FRIDAY, Jul. 25, 2008 -- John Farmer (Five-time Horse of the Year, 1960-64 / Turkey's wattle / Baseball's Belinsky and Jackson)
Friday, July 25, 2008
Relative difficulty: Easy
Those of you who were around last night know that Rex sent up a smoke signal asking for one of us benchwarmers to get in the game. Okay, it was a little more high-tech than a smoke signal, but apparently not by much. After I responded to the plea for help, I checked in with Wade who said his power had gone out during the last episode of "The Sopranos" and was writing to me from his Blackberry. So he's no help. No idea where Seth is. He's young, so he's probably out gallivanting somewhere. Which leaves you with me, PuzzleGirl. Let's just try to make the best of it, okay? Hey, it could be worse -- we could have a sucky puzzle today, but we don't. I like this puzzle a lot! I had many Aha!'s, only a couple WTF?'s, and, who knows? Maybe some of the fill reminded me of a story or two. Let's find out.
- 15A: Continue the journey (ride on). Also the name of the bus service in Montgomery County, Maryland. I had MOVE ON at first.
- 18A: How some are offended (mortally). With the MO in place I wanted MORALLY, but of course that doesn't fit.
- 23A: Tribulations (ills). Had WOES here.
- 25A: Baseball's Belinsky and Jackson (Bos). When I saw that I needed to do the write-up for today, I admit I panicked a little. Sometimes I can't even finish the Friday puzzle! So I did get some help from PuzzleHusband. About this particular clue, PuzzleHusband says "I just don't think of Bo Jackson as a baseball player." Fair enough.
- 30A: Visitors (sojourners). Great word.
- 35A: Cousin of a woodcock (snipe). Sounds like these are good birds for crossword puzzles. Wikipedia tells me they have "cryptic" plumage. Whatever that means.
- 40A: Ones with read faces? (timepieces). Also Eric Clapton's two-volume "best of" compilation. I was on the right track here but kept thinking it should end with -WATCHES or -CLOCKS.
- 56A: "Your children are not your children" poet (Gibran). Apparently the third best-selling poet in history after William Shakespeare and Lao Tse.
- 57A: Bank of America Stadium team (Carolina). Again, went straight to PuzzleHusband for this one. He immediately said, "Carolina Panthers?" and I'm all, "Well, PANTHERS has the right number of letters but doesn't fit with the crosses." The cross I had was the O from NOSH (54D: Have a little something). Ya know, the 4th letter of CAROLINA. D'oh!
- 1D: Goal of middle management? (trim waist). Again, I was on the right track here, but with the I*T in place I thought it would end with DIET.
- 3D: Acting (ad interim). Note to self: Learn more Latin.
- 12D: One with a high Q score (celeb). I knew this had something to do with movie stars. I found the following explanation here: "Twice a year, 55,000 families are asked their thoughts about 1,800 public figures in entertainment, sports and business: Have you heard of them? Are they one of your favourites? How much do you dislike them? The answers are transformed through a mathematical equation into a single numeral. That number, the Q Score, is the oldest and best-known gauge of celebrity." So now you know.
- 13D: Five-time Horse of the Year, 1960-64 (Kelso). Since it wasn't Seabiscuit, Seattle Slew, Secretariat, or Affirmed, I couldn't come up with it without the crosses.
- 44A: Got by (did OK). With D*D*K in place I thought for sure I had hosed something up. Aha!
- 53A: Start of a "Name That Tune" bid ("I can…"). As in "I can name that tune in three notes." I've been told that an aunt of mine was a contestant on "Name That Tune" in the 1970's. She didn't win, but legend has it she went home with a year's worth of Rice-A-Roni (2D: Quaker Oats product).
- 7D: Rolling Stones hit just before "Honky Tonk Women" ("Jumpin' Jack Flash"). When I had WOES instead of ILLS, "Brown Sugar" came to mind but, obviously, didn't fit. PuzzleHusband isn't a big Stones fan, but "Jumpin' Jack Flash" is on the same album as "Sympathy for the Devil" and, as far as I'm concerned, every song mentioned in this paragraph Rocks. The. House.
- 31D: Some court contests (one-on-ones). Love this one. So many different types of courts.
- 32D: Shortage in a rush-hour subway (elbow room). Got this with only the B in place. Awesome answer.
- 42D: Intimate (suggest). I knew I was on this puzzle's wavelength when my first thought was "'intimate' is a verb here, not an adjective." I guess you can only fool me so many times with that one.
- 16A: In Dutch (up a creek). I understand "up a creek" but have never heard the expression "in Dutch."
- 20A: Practice (ply). PuzzleHusband: "You know, like 'ply a trade'?" Gotcha.
- 22A: Turkey's dewlap (wattle). Pretty sure I've heard "wattle" before, but never "dewlap."
- 62A: Weed (hasheesh). No. No. No. Possibly with a "Var." designation, but spelled this way? No. Plus, I thought weed was marijuana. Isn't hashish ... something else?
- 34D: Dry state (soberness). Sorry, but I have to protest this one too. The word is "sobriety." "Soberness" might work in other contexts, but not in the one where "sober" means "dry."
- 46D: Base of support (plinth). My favorite new word of the day.
Pura Vida, PuzzleGirl