Gaucho's plain / TUE 12-21-10 / Windblown soil / Keatsian Pindaric / Composition of Jack Haley's Oz character
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Constructor: Alan Arbesfeld
Relative difficulty: Medium
THEME: 3 steps back — "L" is moved back three spaces in familiar phrases, creating wacky phrases, clued wackily
Word of the Day: LOESS (25D: Windblown soil) —
Loess (pronounced /ˈloʊ.əs/, /ˈlʌs/, or /ˈlɛs/) is an aeolian sediment formed by the accumulation of wind-blown silt and lesser and variable amounts of sand and clay that are loosely cemented by calcium carbonate. It is usually homogeneous and highly porous and is traversed by vertical capillaries that permit the sediment to fracture and form vertical bluffs. // The word loess, with connotations of origin by wind-deposited accumulation, is of German origin and means “loose.” It was first applied to Rhine River valley loess about 1821 (wikipedia)
I think I would have liked MIND BLOGGING better if it had been clued as MIND-BLOGGING ... maybe something like [Psychokinetic online commentary].
Really wish I had more to say about this one, but I don't. So, rather than blather to fill space—straight to Bullets.
- 3D: Shepard in space (ALAN) — constructor signature. Nice.
- 15A: Gaucho's plain (LLANO) — Are there LLAMA on the LLANO? Or are they just in the Andes?
- 30A: "Waiting for Lefty" playwright (ODETS) — What are we up to now: ALBEE, INGE, ... ODETS. Oh, and IBSEN (12D: "The Wild Duck" playwright Henrik). Weird: I'd consider IBSEN the more famous playwright, and yet the clue provides IBSEN's first name, but doesn't provide ODETS' (Clifford).
- 64A: Playing pieces in Rummikub (TILES) — No idea what "Rummikub" is. Sounds Finnish. Is it Finnish? ... nope, Israeli. No matter: "playing pieces" was enough to make this easy.
- 11A: Composition of Jack Haley's Oz character (TIN) — no idea what to make of this at first because I was thinking of "Oz" the TV show ... ERST on HBO (56D: Once, old-style + 16A: "Six Feet Under" network)
Happy Winter Solstice.
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld
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