MONDAY, June 22, 2009 — Neural transmitter / Aviator Post / Fragrance named for a Musketeer / Storage for forage
Monday, June 22, 2009
Constructor: Fred Piscop
THEME: The puzzle is brought to you today by the letter C. Each theme answer begins with a homophone of "cee."
Word of the Day: AXON (38A: Neural transmitter) — An axon or nerve fiber is a long, slender projection of a nerve cell, or neuron, that conducts electrical impulses away from the neuron's cell body or soma. ... Axons are in effect the primary transmission lines of the nervous system, and as bundles they help make up nerves. Individual axons are microscopic in diameter (typically about 1μm across), but may be up to several feet in length. The longest axons in the human body, for example, are those of the sciatic nerve, which run from the base of the spine to the big toe of each foot. These single-cell fibers of the sciatic nerve may extend a meter or even longer. (Wikipedia)
Hi, everyone. It's PuzzleGirl hanging with you today. Rex is a little under the weather and asked me to cover for him which, of course, I'm always delighted to do. Why? Because I crave attention. But you knew that already.
Seems like every time I turn around I'm solving a puzzle by Fred Piscop. Fortunately, Fred is an awesome constructor, so it actually turns out to be a good thing! I pretty much glided my way through this puzzle with only two minor hang-ups. First, I entered cactus for NETTLE (49A: Prickly plant). Totally understandable, right? But then I didn't know 64A: Aviator WILEY Post and I feel pretty bad about that. He was the first pilot to fly solo around the world! His plane, the Winnie Mae, is on display at the Air and Space Museum out near Dulles, which I keep meaning to take my kids to, but I just haven't gotten to it yet. Dang! My procrastination bites me in the butt again! When will I learn?
- 17A: Emphatic south-of-the-border assent (Sí SÍ SEÑOR)
- 26A: Beginning piano student's exercise (C MAJOR SCALE)
- 45A: Parting words (SEE YOU LATER)
- 62A: Wind that cools a beach (SEA BREEZE)
- 4A: Trailer's connection to a car (HITCH). I wonder if this would have been easier or harder if it had been clued to the Will Smith movie.
- 15A: Japanese automaker (ACURA). It's a luxury Honda. When I don't need the mini-van any more, I'd like to get a Honda.
- 21A: Mocking remark (JAPE). Sounds like remark that might be made by a scamp or a scoundrel. Or maybe these guys.
- 33A: Feeds, as pigs (SLOPS). That's the coolest word ever for feeds.
- 39A: Vagrant (HOBO). I think I've mentioned before that one of the characters on my favorite kids' show — iCarly — is obsessed with hobos. Here's one of my favorite exchanges.
Sam: Let's do a project about hobos!
Carly: What's the connection between hobos and science?
Sam: Aren't they affected by gravity or something?
- 66A: Suffix with rocket or racket (-EER). Okay, this should have gone on the "puzzle regulars" list.
- 5D: Winter river obstruction (ICE JAM). This sounds like it might be the catch-phrase for a winter concert that takes place in my hometown (Fargo, ND).
- 9D: Fragrance named for a Musketeer (ARAMIS). Can you name all three? I sure can't, but I'll look them up for you. It's just one of the services I offer. ... They are Athos, Porthos, and Aramis. You're welcome.
- 10D: Quick, cashless way to pay for things (DEBIT CARD). PuzzleHusband and I decided that we were going to stop using our debit cards because it made it way too easy to go over budget. So, he gave me a bunch of cash the other day to last me until the end of the month and ... yeah. I'm gonna need some more.
- 32D: Outfielder Slaughter in the Baseball Hall of Fame (ENOS). This is a gimme for everyone by now, right?
- 40D: Hatfield/McCoy affair (FEUD).
- 46D: Cyclops feature (ONE EYE). I wonder why I always picture some sort of marine creature when I think of cyclops. I'm constantly amazed at the things I know enough for crosswords but not at all in real life. For example ...
- 56D: Storage for forage (SILO). I don't believe I've ever seen the word forage used as a noun. Something new. Every day.