Universal soul in Hinduism / SUN 6-27-10 / Ukrainian city in WWI fighting / Alfalfa's sweetie / Miro museum architect Jose Luis / Fiji competitor

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Constructor: Michael J. Doran

Relative difficulty: Easy-Medium

THEME: "To Thine Own Self Be True" — Clues are "I"-words that are imagined as two separate words: pronoun "I" + verb — answers are various jobs


Word of the Day: LUTSK (7D: Ukrainian city in W.W. I fighting) —

Lutsk (Ukrainian: Луцьк, translit. Luts’k, Lithuanian: Luckas, Polish: Łuck, Belarusian: Луцак or Луцк, transliterated Lutchak or Lutsk) is a city located by the Styr River in north-western Ukraine. It is the administrative center of the Volyn Oblast (province), as well as the administrative center of the surrounding Lutskyi Raion (district) within the oblast. The city itself is also designated as its own separate raion within the oblast. [...] In 1850 three major forts were built around Lutsk and the town became a small fortress called Mikhailogorod. During the First World War the town was seized by Austria-Hungary on August 29, 1915. The town was slightly damaged. During more than a year of Austro-Hungarian occupation Lutsk became an important military centre with the headquarters of the IV Army under Archduke Josef Ferdinand stationed there. However, poor food supply led to a plague of epidemic typhus which decimated the city's inhabitants. // On June 4, 1916 four Russian armies under general Aleksei Brusilov started, what later became known as the Brusilov Offensive. After up to three days of heavy artillery barrage, the Battle of Lutsk began. On June 7, 1916 the Russian forces reconquered the city. After the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk in 1917 the city was seized by Germany on February 7, 1918. On February 22, 1918 the town was transferred by the withdrawing German army to the forces loyal to Symon Petlura. However, on May 16, 1919 it was captured by Polish forces under Gen. Aleksander Karnicki.

• • •

A very nice idea, as far as the clues go. The answers aren't always A-ONE — PONZI SCHEMER doesn't feel like a thing, LUGER is a fugly word, the ELECTION winner "ran" too, etc. — but they're successful enough for this puzzle to get an overall thumbs-up. It took me longer than I care to admit to glean the theme — I was half-heartedly trying to anagram the clues in the back of my mind as I pressed forward with the puzzle, then thought maybe the clue numbers were involved somehow ... but after I got nearly ever letter of FILM CRITIC from crosses, I put two and two together. Despite my slow start, I ended up a tad under my normal Sunday time. All my hangups involved questions of geography. No idea about:

  • LUTSK
  • SKOPJE (39A: Macedonian capital)
  • LAMBERT (4D: St. Louis airport)
  • MINEOLA (vaaaaaguely familiar) (94D: Long Island town where the Wright Brothers experimented)

Also balked at spelling of SKÁL (wanted SKOAL, like the chewing tobacco) (97A: Swedish toast). Also balked at nearby RHO (92A: When written three times, fraternity in "Revenge of the Nerds"), as the only thrice-named frat I remember from "Revenge of the Nerds" is the Tri-Lams:



Theme answers:
  • 23A: Irate (FILM CRITIC)
  • 28A: Isled (OLYMPIC LUGER)
  • 52A: Islander (TABLOID WRITER) — Having "Isled" and "Islander" as clues feels a bit redundant; further, TABLOID WRITERS libel...
  • 88A: Iran (ELECTION LOSER)
  • 109A: iPhone (TELEMARKETER)
  • 117A: Ibid. (EBAY PATRON)
  • 33D: Icon (PONZI SCHEMER)
  • 42D: Ideal (CASINO WORKER)

Strangely, my only non-geography-related trouble-spot came at 89D: Suffix with pant (-IES). I had something like AIRONS for 99A: Large planes have two, and so had "pantier" as my imaginary, hypothetical word. Then I got the plane answer down to AIRLES, and decided that *couldn't* be right. Took it out, stared, and then there it was, mockingly obvious "S" (and so AISLES) —something about suffixes that won't allow me to think of them as ending in "S".

Bullets:
  • 25A: Universal soul, in Hinduism (ATMAN) — I get this word and ARHAT confused. Both related to Eastern religions, both five letters, both start with "A," both learned from xwords ...
  • 37A: Lovingly, in music (AMOROSO) — what does that look like? Do you make emotional faces? Kiss your violin?
  • 48A: Shanghai-born N.B.A. star (YAO) — [Gigantic Rocket] would have made a nice clue.
  • 59A: Miró Museum architect José Luis ___ (SERT) — in one of today's more comical solving moments, the first answer I wrote in here was ... MIRÓ!
  • 126A: Title girl on the first Beatles album (ANNA) — no memory of any ANNA song. And "Please Please Me" was one of the very first CDs I ever bought (mid-80s). OK, now that I listen to it, it's very familiar:



  • 2D: What to play Super Mario Galaxy on (WII) — instinctively wrote in NES...
  • 24D: Part of Eritrea's border (RED SEA) — what is it with "Eritrea" that I'm compelled to believe that it's a European country. I mean, I know it's not, but some instinctive part of my brain always flashes "Europe" before the sane part kicks in and fixes things. Oh, and I wanted a country here, duh.
  • 31D: Alfalfa's sweetie (DARLA) — I think DARLA is a super-hot name. Alfalfa, on the other hand ...
  • 52D: South American monkeys (TITIS) — not sure I've seen it in plural; mildly amusing, especially crossing ACHES FOR (!) and LICKING (!!!!!!!!!!) (74A: Greatly desires + 68A: Rout)
  • 53D: Basketry fiber (ISTLE) — not to be confused with longtime Denver Nuggets center Dan ISSEL


  • 65D: Fiji competitor (EVIAN) — Fuji = film, FIJI = water.
  • 97D: Ocean dweller with five points (SEA STAR) — I know these as "star fish."
And now your Tweets of the Week — puzzle chatter from the Twitterverse:

  • @RiaDawn2011 dude. my dad spelled waste w-a-s-t on this crossword. bahahahah!
  • @willishumphrey Okay, why am I n traffic & I look ova and this lady is driving and a crossword puzzle and talkin on the ph??? WTF????
  • @CAROLiN3_bby My brother, Robby, and Christain are fighting over a crossword puzzle on the kids menu. Haha woww.
  • @Raudive You know your teacher is off when there is a crossword on your final.
  • @stasheez Dese lil girls is throwin bows cuz dey losin the crossword puzzle tournament lol this job is funny
  • @ninaholmberg On the bright side, being stranded at the body shop w/o work email means I can devote my full attention to the NYT crossword. cc @olivia
  • @Fuzzie_74 Poke my eye out with chopsticks. Couple sitting opposite are rubbing each other while doing a crossword puzzle.#nerdpettingewwwwwww
  • @20Winxx NYT crossword clue: "Bam!" blurter. My first answer: Batman .......... D'OH!!!!
  • @alexcarlton I now carry a box cutter so I can whittle pencils to do crosswords and kenkens. I'M REALLY COOL, wanna date me yet?

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter]

60 comments:

iandrea 1:36 AM  

checked in for tweets and saw the theme. ISORRY IDIDN'T do this puzzle bec ILOVE the theme!!!

Mnemonic for diff betw LIBEL and SLANDER
L: Libel/Literary
S: Slander/Spoken

Thanks for the Beatles too...Didn't know that song was called "Anna".
That would be a fun puzzle for something, all the Beatles songs with girl's name in the titles.
Penny Lane, Eleanor Rigby, Martha my Dear, and the one with Mia Farrow's sister, whose name escapes me...

syndy 2:10 AM  

now once more,with feeling!!amoroso dosen't look like anything- got olympian luger and still took awhile to finger out what was going on.Chrunchy good sunday puzz and yes i know you know but hey slander didnt stop us

foodie 2:10 AM  

It's late, I should be asleep and I'm sitting here laughing at Rex's comment about TITIS crossing LICKING. I need a life, but this is pretty funny!

Had no clue about this theme for the longest time. I was almost done with the puzzle, working around the whole thing and then decided I really should man up (so to speak) and figure out what the heck is going on- An ideal CASINO WORKER? Oh yeah, they all start with "i" and there's this puzzle title, and then an AHA chuckle. I liked it, and it helped me finish up in short order.

I agree with Rex. It's a very clever idea but I give the execution a B+/A- because of the cluing end of things. IRATE is perfect. It both reads and sounds right in the context of the theme. I will forgive IRAN (although it hurts my ears when people say I RAN in lieu of E RAN and I RACK for IRAQ). And iPhone is a little cheaty but okay. But IBID,ISLED, ISLANDER? nuh uh. Based on my strict education in puzzle critique, I feel that either all the clues had to be discordant between oral and written or they all had to be concordant. But a mishmash leads to point deductions.

Pickiness aside, I enjoyed solving this puzzle. It felt smooth and friendly and at no time did I feel like poking my eyes out as I often do on Sundays. And ENCINO (near Tarzana!) brought back memories- me new in the US of A watching endless ads about big car dealerships in ENCINO. That's how I knew I was really in LA.

ArtLvr 2:56 AM  

Like @foodie, i should be getting some ZZZs, but have to agree it was a clever puzzle. Unlike Rex, my favorite theme answer was PONZI SCHEMER. So many cons coming to light these days -- one can hardly DEPEND, or bank on, anybody's integrity.

I kind of knew there'd be titters over TITIS, never mind the LICKING... And I didn't even see 89D for the endIng of pantIES since the crosses in that section went so fast!

My pleasant bits were LOVE, EROS and AMOROSO, counteracted by the pain of GORES - ACHES FOR - NEED - ALEVE, leaving me a tad RUMPLEd.

I thought SKOPJE was a hoot, and I got that only because Art makers had to become ART MAJORS to allow for YAO. Yikes. LUTSK was interesting but less difficult.

KUDOS to Michael J Doran -- this crafty creation must have taken him HOURS, yet ended up fairly easy in the end.

∑;)

jae 4:10 AM  

Cute, easy, fun solve. Got the theme with Irate/FILMCRITIC and it went pretty smoothly from there.

I keep wanting NINOS for NENES.

@iandrea -- I love the Beatles but I also didn't remember ANNA, and the sister was Prudence.

Steve J 4:12 AM  

I liked this one, even if I gritted my teeth at the Islander/TABLOIDWRITER combo (it's literally impossible to write slander). The concept overall was clever enough that I could forgive one incorrect answer, since theme answers should probably get a little leeway anyway.

@foodie: I'm somewhat in agreement with you on the phonetic issue; it's definitely an inconsistency that keeps the theme from being as elegant as it could be. But I think it still worked. And, at least for me, Ibid was phonetically correct. I've always heard it pronounced with an Anglicized (or Americanized) pronunciation (eye-bid), not the Latin.

Bit of a missed opportunity in not crossing NORISK with PONZISCHEMER, since there is no such thing as a no-risk investment (even a CD or savings account carries a small amount of risk). Of course, someone running a Ponzi scheme is likely to promote heavily the can't-miss nature of the investment.

One nit: neither ENCINO nor Sherman Oaks are cities. They're parts of Los Angeles, and have been ever since the San Fernando Valley was annexed nearly a hundred years ago.

But the nits don't matter, and even the slander/libel switch doesn't. This was fun.

Bob Kerfuffle 7:16 AM  

Did this one at the beach yesterday. Looked at the title and expected Shakespeare . .

Three write-overs: 1 A, Low-lying land, had SWAMP before SWALE; 60 A, Word of greed, had MORE before MINE; and 103 A, Like some investments, had NOLOAD before NORISK -- agree with Steve J, NO RISK should have had the qualification "mythical."

Good puzzle overall.

chefbea 8:02 AM  

Loved the puzzle and found it very easy. Probably my best time for a Sunday - but I don't time myself.

Yesterday at a yard sale there were rack and racks of old vinyl records. Even a phonograph so you could play what you wanted. They were all for sale except for one of the first Beatle albums which she was told is worth a fortune. She also had the whole set of My Golden Books. - remember those????

chefbea 8:04 AM  

I meant Little Golden Books

rolin mains 8:28 AM  

amoroso = appassionato, or dolce e cantibile or (in some cases) agitato. and yes, when you play something "amoroso" you must look like you're making love to your instrument or the entire orchestra. ah, romanticism.

EBAY "PATRON?" if you are on ebay, you are an ebay "bidder...patron seems so, uh, patronizing.

33D i wanted "scam artist," but the clue would have to be "icons" and the answer would have to be a pretentious "scam artistes"

funny how you get something in your head as an answer and it takes an act of congress to convince you it just isn't going to work.

otherwise, "iphone" seems to be the oddman out in these clues for some reason. but it's all good...

The Bard 8:29 AM  

Macbeth > Act V, scene I

LADY MACBETH:
Out, damned spot! out, I say!--One: two: why,
then, 'tis time to do't.--Hell is murky!--Fie, my
lord, fie! a soldier, and afeard? What need we
fear who knows it, when none can call our power to
account?--Yet who would have thought the old man
to have had so much blood in him.

Doctor: Do you mark that?

LADY MACBETH:
The thane of Fife had a wife: where is she now?--
What, will these hands ne'er be clean?--No more o'
that, my lord, no more o' that: you mar all with
this starting.

JenCT 8:44 AM  

Cannot believe how long it took me to get the theme! Once I did, the puzzle fell into place.

Snickered at TITIS too - pretty racy for the NYT.

Got ED MEESE, but thought it must be wrong - difference between the clue (last name) and the answer (first and last name)? Anyone?

Anonymous 8:51 AM  

all'SET' and get'SET'? Anybody?

joho 8:59 AM  

Fun theme that took me forever to get even with answers in place. I love when that happens. This very original idea made for a most enjoyable Sunday solve. Thank you, Michael Doran!

I didn't remember ANNA either but upon listening to it (thanks, @Rex) I was struck by a overwhelming feeling of loss of John Lennon.

Ruth 9:08 AM  

I remembered "Anna." My sister and I listened to that whole album over and over. I always thought it was kind of a low point in Beatles music--they didn't write it, and the way the chorus voices swoop in there with an echo-chamber effect is pretty dopy. But John Lennon manages to sound pretty soulful.

Mr. Jinks 9:23 AM  

I hate those Meeses to pieces.

retired_chemist 9:28 AM  

Fun puzzle.

Hanging on to LONG AGO (49A) and MORE (60A) slowed me down. Gave up WWII @ 10D fairly quickly. Not a lot else was a problem, but it took me a while. SKOPJE and LUTSK needed all their crosses.

CoolPapaD 10:02 AM  

Loved it! Got stuck with AT_IP/SE_T, and had to guess the R- guessed right today, for a change!

Despite 8 years of residency and 9 years in practice, the only LANCET I know is the British journal. If it is a surgical tool, it may be called something different, or seldom used these days.

RadioMan 10:04 AM  

Anyone else want KICKASS at 68A?

Like the theme and puzzle - once I got the theme, it went very quickly.

Jim H 10:07 AM  

I remember Rho Rho Rho. In the talent competition, they sang "row row row your boat".

Anonymous 10:19 AM  

Started this one with a RAGING hangover from the previous night's wedding reception. Finished the puzzle with my best time ever. How does that work?

Leslie 10:36 AM  

I, too, took longer than I should have in figuring out the trick of the theme. Perhaps, oh, reading the title before I get started would help??

Areas Where I Felt Stupid: Not immediately getting D-DAY at 10D. Four letters, wanted WW II, even though that's a pretty darn long-lasting "event." Wanting "Upson" instead of EPSOM at 88D. Wanting "PS3" instead of WII at 2D, thinking for a moment that maybe this puzzle would have numbers in some of the squares. And so on. But I did like the puzzle a lot, once I understood the theme.

Logging in late this morning; Mr. Leslie woke me up this morning to tell me he was afraid our Very Large Golden Retriever had swallowed one of his fetch balls. Which, yes, he had. Gurgling, foaming, frightened Mr. & Ms. Leslie, call to emergency vet, tense and silent car ride, sedated dog, ball removed from slightly bleeding throat, all's well that ends well, but jeez. Vet's suggestion: "Have you considered Frisbee?" Um, yeah, good call there. Frisbee-shopping in our immediate future.

Van55 11:11 AM  

I tried to solve left to right and top to bottom. The theme didn't come clear until ebaypatron. From then on finishing was pretty much a romp.

Gagged a bit at square root of never as a clue. It was clearly mensanized.

Greene 11:13 AM  

Fun, easy Sunday puzzle. Like many, I finally got the theme with FILM CRITIC. I was probably halfway through the puzzle when the light finally came on.

@CoolPapaD: I had a small problem with the cluing for 68D. Like you, I know The Lancet as a prestigious English medical journal of general medicine, but in the US a lancet is a tiny knife with a sharp point used to prick the skin for a drop or two of capillary blood for testing purposes (think diabetic home monitoring of blood sugar). This is not something any modern surgeon would use, although a wiki search indicates it is considered a surgical instrument. Perhaps lancets come in different sizes or perhaps the surgical version is no longer in comtemporary usage? Any surgeons out there?

All told, this was a happy way to start my Sunday morning.

Leslie 11:22 AM  

@Van55--You saw, right, that 112D was "square root of nueve" rather than "square root of never?" I think that's fair enough--square root of nine, but answer's going to be in Spanish. Not overly mensanized, although "mensanized" is still one of my favorite new words AND concepts.

David L 11:36 AM  

I agree that the theme was obscure, and some of the theme answers were strained -- but gettable, once I had the idea.

My big objection is to the SERT/ATRIP cross -- total Natick, yes? Then again, I guessed right, but only because all the other options seemed even less plausible.

Anyone else think that AGESAGO could be a kind of cheese?

Van55 11:49 AM  

@Leslie

For some reason spell check corrected nueve to never.

Thanks for endorsing "mensanized."

It was just this week, I think, that TRES was clued "Spanish crowd." I liked that cluing better.

chaos1 11:59 AM  

Sorry Rex, I have to disagree with you. I absolutely love Lugers. Nothing fugly about them, especially the Navy issues with the eight inch barrels. Such gorgeous lines and unique toggle action. Never could understand why the Germans replaced in with the truly fugly P-38 Walther?

@JenCT: Patrick Merrill addressed this issue at POST # 18A on today's Wordplay blog. In a nutshell, this is what he said:

" The only time when a differentiation must be made for a name is when the answer is a first name. Something in the clue must signal that."

@LESLIE: Sorry about you pooch, but glad to hear he's O.K. I'm betting it was the ubiquitous tennis ball right? My retrievers mostly fetch "training dummys" but you can use regulation softballs. They are easy enough for a retriever to pick up, but too big to swallow. The float too. Be careful till you get used to throwing it. They're heavier than a Tennis ball. You could strain or tear your rotator cuff. A bat makes for some nice long retrieves.

redhed 12:09 PM  

I got the theme fairly quickly, at 28A with "olympic luger." (I solve in blocks of Across and Down). But never got "ebay patron" at 117A...I could never get myself to think of "I bid" instead of the Latin "ibid." It was that pesky period placed at the end. ARGH! (an "I feel so stupid!" moment). Otherwise, pleasant experience solving the rest, and a nice enough theme for a hot and sunny Sunday. BTW, the verification word is "copho"-- what do you call a police woman working undercover as a prostitute (familiarly)?

jesser 1:01 PM  

Agree with the Natick at AT_IP and SE_T. I, too, guessed correctly, but Jesus Chrysler! Only writeover was at 90D where I confidently plopped in aLLen off the double ls. Good night, Gracie.

If Dave Barry were contributing here, he would almost certainly note that "Rex and the Titi Lickings" would be a fine name for a rock band. I laughed and laughed. :-)

I would not voluntarily eat anything called SKAL. But I'm picky that way.

Stroli! (The patron saint of Raleigh, N.C., often prayed to by Otis) -- jesser

Masked and Anonymous 1:04 PM  

Nice, fun and breezy SunPuz. Tensest moment for moi-self was as the LOTS?/?ARL intersection. "Had" to be yer K...or...a lowly E. Went with the winner, as it turned out. Thanx, Mike and Will.

FWIW dept: "Anna" was originally a great great single sung by Arthur Alexander, which the Fab4 covered on their album. Got the old Dot 45. Arthur also did the great great "Soldier of Love".

Tip #3 for beginners: always sculk around over at the bottom or far right margins of a puz grid, if you're stuck. Constructors need to use a lotta common, easy letters for their fills in those areas. Take a look at those margins in this puz puppy, for instance. (Kaution! Someraretimes this trick don't work!)

PIX 1:18 PM  

I spent 25 years in operating rooms and never heard a surgeon ask for a lancet...on the other hand Wikipedia defines lancet as "Lancet (surgery), a cutting instrument (scalpel) with a double-edged blade". Fully agree with Greene a more modern definition would reference a diabetic taking thier own blood for glucose testing.

Fun puzzle; made for a wonderful morning at the beach.

chefbea 1:27 PM  

Anyone see the wedding write-up today in the Times???
Robin and Byron. Even mentions their puzzle.

Then there is an article in the travel section on St. Louis. And of course mentions Lambert International Airport

PuzzleNut 1:49 PM  

Hard to get real enthusiatic about this puzzle. Had one mistake, DEEs for DEEr. Had put the S in as the answer was a plural, thinking it was DoEs or roEs. DEEs sounded pretty stupid (especially in HINDsight), but I didn't have the theme at that point and thought the answers were probably objects (versus careers).
Seems like I've seen ATRIP lots before, so that was actually a gimme. Had miRo at first, but easily correctable.
A lot of the cluing seemed sloppy, but nothing too outragous.
Overall, kind of disappointing for a Sunday. Now off to get slammed by the cryptic crossword.

joho 1:53 PM  

@chefbea ... thanks for mentioning Robi(y)n and Byron's wedding announcement. Otherwise I would have missed it. What a great-looking couple with impressive creditials for both. I hope they are very happy!

retired_chemist 1:56 PM  

@ Leslie - was Mr. Leslie using a regulation tennis ball? In 15 years of throwing tennis balls for golden retrievers I have never seen one of those get stuck or even remotely close to it. The little ones for puppies, possibly, could. Or is your GR SO large that regulation TB's to him are like the small ones to my 60-75 lb. goldens?

captcha - persons. Sometimes the goldens seem like they are just that.

Steve J 2:03 PM  

Re LANCET: I wonder if the "surgical" portion of the clue is going for the very literal sense of the word, and not how we typically think of it. Technically speaking, surgery is any medical procedure that is invasive, i.e. breaches the skin or occurs inside the body.

Not sure what I think about the clue. Generally I don't like that sort of imprecision, but at the same time I had no trouble getting LANCET once I had a cross or two in place.

Leslie 2:54 PM  

@Steve J--same here. In my mind, LANCET = scalpel.

@retired_chemist: Yeah, he's a mutant--110 pounds (of muscle, not fat!). We throw those rubber balls that go with the Chuck-It throwers. Same size as a tennis ball but much more durable. I like Chaos1's idea of a softball and/or a "training dummy," but I throw like a girl, so wouldn't be much of a challenge for the big guy.

My word: latingpi. Almost a South American grade point average.

Anonymous 3:30 PM  

why wasn't ISLINGLASS a clue, for male Scottish danser

Ruth 3:34 PM  

@Greene, @CoolPapaD etal, I will chime in about LANCET (being as I am a surgeon) and say I agree that there is no real surgical implement I've ever used/heard of that went by that name. Know lancets only, as Greene said, as a little pointy thing in a foil packet for use in getting a drop of blood--and they seem to use much more high-tech, spring-loaded pointy things these days. Neurosurgeons still use archaic-sounding trephines for making burrholes, so perhaps the LANCET lives on in their bag of tools. Primitive lot, neurosurgeons.

chefwen 3:46 PM  

@Leslie - Glad that your pup is O.K.

Never made it to the party yesterday, cable went down just as the World Cup was about to start and it was down for hours, heads will surely roll down at OCEANIC Time Werner.

Really liked both Saturday and Sunday's puzzles. Took me a while to get the theme but the light bulb was switched on at CASINO WORKER and the others came easily. Made the same errors as Bob K. did (man, you spend a lot of time at the beach) but all were easily fixed.

capcha - mammu - Shamu's mommy!

mac 3:55 PM  

Love those tweets....

Got the theme almost immediately but just chopped off the I to make the answer understandable - needed Rex, as usual, to finesse the job for me. BTW, Los Straightjackets, LOL! It says Big Sandy on the cover.

What a bad day for FIFA. Join the 21st century please!

Clark 4:11 PM  

@Steve J -- You're right that modern usage limits "slander" to oral defamation, but it has not always been so.

Bouvier’s Law Dictionary (1856): Slander is “defaming a man in his reputation by speaking or writing words which affect his life, office, or trade, or which tend to his loss of preferment in marriage or service, or in his inheritance, or which occasion any other particular damage. . . . Written or printed slanders are libels.”

Webster’s Dictionary (1913): Slander. Def. 3: “Formerly, defamation generally, whether oral or written; in modern usage, defamation by words spoken . . .”

That's the route I take to cutting a good puzzle some slack.

Two Ponies 4:37 PM  

I don't get the Sunday paper but I do drop by occasionally on Sundays for the tweets and to see what everyone is doing.
I got so inspired yesterday that today I am alternating between chapters of John Water's book and watching Hairspray and Crybaby on Netflix. It's a million degrees outside here in Vegas and the beer is cold so what could be better on a Sunday afternoon?

PurpleGuy 4:55 PM  

ATwoPonies- we've got that heat wave here in Phoenix also. Your plan sound reasonable to me. I'm about to unwind with some ice cold martinis (shaken, not stirred!!).
"A Votre Santi !" (FR.-To Your Health !).

I really liked this puzzle once I realized the theme.

I was born in Mineola,NY and lived there for 27yrs. I never heard or knew that the Wright Brothers experimented there. I wonder if it was with bicycles or flight. Roosevelt Field is nearby(where Lindbergh took off). Anyone with info ?

Rex, your comments about the monkeys crossing desires with licking had me on the floor. Thanks.

My glass is raised to Michael J. Doran for a nice Sunday solve.

@iandrea- don't forget Rita, the lovely meter-maid.

Anonymous 5:22 PM  

Had Igotta for ages at 50D. Oh well . . . I gotta go.

JenCT 5:48 PM  

@chaos1 - thanks for the heads up - learn something new every day - I always thought the clue & answer had to be the same structure (?).

michael 6:37 PM  

It took me a while to get the theme. Before I got, I was disappointed with what seemed to me to be a lot of crosswordese and thought that there better be a good theme to make up for this. Only semi-mollified after seeing the theme.

erat, situ, acti, olio, yesor, nenes, ster, agog, istle, iceaxe, isee, toga, elan, lien, ora

Maybe most puzzles have this much and I'm just not paying attention,

Anonymous 6:49 PM  

Help. Someone please explain the answer for 54D, Roadside bomb: Abbr. What is IED? Thanks.

Leslie 7:05 PM  

@Anonymous, I think it stands for Improvised Explosive Device, right?

mac 7:06 PM  

Improvised explosive devise. I just googled it for you.

retired_chemist 7:07 PM  

IED

mac 7:07 PM  

@Leslie: sorry!

PIX 7:08 PM  

improvised explosive device (IED),like in Iraq

foodie 8:06 PM  

@Jae and Andrea, I used to have an old beat-up car I called Prudence. Prudence had trouble with self-control, though, her breaks would go out on a regular basis in mid traffic and her trunk would pop open right in the middle of LA freeways. Man, this is my day to remember cars and LA.

@Ruth, LOL re Neurosurgeons. I worked in a neurosurgery department early in my career, and I recall one of them explaining to me that medicine was the best of all professions, surgery was the best of all medicine and neurosurgery was the best of all surgery, and he needed me in order to become a "research neurosurgeon" so he could tower over the rest. We did in fact do some very interesting research and I went to present it at neurosurgery meeting. I was at a the pre-meeting mixer and met one of the good ole boys who assumed I was someone's girlfriend. I told him I was the first speaker of the meeting, to which he said: "And I'm the Queen of England." I laughed, and really enjoyed the expression on his face the next morning as I was being introduced...

Since you asked 8:46 PM  

@PurpleGuy

Col. Charles Lindbergh departed from Lambert Flying Field in 1927 St. Louis for New York [Mineola]to begin his historic non-stop solo flight to Paris, France.
http://www.slfp.com/SLFP-SLIP.htm

Remember, his plane was "The Spirit of ST Louis"!

The Wright Brothers, Igor Sikorsky, Captain Rene Fonac, and the famed duo of Clarence Chamberlain and Bert Acosta, dubbed "twins of derring-do," all spent time in Mineola taking advantage of the rolling grasslands and favorable winds.

October 22, 1900 - The Wright Brothers make their first glider flight ... by Eagle Ovington from Nassua Boulevard Aerodrome, New York to Mineola, New York ...

Their first *powered* flight was at Kitty Hawk.

P>G>

dk 8:56 PM  

@foodie, great story... err are you the QUEEN OF ENGLAND???

@twopones and @purpleguy, it is even hot in Minneapolis.

Picked at this puzzle all day in between my war with the slugs, the farmers market & watching the Germans excel. I love no instant reply, long time outs, etc. Bad calls become a part of the game. I sure hope this sport does not become another made for TV moment.

And, I was all set for a TITIS, ACHESFOR etc, but @rex's inner 14 year old beat me to the punch... again.

Nicer Sunday than most

PurpleGuy 9:48 PM  

@Since you asked said. . .
WOW. Thank you so much. I've Googled and got way more information than I wanted, but nothing to tell me about the Mineola connection.
Of course I knew the plane was called "The Spirit of St. Louis." My parents were at Roosevelt Field to see the departure. My mom was in charge of the crating when it was being shipped to the Smithsonian for display in the '50s.
One never hears of the trip from St. Louis to Mineola.
I meant no offense.

CaseAceFos 10:03 PM  

Whoa! I tried posting a pic of myself in a most becoming Eskimofro, but my wireless igloo PC fro's on me!

Chick in Easton 2:32 AM  

I can't decide if chaos1 was really serious. Did he really think that "luger" was a reference to a handgun?

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