Alternative name for abalone / FRI 9-14-12 / Big multilanguage broadcaster briefly / Hayshaker / Guyanese capital / Father-and-son prophets in Book of Mormon / Figure on 5000 EE savings bond / Sci-fi knight
Friday, September 14, 2012
Constructor: Peter A. Collins
Relative difficulty: Easy-Medium
THEME: none (or BEATLES—see JOHN, PAUL, GEORGE, and RINGO in the corners; I did the write-up thinking there was no theme, and I'm not changing it; if I consider the theme, I have to a. hate the theme (weak, sparse) and b. hate the fill I hated even more because now I know it's there only because of this weak theme (this is esp. true of the worst word, ORMER); so: themeless)
Word of the Day: ORMER (39A: Alternative name for abalone) —
n. Chiefly British
An abalone, especially of the species Haliotis tuberculata, found chiefly in the Channel Islands.
[French dialectal, from French ormier, short for oreille-de-mer, translation of Latin auris maris, sea-ear : auris, ear + maris, genitive of mare, sea.]
Read more: http://www.answers.com/topic/ormer#ixzz26PJ0us5p
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A very nice puzzle, for the most part. I'd tear a grid down to the ground before I ever let something like ORMER sneak in (truly terrible), but in this grid, at least it's an outlier (LER and ALMAS are also pretty bad, but slightly less so) (31D: The Once-___ (Seuss character) + 21D: Father-and-son prophets in the Book of Mormon). The marquee answers, on the other hand—the four 3x10s—are all very clean and interesting, and, unless any one member of the ORMER LER ALMAS trio really held you up, odds are you're not going to have been troubled by them that much.
JOHN DENVER than I should have (1A: Colorado state song composer). I grew up on his music, and to this day I can't get properly in the Christmas spirit until I've heard "Please Daddy, Don't Get Drunk This Christmas" at least once. I had JOHN and *still* needed crosses to figure it out. Shameful. Also shameful—it took me many beats—several seconds—after getting STERN to understand how the clue fit (41A: Bow's counterpart). Me: "Isaac STERN ... used a bow ... I don't get it." I get it now. I don't feel nearly as bad about not getting PAUL REVERE right away (58A: Figure on a $5,000 EE savings bond).
HICK was all from crosses. Thought [Guyanese capital] would be something exotic, but it's straight-up English and very familiar (GEORGETOWN). First thought for [Players who made a historic touchdown in 1964] was GARY, but his last name is actually just Player and apparently golfers don't actually make touchdowns and anyway GARY didn't fit. This from the brain that also wanted [What "burns, burns, burns" in a hit country song] to be "DISCO INFERNO." I really wish I could hear "DISCO INFERNO" played as a "country song" right now. To give you a sense of how improbable such a song would be—try to imagine Merle Haggard singing this:
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld