Onetime reality show with Whitney Houston / TUE 4-19-11 / Biographer Leon / 1997 Jennifer Lopez biopic / Medieval treasure chest
Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Constructor: Randall J. Hartman
Relative difficulty: Easy
THEME: BBB (33D: Grp. that battles consumer fraud ... or a hint to some much-repeated letters in this puzzle) — puzzle has a lot of Bs in it. It sure does.
Word of the Day: Leon EDEL (16A: Biographer Leon) —
Joseph Leon Edel (9 September 1907 – 5 September 1997) was a North American literary critic and biographer. He was the elder brother of North American philosopher Abraham Edel. // The Encyclopædia Britannica calls Edel "the foremost 20th-century authority on the life and works of Henry James." His work on James won him both a National Book Award and a Pulitzer Prize. (wikipedia)
- 17A: Relaxing soak (BUBBLE BATH)
- 23A: First lady who wrote "Millie's Book" (BARBARA BUSH)
- 38A: Onetime reality show with Whitney Houston ("BEING BOBBY BROWN")
- 47A: Louisville Slugger, e.g. (BASEBALL BAT)
- 10D: Brewery container (BEER BARREL)
- 29D: Anti-nuke slogan (BAN THE BOMB)
Hardly a hesitation today. The [Dumb cluck] clues could've been just about anything (lots of applicable 4-letter words), so I had to wait for crosses there, but otherwise I didn't blink, not even at EDEL (a gimme to me now, after being a !?!?! to me a couple years back) and BRYCE (no idea why I know this Canyon, but I do). Went so fast I didn't even see the clues for BENES or ALEPH (13D: Letter before Beth). The ampersandwich is really making a comeback of late—two RANDRs, a DANDD, and now a BANDB (47D: Hardly a chain hotel, informally). A welcome trend, I would say, were it not for the sizable uptick in desperate emails that I receive every time one of these answers shows up ("I don't understand"). See also any clue referencing a letter string via a telephone keypad (e.g. [6 letters]=>MNO). Man, those baffle people for some reason. Can you still "POKE" people on Facebook? I'm on Facebook every day, but have never POKED or been POKED (to my knowledge—so, if you've been poking me ... you're doing it wrong) (67A: Contacted on Facebook, in a way).
- 46A: 1997 Jennifer Lopez biopic ("SELENA") — Look, Jennifer Lopez is indeed "beautiful," but "Most Beautiful Woman in the World?" If she weren't on "Idol," would "People" really be saying that? Also, am I really spending 30 some-odd seconds typing these questions as if they are meaningful? (answer, sadly = yes)
- 24D: Dubai denizens (ARABS) — ARAB here crosses the ARAB in BARBARA BUSH. I know, I shouldn't notice these things, but I do.
- 37D: 1987 album later rereleased as "The Celts" ("ENYA") — "ENYA" as album title = nice entry into the "How the Hell Do I Clue ENYA This Time?" sweepstakes.
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P.S. Crossword constructor and constant commenter Andrea Carla Michaels gets fan mail. I know this because much of it is sent to me. Just a taste...
I like the part where I'm an afterthought ... :)