Benardo

Good Thursday morning! Today's the last day you'll have to suffer this fool, Evad (hopefully gladly).

Today's theme is a tribute to the fiftieth anniversary of the launching of SPUTNIK, back on this day in 1957.
I wasn't around for this (note to constructors: you have three more years to come up with the tribute puzzle celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of my birth!), but certainly was aware of the chilling effect it had on the American psyche and our drive to put a "man on the moon." (Apologies for the blatant gender bias of the early '60s...hopefully we've come a long way from then!)

Without further ado, here are your other theme entries (in pictures!):

YURI GAGARIN - the first human in space (not on Sputnik, though)...he's appropriately in the upper left of today's puzzle

ALAN SHEPARD - the second person in space (and fifth to walk on the moon)...dig that spacesuit, huh?

SPACE RACE and SATELLITE - this little ball was roughly 23" in diameter and weighed a mere 183 pounds - pretty small, given its impact on the world at that time.

Other entries that might be considered part of the theme:

- ARES clued as "NASA launch vehicle"

- STARDATE clued as "Enterprise log entry" (is Kirk holding a Sputnik model in his hand?)

- EARHART the aviatrix (don't you love that word?) and author of "20 Hrs., 40 Min.," the log entries from her flight across the Atlantic, this time as a passenger (later she would fly it solo).

- Syngman RHEE was the first president of South Korea, and in office when Sputnik launched.

A few clunkers found in the space around these entries, REBALE is one of those words that you really wonder if anyone would ever use. I think BLINI appeared in a recent puzzle, so that one wasn't as hard.
I did like the pair of STRUT and SNORT tailing away from the central theme entry. I would've preferred to have seen STAN clued in reference to South Park, instead of a 1972 Wimbledon champion, but since this one was a tribute puzzle, I'll let Will and Sheldon off the hook. I had some trouble with the spelling of SANIBEL island (I first had an "A" for the "I"), and I had GIVE BACK before SEND BACK for "Remit," but recovered quickly from both missteps.

Here's the grid...enjoy the remaining few guest posts and extend a warm welcome home to Linda G. from her well-deserved vacation!


Anonymous said...

I was in college when Sputnik went up. It was a Very Big Deal, and the country collectively decided we had to mend our education system to catch up with the Russians. It seems our education system always needs mending.

QP said...

The only reason that Soviets got ahead of us in SPACE RACE, is because of their brutal social policies and slave labor (for more info on the subject read : "Gulag Archipelago" or "Gulag, a History")

Linda G said...

Nice write-up, Dave. And the pictures, especially of Sputnik, were over the top.

I was around, although very young, at the time. I fondly remember ALAN SHEPARD, so he was a gimme, but I had to think about the others, and Don gave me YURI. I won't forget that name again.

Today we're off to hike the Kalalau trail along the Napali coast. We can only do the first two miles...probably more than enough for me at this point. To go beyond that, you need a camping permit. The whole trail is 11 miles and requires an overnight. The two-mile portion is supposed to take 3-4 hours roundtrip, so I guess I'd better get going.

coachjdc said...

Found this one on the easy side for a Thursday offering, but it was "up my alley" As a US History teacher, I teach about the Space Race and also have some Russian knowledge from my watch collecting hobby (there are Russian brands that pay tribute to Gagarin and others)

cornbread hell said...

thanks for the cool pictures, evad.

somehow i kept looking for 'cold war' to be in the puzzle, but finally decided 'mindsets' was good enough. (does that even make sense to anyone but me?)

sanibel threw me. i had sant bel and was like, "hmm, i 'guess' blint is a word..."

Anonymous said...

Dave: thanks for filling in! I always love your comments. Super-plus! Today was no exception.

Take care.

cornbread hell said...

hey, coacjjdc- are you familiar with this site?

coachjdc said...

cornbread- thanks for the link. that's a cool site. don't think I've come across that one before.