Ruminant's third stomach / WED 6-22-11 / YM or Us output / Yount had 1406 of them / Online option since 1998 / Moo makers / Unit for chairmaker
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Constructor: Tim Croce
Relative difficulty: Medium-Challenging
THEME: THE FIRST LETTERS / OF EACH / CLUE GO / FROM A TO Z IN ORDER (21A: Including 38-, 41- and 60-Across, a description of this puzzle's theme) — just what it says, only the clues do that A TO Z cycle three times ...
Word of the Day: OMASUM (6D: Ruminant's third stomach) —
The omasum, also known as the bible, the fardel, the manyplies and the psalterium, is the third compartment of the stomach in ruminants. Though its functions have not been well-studied, it appears to primarily aid in the absorption of water, magnesium, and the volatile fatty acids produced by rumen fermentation, that have not been absorbed into the bloodstream yet. The numerous folds of its mucosa are thought to trap digesta particles so that the maximum amount of nutrients may be absorbed. (wikipedia)
OMASUM is what I'd call a "sore thumb."
EDA and ESA and ERTE all in the same grid! An embarrassment
- 15A: Domitian's "you love" (AMAS) — here's where I figured out something was fishy. Clue was easy to figure out, but ... Domitian!?
- 20A: Historical region of France (ARTOIS) — now probably best known to Americans as part of the Stella-ARTOIS beer name.
- 48A: Xavier Cugat film "___ Were Never Lovelier" ("YOU") — I kind of want to clap for this clue. Xavier Cugat wins the "Best X Clue" category today.
- 49A: YM or Us output (ISSUES) — Love this clue. Looks like gibberish until you realize you're looking at magazine titles.
- 70A: John McCain ranch locale (SEDONA) — a beautiful place, I'm told. SEDONA, I mean. No one I know has been on McCain's ranch ... I don't think.
- 4D: "Pshaw!," to a Valley girl ("AS IF!") — Another good clue, mostly because it has me imagining Valley girls actually saying "Pshaw!"
- 9D: Unit for a chairmaker (SLAT) — OK, I will give this puzzle one thing—the limits it puts on cluing really encourages some decent inventive thinking. Clues aren't boring, even if the grid kind of is.
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