Larry Shearer gets better than an AVERAGE MARK (11D, clued as C) for this one.
Every clue in this puzzle begins with the letter C...four of them are simply the letter C. There are also C shapes within the grid.
In addition to average mark, the other theme answers are:
26D...EPCOT CENTER...the first theme answer to fall, although I don't know why.
This was a pretty clever puzzle. I was wiped out tonight, but it held my interest...not just because of the theme. Check out the number of multiword answers.
27A: Curved motorcycle part (mud guard).
30A: Concluding appearance (swan song).
45A: Collects one's winnings (cashes in).
50A: Clarify (spell out).
66A: Come aboard, in a way (hire on). I wanted this to have something to do with a ship...although I guess they wouldn't have added in a way.
8D: Consequence of a solo homer (one run). I got this with only the R in place. Does it count as a sports clue?
18D: Concentrates on specific achievement (sets a goal).
28D: Committed to the truth, in court (under oath).
Favorite clues and/or answers include 10A: Churls lack it (tact), 15A: Convincing, as an argument (cogent), 19A: Cosmos legend (Pelé)...born Edson Arantes Do Nascimento, 20A: Celebrity biographer Hawes (Esme), 38A: Columnist Hopper (Hedda), 42A: Con __ (animatedly, in music) (moto), 65A: Critic James (Agee), 24D: Cassandra's father (Priam), 25D: "Capitalism" rock group __ Boingo (Oingo), 35D: Capua friends (amici), 36D: "Chimes of Freedom" songwriter (Dylan)...I don't remember if Wendy's done Bob Dylan yet, but I bet she will soon if she hasn't already, 47D: Chief (honcho), 48D: City near Cleveland (Euclid) and 55D: C.I.A. betrayer Aldrich (Ames).
Arn returns at 53A, clued as [Comic strip prince's son]. This is one to remember...along with Aleta, the wife of Prince Valiant. You'll see them both fairly often.
Not to be confused with Arn, we have ARI at 61D, clued as [Cardinals, on scoreboards). I was thinking baseball, though, so had STL.
Just noticed a couple of excellent clues, although the answers aren't especially noteworthy. 70A: Coach in Little League, often (Dad), 5D: Circumambulate (roam), 7D: Coloratura's home, with "the" (Met) and 9D: Cremona collectibles, for short (Strads).
Very quickly...got my blood work back today. After three months on Lipitor, my total cholesterol dropped from 277 to 163. HDL is 69 (up from 58), and LDL is 76 (down from 197). I'm not crazy about having to take Lipitor, but I'm crazy about those numbers. The lowest total cholesterol I've ever had was 167...that was back in 1988 when I weighed 98 pounds and exercised obsessively. Trust me...there's no way I could get back to that weight and exercise frequency!
I've been up since 5:30 and I need to be ready for another busy day...so it's off to bed.
Here's the grid...
...and I'll see you tomorrow.