Mingo player on "Daniel Boone" - WEDNESDAY, Oct. 22, 2008 - Gary J. Whitehead (Button below TUV / Genesis terminus)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Relative difficulty: Easy

THEME: BED / SIZE (68A: With 70-Across, what the end of 17-, 33-, 42- or 63-Across describes)

The most striking thing about this puzzle is how easy it is (for a Wednesday). I did this more quickly than I did yesterday's. Even the words I didn't know (e.g. NATAL - 31D: Brazilian seaport), where easy to infer and highly gettable from crosses. Theme answers are all kind of blah, except MAKE MINE A DOUBLE, which is fantastic. There was a lot of crosswordese - ASTER (48A: Provider of some fall color), ETNA (38D: Italy's Mt. _____), ILIE (56D: 1976 loser to Bjorn at Wimbledon), BAER (36D: Max of the ring), etc. - and I could have lived without ONEIS (30D: "_____ the loneliest number"), but overall it's a fine, solid Tuesday puzzle, which somehow got misfiled and ended up appearing on Wednesday.

Theme answers:

  • 17A: Eng, for one (siamese TWIN) - Cheng and Eng
  • 33A: Bar request ("Make mine a DOUBLE") - Whiskey and soda
  • 42A: 1951 film named for a boat ("The African QUEEN") - Bogart and Hepburn
  • 63A: "Circle of Life" musical ("The Lion KING") - nobody is buying that this is a "musical"; I mean, of course it is, and I see why it's clued that way, but it's a movie just like "THE AFRICAN QUEEN" is a movie. Would you clue "THE AFRICAN QUEEN" as [1935 novel named for a boat]? No, you wouldn't. Well, you might, on a Friday, I guess, but not here. The "1935 novel" clue is true, very true, but you wouldn't use it. Just admit that you have two movies in your theme answers. Worse things could happen. Or maybe by "musical" you meant "movie musical" and were not at all referring to the stage musical, in which case ... oh, nevermind. Prepare to have your ears tortured (seriously, I can't Stand this song):

I like how ED AMES (34D: Mingo player on "Daniel Boone") and MR SULU (22D: Crewmate of Capt. Kirk) act as twin sentinels, pillars holding the middle of this puzzle in place. Both men appear frequently in the grid, though usually only by their last names. Here we see them in full name regalia. Let's review the other names in the puzzle, as they are (almost) all frequent guest stars. Presumably everyone knows the good Dr. DRE (23A: Eminem collaborator, informally), though you might not have known him by this clue. "But when your album sales wasn't doin' too good / Who's the doctor they told you to go see...?"

Then there's EFREM Zimbalist (18D: Violinist Zimbalist), whose name I can never spell confidently, which I believe I've said before, and yet it's still true. I don't think LUKAS Haas (52D: "Witness" actor Haas) and Anthony QUINN (44D: Zorba player) were ever in a movie together, but they're alongside one another in the SW, in a crazy long line of people that stretches from ADONIS (32D: Dreamboat) to James AGEE (61D: Winner of a posthumous Pulitzer) and includes also BIBI Netanyahu (59D: Israel's Netanyahu, familiarly) and INEZ (60D: Don Juan's mother). LENORE (15A: Poe maiden) is probably a good name to remember, as she has Delicious letters for a crossword puzzle. Just don't get her confused with ELEONORA or ANNABEL LEE. Finally, there's the ubiquitous Lucy LIU (46A: Lucy of "Kill Bill"), currently starring in "Dirty Sexy Money," and the puzzle's favorite bar (or my favorite bar, anyway), MOE'S (45A: Springfield tavern).


  • 5A: Genesis terminus (Ararat) - like it's a bus depot. Nice.
  • 14A: Button below TUV (Oper.) - I don't text and almost never notice the letters on my keypad. This was an educated guess - I figured there weren't enough letter strings left in the alphabet after TUV to make it back underneath TUV, and OPER. fit. Tada.
  • 21A: Meadow denizens (field mice) - "Denizens!" I had FIELD and just threw down MICE because it was so cute. And it worked.
  • 41A: Bebe's intake (lait) - "intake" is hilariously technical-sounding here. It's a baby, not an engine.
  • 12D: "Vissi d'arte" opera ("Tosca") - had the "CA," clue has "opera" in it -> TOSCA.
  • 24D: Asylum seeker, perhaps (emigrĂ©) - elegant word
  • 49D: Online current affairs magazine (Slate) - I like how the puzzle passed on yet another opportunity to use the "word" EMAG.
  • 50D: Deducted from the gross weight (tared) - Torn between love and hate here. I've never seen TARE used in verbal form before. It's bold. I'll give it a thumbs up.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld


Anonymous 9:18 AM  

Those of us who work in a lab use TARE as a verb all the time- have you tared your balance today?

Rex Parker 9:23 AM  

Well then you and grocery store clerks should be very happy.


Anonymous 9:25 AM  


Kinda lost you in your *The Lion King* comment --- it IS a musical playing on Broadway (among other incarnations), so I have no problem there.

I did have a problem with the obscure (to me) crossing of Nile Valley with actor Haas and would declare it a NAT... oh, never mind. ;)


a guy 9:25 AM  

Funny, I rarely see Tare used in anything but a verbal form. I tare a scale pretty much every day.

I used to play basketball with Ilie Nastase's kid back in the day. He shot the ball like Rick Barry from the free throw line all over the court. He wasn't very good. Maybe tennis was his sport. I don't know.

I went through the list of AFI's 100 Years, 100 Movies list and tried to watch them all the summer after 7th grade (ah, youth), or at least the ones that sounded pretty cool. The African Queen was on there but I xed it off for sounding too girly until my dad told me it was a pretty awesome and sufficiently manly movie with guns and stuff. I don't remember much of the plot but I remember liking it.

Circle of life is a bad song but Can You Feel the Love Tonight is I think my #2 Disney song behind Under the Sea.

treedweller 9:38 AM  

NATS/NATAL was the one that got me. I think I was blinded by the 'W' in the clue--couldn't get away from thinking of the president and I haven't paid any attention to baseball since that team came to be, anyway. I tried a 'P' where the 'N' belonged.

ArtLvr 9:48 AM  

Hey, THELIONKING did very well as a Broadway musical, and it was playing not far from the Elton John/Tim Rice musical "Aida" which was likewise backed by Disney Productions and ran for over five years. Sadly, Disney ventures of that sort are a thing of the past since Michael Eisner's ouster in 2005, when minority shareholders demanded that emphasis be returned to theme parks, etc. Such a shame!

Yes, the BED SIZE puzzle was a cute idea, and had a hidden "STRIP" for remaking the bed in 53A's CLASSTRIP... I also liked the exotic touch NUBIA along with THEAFRICANQUEEN and SIAMESETWIN...


Dinsdale 9:52 AM  

That video rocks. I'm old enough to remember the original release and looking back on this it strikes me how absolutely free and happy that band looks - nothing like the typical glum stuff you see today.

Did seem like an easy Wednesday.

My first comment ever - thanks for a great blog.

Anonymous 10:17 AM  


Actually, The Lion King is still alive and well on B'way, at the Minskov. Took my little nephew (and an extra dose of insulin) to it last week.

Beauty and the Beast was the one that seems to have closed.


foodie 10:21 AM  

It would have been easy except for my brain shorting out and focusing on the idea that the theme had to do with cards, may be Tarot cards, to accommodate the "Twin" (I don't even know that there is a twin in Tarot cards, but you can convince yourself of anything). So, for me it was fun because I had one mindset and then had to switch gears.

Wade 10:30 AM  

Did you hear about the Siamese twins who moved to England? The other one wanted to drive.

My only exposure to non-C&W music when I was a kid was a friend's older sister, who had eight-tracks of Manilow, Elton John, Gary Numan (the guy who sang about cars who wasn't Springsteen) and the Captain and Tennille. She also had a Three Dog Night eight-track. It was blue. The song I remember best is "Never Been to Spain," and I remember listening to it over and over (of course you had to flip through the four tracks and listen to the whole track again to get to it) on a frog-hunting expedition. When I start thinking that the seventies were a hoax, I remember riding down a dirt road in the back of a pickup with a pile of dead bullfrogs when I was ten years old while Clint Daily blared "Never Been to Spain" out the windows, and I remember that the seventies really did happen, just not in the way everybody seems to think.

Never heard of TARE in any form.

Two Ponies 10:52 AM  

I guess I need to brush up on my Brazilian geography. The cross of natal/nats left me guessing. Then there was the cross of nubia/bibi. Who would call this guy Bibi?
Other than that an OK Wed. that almost felt like a Tuesday.
Geez wade, your frog story kinda makes me sad. I really like frogs. Did you eat them (I hope)?

Anonymous 10:54 AM  

LENORE appears in three different poems by Poe..."Al Aaraaf," "Lenore," and "The Raven."

"Never on a Sunday" from Zorba the Greek joined the cast albums from The Music Man, South Pacific and My Fair Lady to instill a permanent love for the theater. I was far removed from Broadway then, but those days in my youth called me to see over one hundred musicals.

PhillySolver 10:55 AM  

That was me above on the musicals...I somehow lost my connection to the blue and orange world.

Pete M 11:05 AM  

I much prefer the Aimee Mann version of "One" myself.

dk 11:07 AM  

Everything is connected. The theme was bed size and I did not want to get out of bed. A raw day here in the mighty midwest.

Great clues for NATAL and the ever popular ATM.

I though it was a G Clef but I am happy to be proven wrong. I knew BOSC was right as I just got some to roast and sprinkle with pine nuts, feta and currents.

Yesterday,I used this blog as an example of intelligent conversation and the way blogs may advance the thinking in a field of endevor. So thank you Rex, fellow bloggers and blogettes. I gave credit to this site so expect some new blood from various corners of the globe.

archaeoprof 11:17 AM  

@Rex: yes, this was pretty easy for a Wednesday. Might have even been boring, except for the wide range of subjects: ANTImatter, TOSCA, SLATE, BIBI, SDS, NATAL, and more.

Crosscan 11:18 AM  

TARED/ASTER got me today in what I am declaring one mistake a day week. Sigh.

NATS took me a while as I still believe the Expos are on an extended road trip.

Crosscan, who is in NUBIA (De-Nile)

Cheryl 11:19 AM  

I did better than yesterday on this one, although I was struggling with the baseball clue, and wondered out loud what the heck a NAT was. My husband kindly told me about the Washington Nationals. I love how when he gives me one answer that allows me to finish the puzzle, he takes full credit for that day.

I saw Pushing Daisies last night and there is a crossword puzzle reference, but I just realized it doesn't air in the states until tonight, so I'll say no more until tomorrow.

Fieldmice reminded me of a childhood song that I haven't been able to get out of my head since.

"Little rabbit frou-frou, running through the forest..."

Anonymous 11:39 AM  


Similar theme-hunting experience, only after the first three long answers contained TWIN, FIELD and DOUBLE, I assumed a baseball theme, in honor of the start of the World Series tonight. Then it turned out FIELDMICE was not one of the theme answers, but it took me quite a while to get BED/SIZE because the D in TARED was one of the last squares, as was the Z in INEZ. I had heard of TARE in a net weight context, but was not thinking it could be used as a verb.


Greg 11:40 AM  

Keypad location threw me. I wanted ATM but, considering the clue had no abbreviation noted, I hesitated and the upper right portion took longer than usual.

Got caught on ASTER / EDAMES too. I had ASTOR / EDAMOS. D'oh!

ArtLvr 12:10 PM  

@ glitch -- thanks for the update! I haven't been back to NYC in quite a while... The last time I was driving, and got a ticket for turning right on a red. They were just waiting for me, it seemed!


Sandy 12:12 PM  

Rex wasn't saying that The Lion King wasn't known as a musical. Just that it is more well-known to many people as a movie. Made sense to me.

Shamik 12:48 PM  

This was a solid medium for me and I liked the puzzle. Just did.

@dinsdale: Free and easy? How about stoned and high? LOL I'm old enough to remember, too.

@wade: As far as the 70's being a hoax. One of the great things about the wisdom gained after the age of 50, is never having to apologize for actually liking...at the time or nostagically...hokey music.

@chef bea: I'm in Stamford. Where is one of those good fish places? My family doesn't eat fish.

As for the book/movie/film controversy, I don't give a rat's patootie. Each has merits and different fans. It will really depend on who is saying and who is hearing what the reference has the most affect on. Before the movie came out, people would know "The African Queen" ad a book. And I'm as excited to see "Young Frankenstein" the musical as I am always cheered up by the movie.



dk 12:52 PM  

another EFREM:

steve l 12:54 PM  

On the subject of BIBI: Did you know that Yahoo and Netscape merged in Israel? The name of the new company? Net 'n' Yahoo!

dk 12:55 PM  

@chefbea1, Is The Boxing Cat still open. I think it is closer to Fairfield, @shamik I recall they had good fish.

Karen 12:57 PM  

Cheryl, I've heard that one as 'Little bunny Foo-foo, hopping through the forest'. May be a regional variation. Although I'm sure the same thing ends up happening to the poor field mice.

No twins in the Tarot; there is a card with two people, the Lovers.

Pretty fast Weds for me too.

Mike the Wino 1:01 PM  

Ya know, Ilie was a helluva tennis player, but he was still a Bjorn loser..........

Greene 1:03 PM  

@artivr: Disney Theatricals is very much alive and well on Broadway (one can reasonably argue whether that's a good or bad thing). Their latest production, "The Little Mermaid," just opened this past January and has been doing respectable (if not socko business) at the Lunt-Fontaine. "Mary Poppins" and "The Lion King" continue to do excellent business,on Broadway, on tour and in multiple foreign productions. Disney is raking in huge amounts of money from these properties, so don't expect any let-up soon.

@Rex: I don't think it makes much difference how one clues "The Lion King." Whether one calls it a film musical or a stage musical, it's still a musical -- and not a very good one at that. Clearly both the film and stage versions are largely notable for their stunning visuals and not so much for their scores. As far as I'm concerned, if a musical doesn't have a good score, what's the point really?

mac 1:09 PM  

Pretty easy, but I had a couple of problems. Edames didn't mean anything to me, thought Esames would be acceptable (39A as is), and the 3D teal really surprised me. I expected something like orange or aqua in that location.

When I started looking for the theme, I first thought it was about some nursery rhyme or fairy tale, with the mice, the twin, the king and the queen, but the double seemed hard to place. I agree with someone above, "strip" is well placed.

I also want to spell Zimbalist differently, like Efraim. Isn't an asylum-seeker an immigre? Most don't dare apply until they are already an emigre where their own country is concerned.

@dk: I'm serving ripe Bosc pears with Stilton for dessert, then, of course, dark chocolate.

joho 1:33 PM  

I thought this very easy for a Wednesday with my only glitch being ACRID for ACERB for about two seconds.

I think I was spoiled by yesterday's five fifteen-squares- across answers. Today I wanted FIELDMICE AND CLASSTRIP to somehow relate to the theme. Like FIELDCREST or something. I supposed I should be thrilled that we got TWIN, DOUBLE, QUEEN AND KING, but I still feel like something got left short ... short-sheeted?

Boy, how I wish I could have some of those Bosc pears with Stilton and dark chocolate!

chefbea1 1:40 PM  

Did any one notice al the to's.. Get to, tend to and then too.

A fun wednesday puzzle.

Welcome Dinsdale

@shamick The boxing cat that DK mentioned is no longer. It was in Old Greenwich. Try Mitchell's Seafood at the Stamford Town Center. we went there Sat. night and it was great. E-mail me and I can tell you other places. where in Stamford are you?

Doc John 1:49 PM  

I had a misstep today- had aspen for ASTER. Pared seemed perfectly OK to me but if I had checked the N I would have realized that Fonster didn't sound right (that's more like what Fonzie dresses up as for Halloween). Oh well.

"MAKE MINE A DOUBLE"- Can anyone else hear Darrin Stephens barking that out?

I recall Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. from a TV series called "The FBI". He is also a celebrated violinist. Also, his daughter, Stephanie Zimbalist, was in "Remington Steele" with Pierce Brosnan and continues to act.

As for the Lion King- say what you will about it, the opening where the animals come out through the audience is very impressive. Julie Taymor, who directed it (and won a Tony), recently did a movie called "Across the Universe", a Beatles-themed musical. Many critics put it down, mostly because of the singing, but I felt that the direction and production were amazing. The "pink punch" and army induction scenes are two highlights.

Gary 1:54 PM  

I'd like to say that I meant to add the STRIP of CLASSTRIP, but it hadn't occurred to me till I read this blog today.

Gary J. Whitehead

jeff in chicago 1:55 PM  

very easy Wednesday (to me).

some stories just weren't meant to be musicals. ask the producers of "Carrie: The Musical." (yes, it's real!)

@a guy: sorry, but "#2 Disney song" feels to me like "#2 genital affliction."

joho 2:03 PM  

@chefbea1 & @shamik: We have a Mitchell's Seafood near us and it is excellent.

andrea carla michaels 2:18 PM  

@mike the wino, stevel

Bjorn Loser? Net & Yahoo?
Yikes, the bad puns are flying today.

It was a bit odd the whole BEBE/BIBI thing...
someone commented that it's odd to have a grown man called Bibi, but that seems fairly common in Israel, eg men named Giora
(Hebrew for George) are called Gigi
(pronounced with hard g)

I think it's brilliant you spotted STRIP in one of the longer answers!
I hate when there are long answers
(FIELDMICE/CLASSTRIP) that seem to be part of the theme...
My total pet peeve which Will completely disagrees with me about, but I think it visually wrecks the puzzle and the theme.

Plus I still contend the eye doesn't differentiate between a 9-letter random fill answer and an 11-12 letter theme answer...
I think it's confusing and obscures a potentially nice theme.

But your finding STRIP saves the whole thing! I think it rescues a Monday-passing-for-Wednesday theme.
(I guarantee you, had I submitted this he would have run it on a Monday or Tuesday!)

I like your Siamese twin joke.
As aforementioned (aforeblogged?) my mom (and aunt) are identical twins and we had a circus poster of Eng and Cheng hanging above our refrigerator while I was growing up.
It was always a creepy reminder that if my mom and aunt (Carol Frances and Frances Carol, I sadly kid you not)'s egg hadn't split completely, my mom could have been a Siamese Twin...
(altho I may then not have been born...)(Bjorn loser?)


andrea carla michaels 2:19 PM  

ps I also meant to say that this is yet another millionth day where I enjoyed Rex's comments more than the puzzle itself!

fikink 2:33 PM  

I found today's puzzle ho-hum, but the conversation is lively:
@steve l - I actually did Laugh Out Loud!
dk, dk, lend me your comb!
@docjohn, when I saw Hair in Chicago in 1970, the cast walked off the stage and through the audience on our armrests - Thank goodness it wasn't the nude scene!
@greene - a good score and a clever libretto. Who can forget all the waltzes written for A Little Night Music with lyrics like, "I acquired some position,
plus a tiny TITIAN"
(Rex, reference to a recent puzzle, Titian)
@mac, I am on my way to your house for pears! yummo!

rafaelthatmf 2:36 PM  

Back on the fence again. Nothing to like or dislike really. Maybe the shorter days up here are starting to sap my generally cantankerous temperament. Time to break out the SAD lamp.
@wade – man did we have the same childhood! And yes you do eat the frogs – the legs anyway. Ever go after crayfish? I ate so many of those once – well I let you figure out the result.
Respect dinsdale.

thebubbreport 2:44 PM  

@Pete M, the Aimee Mann version of the song is one of my all-time favorite songs. I love it!

Isn't SLATE the one that had the horrible article from that loser hatin' on people who do crossword puzzles? I think I found the article via it on HereinFranklin's blog.

Re: THELIONKING: Perhaps the next BOOMSHAKALAKA-type answer can be ACOONAMATAHDA (sp?)

@Rex, I think your African Queen book/movie analogy actually argues that musical is the right way to clue THELIONKING. People today, probably even most kids, are likely more familiar with the musical - it's very popular and has been since the days The Rosie O'Donnell show was on. It has eclipsed the movie, as As The African Queen movie eclipsed the book. I took the kids I used to babysit to see the movie version back when I was a teenager, and I'm 36 now!

@Two Ponies, I had two personal Becky's own NATICK principles going on in this one, and they were the same as yours. First, the NUBIA/BIBI cross. Of course, once I saw NU_IA was NUBIA, it was kind of a "doh!" but missing the "B" made it tricky. Also I did not get the "N" in the NATAL/NATS answer. While I don't know all that much about baseball, I personally find NATICK and NCWYETH to be very easy answers, and I am not a great puzzle solver. So anyway, those were Natick principle answers for me. I think we all have our own personal Natick principle moments, and it's really hard to judge which answers are obscure to most puzzle solvers. I love the idea and the name though!

ProdigalT 2:46 PM  

C'mon, Rex. If the Lion King isn't a musical, what movie qualifies? And of course, Lion King is one of the longest-running current musicals on Broadway and won tons of awards. This IS the New York Times - you don't complain about other metropolitan clues that refer Park Avenue or such.

miriam b 3:51 PM  

I would've liked to see a tribute to the late BIBI Andersson, of the Bergman regulars.

I TARED my balance daily at work. I have also seen the phrase "tare weight" on something or other.

@ fikink: A cousin by marriage once told me that the cast actually did walk through the audience during the nude scene of Hair, performed in some suburban Connecticut venue by an apparently enthusiastic group of amateurs. She also mentioned that she had seen my bachelor uncle (also her husband's uncle in the audience. She expressed shock as she recounted this, but I simply shrugged, thus reinforcing her impression that she'd married into a family of wackos and libertines.

Crosscan 3:52 PM  

@doc john - wasn't Efrem Zimbalist Sr. the violinist?

@andrea - de-nile doesn't make your list of puns? sigh. I'm slipping.

I'm waiting for Wordplay: The Musical featuring the hit songs:

"Oh, I love the letter Q"
"What are you the best in the world at?"
and "The great letters of Enema"

Crosscan, out of de-nile and likely off the deep end.

David from CA 4:14 PM  

What a vile puzzle, a new low I think. I can't ever remember a five letter proper noun answer (NUBIA) where every letter was a crossing proper noun. Plus a similar 3 letter answer (LIU), plus a 3 out of 4 (NATS). Plus more such proper-proper crosses.
What kind of word-play is involved in a puzzle with so many names?

Rex Parker 4:23 PM  

bubb, you need math help. If you are 36, and The Lion King movie came out in 1994 (which it did), then you were how old when you took the kids you babysat to see it? (A: not a "teenager").

Lots of deliberate or odd misreadings of my complain on THE LION KING. I know NYers love themselves to death, but to most of the rest of the world, THE LION KING is, first and foremost, a movie. As I said (if you read it), I acknowledge that THE LION KING is a musical, but (and this was never meant as a serious complaint) it's clued as "musical" only bec. THE AFRICAN QUEEN is already clued as a film. It's trying to pretend it's not a film. I'm not buying it.


Shamik 4:45 PM  

@chefbea: sorry that this is online to everyone...but I can't access your e-mail through this blogger thing. An ugly gray box pops up. But I'm near downtown Stamford. I may hate myself for this, but my e-mail is shamik1954@yahoo.com

HudsonHawk 4:52 PM  

OK with the puzzle. I did like the varmints crossing of MICE/MOLES.

@wade, you didn't get too far from your C&W (both kinds) roots with "Never Been to Spain", as it was written by Hoyt Axton, an Okie from Comanche, OK (alluded to in the lyrics). He also penned Three Dog Night's biggest hit, "Joy to the World", which oddly enough was about a bullfrog. Weird, huh?

thebubbreport 5:27 PM  

@rex, you're right, I graduated college in '94 and was 22, and was still babysitting for the Vercallone's, because they were the coolest family ever. I had it mixed up with taking them to see "The Little Mermaid" in '89. I remember it was so packed that Phil had to sit on my lap for the whole movie and my legs fell asleep, and I could barely make it up the aisle. Same difference in my mind, except I recall the video of The Little Mermaid wound up having a phallic symbol on the castle on the cover, which is about all I remember about the movie!

Or maybe I am only 32! That would be wonderful!

It's always a big deal when "The Lion King: The Musical" comes to Atlanta. Well, that is to say there are those horrible TV commercials for a musical on constantly. The ones for "Aida" made me NEVER want to see it!

BTW, my favorite parody of this movie to musical to musical movie ala "Hairspray" was on '30 Rock" when Jenna starred on Broadway in "Mystic Pizza: The Musical" and gained about 50 pounds from eating 36 slices of pizza a day in the show.


Wade 5:46 PM  

I was still a teenager when I was 22. It's possible.

HH, good connection with the bullfrogs--I didn't see that, and I'd forgotten Joy to The World was also on that tape (I did know Hoyt Axton wrote them, and that his mother wrote "Heartbreak Hotel." I wish my mom had written some Elvis songs.)

Rex, the Lion King was also a musical.

mac 6:18 PM  

"I know NYers love themselves to death"? Was that really necessary, Rex?

Mike the Wino 7:51 PM  

@shamik, it's too late for you now (and yes, you probably will hate yourself for it), but in the future if you have the need, setting up a new (albeit temporary) email account through gmail or yahoo is really quick to do, and it'll save the one you use all the time from those awful spamanators. Just my $.02 worth...

Orange 8:54 PM  

Mac, are you freaking out because Rex said "to death"? It's just an expression.

From a 1996 Letterman Top Ten List, the top ten ways to mispronounce Bibi Netanyahu, here are my two favorites:

Yahu Netanbibi
Betty Needs a Yoo-Hoo

mac 9:04 PM  

No, Orange, it wasn't about that word specifically. It was the whole sentence. We are all protective of our Rex, but this time it just hit me the wrong way.

Orange 9:25 PM  

Those New Yorkers do think they're special and live in the best possible place. They're not exactly wrong, but the center-of-the-universe thing can be wearying to others.

Anonymous 9:27 PM  

Lion King = movie and musical
African Queen = movie and book
Billy Jack = movie and song
Ace Ventura: Pet Detective = crapola
The Joker = Steve Miller Band song about the pompitous of love

fergus 9:30 PM  

I'll provide confirming evidence for Andrea's contention about the eye not discerning differences beyond the eight letter range. I was trying to spice up these disconnected Acrosses, especially on learning they had something to do with BED. I was encouraged enough by STRIP, but then Eeek, MICE.

thebubbreport 10:13 PM  

Mac, you're allowed to mercilessly make fun of a state you live in or have lived in. Thus, I get to make fun of NJ, where I was born, OH, where I grew up, MA where I had to suffer through H.S., VA, where I lived for 11 years, and most importantly, Georgia, where I live now. I think Rex lives in NY, yes?

mac 10:17 PM  

You are right, but do you think a Californian who lives in upper New York State feels he has a lot in common with people living in New York City?

green mantis 10:31 PM  

Count me in with the group (Mac?) that looked at EdAmes and saw something like Edameez, like Pericles or whatever.

And concerning little bunny foo foo, it is my understanding that the field mice were asking for it.

Hi everyone. You would think I would have something thrilling to say after being MIA for so long, but you'd be wrong. I've missed you all though.

mac 10:49 PM  

Nice to hear from you again, Mantis! Are you planning your trip to Brooklyn?

wade 10:56 PM  

Bubb, John Gorka has a very plaintive song called "I'm From New Jersey" that has the line, "It's like Ohio. But even moreso."

There's no need to make fun of all those states. That's what Oklahoma's for.

mac 10:57 PM  

You're bad, Wade! IAGA.

Rex Parker 10:58 PM  


Are you !@#!@ing kidding me? I can only hope so. "Who will stand up for us poor, maligned NY'ers?" I didn't think self-respecting NY'ers whined like that.


mac 11:07 PM  

You're still awake!
That sounded like whining? Hah!
Sorry, I am watching Jon Stewart and laughing out loud.
You're right, I overdid it, but I seriously don't think you can talk about "New Yorkers", there are too many kinds.

HudsonHawk 11:16 PM  

@mac, orange, et. al.: I'm a military brat with dozens of adopted hometowns, including NYC currently. I agree with orange that the NYC as center-of-the-universe thing can be wearying. On the other hand, the NYTimes is still a daily NYC newspaper, in spite of its self-promoted prominence as the "Newspaper of Record" and the "Old Gray Lady".

So I will give Will a free pass on some local/regional references like RARITAN, NATICK (home to a prominent retail center for those in the fashion industry), and THE LION KING as a Broadway musical (which my friends from Kansas are still asking me about for tickets).

Crosscan 11:30 PM  

You are all wrong. It is centre, not center and it is Toronto, not New York. Just ask anyone who lives there.

foodie 12:19 AM  

Everywhere I've lived, which has included Damascus, Cairo, Beirut, Amman, Iowa City, LA, New Orleans, SF Bay Area and Ann Arbor, people seemed to think it was the best place to be. I can't tell whether most people convince themselves that their town is the centre (as crosscan says), whether I've been incredibly lucky and lived in places with happy people, or whether we are all a little delusional.

BTW, @mac, in watching Jon Stewart a couple of days ago, he seemed genuinely ticked off at the stuff about "the only real America is small town America"...

@green mantis, I was wondering where you had gone. Glad to have you back.

foodie 12:21 AM  

PS. How could I have forgotten Boston, or more precisely Lexington Mass, the real center!

Crosscan 12:36 AM  

foodie you are right but who else has "The Best Place on Earth" on their business card like I do? (no joke)

Best Place on Earth

fergus 12:41 AM  

Actually I've been in New York, LA and London when most people would have said that they were living in a hell-hole but rationalized the centripetal draw as simply a professional rationalization. That said, I've also been in those cities where the denizens really believed they were living in the 'paradis terrestre.'

fergus 12:44 AM  

... and when I lived in Vancouver, I rationalized quite genuinely that it was the finest city; but then I moved back to Northern California. San Diego bills itself as "America's Finest City," which ensures that it isn't, though it does keep getting better, in my opinion.

foodie 1:30 AM  

@crosscan, It's amazing! If you google "the best place on earth" you get British Columbia as the top hit and the link you posted! That's the way to make it official! (And, of course, putting it on your card)!

thebubbreport 4:17 AM  

@foodie, BC is pretty amazing.

Exemption to the rule - CA gets to make fun of NY, and vice-versa! It's an East Coast/West Coast thang!

Is THE LION KING the new CATS? i.e., the show no New Yorker would be caught dead going to see? Or is that Legally Blonde?

Holy insomnia, it's almost light out - tomorrow's, oops, I mean today's puzzle will be available at the coffee shop in one hour!

Sharon 9:38 PM  

I can't help myself. I have this urge to express opinions even knowing that almost noone will read this 5 weeks later.
I aabsolutely think "Lion King" is a musical in minds across the country. The movie came out 14 years ago. The musical is current. It has been playing, and being advertised, and going on the road forever. Granted, maybe if I had kids who liked to watch and watch the movie on DVD... Is that where REx got his thing about it being a movie?

Anonymous 6:28 PM  

Today after researching Mingo and caming across your web site, I must
thank you for the answer. I had already filled in Mr. Sulu when I realized that my puzzle appeared in the DC Examiner November 26th.

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