WEDNESDAY, Aug. 27, 2008 - Donna Hoke Kahwaty (Comical Boosler / Capulet murdered by Romeo / Suffix with buoy)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008



Relative difficulty: Eeeeeeeasy

THEME: Stuttering - familiar phrases have their first word repeated, creating comically improbably phrases, which are clued in comical "?" style

My only comment on the entire puzzle when I test-solved it was "EZ," which I had underlined a million times. I thought Will had said that he was going to toy with the clues to make it harder, but the clues are virtually identical to the ones I saw first, and the only clue change that could possibly have led to an increase in difficulty was the removal of "(informed)" from the tail end of 6D: In the _____ (know). Otherwise, it remains a shockingly easy puzzle. I suppose if you don't know what a PAWPAW is, you might struggle, but otherwise, I don't see the difficulty here. I struggled a tiny bit in the far west, where something about the non-"ing" ending on NITPICKY (4D: Sweating the small stuff), the non-ANCE answer to 35A: Suffix with buoy, and the (to me) mildly weird ESKIMO clue (22A: Parka wearer, maybe), caused a slight slowdown. But otherwise, a cakewalk.

Theme answers:

  • 20A: Some fruit still lifes? (pawpaw prints) - this theme is pretty clever, I'll give it that
  • 26A: Showy dance intro? (can-can opener)
  • 41A: Gobbler in a powwow musical group? (tom tom turkey)
  • 47A: Chocolate's journey? (bonbon voyage)

The eeriest word in the puzzle, to my eye, is YARE (50D: Easy to maneuver, at sea), which I assume is pronounced "YAR," but I could be wrong. I think a pirate might say "YAR," and a ship might "YAW." "YARE" just looks like a typo for "YEAR." The clue for UNION (19A: Shop group) was mildly tricky, but I blew right through the Down crosses and thus barely noticed it. 25A: Orbital extreme (apogee) could easily have created trouble, but APOGEE came very quickly for some reason. I handed out copies of DANTE's "Inferno" to all my TAs today, so 59A: Writer who went to hell? (Dante), despite its little trickiness-indicating question mark, read like a straight clue to me (and in the original draft, it was - [As a writer he went to hell]).

OK, off to watch "The Situation Room" - I mean "The Colbert Report." More in the morning.

54D: "The Situation Room" airer (CNN)

RP

[the next morning...]

OK, the first issue is that I made an error in transcribing the grid from paper to computer, and it's one I should have recognized as a possible error for LOTS of people. ELAYNE Boosler (43A: Comical Boosler) is virtually crosswordese to me, so often have I seen her "Y"-ish name in the grid, so I never considered that the crossing of her name (proper noun) with TYBALT (proper noun) (41D: Capulet murdered by Romeo) at the "Y" would cause any trouble. But of course it would - "I" spellings seem reasonable, certainly no less outrageous than "Y" spellings. So my sympathies if you tripped here. Would have been super annoying for one to torch a puzzle in one's best time ever only to find out that one had a mistake (those "one"s are for you, Seth).

Anything else?

  • 39A: Actor Rutger _____ (Hauer) - someone in the comments section said he didn't know who this was. You're in good company; neither did Will.
  • 2D: Jersey sound (moo) - was "lament," which I like better.
  • 37D: Dungeons & Dragons character (sorcerer) - I remember them as "wizards," but that could be Harry Potter running interference in my brain.

Good day.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

70 comments:

Doc John 11:25 PM  

Howdy, folks!

Although I jumped around a lot I did finish without any difficulty (as opposed to other Wed puzzles that can sometimes really throw me for a while).

Pretty quick write-up today. Not feeling too GLIB today, Rex?

I liked the theme, too, but the repetition did make the puzzle that much easier. Not thrilled about NITPICKY, though. (Or am I just being NITPICKY?) ENORM seemed to be another stretch.

I can hear Katherine Hepburn saying "She's really YARE (pronounced YAR)" in some movie but can't remember which one. Or maybe it was Cate Blanchett imitating Ms. Hepburn in The Aviator.

"I just adore a penthouse VIEW. Dahling, I love you but give me Park Avenue."

Joon 11:44 PM  

3 quick thoughts:

1. yep, easy. my fastest wednesday NYT ever, by ... a lot. 25% faster than yesterday. but a good puzzle nonetheless.
2. this theme seems to be the spiritual brother of the one from matt ginsberg's puzzle last month.
3. NITPICKY! i love it.

jae 11:45 PM  

Yes, very easy. Seemed like medium-challenging Tues. to me.

I always thought it was spelled YAR but my American Heritage tells me it is indeed YARE. I may have gotten YAR from watching the Simpsons with closed captions and seeing YAR when the sea captain said it.

In all an OK puzzle/theme but I can't help but wonder what day the author had in mind during construction.

Crosscan 11:51 PM  

Bon bon, everybody!

My fastest Wednesday ever as well. And on my birthday!

Once you got the theme, those long answers filled themselves in.

So can we spend the day talking about chocolate and SLURPEES instead of vegetables?

An older but quicker Crosscan.

Aaron Bergman 11:55 PM  

Only problem is that the applet thinks your solution is wrong. It's Tybalt, not Tibalt. Crossing that dude with Ela(i/y)ne and Bri(a/e)r wasn't very nice. Other than that I agree with the assessment.

Omnie 11:55 PM  

I rarely complete a Wednesday puzzle but this one was definitely pretty easy.

I was stuck with a lot of blank spaces but once I worked out the theme I was able to finish up in about 10 minutes after staring at a bunch of blank spaces for about 4 minutes.

I did get stuck up in a view places with TN which I did have to look up. Not being American sure didn't help too much with that answer although I did get the SENIOR answer quickly. I had to get APOGEE on the downs which is a word I should know being a physics student but don't. What else... a couple words I didn't know but that's all right since it's better to have an easier puzzle to learn them on than a hard one.

The theme was cute and as I said once I got that everything fell into place.

Also what was with "Writer who went to hell?" Is that supposed to be a trick clue since I don't know any other writers who went to hell. Way too easy and didn't need the ? IMHO.

I eagerly await to see Will on The Colbert Report tonight!

Rex Parker 12:05 AM  

The ELAYNE / TYBALT "I" for "Y" mistake was a simple transcribing error, which I would prove by scanning my pencil-solved copy, but pencil doesn't scan well and I'm not that anal.

Thanks for pointing out the mistake, though next time, just email.

rp

Rex Parker 12:09 AM  

PS Will was not at all well used. Very disappointing. Don't drag the most important man in crosswords down to your studio if you're just going to make one lame joke.

But it was Will's birthday, and if Colbert asked *me* to be on the show, it's not as if I'd make him clear the quality of the joke with me first. I'd just show up all wide-eyed and say "tell me what to do."

rp

Aaron Bergman 12:14 AM  

Ah. Well *I* made the mistake even if you didn't :). I mostly wanted to complain about crossing the names with two things that have equally legit spellings. Seemed a little harsh for a Wednesday, but maybe I should just know my Shakespeare better.

Alex 12:24 AM  

I have no idea what a pawpaw is (wondered momentarily if somehow papaya was being punilly mispronounced as pawpawya), but still had no problem at all with the puzzle.

sillygoose 1:21 AM  

oi! tibalt/elaine messed me up. Couldn't figure out what I had wrong.

des 1:27 AM  

doc john,
It was in "The Philadelphia Story" that Katherine Hepburn said "Yare" to Cary Grant (I'll accept that spelling if you insist, but I would never have believed it, since she pronounced it "yaar").

Of course, that movie was remade in the 1950s with Grace Kelly and Bing Crosby - although I can't remember if Grace Kelly had that same line. I would assume so.

ArtLvr 1:36 AM  

I missed the Shortz minute, sorry to hear he was ill-used!

@ doc john, re YARE -- yes, it rhymes with "jar" and means lovely to handle when speaking of a sailing ship. Kate Hepburn fondly recalled a romantic interlude, drawling "My, she was yare" in the "Philadelphia Story", co-staring suave Cary Grant. Yum.

Anyway, I wasn't very much on board with ANCY as a "suffix" for buoy -- it seems a bit of a stretch just for two words with the same root! Is ANCY a suffix for "necrom", for example? or "redund"?

∑;)

andrea carla michaels 1:39 AM  

no idea what a pawpaw was, but I loved this theme...
(why do I suspect if I had submitted it it would have ended up as a Monday/Tuesday? I have Wednesday-envy!)

Found KNACK and SOCKO nice. I'm starting to Kotton to the whole K thing!

By the way, I may or may not have read LOCKE in college...
(Which is worse, to have NEVER read as whatzhizname bizarrely accused the lot of us, or to have at one time been REALLY well-read but can no longer remember?)

@doc john
Yes, "Philadephia Story" one of my top five fave films of all times!
(Reason #859 to play Scrabble, you can spell YAR/YARE both ways!

Wobbith 1:59 AM  

Mongo solve puzzle in record time, but Mogo wrong. Thought ElaYne, but never heard of TYbalt. Mongo spend 7 minutes looking for other mistake.
Mongo must read more Bard.
Mongo go back to solving puzzle on paper and forget about time.

Much, much more fun that way.

- Mongo

acme 2:15 AM  

oh! and Happy Birthday Crosscancan!

steve ; 6:21 AM  

@aaron bergman--ELAYNE clued as comedian Boosler is classic crossword fare. It started back in the days when everyone knew who Elayne Boosler was, as she was, and still is, the only famous person on the planet whose first name is pronounced Elaine and spelled with a y.

YARE gave me pause, since I guess, if you haven't seen the Simpsons episode(s?) or "Philadelphia Story," you just might never have heard the word at all. But the crosses were right (I thought twice about WEEP in terms of tense, etc.).

Otherwise fairly easy. Didn't know the name Rutger HAUER, but crosses were easy enough.

steve l 6:22 AM  

Previous comment by Steve L (to early to type right.)

steve l 6:22 AM  

Or use the right version of to/two/too, apparently, either.

joho 8:06 AM  

I did this puzzle faster than yesterday so a little disappointed that it wasn't more difficult for a Wednesday. The theme is cute and adds interest but also adds ease.

@acme: shouldn't it be happy birthday Crosscrosscan?

Well, I'm off to the Paw Paw Patch ...

Anonymous 8:14 AM  

Rutger Hauer starred in "Ladyhawke" (1985) a fairy tale based on a medieval legend and filmed in the Abruzzi in Italy. His co-stars were the relatively unknown Michelle Pfeiffer and Matthew Broderick--it's worth watching! Sally

Ulrich 8:19 AM  

Doing the thing in pencil prevented me from learning that I did have the I/Y error. I remembered Tybalt, but not how he was spelled. And was he really murdered? Isn't he the one killed in a duel?

Since we're talking movies: Bladerunner is one of my all-time favorites, especially in its restored version (sans silly voice-over, sans happy end), and Rutger Hauer (Dutch, not German, I believe) is unforgettable in it, much more memorable than whatsisname playing the hero. And Sean Young looked absolutely georgeous.

PhillySolver 8:29 AM  

In the South, you go to school and in Kindergarten you learn about Paw Paws. Here is a shortened version of the learning experience.

If you know LOL, you might know HOUER...it is used in an ironic way and represents...Hanging On yoUr Every woRd. SYL

jubjub 9:49 AM  

@artlvr, you can watch the colbert report online:
http://www.comedycentral.com/colbertreport/index.jhtml
(i don't have cable, so i'm an expert at finding tv on the internet :)). i haven't seen it yet, so i don't know which segment it's in...

Cheryl 10:02 AM  

As a Dungeons & Dragons geek, I can confirm that there are both Wizards and Sorcerers. There is a distinction since they use magic differently and there are gameplay rules to reflect that. Other D&D "characters" (classes): Cleric, Bard, Druid, Rogue, Fighter, Barbarian, Ranger, Monk.
I know, more information than anyone probably wanted. But it could come up again, right?

Shamik 10:15 AM  

Phooey....Fell into the ELAYNE/TYBALT and used to know the spellings of both of them. Bah!

archaeoprof 10:35 AM  

Enjoyed the theme, even if it did seem a little easy for Wednesday.

Crossworld is full of puns, isn't it. On the dig my students bet me a six-pack that I couldn't go 24 hours without making a pun. They won; I only lasted 12 hours...

mac 10:47 AM  

Fun and quick Wednesday, just right to get ready for the Thursday/Saturday onslaught. Never heard of Elayne and couldn't remember the spelling of Tybalt, so got that one wrong. Rutger Hauer started his career in his native Holland with "Blue Movie", a pretty riskee piece of work!
Tomtom is the the fabulous little gadget we take with us where-ever in the world we go. Works a lot better than our former Garmin product.

@Crosscan(can, funny, Andrea), a very happy birthday. There's a lot more food in the puzzle, we can talk about fruit, chocolate, candy, noodles, turkey, bread (roll) and with a bit of creativity, leeks. All foods that don't require a can opener! The bird might even be free range.

@Rex: I stayed up and watched Colbert, and I agree, they could have given Will a bit more time.

It's a gorgeous day in NY, I'm going out and enjoy it!

Jane Doh 10:50 AM  

Agree -- super easy. Cute theme and nice fill.

Is ANCY a new crossword suffix? Don't recall seeing this before today.

Nice symmetry of two films (though not so clued) FOOTLOOSE and IN AMERICA.

Favorite clues were for SENIOR, SPA, and especially DANTE.

Was fun to see LOCKE during convention season. His writings influenced the Founding Fathers.

Very happy to have Colbert back from vacation. The Will sighting was kind of lame, alas.

--JD

dk 11:05 AM  

Do they make chocolate SLURPEES?

I never liked ROLOS!

@XXCAN, Happy birthday with many ENCORES, like a TNOTE I am sure you just grow more valuable with time.

@mac, I think your on to a hot dish idea.

Y or I: A rose by another name would smell as sweet.

Figuring out TYBALT was my favorite part of this puzzle confection. Perhaps an ESKIMO pie for lunch?

@jubjub, thanks for the link. I am TV free as well (insert look of smug superiority about here), so links to things like this are great.

Off to a resort in Wisconsin for a few days of Croquet and Badminton. I won't mention I played competitive badminton and squeal with delight when I drill my opponent with the shuttlecock (not rooster.... Andrea). :)

Mimi 11:37 AM  

Today's puzzle enlightened me as to Rex's difficulty rating system. I found it nicely challenging, but overall easier than most Wednesdays.
I couldn't quite grasp the theme even after I got PAWPAWPRINTS (didn't know what a pawpaw is, but glad to have learned) and I was fooled by the near-malapop of 9A. I filled in SRGTS, thinking it had to be right even though it looked wrong (big mistake!), then was lost on 10D, and the blank squares just cascaded in a stumpingly-neat diagonal from the NE to the SW.
Nevertheless, a fun solve.

fikink 11:41 AM  

Enjoyable puzzle. For those of you out there who know how the brain functions with and without drugs, could you explain this phenomenon, please:
I was up too late last night toasting a comment I'd heard about the Twin Cities and this morning it took me longer to do the set puzzles than it did to do the crossword puzzle.

dk 11:45 AM  

More PAWPAWPRINTS than you ever want to know:

Growth Habit: The pawpaw is a deciduous, often narrowly conical tree growing from about 12 feet to around 20 feet. Pawpaw trees are prone to producing root suckers a few feet from the trunk. When these are permitted to grow, the single-clone pawpaw patch comes into being. The prevailing experiences of many individuals is that the pawpaw is a slow grower, particularly when it is young. However, under optimal greenhouse conditions, including photo-period extension light of approximately 16 hours, top growth of up to 5 feet can be attained in three months.

Foliage: The dark green, obovate-oblong, drooping leaves grow up to 12 inches long, giving the pawpaw an interesting tropical appearance. The leaves turn yellow and begin to fall in mid-autumn and leaf out again in late spring after the tree has bloomed.

Flowers: Dormant, velvety, dark brown flower buds develop in the axils of the previous years' leaves. They produce maroon, upside-down flowers up to 2 inches across. The normal bloom period consists of about 6 weeks during March to May depending on variety, latitude and climatic conditions. The blossom consists of 2 whorls of 3 petals each, and the calyx has 3 sepals. Each flower contains several ovaries which explains why a single flower can produce multiple fruits.

Fruit: The pawpaw is the largest edible fruit native to America. Individual fruits weigh 5 to 16 ounces and are 3 to 6 inches in length. The larger sizes will appear plump, similar to the mango. The fruit usually has 10 to 14 seeds in two rows. The brownish to blackish seeds are shaped like lima beans, with a length of 1/2 to 1-1/2 inches. Pawpaw fruits often occur as clusters of up to nine individual fruits. The ripe fruit is soft and thin skinned.

There are also songs about being in Paw PAw patches, in hollars, way down yonder, etc.

Doc John 12:10 PM  

More Rutger HAUER trivia- he was also the villainous CEO in Batman Begins and the villainous Cardinal in Sin City. Am I sensing a trend here?

jeff in chicago 12:26 PM  

@ulrich: Romeo kills Tybalt to avenge the death of Mercutio, whom Tybalt killed. It is often set as a duel, but Romeo's murderous intent is clear.

LOCKE trivia: the character of John Locke on "Lost" (the most philosophical of the crash survivors) is named after the 17th century empiricist philosopher of the same name.

Like the puzzle today. Fun theme. Had to bounce around a bit, but got through it.

Happy birthday Crosscan

P.S. - I've never had a Slurpee. (Or a Slushee or a Squishee.) Should I start now?

ArtLvr 12:37 PM  

Thanks, jub jub -- but I can't view the Colbert replay without downloading more stuff, and I'm leery of doing that because my crucial Adobe Photoshop is suddenly completely messed up. Did that come about due to too many puzzle downloads? O woe!

p.s. joon's NYSun pangram puz today is a bit tricky but fun... Meant to wish XXcan a Happy B'Day too. @ dk: the details on pawpaws are fun, but most imprtant -- what do they taste like??? Mango is my fave.

∑;)

SethG 12:42 PM  

My favorite sea captain moment: Bart and Lisa walk into his store while he's on the phone. He says "Arr, I've got some customers. Call me back, Ishmael."

This puzzle was like the ghost of comments past. We discussed PAWPAWs back with the Sunday with Linda Rondstadt's "Paw Paw Pitiful Me" (which in turn referenced prior PAWPAWs--a pawpaw might be a papaw, might be a papaya). ROLOS when they were clued as chocolate candies and some of us took exception. YAR/YARE/Hepburn back in February. Boosler a coupla times. SOCKO, well never. I've never heard of it. And maybe ECLAT, but I also don't remember that.

Sometimes, for no good reason, I think of Powers Boothe when I'm trying to think of Rutger Hauer. RH was the vampire king in the Buffy movie.

Some people affirmed oaths to me yesterday, the fourth time I've had people do that. Fifth time's coming up in October.

And ONE IS THE WALRUS is only 14, but ONE MYSELF AND ONE is 15-letters; watch out!

acme 12:58 PM  

@Rex
Will had not heard of Rutger Hauer
(even tho first and last names end in -er)?!!
Well, then if I can't find that anti-christ Tshirt, I think we should all chip in and get him Netflix for his bday!
I think of him (fondly)in Bladerunner, my he was yare!

Rex Parker 12:58 PM  

ONE ONESELF and ONE sadly goes to 16

rp

Anonymous 12:59 PM  

It is odd that "T-Note" was an answer yesterday and then again today. Somebody's been reading the business section (or drowning in sub-prime paper). And Monday featured securities law swindler Charles Ponzi, who had 'em lining up around the block to invest in his overseas postage stamp non-business!

Bill from NJ 1:16 PM  

PAWPAW reminds me of the old Supreme Court definition of pornography - don't know what is, but I recognize it when I see it. I know we have been down this road before, but thank you, dk, for the explanation.

I saw ELAYNE for what it was - high-level crosswordese - and did not fall into that trap.

Blade Runner was where I first remember seeing Rutger Hauer and his part was so heart-breaking it made me cry.

This was a solid Wednesday effort and I agree that it was easy but that is not necessarily a bad thing.

Jane Doh 1:39 PM  

"Blade Runner" was a memorable film, so dark. Except for Sean Young who isn't good in anything except, maybe, in "Stripes," the acting was solid and the story provocative.

Belated (overlooked above) HB to Crosscan!

--JD

Karen 1:42 PM  

I missed the ELAYNE/TYBALT cross also. I remember Elayne tripping up a bunch of folks who should have known better on the ACPT puzzle a few years back (that might have been the Wordplay year).

I also misspell SORCEROR (no pun intended) which still looks better to me than sorcerer.

I'm getting Rutger Hauer confused with Dolph Lundgren.

Agreed that it is easy...even with two mistakes I made a decent time.

Ulrich 2:09 PM  

@jeff: Thanks for refreshing my memory

@jane doh: She wasn't supposed to act--she was an android. All she had to do was wear great clothes.

fergus 2:26 PM  

... and he slew TYBALT.

Guess what the adolescent in me thought at first for the 48D Penthouse asset Clue?

Also thought the Hosiery shade was going to be NUDE.

KNACK, GLIB and LORCA seem relatively fresh in puzzleworld. Which reminds me of how I dislike the New Yorker's fixation on translated poetry.

chefbea1 2:42 PM  

Easy fun wednesday puzzle with lots of food and food-related items

@phillysolver - thanks for the song - I remember it from my kindergarden days.

@crosscan Happy birthday - I will make you a paw paw cake with chocolate frosting.

Back in the days of my radio show, I did a whole segment on slurpees. Don't think they are made with chocolate - just fruit

Travis 2:50 PM  

Everyone is mentioning ELAYNE/TYBALT. But what about LORCA/ECOLE? Am I supposed to know either of those? Together it made what seemed a square of impossible crosses harder to guess since I was missing 2 letters in each answer.

Also thought I was being clever puting ONE E for 'it's enough, for some' of course hosiery shade made no sense especially as I didn't know YARE, but ECRU barely registered anyway even after seeing it.

Usually have no problem with TSK when it appears, but the cryptic clue today had me drawing a blank especially as the crosses were hopeless except for the K.

memphis 2:55 PM  

I didn't get the (know) part for "6D. In the __ " in the downloadable puzzle. I had MOOD for the longest time (isn't that a Miles davis or john coltrane song?).

...funny thing though, NITPICK shows up in both the LA Times (NITPICKS) and the NY Times (NITPICKY). Thought that was wierd!!!

Anonymous 3:07 PM  

Why put blue lips in a crossword grid? I don't believe there's any nice way to clue it.

Happy Birthday Crosscan!

miriam b 3:24 PM  

IMO a pawpaw IS a papaya. Last time I tried one, the smell put me off. Smelled like vomitus, you should excuse the expression. I think I'll pick one up next time I shop and see if I have the same impression. The enzyme papain, which is extracted from the papaya, is used to make meat tenderizer.

My late husband knew that song about the pawpaw patch. He learned it from his Missouri-born mother.

dk 3:52 PM  

@fergus, I am only sorry I did not register the penthouse asset and make some sexist pig joke, err... GLIB bon mot.

@miriam b, when in Hawaii I had a durand (sp??), now that smelled like vomitus. There are also Mayhaws that look like pawpaws, that look like papaya. Green papaya salad... yum

@travis, if you had taken french one as many times as I did ECOLE would have been a gimme.

chefbea1 4:14 PM  

@miriamb and as you know I am from Missouri where I went to kindergarden and learned that song!!!

miriam b 4:21 PM  

@dk: Durian. I have heard descriptions from friends. In some areas, it's illegal to carry them on public transport.

joho 4:37 PM  

@miriamb: Yikes, now I'll definitely leave the pawpaws in the patch. Sounds like the only real upside is a tenderized tongue, if that's what you're going for.

@rex: finally saw Will's spot on the show last night. If you blinked you'd miss it. I was hoping for more ...

kathy d. 4:37 PM  

This puzzle was easy for a Wednesday. I got it in the same time as Tuesday's. There wasn't anything really challenging, certainly nothing to google.

Only thing I had to change: had finnicky instead of nitpicky at the start.

Where is Elayne Boosler? No problem with spelling but she, one of the funniest women ever, should be out more.

Kathy

green mantis 4:56 PM  

Easy schmeasy, although I will cop to Elaine/Tibalt.

@Fergus: of course red peppers are fine. All ripe peppers are completely legal, as they taste like food rather than shoes.

Off to the first day of classes. That's right: I'm the world's oldest kindergartner. That also means I'm bigger, though, and can kick all kinds of whiny preschool ass. In fact, all of you should probably just give me your lunch money right now.

Crosscan 5:10 PM  

Thanks everybody.

All chocolate, no beets or broccoli in sight. A perfect day !

fergus 6:11 PM  

The papaya and the PAW PAW are decidedly distinct. I have a friend, who is a bit of a botanical nut, who has both in his back yard. He said the PAW PAW was native to the US Midwest, while the papaya is, of course, tropical. A fine specimen once arose from my brother's compost heap in San Diego.

And in the smelly fruit category, my street is lined with ginkgoes, some of which are female. They stink up the place for the whole of November.

Ulrich 7:04 PM  

I'm totally stunned when I read the papaya comments. I had them in Hawaii and I thought they were delicious (bright orange in color), peeled and cut into slices. Expensive, too. Or do I confuse them with yet another fruit with a similar name?

Jane Doh 7:10 PM  

@fergus: Your smelly fruit story reminds me that back in the early 1980s when I was working on Wall St., some men folk in one of our midwestern offices sent our trading desk, "coincidentally" all women, a greeting card with a pic of a fish market on the outside, and the inside message, "Thinking of you."

--JD

Bill from NJ 8:09 PM  

@crosscan-

Happy birthday to a cyber-pal!!

fergus 8:19 PM  

Jane Doh,

I'm sorry to have provoked that reminder. Just to be associated with anything of that order is dispiriting. (And I worked with traders, so I know crass.)

It's just a fact that the fruit of the ancient ginkgo casts an aromatic anomaly, as far as gender is concerned. I was quite amused, when last in New York, to find that outside the architecturally classic Seagram Building, in that fine open space there are six ginkgo trees, and half of them are female. (The NYTimes, in some reference to Bloomberg's tree campaign -- hoping to emulate Chicago -- highlighted this venerable tree quite recently.)

Again, I'm annoyed to have led to any aspersion, on gender or tree.

fikink 8:46 PM  

The two of you would probably be amused then to know that for our 37th wedding anniversary Mr. Fikink and I gave each other a large and beautiful gingko under which we plan to be scattered upon our demise.
And I can attest to the lack of sensibility among traders, as a breed, having been exposed to the "snakepit" when I worked in the securities industry. Jane, I am sure that Fergus did not mean to be unkind. Btw, we don't know the sex of our gingko and were quite surprised when our female Anglican priest friend told me, "They smell."

fergus 11:11 PM  

A while ago a politician unwisely used the word 'niggardly' to describe a cheapskate measure ...

fikink 11:17 PM  

Yes, fergus, exactly how many very "legitimate" words (and ideas) have met their death.

Jane Doh 11:30 PM  

@fergus: Not to worry, I wasn't offended! Just reminded of the "good old days." I'm a tree hugger, regardless of the tree in question. :-)

Another characteristic of that time was that very few women and zero persons of color were in customer contact positions ... and here I am right now watching the Dems nominate a person of color as their candidate for president. The trend line is positive!

--JD

Orange 12:20 AM  

Chefbea, the 7-Eleven Slurpee contains no fruit, unlike a smoothie. The classic flavor is the Pepsi or Coke Slurpee (Pepsi Slurpee was my poison in high school). The 7-Eleven where my sister worked sold more Slurpees than any other 7-Eleven store, though there were often just three flavors to choose from: Pepsi, Mountain Dew, and orange. The "suicide" was a mix of all three. The 7-Elevens I've been in more recently seem to have red and blue Slurpees pretty often, along with a cola. Back in the day, the employee dished out the Slurpees, but now they're self-serve.

Anonymous 11:06 AM  

somebody please explain Order at a French restaurant? the

boardbtr 12:39 PM  

Five weeks later - my problems were similar to those of Travis. I didn't know Lorca or Tybalt and I had a spell of oldtimer's disease with Dante. I got to 59A with D_N_E and all I could come up with was Donne. That gave me Lorco, which could have been, and Tybaln, which I didn't like, but again, could have been as far as I knew. No one mentioned Rutger Hauer in "The Osterman Weekend".

The Daddy Man 8:26 PM  

Okay, this is 5 weeks later too, so I know no one will probably read this, but I have a comment related to Rutger Hauer. Have none of you folks seen the two best RH movies ever: The Bounty Hunter, in which he gets really mad a a terrorist, and The Hitcher, a really edge-of-the-seat thriller.

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