Thursday, April 19, 2007
Relative difficulty: medium to challenging
THEME: BIALYSTOCK (48A: Flimflammer of stage and screen) - All theme answers relate to this guy, the main character in "The PRODUCERS" (38A: 1968 film or 2001 Broadway hit, with "The")
Here are the rest of today's theme answers:
- 11D: 48-Across portrayer (Nathan Lane)
- 27D: 48-Across portrayer (Zero Mostel) - I hadn't even begun to search out the theme when I got to this answer, but since I had ZER- in place ... I mean, who the hell else would it be?
- 20A: With 32-Across, 48-Across's pet project (Springtime / for Hitler)
- 36A: 48-Across's partner (Bloom)
No time for a full blog entry today, so just the highlights.
16A: _____ Bear (Papa)
47D: _____ Bear (Mama) - would have been better with symmetry, but still, adorable
23A: "Ditat _____" (Arizona's motto) ("Deus") - total (educated) guess at the "U"
21D: Nickname aboard Apollo 1 (Gus) - DEUS's "U" crossing, which I also didn't know
44A: 6'7" TV star of 1955-75 (Arness) - OK. Can't picture him. No time to look him up. Wanted BIG BIRD here... but the dates were wrong.
7D: Returnee of a sort (Haji) - one returning from pilgrimage? Nice.
5D: Children of Norman and Enid (Sooners) - I'm really surprised by how quickly I got this. Can't see "Enid" without thinking Oklahoma, for some reason.
29D: 1992 Olympics prizes (oros) - they were in Barcelona, so GOLDS becomes Spanish - still think there should have been Spanish in the clue to cue the language change, but ... I'll allow it.
30D: Law man (Ohm) - Ohm's Law. Rough, rough, rough.
36A: A train? (BCD) - the oldest of fill tricks - the letter sequence - but the cluing here is sweet, so I don't mind.
41A: Its participants must form a line (Bingo) - I had -NGO and confidently wrote in CONGO, forgetting that CONGO is a country in Africa and not the line dance I was looking for (CONGA). Anyway, this is a hot way to clue BINGO because of the two letters it shares with the more obvious (but wrong) answer. [The Gloria Estefan song "Conga" was featured on "American Idol" last week, so the word has been on my mind, much to my dismay]
56A: Holy book (Koran) - had the -ORA- and wrote in TORAH. D'oh! (for whoever asked, that is the preferred spelling)
50D: "It's been _____!" ("ages!") - I didn't actually fall into this trap ... until I was (once again) mindlessly transcribing my answers, and wrote in A GAS!, which totally works. It makes the cross LEAR instead of LEER (58A: Knowing look) - an error that's very hard to pick up on the grid once you've made it, as LEAR is a perfectly cromulent word.
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld