Dancer Jeanmaire / SUN 7-4-10 / Actor/comic Brad / Play featuring Mrs Malaprop / Dahl Southern Yankee / Love surfeits not * like glutton dies
Sunday, July 4, 2010
Constructor: Patrick Blindauer & Tony Orbach
Relative difficulty: Medium
THEME: "Making Ends Meet" — Words that share the last two and first two letters, respctively, are mushed together, forming one big non-word.
Word of the Day: RENÉE Jeanmaire (104D: Dancer Jeanmaire) —
Zizi Jeanmaire (born April 29, 1924), is a ballet dancer and wife of renowned dancer and choreographer Roland Petit. She became famous in the 1950s because of her title role in the ballet Carmen, produced in London in 1949. // Born in Paris, France, as Renée Marcelle Jeanmaire, she met her future husband and long-time collaborator Roland Petit at the Paris Opera Ballet at the age of nine. In 1954 they married, and their successful shows put her on the road to stardom. By this time she was the prima ballerina at Les Ballets des Champs-Elysées. She became noted for her energy and passion. // This led to a brief stint in Hollywood (where she was credited as Jeanmaire), appearing in the musicals Hans Christian Andersen (1952) and Anything Goes (1956). After that, she concentrated on ballet, producing more than 60 shows with Petit. (wikipedia) — [the fact that she's not breaking into puzzles as ZIZI — the name by which she's better known, it seems — is a tragedy]
This is a solid idea, but has little of the cleverness and playfulness and sense of humor that I have come to expect from these guys (esp. the wily Mr. B). The theme answers are just mushed words, and while there's an elegance there — every pair of words is linked by precisely two letters — there are no laughs, no ahas, not even smiles. Not in the theme answers, at any rate. Elsewhere, there was some good stuff. I mean, how do you not like a clue like 5D: Gift from the well-endowed (STUD...ENTAID)? Lots of theatery stuff today (dance/Broadway/movies), which is not surprising. If you see these guys' names on your puzzle, you should expect it. Nothing but RENÉE threw me too much today. I know ARLENE Dahl as prime 6-letter crosswordese, one of the "What's My Line" ARLENE duo (the other=Francis) (95D: Dahl of "A Southern Yankee," 1948). Thought I didn't know 113D: 1950 Anne Baxter title role, but it turns out I just forgot who Anne Baxter was—not surprising, given the star wattage around her in "All About EVE." See also the (apparently) Swedish born Ms. OLIN (28D: Swedish-born "Chocolat" actress) and Mrs. Malaprop's star turn in "The RIVALS" (39D: Play featuring Mrs. Malaprop, with "The"). Lena OLIN co-starred in "Chocolat" with Johnny Depp, who is also in the puzzle, in one of his less famous roles—Donnie BRASCO (54D: Depp title role). Not much more to say in the way of general comments. I've had a (strong) mint julep earlier in the evening, so I should probably keep my commenting ambition to a minimum. I'm already concerned I'll wake up tomorrow morning and find my write-up rife with typos and errors, if not profanity. Coincidentally, nobody is more diligent about rooting out my mistakes than Mr. Blindauer. Every morning, when I check my email, I scan the Inbox ... any message from Patrick = 95% likelihood I have f'd up somehow.
- 23A: Technical trouble (COMPUTERROR) — sounds awesomely sinister
- 32A: Helper in herding (ENGLISHEEPDOG)
- 42A: Collectible book (LIMITEDITION) — really hung up here early on, as I plunked down FIRST EDITION with no hesitation, and it worked quite well. The EDITION part, anyway.
- 57A: Line in London (PRIMERIDIAN)
- 66A: Like many an online password (CASENSITIVE)
- 76A: It might have a theater and planetarium (SCIENCENTER)
- 87A: Singer who played Cyrano in "Cyrano de Bergerac" (PLACIDOMINGO)
- 100A: Introvert or extrovert (PERSONALITYPE) — found this one roughish, for some reason. Came at it from the front, and kept thinking "PERSON WHO... PERSON OF ... ?"
- 111A: Protector (GUARDIANGEL)
- 6A: 1961 Charlton Heston/Sophia Loren film ("EL CID") — I have a movie tie-in paperback with them on the cover, so that helped.
- 30A: Actor/comic Brad (GARRETT) — giant of "Everybody Loves Raymond" fame. Took me a while to see. Kept thinking PITT, despite the inaptness / shortness ... and then those two Ts showed up, taunting me.
- 48A: Cassette knob abbr. (VOL.) — Cassettes have knobs? Does "cassette" stand for "cassette *deck*?" What year is it?
- 71A: Rose who rose to fame in the 1980s (AXL) — he sure did. My first year of college. I still have a huge soft spot for "Appetite For Destruction," esp. "Sweet Child of Mine."
- 80A: "Love surfeits not, ___ like a glutton dies": Shak. ("LUST") — really wanted a conjunction, specifically "BUT."
'Love comforteth like sunshine after rain,
But Lust's effect is tempest after sun;
Love's gentle spring doth always fresh remain,
Lust's winter comes ere summer half be done;
Love surfeits not, Lust like a glutton dies;
Love is all truth, Lust full of forged lies...' (Adonis, from "Venus and Adonis," 1593)
- 81A: Show expanded to our hours in 2007 ("TODAY") — and the world is sooo much better for it. I'm sure.
- 103A: Grenache, for one (VIN ROSÉ) — at least I *think* I'm parsing that right. It's not VINROSE, is it? Seems a very odd phrase to have in French. Grenache is a ROSÉ. But here, sometime in the '70s (?), "VIN ROSÉ" is clearly in-the-language; at least it's in this guy's language.
- 116A: Future platypi (EGGS) — thought I'd be getting something Much more technical here.
- 8D: What a mummy might have (CURSE) — what a mummy might be *said* to have, yes.
- 11: "Bam!" man in the kitchen (EMERIL) — In the bedroom, who knows?
- 17D: Composer of "The Miraculous Mandarin" (BARTÓK) — My favorite composer not named "Beethoven."
- 44D: Demoiselle's dressing (TOILETTE) — not ROQUEFORT!? Damn.
- 91D: T.S. Eliot's "Theatre Cat" (GUS) — never seen the musical. The very thought of singing cats makes my skin crawl. Seriously, in my nightmares, costumed cats sing and prance about me, doing some kind of Cirque-de-Soleil-esque jumpings and gyrations, and I am helpless to escape.
- @JamesDunphy In a pub doing the xword and watching tennis (which I don't understand). Commentators tell me Murray does xwords too.
- @crystaleyesd Andy's been doing crosswords and playing wiff-waff! AND YOU SAY HE DOESN'T REPRESENT ENGLAND!
- @byPetaL Plaid shirt guy has been working on the crossword since we got stuck. It's been forever...he has one word done...it's wrong.
- @alisoncarey Thank you,Tuesday Crossword for making me google "polecat" and find Nelson Eddy singing The Owl and The Polecat: http://tinyurl.com/3azsjux
- @jenunislawski Addicted to the Shortyz app for Android. Holy crosswords.
- @mikeorren I fiddle with my phone while driving. But before you decry me as modern scourge, consider car just passed: driver working paper crossword.
- @jaymohr37 Monday NY TIMES Crossword. 50 Down answer: jewfro. Will Shortz anti semite?
- @theaurelian "Jewfro" was one of the answers in Monday's NYT crossword. Am I anti-Semitic if I think that's fucking awesome?
- @nataliarana mum,the whole point of a crossword isn't to make me look up every answer on google
- @dblue23 Guy who plays angel behind me doing a crossword puzzle
- @hellobuglers England manager Capello defends his team's inept defeat to Germany. "They'd been up all night trying to finish a very difficult crossword."
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld
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