Plant with purple flowers / SUN 2-27-11 / Aircraft control surface / Weekly since 1955 / TV title character who said I'm not Amazon
Sunday, February 27, 2011
Constructor: Peter A. Collins
Relative difficulty: Medium-Challenging
THEME: V-2 — theme answers are two-word phrases where both words begin with "V"; further, the grid has two unchecked letters (both "V"), and black squares in the middle of the grid form a double set of "V"s...
Word of the Day: CHIVIED (13A: Annoyed with persistent petty attacks) —
CHIVVY or CHIVY
v., -vied, or -ied, -vy·ing, or -y·ing, -vies, or -ies. v.tr.
- To vex or harass with petty attacks: political opponents who chivvied the senator.
- To maneuver or secure gradually: "had spent two weeks chivvying this division toward combat readiness" (Tom Clancy).
n., pl., -vies, or -ies.
- A hunt or chase.
- A hunting cry.
[Variant of chevy, a hunt, hunting cry, from Chevy Chase, title of a ballad about a border skirmish, from Cheviot Chase, a large unenclosed hunting tract in the Cheviot Hills.]
- 4D: The other way around (VICE VERSA)
- 27A: John McCain and John Kerry (VIETNAM VETS)
- 16D: Plant with purple flowers (VINCA VINE)
- 59D: Weekly since 1955, with "The" ("VILLAGE VOICE")
- 73A: "Wedding Crashers" co-star, 2005 (VINCE VAUGHN)
- 63D: Vessel seen just below the surface? (VARICOSE VEIN) — nice clue.
- 107A: Keepers of the flame? (VESTAL VIRGINS) — I work in Vestal. No idea what the virgin situation is there.
Never heard of: HETH (1D: Eighth Hebrew letter) or IRONWOOD (9D: Tree with very hard timber). "IRONWEED," yes. Iron & Wine, yes. IRONWOOD, no. Also, no idea that Jude LAW was ever British P.M. He's had such a varied career (47A: British P.M. after Lloyd George).
There was a "Real World" joke on this past Thursday's episode of "Community," so that show was fresh on on my mind (57A: "The Real World" airer=>MTV). What was not fresh on my mind was the toy company DUNCAN—haven't thought of them in years (since the last time I played with a yo-yo, probably) (85A: Toy company behind yo-yos). I like how things get all Hebraic with HETH and MT. ARARAT (3D: Post-flood locale) and TEL AVIV (37D: Setting for part of 2005's "Munich") and TEACHER clued via rabbi, and then veer wildly in the center of the grid toward the pop cultural with "AVATAR" and then VINCE VAUGHN on top of Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, former CO-ANCHORS of "Weekend Update" on SNL. Big fan of both Fey and Poehler: those women now anchor two of the only sitcoms worth watching: the Emmy-winning "30 Rock" and the amazing and highly underrated "Parks & Recreation," respectively.
Lastly, loved the clues on XENA (10D: TV title character who said "I'm not an Amazon") and SARCASM (54D: "Oh, joy!," e.g., typically). And I'm not even being sarcastic. Oh, joy!
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld
[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter]