Horse-drawn vehicle often mentioned in Sherlock Holmes stories / MON 7-25-11 / Flowers on proverbial path / Opposite of deletes in typesetting
Monday, July 25, 2011
Constructor: Nina Rulon-Miller
Relative difficulty: Medium
THEME: Garnishes — drink garnishes. That is all.
Word of the Day: DOGCART (20A: Horse-drawn vehicle often mentioned in Sherlock Holmes stories) —
A dogcart is a light horse-drawn vehicle. There are several types:
- A one-horse carriage, usually two-wheeled and high, with two transverse seats set back to back. It was known as a "bounder" in British slang (not to be confused with the cabriolet of the same name). In India it was called a "tumtum" (possibly an altered form of "tandem").
- A dogcart having four wheels and seats set back to back was a dos-à-dos. "Dos-à-dos" means back-to-back in French.
A young or small groom called a "tiger" sometimes rode, usually standing, on a platform at the rear of a dogcart driven by the person on whom he was in attendance. // Frequent references to dogcarts are made by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in his writings about fictional detective Sherlock Holmes, and indeed by many other Victorian writers, as it was a common sight in those days.
An oddly basic and thin theme. Just drink garnishes. Those garnishes make for fairly interesting fill, I guess, but I generally like a *little* more ambition / imagination in my puzzle themes. Also, CELERY STICK? Bah. I see that it's called "STICK" quite a bit in various places on the internet, so it's clearly acceptable, but I'm going out on a pretty thick limb and saying that "STALK" is more common ([bloody mary "celery stalk"] got me about 50% more hits than the "stick" version of that search). STALK is a more interesting word, and it feels righter, and with "STALK" maybe ugly answers like ISMS (59D: Beliefs) and STETS (69A: Opposite of deletes, in typesetting) could've been avoided. Maybe. Puzzle played slightly harder than usual, largely because of DOGCART and various miscues with the garnishes (STALK ... had the -ICE in SLICE but wrote in JUICE, which is just stupid, but I still did it; wife went with TWIST at first). Unusual NE and SW corners, with a couple of showy 9s running through both. All in all, an adequate puzzle, but without much to enjoy or remember.
- 17A: Whiskey sour garnish (ORANGE SLICE)
- 27A: Gibson garnish (PICKLED ONION)
- 47A: Martini garnish (PIMENTO OLIVE) — I know this garnish as "OLIVE"
- 62A: Bloody Mary garnish (CELERY STICK)
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld