Reader's Digest co-founder Wallace / MON 7-5-10 / Big name in copiers / Moniker for Lone Star cowboy / Dance in Rocky Horror Picture Show

Monday, July 5, 2010

Constructor: Jill Denny & Jeff Chen

Relative difficulty: Medium-Challenging

THEME: APART (38A: Separate ... or a hint to this puzzle's theme) — four phrases with last word A(body part): AHEAD, ABREAST, AFOOT, ABACK


Word of the Day: LILA Wallace (32D: Reader's Digest co-founder Wallace) —

Lila Bell Wallace (December 25, 1889, Virden, Manitoba, Canada – May 8, 1984, Mount Kisco, New York) was a United States magazine publisher. // Born as Lila Bell Acheson, her father was a Presbyterian minister who brought his family to the USA when she was a child, and she grew up in the Midwest. She graduated from the University of Oregon (1917), taught at schools for two years, and then worked for the Young Women's Christian Association. // In 1921 she married DeWitt Wallace, with whom she co-founded Reader's Digest; they published the first issue in 1922. // The Lila Wallace Reader's Digest Writers Award was endowed in her memory. // On January 28, 1972, Lila Bell Wallace was presented with the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Richard Nixon. In 1992, she was awarded the National Medal of Arts.

• • •

This played more like a Tuesday for me. The whole top half, esp. the NW, threw me completely off my game. I mean, a plural clue for a singular (and uncommon) answer at 1D: Grain husks (CHAFF)? A super-vague clue on FULL SPEED AHEAD (20A: "Go!")?! A copier brand I can't remember ever seeing before at 25A: Big name in copiers (IKON)? Even the idea of TUFT as a "bit" of hair threw me off. "Bit" doesn't give me "TUFT" — not easily (10A: Bit of hair standing up). I mean, it's completely defensible, just not ... TUFTy enough for my brain to grasp easily. Never mind that I had no idea who this LILA person was, and wanted TEAL and AQUA before I ever considered CYAN (!) (30D: Greenish blue)—a word I know only from medical shows ("He's cyanotic!"). I'm just saying that my brain said "Tuesday," and with some tougher cluing, this could've been a Wednesday. Not the constructors' fault—concept is actually tad cleverer than the avg. Monday (considering I was finished and thinking on it for many seconds before I realized what the theme even was).

Theme answers:
  • 20A: "Go!" ("FULL SPEED AHEAD!")
  • 10D: Surprised and flustered (TAKEN ABACK)
  • 26D: Going in side-by-side pairs (TWO ABREAST)
  • 56A: Sherlock Holmes phrase, when on a case (THE GAME IS AFOOT)
In addition to being clever, the theme is nicely executed, with interlocking theme answers in NE and SW—interlocking is hard stuff; at least it is to me. You have to have lots of options on your theme answer plate, or else just get damned lucky. Or both. My "Constructing" mailbox (where I keep all correspondence about — surprise — constructing), indicates that I have corresponded with Mr. Chen about puzzles in the past. At that point he was still trying to land one in the NYT—so good for you, Jeff. I'll let Jeff tell you how often he was rejected before he finally succeeded. Moral of the story: persistence. Please note that this grid is wicked clean, with not a made-up word or forced entry or wincer in sight. Not only that—you can dance to it: TIME WARP! (6D: Dance in "The Rocky Horror Picture Show")



Bullets:
  • 42A: Billy the Kid, for Henry McCarty (ALIAS) — "Henry McCarty" meant nothing to me, so needed crosses before I was sure of the relationship here. For more cowboy action, see 13D: Moniker for a Lone Star cowboy (TEX)
  • 57D: Tooter (HORN) — Why in the world did I write in HOOT here? Why? I ask you.
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter]

64 comments:

foodie 12:14 AM  

I agree, a very clever concept. I like it when a theme makes you stop for a second and think about the nature of the language.

I completed it in average Monday speed, but my QDI (quick and dirty index) which I use to predict ratings before I solve the puzzle, showed it to be Medium Challenging. Of course, SanFranMan will give us the real data.

newspaperguy 12:36 AM  

This one seemed tough at first glance but it actually all fell rather nicely. Good clues, though I almost never pay attention to the themes, and didn't even notice it until I read Rex's blog. Great start to the week.

ALFcake 1:26 AM  

I was surprised to see this as medium-challenging (though I guess I could understand it) because this was my new record time for maybe any puzzle, ever. :D

Rube 1:41 AM  

Definitely harder than the usual Monday. However, my only writeover was THEGAMESA___ - too much room. RIPTIDES fixed that. Still think that "The Game's afoot" is a better answer.

I'll have to Google Salinger heroines for future reference.

It's interesting how in one xword elms are an endangered tree and in another xword ELMS are "Classic street liners".

Rube

Rube 1:44 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
chefwen 2:07 AM  

Puzzle seemed a little more difficult than your average Monday, actually had to think for a minute or two. Only had one write over at 14A, had aimed in on before HOMED. Liked the theme and for the "beginning of the week" puzzle this one was quite decent.

Our Maine Coon kitty boy has huge TUFTS of fur between is majorly large kitty paws.

Good puzzle Jill and Jeff, keep 'em coming.

patrick_nyc 2:39 AM  

Not sure I'm loving this as much as @Rex and the rest of y'all. I'm tired of ULNA, ATRA, and EMIR (in the same grid as MIR and MIRE, no less)!

Today's puzzle pales next to last Monday's by Joel Fagliano (remember LIVETV, SIXAM, and of course JEWFRO)? Or compare Kristian House's crisp TADA clue last Wednesday ("Look what I did!") with today's entirely too awkward "Look how perfectly I performed!" (26A)

To be clear, I have lots of appreciation for how hard it is to create these things, but I was underwhelmed today. I did have two favorite clues: the wordplay for WHOA (60A, "Horse's halter?") and the cryptic but eventually gettable "Go!" for FULLSPEEDAHEAD (20A).

andrea cyan michaels 3:15 AM  

Nice, nice, nice!!!!

@Rex:
HOrn + toOT = HOOT
(Well, you asked!)

As @Rex said, four interlocking themes is really tough...plus a fifth beautifully placed central "revealer", plus you had to think for a moment = Tuesday, in my book.

(Esp with CREDO/CHAFF as 1A/1D is
non-Monday-esque...)

Personal hole in education: Never heard THEGAMEISAFOOT, but nicely gettable due to ultra smooth fill around...

I guess instead of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, I spent my ill-spent youth reading Salinger...and I don't know that I would call ESME a heroine, per se...Title character yes, but "heroine" has a Nancy Drew feel to it and it felt clued by someone who had maybe never actually read the short story itself...
(Highly recommend "Nine Stories")

I really liked having to expend some effort to seek out the theme at the end
(and usually I'm ready to smack upside the head those solvers who habitually claim not to have even noticed a theme...I implore them not to even DO Mondays if you can't appreciate the art/point of them!)

EBONY crossing CYAN was lovely...
and TIMEWARP totally excited me and I couldn't wait to see it in @Rex writeup
(tho again, TIMEWARP, which will now be going thru my head all day, is hardly Monday fare).
The three Ks, X and Z made this just right!

Congrats Jill and Jeff, aka CHENNY?
;)

Jeff 3:58 AM  

Thanks for the comments, everyone! We're extremely excited to have a puzzle published in the NYT. As to Rex's note about rejections, yes, persistence is important. I was rejected 21 times in a row as a solo constructor, and I got a very nice note from Will halfway through, to the effect of "sending five or six or ten puzzles in at a time is less than optimal for me". Whoops, sorry about that!

Then, Jill and I began constructing together, and had this particular one accepted on our second attempt. Fairly clear where the brains of this operation are.

I put a comment up earlier on the Wordplay blog about how we came up with and constructed it. I'm pasting it below:

I think the inspiration came from watching the recent Sherlock Holmes movie. Afterward, we talked about what a nice phrase "THE GAME IS AFOOT" is, how it hasn't been in any crosswords that we've seen, and decided to brainstorm other "A____" words. Jill came up with the brilliant idea of placing AHEAD at the top, ABACK to one side, ABREAST (tee hee) to the other side, and AFOOT at the bottom. We sat down to come up with theme answer and square placements, and this is roughly how it went:

Jill: How about if we put head on top, foot on bottom, and back / breast to either side?
Jeff: That'll never work (dripping with condescension). Do you have any idea how bizarre, how coincidental it would be for two symmetric crossings to work like that? The odds are momumentally low! (insert *pffft!* sound here)
Jill: Hmm. But... how about if we just try it?
Jeff: (grumble)
(fast forward one minute)
Jeff: What the $*$%? How did? Whazza?
Jill: What a coincidence, it worked. Imagine that.

Anyway, Rex, thanks for the comments, feedback, and entertaining writeups! It was great to get some encouragement from you about a year ago. Much appreciated!

Jeff

Steve J 4:15 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Steve J 4:18 AM  

Almost exactly on my Monday average time, so I guess that would count as a medium for me. I did notice more misdirectional cluing than I would expect for a Monday (which is none), such as "Classic street liners" and "Horse's halter," which I would say probably does make it a bit tougher for people who would ordinarily just do a Monday puzzle.

Nicely executed theme. Bit like Sunday's though: nothing that really gave me a chuckle or "aha" moment. Technically proficient, not terribly emotionally exciting. It's like a Volvo. Which isn't a bad thing.

Re IKON: I'm not fond of the clue for this one. IKON is a huge office equipment supplier, and they lease out tons of copiers. But they don't make them. The clue is a bit like saying Best Buy is a big name in TVs or 7-Eleven is a big name in cigarettes. Technically true, but not matching up at all with the way the phrase "Big name in X" is used in the vernacular.

And Re Lila: I'm not getting the picture of the wrong Lila with the WOTD text. It's well past my bedtime and I made it through more wine than I planned, so I may completely be missing the joke, but I'm stumped. I'm also stumped trying to figure out what that is in her hand.

Captcha: depoo. Not something I wish to contemplate further than the initial image that appeared in my head.

redhed 6:30 AM  

Fun puzzle, challenging -- not at all a gimme. I, too, was totally "clueless" about "the game is afoot," but did just fine with the crosses. Like Rex, my write-over was at 30D, wanted teal for cyan. Otherwise, it all came in due time. Congrates to Jill and Jeff on their success! TADA!

foodie 6:33 AM  

Wow, thank you Jeff! You're also a writer. Very vivid scene! And I've gone from impressed to amazed, with Jill's brilliance of course, but also your great taste in partners.
Only after reading your comment did I realize the perfection of the placement relative to body parts. I'd like to think that I knew it at some subliminal level, and that if it had been otherwise, it would have been jarring.

And a seal of approval from both Rex and Andrea-- you have arrived!

Rex Parker 6:45 AM  

If the word "Challenging" appears in one of my Monday ratings, without fail, there will be people saying "I can't believe..." and "fastest ever" and what not. Without. Fail. This tedium makes me want to not rate Mondays. And yet I persist.

And the very fact that you (above) call last Monday's puzzle the "JEWFRO" puzzle shows what that puzzle was: one great answer. The rest was not up to caliber of this one. Faulting someone for having three "MIR" strings somewhere in the grid is a little absurd, and you can be tired of a tiny handful of crosswordese (who isn't?), but when you find a Monday puzz. that doesn't have the same (looking at last Monday's, e.g.: ARIA next to GAEL, TSAR, ELENA, ICEAX, AREA, OXEN, EMBAR, LATEN, ESTD, on and on and on), you'll let me know.

rp

dk 7:38 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
dk 7:39 AM  

Any puzzle with TESS and ESME is fine by me.

Who knew Lila Wallace was a pinup girl for the social and fiscal conservatives... and what is she holding?

Impressive construction and unique fill. I guess as the saying goes 22nd times is a charm.

My misspent youth replaced @andrea's Nancy Drew with Sherlock Holmes so 56A was a gimme. The rest of the fill hit the back of my Monday net (soccer obsessed sorry).

Jill and Jeff, thanks for the puzzle and weighing in. I always like to get the back story.

*** (3 Stars) if only I could dance... do the.....

PIX 8:10 AM  

Iron = Fe (Latin: ferrum)

Definitely challenging for a Monday but very well done.

Bob Kerfuffle 8:28 AM  

Very pleasant puzzle.

I took note of 14 A, HOMED in on, and 22 D, HONE, Sharpen. Seems there are a lot of people (none on this blog, of course) who have trouble keeping the two words straight.

Leslie 8:33 AM  

Jeff and Jill, nice job! My hat's off to you both on the placement of the answers. Without my morning coffee, I was patting myself on the back for getting the theme--but I did not see that AHEAD was at the top, AFOOT was at the bottom, etc. Color me impressed.

As usual, my favorite answers are the ones that, while not weirdly rare in themselves, are words you don't often see in crosswords, such as SORDID and GARBLED. And, of course, yay you for fitting in TIME WARP!

Van55 8:47 AM  

Someone left the cranky pants lying around.

Certainly more Tuesday than Monday. Nicely done!

JayWalker 9:02 AM  

I so agree!! This was a great puzzle - equal parts easy and hard with a "theme" that totally escaped me until it was explained. My admiration level soared accordingly. I having my cranky pants altered at once!

chefbea 9:08 AM  

What a great puzzle..and I didn't realize the placement of the body parts til Jeff chimed in.

A bit harder than the usual Monday, I agree.

fikink 9:26 AM  

"Threw me completely off my gain" - nice wordplay, Rex!

The Monday puzzle had some DYNAMIte fill: CHAFF, DEMISE, RUNE, GARBLED, TUFT - kept wanting to fit "cowlick" - was that yesterday's puzzle?

I know CYAN from refplacing too many ink cartridges.

"Wicked clean" is right. A+ on this doobie!

CaseAceFos 9:52 AM  

The pic of the Pretty in the bathing suit, surely is not of Lila Wallace, as no woman born in 1889 could have posed so fetchingly in the 1940's for it.
And Rex, the reason you erroneously filled in 57D is obviously due to the fact that you gave a Hoot!

CaseAceFos 10:08 AM  

Why, pray tell, were so many comments removed by the author this day...when it was so lovingly laid out and presented by the delightfully DYNAMIC duo of Denny and Chen?

Smitty 10:10 AM  

@Steve J - now that you brought it up, I was wondering the same thing (what's that in Lila's hand?)
That thing hanging from whatever's wrapped around her hand looks like the air bulb for a rubber jumping frog toy I used to have

Tobias 10:25 AM  

Medium challenging?? I can't believe it, this was my fastest ever and what not.


Actually I would have had a pretty decent time (for me) but I stuck fullsteEmahead in there for some stupid reason, and lord help me I could not figure out why the central north would not come together.

Great puzzle, the woodworker in me loved mention of ebony , teak and oak.

HudsonHawk 10:27 AM  

Congrats, Jeff and Jill! I didn't notice the placement of the body parts, either. And thanks for stopping in, Jeff--I love hearing input from the constructors.

PuzzleNut 10:30 AM  

Wonderful to read the blog and comments and learn more about the construction of the puzzle. I saw that the theme answers had an "A" in front of another word, but I failed to notice that they were all body parts. Like so many others, I'm doubly impressed with the placement (which, of course, I hadn't noticed either).
I can't begin to imagine how difficult it is to construct a good crossword puzzle and probably miss some of the elegance that goes into most puzzles. It is a pleasure to hear from @andrea and others with their insight. Thanks, Jeff and Jill, for a very good puzzle and follow-up comments.

Two Ponies 10:33 AM  

What a gem of a Monday.
I needed some fresh entertainment after getting little sleep last night. My neighborhood sounded like WWIII so between that and the trembling panting hundred pound dog sitting on my head it was not a restful night.
Thank you, Jeff, for filling in the blanks. Very enlightening esp. the placement of the body parts.
Brilliant.
Tuft made me picture the lovely ears of a lynx.
Chaff has me humming Crosby, Stills, and Nash "Almost Cut My Hair."
Good start to the week.

CaseAceFos 10:42 AM  

The clip appended to Sundays puzzle of Zizi Jeanmaire, reminded moi of an amusing query popular for a spell back when the SST first took flight...went like so, "Why are French women so much like the Concorde?" "Ahhh, that is so easy, Bon Ami, it's because all zee power is in zee rear!"

fikink 10:45 AM  

@Two Poniesor the majestic ears of the Great Horned Owl.

archaeoprof 10:59 AM  

I join the chorus of praise for this exceptionally good Monday puzzle. Interesting, all the way through.

I see that HEAD, BACK, BREAST, and FOOT are in correct anatomical relationship, but what about that ULNA?

Lila Leeds 11:01 AM  

That #$%^& Lila Wallace thinks she can get away with anything on the Internet! I wish she would sit down for a nice long talk with my friend Mary Jane!

ArtLvr 11:04 AM  

Congrats to Jill and Jeff for this delightful NYT debut! And many thanks for the peek behind the scenes too.

@Two Ponies, your trembling hundred-pound dog sitting on your head brought back memories of my sweet Irish Setter who ran away three times during one July 4th weekend. Retrieving her from the pound cost $10 the first day, $20 the second day, and $30 on the last day. Another year I asked the vet for a doggie tranquilizer, and was told that this is the one breed most noted for not being able to handle anything of the sort! Poor baby...

∑;)

CoolPapaD 11:26 AM  

Glad this was rated medium-challenging; at one point, I told my wife that, for the first time in years, I wasn't going to be able to finish a Monday (I then went on to finish).

I got the body part placement, but I never saw the "A____" part of the theme - thanks for your appearance, Jeff.

The Wallace Foundation supports NPR, so it was nice to finally learn a little bit about the founders. If that's really her, I wouldn't mind a TIME WARP right about now!

Ruth 11:55 AM  

@Archaeoprof, the ULNA in the puzzle is in approximately the same position as the left ULNA of the radiant young LILA who Rex chose as illustration. Never think there's not method to his madness. (nor to that of these constructors!)
@CoolPapaD, ah yes, THAT's why I semi-automatically put in LILA for the answer--too much NPR in the car, these things are engraved in my cortex!

dk 12:48 PM  

@CaseAceFos, one of the deleted comments was mine as a grammatical error (I can't believe I caught it).

In this whole body positioning thing the ears are in an odd spot... just sayin.

dk 12:49 PM  

err, because of a grammatical error.

Anonymous 12:51 PM  

If poor old Rex HAD a TUFT of hair, he might have gotten that answer more quickly, no?

Steve J 12:53 PM  

I retract a portion of my comments last night: even though my comment comes after Jeff's, his posted while I was composing mine, so I didn't notice until this morning that the a-parts are all in correct anatomical position. That's the sort of clever or "aha" payoff I look for and thought wasn't there. It's there. It's brilliant.

@CaseAceFos: when you see the "commented deleted by the author" line, it means the author of the post, not the author of the blog (posts Rex deletes just disappear). Since you'll usually see a post from the same person immediately adjacent, it usually means they're removing a duplicate or noticed an edit they needed to make in the original (which was my reason).

joho 12:53 PM  

I'm late, nothing to add except my praise for this beautifully conceived and executed Monday. Wonderful debut, Jeff & Jill! And, Jeff, I, like others, really appreciate hearing how the puzzle came to be. Your story is particularly interesting. Plus, it's nice to know Rex mentored and encouraged you. I love this blog!

Greene 1:08 PM  

Good grief. When am I ever going to remember ESME? Guess I'm just gonna have to break down and read the book. Maybe then it'll stick.

Terrific puzzle. I too didn't see how clever the theme was until I came here for enlightenment. Thanks to the constructors for a dandy puzzle and for sharing some of the process.

Jill 1:24 PM  

Hi everyone! This has been such an exciting morning -- thank you for all the lovely comments! Jeff is being humble, as you may have surmised from the dialogue above. He has two more puzzles coming out this summer, publication dates TBA.

Happy to join the ranks with all of you!
Jill

Masked and Anonymous 1:58 PM  

Was lookin' for somethin' to grouse about in 44's comments, since he thrives on it. Nothin'. Spot on and smooth sailin', Mr. T-Rex. Glad you've sobered up.

Beautiful puz. If I was makin' puzzes, woulda wished I'd thought of it. Glad more are on tap from these folks. Athumbs up!

Sparky 2:00 PM  

All of the above. Good puzzle. Welcome back Esme, feels like a Time Warp with old puzzle friends Tess, Aloe, Rune, Ulna and Otter.

CaseAceFos 2:00 PM  

Thanks, Steve J. for splainin the deleting process here on RP's blog...as I'm a relatively new here. Got it straight now.
Ciao, The CaseAce

CaseAceFos 2:34 PM  

Surely, a nice novel BODY of work debut by the duo of Denny & Chen, that is PARTS and parcel of a partnership destined to flourish!

Mary Candace 2:42 PM  

Loved this puzzle! It brought back memories of my first job in the 1960's -- at Reader's Digest in Chappaqua, NY.

I was working in the indexing and information department (think "Desk Set") where editors and subscribers called all day for facts and references. One day, DeWitt Wallace called and asked me a question, which I answered, and then he had a short conversation with me. I didn't think much about it, but when I hung up the phone, the other people in the office (including one who had started working there at its founding in 1922) were dumbfounded that I had been so matter-of-fact about speaking to THE DeWitt Wallace. He and Lila Wallace were held in great esteem throughout the company, partly because it was such an employee-friendly company (certainly not the norm in the '60's). Hours were 8:30 to 4:30 in the winter and 8:30 to 3:30 in the summer because they believed employees should have time to enjoy the beautiful area. Everyone had a full hot lunch for under $1.00 in a lovely cafeteria. But the whole atmosphere was, indeed, very, very conservative.

I'll quit rambling -- this post is quite long enough!

MC

shrub5 2:50 PM  

Two thumbs up (one for each constructor) for this smooth puzzle!

Had SLAM for hit hard, as a baseball, so that made it THE MAME IS AFOOT. Did Sherlock say that???

Like @fikink, I knew CYAN from the pricey ink cartridges for my printer.

Seeing "Taming of the Shrew" and PADUA reminds me of the song from "Kiss Me, Kate" where Petruchio indicates he's not too picky about a wife as long as she is rich:

"I've come to wive it wealthily in Padua
If wealthily then happily in Padua
If my wife has a bag of gold,
Do I care if the bag is old?
I've come to wive it wealthily in Padua.

...'Twouldn't give me the slightest shock
If her knees now and then should knock,
If her eye were a wee bit crossed,
Were she wearing the hair she'd lost
Still the damsel I'll make my dame,
In the dark they are all the same,
I've come to wive it wealthily in Padua."
...

Dan Shanley 2:54 PM  

Hey Jill and Jeff!!

Wonderful puzzle and totally enjoyed the theme and symmetry!! Congrats on the upcoming puzzles and publication!

You have inspired Dan and I to give it a go and try writing, we have been tossing it around for years but have never had the guts to try.

Hurrah!
Megan and Dan

Sfingi 3:39 PM  

@Rube - The ELM is still classic, though the Dutch ELM bug has killed off so many. I lost one, with the telltale lines under the bark. We have old photos of Utica with ELMs up and down the streets. Now we have maples, oaks and others. No EBONY or teak.

After I changed "wood" to TREES, and spelled SNEAKY right, the puzzle was totally smooth.

Wait - is there a woodsy mini-theme?

Did not know LILA. Every other answer I've seen before.

I like it when answers run both vertically and horizontally.

@Mary Candace - please keep rambling. That was very interesting.

@PatrickNYC - I didn't even notice the clue for FULLSPEEDAHEAD!

I've heard of on the LAM, but without the "take it" part.

@Greene - I don't know if you'll like Salinger at your age (whatever it is, I'm older, so don't take offense). Same goes for Hesse. The effect is different. They are sort of adolescent O Wow.

@Steve or Rex - does Rex delete a comment without telling the deletee? Just my paranoia acting up.

Anonymous 3:54 PM  

With this theme, it's too bad there wasn't a clue about proximity resulting in an "abut" entry.

Frances 4:25 PM  

"Kiss Me Kate"...my all-time favorite musical! All-time favorite line, from the song "Where is the life that late I led?":

"Where is Fedora, the wild virago?
Thank goodness I missed
Her gangster sister
From Chicago!"

Stan 4:48 PM  

This went from okay to awesome when I came here and finally understood the theme. Also liked the SORDID/SNEAKY pair. Kudos, Jill and Jeff!

@chefwen: Our latest arrival is part Maine Coon, with seriously tufty polydactyl paws. I think @Leslie defined this last week as a 'toehawk'.

Anonymous 5:18 PM  

Fun Monday. Nice of Jeff and Jill to drop in and give the background to the construction, and kudos to @RP for not only the write-up, but the help along the way.

As for @SteveJ, @Smitty, and others who are still head scratching (lice?) about the WOTD photo of Lila Leeds, my take is that this cheesy 1950's in-studio pic with the crashing waves background scrim and the model holding a fishing net and that odd thing in her hand that does indeed look like a pneumatic bulb, possibly on hand from the photographer's studio gear, but was meant to look like a fishing float, is that while this SWIMSUITEDITION of Ms. Leeds didn't exactly make one EATONESHEARTOUT, it was INALLPROBABILITY intended to PLANTINONESMIND a sort of mental caption of the "one that got away."
As @RP writes, the LILA of the clue was unknown to him, so it got away and became the WOTD. At least I think that was what was going on in the goydome of @RP.

As for poor Lila Leeds, after her arrest with Robert Mitchum, not being able to get her PENALTYDECLINED, she was jailed and her last movie, not by UNIVERSALSTUDIOS, but an indie, was called "She Shoulda Said No." Indeed!

Funny that @archeoprof would catch the seemingly out of place ULNA, but thanks to @ruth for tieing that in to the WOTD pic. I agree with @dk about the EARS location, but perhaps, in the SW, they were supposed to be kept "to the ground" for comments.

Speaking of body parts, the cleverness of the construction is all the greater with a consideration of those parts embedded in the TIMEWARP lyrics (which, both is placed somewhat centrally, as it should be, to follow the correct anatomy, and is humorously crossed with FULLSPEEDAHEAD): "jump to the left, now jump to the right, put your HANDS on your HIPS, and bring your KNEES in tight ..." And thanks for the great clip @RP.

Glitch 5:57 PM  

Re: "Deleted by Author"

If you're really curious, you can call up the blog via the archive list (right column, main page).

It shows the original author and time for the "deleted" comments.

.../Glitch

JenCT 6:35 PM  

Not much to add to the above, except totally agree that this was more challenging than a usual Monday. But, I really liked it, and didn't see the anatomy arrangement until I came here!

As far as the TIMEWARP, I spent many Saturday nights at the 8th Street Playhouse in the Village, at the Rocky Horror midnight showing. What a fun time. Can't believe that was some 30 years ago...

chefwen 6:44 PM  

@Stan - Ours is polydactyl also, Paddy aka Big Foot.

Stan 6:50 PM  

@chefwen: Cool! Two excellent names.

Two Ponies 7:46 PM  

@ Rex, Recently we kind of discussed John Water's new book "Role Models".
I got it immediately and really enjoyed it.
I imagine I am not the only blog follower who has read it. I don't think it would be a spoiler to mention the chapter on Leslie Van Houten. She is up for parole again and I wonder if anyone who has read the book and was touched by Water's portrait of her would consider some e-mails of support. Evidently Governor Ahnold has the last say.
Any thoughts from this crowd?
Apologies if I have over-stepped a boundary.

mac 10:10 PM  

I'm sooooo happy. I thought I drowned another laptop, but apparently I only intoxicated it and it needed two days to dry out! It is just fine now!

Loved this puzzle, and the only write-over I had was "full speed/steam ahead.

Loved hearing from the constructors; this was an exceptional Monday, please bring us more.

mac 10:21 PM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
andrea alias acme 10:56 PM  

@MegDan,
Do it!!!!!!
And if @rex is too busy, I'm always happy to help!

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