Tuesday, December 26, 2006
Solving time: 6:47
THEME: Cartoon homonyms, e.g. 19A: Bullwinkle's salon application? (moose mousse)
Today's puzzle was so easy I hardly know what to say about it. There were only a couple of slow parts, and those were the result of technical problems or general methodological idiocy on my part. I often find myself in a rut, where I'm getting the answers easily enough, but not eating up the grid in big chunks. One longish cross will be elusive and so I will solve a lot of its Down crosses, but that might result in just one letter at a time being added to the grid. So I'm blowing past clues, but my solved letter total just creeps along. I hope this makes sense somehow.
I am about to promote REA (40A: _____ Irvin, classic cartoonist) to A-level Pantheon status since every new puzzle lately seems to bring with it yet Another way to clue Rea. The fact that it's both a first and a last name makes it all the more appealing to the Pantheon Promotion Committee. Meanwhile, a search committee has been sent in search of ASPS, who haven't been seen for weeks.
Nice touch including a non-themed cartoon answer in a cartoon-themed puzzle, even though REA Irvin's cartoon's have zero to do with the worlds of Disney or Hanna-Barbera. According to one website I just looked at, "Between 1925 and 1958, Irvin's work appeared on 169 covers of The New Yorker." If I were at my home computer, where all is set up for optimal blogging efficiency, I would of course have a link to that website, along with a picture of one of REA Irvin's New Yorker covers. Alas.
65A: Indigent one (needer)
Ick and yuck and no. Please show me a NEEDER, anywhere, and I will retract my disgust. It's nowhere in the language. Hang on ... yep, when I Google NEEDER, Google thinks I've made a mistake: "Did you mean NEEDED?" No, you stupid engine, NEEDER, not NEEDED. NEEDED gets me 580 MILLION hits. NEEDER gets me only 52,900 hits, and the third one that comes up is an obscure 1938 movie called "The Mind NEEDER." Needless to say, I had BEGGAR here, much to my chagrin, dismay, and slightly hindered solving time.
Happy December 26. I'm off to gain more weight.
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld