1976 rescue site / SUN 11-21-10 / View from Catania / German-born tennis star Tommy / Portuguese speaking island off African coast / 1930s film pooch
Sunday, November 21, 2010
Constructor: Clive Probert
Relative difficulty: Easy
THEME: "Having Aspirations" — familiar phrases have "H" added to beginning of some word in the phrase, creating wacky phrases, clued wackily
Word of the Day: CLANGOR (9D: Loud ringing) —
intr.v., -gored, -gor·ing, -gors.
- A clang or repeated clanging.
- A loud racket; a din.
To make a clangor.
[Latin, from clangere, to clang.]
The other day there were complaints about OBOLI, a Greek coin given a Latin plural. Greek words often go through Latin to get to English, hence the hybridity. See also, today, SYLLABI, a plural I refuse to use because it's not Latin in origin (4D: Course outlines). Doesn't mean SYLLABI isn't legit. Just means that I hate it. One word I don't hate is CLANGOR, which sounds both onomatopoetic and Klingon. When a bell ("CLANG") creates a CLAMOR, you get a CLANGOR. And of course a small CLANGOR is a CLANGORLING (34D: Diminutive suffix=LING). I wanted my whales to be SPRAYERS (not SPOUTERS, 72A: Whales, at times) and my lock-out league to be NBA or NFL (not NHL, 90D: Org. with a 2004-05 lockout). Also wanted KNOBBY to be KNOTTY (42D: Not smooth) and OOOH to be ... well, something else, preferably (44D: Cry of delight). My cries of delight came from very, very different answers: COKED up (5D: Out of one's mind, in a way, with "up"), which took me many crosses to get, and CHURCHY (21D: Very religious). "COKED Up and CHURCHY" is a tell-all autobiography just waiting to be written, e.g. "COKED Up and CHURCHY: The Mother Teresa Story!"
- 26A: Macho guys like their pie cold? (REAL MEN DON'T HEAT QUICHE)
- 41A: Bad actor's philosophy? (I THINK THEREFORE I HAM)
- 63A: Concerns of middle-aged guys in lower Louisiana? (DELTA HAIRLINES)
- 73A: Lengthy military sign-up? (SEVEN-YEAR HITCH)
- 92A: Put the dentures aside while gardening? (SET ONE'S TEETH ON HEDGE)
- 108A: Starboard food fish? (HERRING ON THE RIGHT SIDE
- 10A: German-born tennis star Tommy (HAAS) — like the ILSA he sits on, I know his name instinctively from crosswords.
- 24A: Signal for a programmer's jump (GOTO) — I remember this command from learning Basic in ninth grade.
- 47A: "___ doubt but they were fain o' ither": Burns ("NAE") — from "The Twa Dogs," a poem I'd never heard of until just this second.
- 48A: Org. with the motto "For the benefit of all" (NASA) — that's a pretty vague and un-spacey motto for those guys.
- 56A: Carrier with a frequent flier program called EuroBonus (SAS) — airline I know only from xwords.
- 106A: View from Catania (ETNA) — feels like I've seen this exact clue before. Oh, I have.
- 8D: "Were I the Moor, I would not be ___" (IAGO) — big week for IAGO, an olde skool piece of crosswordese whose grown less common in recent years ... until this week.
- 12D: 1930s film pooch (ASTA) — ETNA, IAGO, ASTA ... crossword vets, every one.
- 13D: Portuguese-speaking island off the African coast (SÃO TOMÉ) — Pres. Obama just returned from Portugal today (or yesterday, I forget). That, and the fact that the capital is Lisbon, is about all I know about Portugal (OK, I know more, but I always feel as if Portugal is the European country that time forgot—from major colonial power to ... whatever it is now. No offense! I'm sure it's wonderful)
- 95D: 1976 rescue site (ENTEBBE) — Had only the vaguest sense of what this was until I ran into it in a grid a while back and looked it up. Israeli rescue mission in Uganda. More here.
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