Joe Btfsplk's creator / FRI 12-17-10 / Cryptogram playwright 1995 / Popular name for tolnaftate / Word on Harry Powell's left fingers Night Hunter
Friday, December 17, 2010
A burette (also buret) is a vertical cylindrical piece of laboratory glassware with a volumetric graduation on its full length and a precision tap, or stopcock, on the bottom. It is used to dispense known amounts of a liquid reagent in experiments for which such precision is necessary, such as a titration experiment. Burettes are extremely accurate - a 50 cm3 burette has a tolerance of 0.1 cm3 (class B) or 0.06 cm3 (class A). // Burettes measure from the top since they are used to measure liquids dispensed out the bottom. The difference between starting and final volume is the amount dispensed. (wikipedia)
Started out guessing LAG (1A: Progress too slowly) and LATTE (1D: Milky drink) ... and it worked. Amazing. Also, I have no idea where Alfred Krupp was born, but five letters starting with "E"—that's gonna be ESSEN (most common German place name in the crossword). Took a weird route after nailing down that NW corner. Got PENCIL SHARPENER easily, and then started building the S and SE off of it. So NW and SE were done first, and then I started shading in the middle. SW and NE corners with last—former wasn't too hard, latter was somewhat harder but not too bad. Beat myself for not remembering ELLSBERG (12D: Analyst who leaked the Pentagon Papers). Forget what I had in there—MOSSBERG? Maybe? Ugh. Stupid. Anyway, rest of that corner was easy enough for me to get over that hump without much grief. Last square was "B" in BURETTES / BIRD (24A: Frequent flier).
Biggest mystery of the day (for me): how in the world did I know Dumbarton OAKS (31D: Dumbarton ___ Conference (1944 meeting that laid the groundwork for the U.N.)). OK, so I spelled it OCHS, but still, how did that name get in my head, when I couldn't tell you a thing about that Conference? Otherwise, no other mysteries. Just a lovely grid, with clever, if slightly easier-than-usual, clues. A pleasant Friday—my favorite Friday in a good long while.
- 4A: Joe Btfsplk's creator (CAPP) — Some weird name's creator in four letters is Often Al CAPP. Guessing CAPP here helped me change ESP to PSI (6D: Clairvoyance and such)
- 28A: "The Cryptogram" playwright, 1995 (MAMET) — another playwright for the crossword pantheon. The date gave this one away. That, and the first "M," which I already had (from the super gimme MORISSETTE — 28A: Canadian singer with a 1995 album that went 16x platinum).
- 17A: Popular name for tolnaftate (TINACTIN) — fast actin'! Didn't know it, but guessed it off the TIN-.
- 36A: Welsh word in a Pennsylvania college name (BRYN) — too easy. Unless you don't have any crosses, then I guess you could've gone with MAWR.
- 52A: Arthur who wrote "The Symbolist Movement in Literature" (SYMONS) — wow, that's pretty obscure. I barely recognize that name, and I studied literature for a Long time. I would've gone with the still obscure but somewhat more interesting (to me) [British crime fiction writer and scholar Julian].
- 54A: 1950 film noir ("D.O.A.") — Gimme. Only one film noir I know of in three letters.
- 9D: Embroidery expert (LIAR) — figurative meaning of "embroidery." Nice.
- 15D: Word on Harry Powell's left fingers in "Night of the Hunter" (HATE) — Love the old-time crime movie feel of this grid, with "D.O.A." and "Night of the Hunter" and the WALKIE TALKIES and what not. Very cool.
- 32D: Three-time N.B.A. Coach of the Year (PAT RILEY) — Full name! Nice. He's now president of the Miami Heat, I think. He was coach of the Lakers during the great Lakers-Celtics rivalry of the '80s. Man, I hated that guy.
- 39D: Slush Puppie alternative (ICEE) — I used to love Coke slushies. I used to love 7-11 in general. Would ride my bike there and get candy and baseball cards when I was in elementary school. Then when I was a bit older, would go to Round Table Pizza around the corner and play Donkey Kong for hours on end while listening to Joan Jett's "I Love Rock & Roll" on the juke box. Good times.
- 47A: 1969 bed-in participant (ONO) — again, too easy.
- 49D: Roman I (EGO) — pronoun "I" = EGO. I stupidly had UNO.
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