Volleyball champion/model Gabrielle / TUE 3-15-11 / Small biter in Niger / Circus wedding staple / Fox hit since 2002 informally
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Constructor: Jeremy Newton
Relative difficulty: Medium
THEME: "ODE TO JOY" (20A: Work by 16-Across (BEETHOVEN) — circles running across grid represent notes of the first part of "ODE TO JOY," both in terms of the letters the circles contain and the placement of the circles in the grid (according to their position on the staff). Additional theme answers include IN C MAJOR (57A: How the circled letters of 20-Across are played) and PIANO KEYS (62A: Items you might play 20-Across on)
Word of the Day: "Eazy-DUZ-It" (46D: "Eazy-___-It" (double-platinum album by Eazy-E)) —
Eazy-Duz-It is the debut album of rapper Eazy-E, released on September 16, 1988 through both Ruthless and Priority Records. The production by Dr. Dre and DJ Yella was deemed dense and funky by critic Jason Birchmeier. The pieces were written primarily by Eazy-E, MC Ren, Ice Cube, and The D.O.C.. The album's title track features Eazy rapping about himself and things that he does. "Boyz n the Hood" and "No More ?'s" are about life in Compton, California and the gangster lifestyle. (wikipedia)
Highlights of my solve:
- Trying to figure out what the hell those circles could possibly be spelling...
- Cocking my head upon realizing that DUZ was, in fact, correct.
- Waiting and waiting on the "C" part of IN C MAJOR (SCUZZ!? Ew...) (53D: Dirt, slangily)
- Realizing I have no idea what MASONITE is (9D: Composite board material)
- Being torn between wincing at and admiring IN PJS as an answer (10D: Dressed for bed, briefly)
- 47A: Tendency for one's mind to wander, for short (A.D.D.) — interesting to go the disorder route on this one ...
- 51A: Midsize bra features (C CUPS) — Didn't C used to be on the large side?
- 66A: Rice-sized pastas (ORZOS) — a weak plural; one of the only weak spots in the grid, and one so minor that I almost feel bad even mentioning. There are a couple of others I'm not mentioning, just to make up for mentioning this one. I swear that last sentence makes sense.
- 25D: -trix alternative — always tricksy. ETTE? ETTA? ENNE? ENNA? OK, ETTA is unlikely, but the others are all viable.
- 56D: He said about an opponent "My main objective is to be professional but to kill him" (TYSON) — Couldn't read the whole quotation in my solving software, and so initially guessed that it was (President?) TYLER.
- 59D: Circus or wedding staple (RING) — totally different kinds of RINGs, so I'm not a huge fan of this clue.
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