Middle Earth's Green Dragon Prancing Pony / SAT 9-15-12 / De facto national carrier since 1932 / 1998 De Niro film memorable wrong-way car chase / Mother of Gobo Faline in children's lit / Colorful marine fish spiny fanlike fins / Hunk noted for streaking / Cherry ice cream smile wearer in Duran Duran hit
Saturday, September 15, 2012
Constructor: Joon Pahk and Brad Wilber
Relative difficulty: Easy-Medium
Word of the Day: — IRT (30-across: Bygone operator of N.Y.C’s Second Avenue El)
Interborough Rapid Transit Company (IRT) was the private operator of the original underground New York City Subway line that opened in 1904, as well as earlier elevated railways and additional rapid transit lines in New York City.
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Hi, blogosphere! My name is Anna Shechtman, and I'm subbing in for Rex tonight. Somehow even though I’m the college student, Rex is the one drinking the night away…
For the sake of full disclosure, I will admit off the bat: I'm a first-time blogger. My blogging frames of reference are Rex Parker and Carrie Bradshaw, which I suppose means I should aim for snarky girl-talk (no offense, Rex!)….I will do my best.
I found this puzzle pretty easy for a Saturday. The upper left contained some odd bedfellows (odder than Rex and Carrie?): PORTIA from Merchant of Venice and Joe Friday. Stranger was that Joe Friday’s IM A COP (3-down: Start for Friday) crosses with DRAGONET (17-across: Colorful marine fish with spiny, finlike fins)….Is that a pun on DRAG(O)NET or just a strange cruci-coincidence?
In keeping with Joe Friday, it would be fair to deem this the “Just the facts, ma’am” puzzle. It was filled with definitional/fact-based clues that easily broke open the grid for me:
- 20-across: Miami Heat player who was the 2006 N.B.A Finals MVP (DWYANE WADE). I'm pretty sure my dad would disown me if I got that one wrong.
- 36-across: Dr. Seuss book (THE LORAX). No mention of the recent 3D film adaptation (which is probably for the best….). Watch Dr. Seuss get corporate -- and your childhood innocence get shattered -- below.
- 47-across: Bug (BEETLE). Something really bothers me about this clue. It doesn’t even seem Monday-worthy. Am I missing something?
- Strange to see ANNAS clued as (44-across: Christie and others). It strikes me as pretty obscure (despite its Pulitzer Prize), especially when “Shechtman and others” was an option…
In addition to the “facts,” this puzzle was filled with risqué puns (some better than others) that felt like they should have been clued not with a ? but with a ;)
- 9-down: Pull up a seat for (MOON)
- 48-down: Hunk noted for streaking (METEOR)
- 34-down: Non-PC choice (IMAC). I had the IM- and was about to fill in IMUS…
“Clue of the day” definitely goes to 5-down (It makes mist moist). I spend 10 minutes online trying to find ANO, some obscure chemical?, in the dictionary; it turns out the answer was AN “O”….I’m in the middle of an English paper and feel compelled to say something about how this clue really foregrounds the materiality of the word…I’ll show some restraint.
Overall, I’m glad this was a fairly easy Saturday. I was sure I was going to miss Rex’s deadline, stumped by Joon Pahk and Brad Wilber. I should probably get back to my paper -- I'm trying to stay on my 35-down….
Thanks for the blog opportunity, Rex!