Ranch in 1956 film Giant / FRI 7-23-10 / Onetime teen idol who later hosted Pyramid / Frank Zappa's rock opera * Garage / One of 14,500 in Manhattan
Friday, July 23, 2010
EVA Airways Corporation (pronounced "E-V-A Air(ways)"; Chinese: 長榮航空; pinyin: Chángróng Hángkōng) is an airline based at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport near Taipei, Taiwan operating passenger and dedicated cargo services to over 40 international destinations in Asia, Australia, Europe and North America. EVA Air is largely privately owned and flies a fully international route network. It is the second largest Taiwanese airline, next in size to its main rival, China Airlines. EVA Air is headquartered in Lujhu, Taoyuan County. [...] In October 2005, EVA Air launched a campaign with Japanese company Sanrio to create the "Hello Kitty Jet," featuring the popular Japanese character. Using the airline's A330-200, the exterior adopted a livery of Hello Kitty characters. A year later, the airline launched a second Hello Kitty Jet. The aircraft featured a Hello Kitty motif on exterior and interior fittings and features. Both planes were used to serve Japanese destinations, and from mid–July 2007, also Taipei-Hong Kong routes. The Hello Kitty livery was retired in 2009. (wikipedia)
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Remarkably easy Friday puzzle. All the names in the NW (and there are a Lot of names in this puzzle—at least 15, by my count) were very familiar to me, including 1A: Fearsome Foursome teammate of Jones, Olsen and Lundy (GRIER). "The Prime of Miss Jean BRODIE" is near my bedside waiting to be read, so that was easy (11A: Jean ___, 1969 Oscar-winning title role for Maggie Smith). DIAMOND JIM BRADY has been in the puzzle before, and the clue was pretty detailed (14A: Gilded Age tycoon with a legendary appetite). RENÉ Auberjonois is a gimme. BIERCE's "Devil's Dictionary" is legendary (11D: Writer of "Happiness, n. An agreeable sensation arising from contemplating the misery of another"). And so on. First puzzler was 5D: Ted Kluszewski's team when he won the 1954 N.L. home run title (RED LEGS). First thought: "Ted who?" Second thought: that the clue said "teammate" (wrong). Third thought: "No team fits." I finally got RED LEGS and stopped the clock so I could look it up, so dubious was I—and thus I learned something:
The Cincinnati Reds are a Major League Baseball team based in Cincinnati, Ohio. They are members of the Central Division of the National League. The franchise originated in 1882 as the Cincinnati Red Stockings, using a name that dates back to baseball's first professional team in 1869. They settled on their current name by 1890, though they used the name "Redlegs" for part of the 1950s to avoid any perceived association with Communism during the McCarthy era. (wikipedia)Freedom Fries! How pathetic.
Didn't know GRAND INQUISITOR, but when your answer starts GRANDI-, it's a good guess (1D: Christ's visitor in a tale from "The Brothers Karamozov"). I know sporcle bec. of Facebook friends who take their quizzes relentlessly, so QUIZ, easy (33A: Sporcle.com feature). I meandered through this puzzle, knocking off answer after answer with no real effort—the poet is YEATS, the running mate is SPIRO, etc. The BLACK SOX SCANDAL was a Monday-level-easy gimme (10D: Subject of "Eight Men Out"). Could've got it with no crosses. Only two crosses held me up for even a little bit—LEAPERS (46A: People born on February 29, colloquially) / SPAZ (before I had the "Z") (43D: "I'm such a ___!" (klutz's comment)), and DO OVER (57A: Mulligan, e.g.) / EVA (the very last letter I put in—this took me several seconds of contemplation, which, with this puzzle, felt like serious work). I thought LEAPERS were LEANERS (i.e. LEANING toward March???). And I thought Mulligan was stew, and then I thought it was a tap-in or gimme in golf (I don't play). Then I thought maybe there was an alternate spelling of DUFFER (DOOFER!?) that went here. Finally ran the alphabet (I think) and realized the answer was two words. EVA is the least Taiwanese-looking airline name I can imagine. Well, maybe SCHWARZ Airlines would be less Taiwanese-looking, but really, of all the EVAs ...
- 19A: One of about 14,500 in Manhattan (ACRE) — me: "JEWS? No, wait, clue says "one"; no, WAIT, there are probably a million JEWS in Manhattan, you idiot!"
- 20A: Fort named for a Civil War major general (ORD) — ORD and DIX are my go-to three-letter forts.
- 31A: Whom the Romans defeated at the Battle of Aquae Sextiae, 102 B.C. (TEUTONS) — The Battle of Sexy Waters, decided, ultimately, by wet T-shirt contest.
- 59A: Ranch in the 1956 film "Giant" (REATA) — crossword trivia. Learned it the first time I became aware that there was a non-RIATA spelling of RIATA.
- 9D: First capital of Japan (NARA) — I know I've seen this before, but it's just not the kind of name that sticks for me.
- 13D: N.F.L. rushing star Peterson (ADRIAN) — he is good. Very good. "Rushing star" somehow sounds weird to me, though it's accurate enough. ADRIAN Peterson is currently a Minnesota Viking.
- 7D: Actor Herbert of the "Pink Panther" films (LOM) — quintessential crosswordese, in that he'd be long forgotten were it not for crosswords. All other possible LOMs (there are mess of them in Bulgaria) are too obscure for American crosswords, apparently, so this guy lives on and on and on.
- 15D: Frank Zappa rock opera "___ Garage" ("JOE'S") — the only thing in the grid that was a Total mystery to me.
- 36D: Onetime teen idol who later hosted "Pyramid" (OSMOND) — Donny!
- 40D: Matchmaker for Tevye's daughters (YENTE) — YENTA, YENTE, YENTL—all of them might show up in your puzzle. I'm never quite sure which is which (though I do know the Streisand movie is "YENTL")
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