Washington city in apple-growing country / TUE 8-6-13 / First lady between Bess Jackie / British royal name since 1917 / Woman's sleeveless undergarment informally / Rodeo wrestling target

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Constructor: Lynn Lempel

Relative difficulty: Easy-Medium



THEME: Stealing... — familiar phrases clued as if they referred to thievery; all clues start [Make off with some ...]:


Theme answers:
  • 17A: Make off with some raffle tickets? (TAKE CHANCES)
  • 23A: Make off with some kitchenware? (POCKET KNIVES)
  • 39A: Make off with some vehicles? (COP CARS)
  • 50A: Make off with some cash? (PINCH PENNIES)
  • 60A: Make off with some gym equipment? (LIFT WEIGHTS)


Word of the Day: YAKIMA (46A: Washington city in apple-growing country) —
Yakima (/ˈjækɨmɔː/ or /ˈjækɨmə/) is a US city located about 60 miles southeast of Mount Rainier inWashington state. Yakima is the county seat of Yakima County, Washington, and the state's eighth largest city by population. As of the 2010 census, the city had a total population of 91,067 and a metropolitan population of 243,231. The unincorporated suburban areas of West Valley and Terrace Heights are considered a part of greater Yakima.
Yakima is situated in the Yakima Valley, an area noted for apple, wine and hop production. The Yakima Valley produces 75% of all hops grown in the US. The name Yakima originates from the Yakama Nation, located south of the city. (wikipedia)
• • •

This was sort of cute. I like the reimagined clues better when the verb for "steal" is made out of an adjective (as with POCKET and COP) than when it's made out of a word that's already a verb (the rest of 'em), and I think the idea of CHANCES as something that someone might steal is pretty weak, but there's a playfulness about this Tuesday-worthy concept that I admire. Or maybe I shouldn't say "Tuesday-worthy," since that sounds backhanded (Tuesdays are often ... rough ... betwixt and between ... wobbly ... unlovable ... etc.). Anyway, I found this mostly enjoyable to solve. The fill is solid, with lots of interesting middle- and longer-range answers strewn about.


I had trouble getting started and didn't even pick up a theme answer until I had traveled all the way down the west side of the grid to PINCH PENNIES, but once I locked in on the theme, I Tore through this, making up for lost time and ending up with a faster- (but not much faster-) than-usual Tuesday time. Balked at CAMI, which is short for "camisole" and is a word I almost never hear (39D: Woman's sleeveless undergarment, informally). Also wanted 43D: Type who wears tight-fitting jeans and thick-rimmed glasses, maybe (HIPSTER) to be HEP- something (probably CAT) and so started second-guessing my spelling of YAKIMA. It's a very ecdysiastical poem, what with all the UNTIE-ing and UNZIP-ing and, well, ASS, I guess, if you want to be crude about it.

I think that'll do it. More tomorrow, I'm fairly certain.
    Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

    67 comments:

    jae 12:03 AM  

    Much easier than yesterday's, so easy-medium works for me too.  Cute theme, smooth grid, what's not to like?

    Erasures: TORn for TORE and ironY for STORY (apparently my brain momentarily shifted to late week mode).

    Stuff I only know from doing crosswords: EIDER, which isn't bad for an early week puzzle.

    Nice one Lynn Lempel!

    August West 12:05 AM  

    Will flip-flopped the Monday and Tuesday puzzles. About the toughest word in the grid is YAKIMA, one of those you-know-it-or-you-don't 90K bergs most famous for now and again showing up in crosssword puzzles. Easy crosses make it readily obtainable to the new solver, to whom I would present this for indoctrination without any qualms. Nice, quick n' easy, um, "Tuesday."

    PurpleGuy 12:24 AM  

    Easy solve for me. Liked it. Picked up the theme at COPCARS. Rather enjoyed the "ecdysiastical" sub-theme. Remember visiting Yakima, so knew it right
    off.
    Fun Tuesday puzzle. Thanks Ms. Lempel.

    Shanti -
    Bob/Purple Guy

    Questinia 12:24 AM  

    A classic Tuesday.

    Thanks Lynn.

    Steve J 12:34 AM  

    Agreed, cute theme. Thought TAKECHANCES was a stretch as well, but it's forgivable with the other theme answers.

    Fill struck me as a bit abbreviation-heavy (although 58A was at least clued nicely and uncommonly), and 21A is a particularly unattractive partial, but it didn't seem to detract from other good stuff.

    Ellen S 2:06 AM  

    @rex likes adjectives like "cop" and "pocket"? Oh, like "pocket knife". Okay. I guess.

    Anyway, any puzzle I get the theme on the first theme answer is too easy. Still, I liked it, theme answers were interesting, nothing too stale. @August West is right, though: Will got Monday and Tuesday mixed up.

    But I'm not complaining! Maybe this is a sign that this week I'll be able to finish the Saturday!

    chefwen 2:43 AM  

    Hey @ PurpleGuy - Have missed you, welcome home. Don't be such a stranger.

    Thought the puzzle was cute, cute, cute! Got it after TAKE and POCKET, that helped with the others. One write over was YAKaMA before YAKIMA, but according to Rex's write up I was pretty much spot-on.

    Good one Ms. Lempel

    Arena Cacti Mamie 3:03 AM  

    Loved it! So so cute!
    Deceptively simple, super clever, tight funny theme.
    Stole my heart!
    Shoulda coulda been a Monday..and the SASS of starting with ASS was clASSic!

    ARENA appears for the third pr fourth time in a week...
    DEMONIZING was pretty clASSy.

    Only mistake was CRIsP/sAMIE. And I thought "who the hell is sAMIE?"

    Evan 5:28 AM  

    I had a tougher time on this puzzle than I expected to, but I blame that entirely on the fact that I solved it while a) sleep-deprived and b) food-deprived. The puzzle itself is solid. The YAKIMA/CAMI cross was a little scary for me but I got it right -- yeah, sorry, I just wasn't pulling my women's undergarments from my head fast enough (he said, sheepishly and prepubescent-ly grinning).

    Funny seeing both UNTIE and UNZIP in the same grid (he said, sheepishly and prepubescent-ly grinning again). And I thought it was a little odd seeing two fill-in-the-blanks in the same clue for BOYS. Not odd in a bad way, but in a "the NYT rarely if ever does that" sense.

    Hmm, two UPs on two consecutive days (ADD UP, EAT UP). I don't mind it here because they don't cross. And I really, really wish that the NYT would finally clue ELBA as a reference to the actor Idris Elba, a.k.a. Stringer Bell from "The Wire," as well as the robot-commanding marshal in "Pacific Rim." Maybe too tough for a Tuesday, yeah, but I'm all for spicing up crossword staples with modern clues. Less Napoleon isles, more Stringer Bells, I say!

    mac 5:49 AM  

    Very cut, tight and professional puzzle, on the easy side.

    Write-overs at nYakama and torn, otherwise smooth sailing.

    Milford 6:58 AM  

    Nice Tuesday, cute theme, one that makes you want to think of more phrases that would work. Why do we have so many words for stealing? Hmm...

    Liked the long downs of DEMONIZING and SKETCHBOOK, very original words.

    With three daughters, we have lots of CAMIs in our house, not really worn as underwear, but just as layered under other clothes. Thankfully no hair CRIMPing goes on here, though.

    dk 8:02 AM  

    Mr. Purple is in the house: welcome back.

    Only error was gleefully penning in egret for HERON as I TORE through the grid.

    The theme is "cute." As in a neat little trick rather than those posters of children with large eyes.

    BOO was the only fill that seemed only unconnected to the clue. Next time try - Man referenced in this quote: When they finally saw him, why he hadn’t done any of those things… Atticus, he was real nice -

    ������ (3 Stars) This week is looking up.

    Susan McConnell 8:04 AM  

    I agree this was more Monday than Tuesday. Also agree with Evan about the UPs. I also didn't like the "Sports V.I.P." clue with MVP as the answer. But minor nits aside, it was cute and fun.

    oldCarFudd 8:04 AM  

    Fun puzz. I know Yakima because my sister lives there. @chefwen - the city is Yakima, but the nearby Indian tribe is Yakama. Go figure. Also somewhat puzz-related: There seem to be two pronunciations of the city. YAK-i-muh, with a classical schwa at the end. And YAK-i-maw. Dunno why.

    Mitzie 8:13 AM  

    Masterful.

    retired_chemist 8:30 AM  


    Easy-medium works for me too. No particular problems, no particular excitement. ICK and UGH preceded BOO @ 38A, MGR preceded MVP @ 41A.

    chefbea 8:59 AM  

    I agree..Very easy except for Yakima..never heard of it..wanted Takoma at first.

    Cute theme. Thanks Lynn

    Tita 8:59 AM  

    Lots to like...clever & fun theme.

    My lake (Candlewood) was made by DAMS in 1928 - it is basically a giant battery - or "pumped storage facility" - 2nd of its kind in the US. Google it - kinda cool.

    Spent 2 weeks on ELBA - a self-imposed exile rife with ice cream, beaches, and sun.

    Knew EIDER because the Portuguese word for any comforter is "edredom" - how you would pronounce "Eiderdown" if you were Portuguese and swallowing half your vowels.

    ALmost a DNF, as I popped in tAKoMA right away, and not really believing that IRISes have any particular attraction for butterflies, stared at that section for a bit, till I realized they call it SEATAC for a reason.

    @dk - same reaction to BOO, uintil I realized "BOO - you stink", as might have been shouted at AROD last night in Chicago.

    Thanks Ms. Lempel!

    Z 9:00 AM  

    75%of all the hops produced in the US? YAKIMA is obviously one of the most important counties in the country.

    And then the other passion of my life, DISC makes the puzzle properly clued (Frisbees aren't actually used much in DISC games, DISCraft, and Innova dominate the market) so I'm a happy camper.

    Norm C. 9:06 AM  

    It IRKs me, when "STEIN" is used as a generic beer container. Any self-respecting beer drinker would gladly enjoy a German lager from a stein, but a "draft of ale?" That would be in a pint glass. They're not the same thing.

    Lindsay 9:10 AM  

    Just read a STORY about the FATE of an MVP who plays for the UNION (oops Yankees) and decided to TAKE CHANCES. What a LOSER. An ASS. STEINbrenner, who doesn't PINCH PENNIES, is IRKed. DEMONIZING fans in the ARENA BOO. It doesn't ADD UP. Why didn't he just SAY NO and LIFT WEIGHTS instead?

    oldbizmark 9:10 AM  

    too many UPS for my liking in an otherwise uninspiring puzzle.

    Carola 9:14 AM  
    This comment has been removed by the author.
    Carola 9:16 AM  

    I smiled when I saw Lynn Lempel's name at the top, figuring there'd be a cute theme and much else to like. Had fun, as expected. Thought it would have been nice if all the theme answers could have been like POCKET KNIVES and COP CARS, where the first word functions both as a noun in a common phrase and as a verb. LIFT WEIGHTS maybe could be found in elevators?

    German mini-theme: BONN, STEIN, KNOPF (button), ASS (ace).

    9:14 AM

    B Donohue 9:22 AM  

    I liked the theme, though didn't like the cAMI/cOPCAR cross.

    I haven't heard "cop" used as a verb in this way.

    loren muse smith 9:27 AM  

    Smooth, smooth, smooth. Lynn’s puzzles always make me think, “Wow. Why didn’t I think of that?” She had a terrific TIGHT END one at the ACPT.

    SPATE is a great word. Funny how some words just never get used. (Reba and I use "cadge" all the time now, fwiw.) Last week, I was talking to the mother of the groom about how we would mark the first two rows on each side to indicate they would be reserved. She used a word that absolutely derailed me, and I owned UP to it. She finished and then was noticing my blank stare. I told her, “You lost me at ‘festoon.’”

    I keep trying to force sCRIMPed (”Pinched pennies’) into BEQ’s 1d from yesterday. It. Just. Won’t. Fit.

    I was just on EBAY yesterday! I’ve decided to resurrect the Spangl Thistle china that I grew up with, and I need 5 more dinner plates. What a great site. I’ve bought countless things there with only one mishap – a few years ago I was looking for a big pot to cook a batch of chili to freeze. I have no idea about measures, quarts, etc., and I bought a Big Stock Pot. Alarms should have gone off when I had to pay a restaurant supply company. . . Let’s just say small children could hide in this thing. We use it once a year to cook lobsters – it holds 21 lobsters and fits over two burners. (The year we christened it, we were in Maine. We had bought 22 lobsters, but that last one just wouldn’t fit. So we took it outside to the ocean, removed the rubber band, and released it back into the water with great ceremony and a cheesy poem. The kids were pretty young and really got a kick out of it. Needless to say, this has become a tradition -we always buy an extra one to release back into the ocean whenever we cook lobsters in Maine.)

    A few weeks ago when I was watching Gone with the Wind with my daughter, when the burning of Atlanta scene came on, I told her, “The stunt man who is driving that cart pretending to be Rhett is YAKIMA Canutt.” Sheesh. How did I remember that or even know that to begin with? So I guess there’s a 1939 Vic Fleming pair going on with TOTO and YAKIMA. (But actually Cukor probably directed the burning of Atlanta scene.)

    Yakima

    fvigeland 9:37 AM  

    Went to Google "ecdysiastical definition" and what should turn up in the first page of results but our very own host, five years ago!

    http://rexwordpuzzle.blogspot.com/2008/09/tuesday-sep-9-2008-patrick-john-duggan.html

    Liked this puzzle a lot, though agreed about using the words meaning "steal" as adjectives.

    quilter1 9:42 AM  

    @Rex, I would think with a young daughter CAMIs would be pretty common at your house. My granddaughter got some CAMIs for her birthday this year. I liked this puzzle so much--no complaints here. Easy with a touch of crunch.

    joho 9:53 AM  

    In margin: "You've gotta love a puzzle that starts off with ASS!"

    And I did!

    I thought this was perfect Monday (I do know it's Tuesday).

    Interesting, fun, simple, quirky theme beautifully executed by a true master of crossword craft.

    Thanks, Lynn!

    Z 9:57 AM  

    Best use of a schwa to create humor this week occurs about 1:30 into this clip.

    JC66 9:58 AM  

    Welcome back @PurpleGuy

    @B Donohue

    As a post-pubescent 15 yr old, didn't you ever COP a feel?

    Tita 10:11 AM  

    @lms - I collect Stangl!!!!
    Though it is not the patterned style - it's more like Fiesta - each piece a different color, with fluted rims.
    How funny! (Though not as funny as your lobster story...)

    Thanks, @Z - when I saw the topic, thanks to your hint, I realized what he was up to...

    jberg 10:25 AM  

    Just a few things to add. 1, I liked the variety of the sports clues, with only 2 baseball but one each from rodeo and gladiatorial combat; and 2, I think there are so many euphemisms for 'steal' because people, we, swipe things all the time, but don't want to say so baldly.

    Two Ponies 10:30 AM  

    Lynn's a pro for sure.
    Very enjoyable solve.
    I liked the cross of wry/story clued with O. Henry. Of course I wanted irony for 68A until I saw in the other clue.
    Liked the clue for Boo but totally agree that a Boo Radley clue would be cool. Robert Duvall played Boo.

    Sandy K 10:45 AM  

    Enjoyable theme with some nice downs. Same thought as @Milford- how many words we have for stealing...

    Didn't mind the EAT UP, ADD UP, UNTIE, UNZIP too much.

    I hear the word CAMI IN USE, rather than camisole...

    @lms- Heard on 'The making of GWTW'- they used the part of the King Kong set (the big wall on the island) for the burning of Atlanta- you can sorta see it when Rhett and Scarlett barely make their getaway in the horse and buggy.

    MetaRex 10:51 AM  

    Nice overlap between the finagling theme and the edgy feel of TAKE CHANCES, POCKET KNIVES, and COP CARS...the implicit bringin sexy back theme is also nice.

    Played around for a few minutes to see if ya can get rid of the unpretty 3 x 3 blocks in the NW and SE...came up w/ TAKE CHARGE crossing POCKET KNIVES in the NW and LIFT TICKET crossing PINCH PENNIES in the SE. I like the interlock and the lack of boxcars in the hypothetical reworked grid...OTOH ya got an issue of inconsistency w/ some thematic answers not endin in S. Hey, this stuff ain't easy.

    Captain G. Piecost 10:56 AM  

    A breeze. But it was just Tuesday. Way too easy for me.

    Glimmerglass 11:12 AM  

    I bet Cabela's makes a camo cami.

    Melodious Funk 11:29 AM  

    The puzzle was quite sweet, kudos for Ms. Lempel. However I have a nagging thought, apropos of nothing whatsoever, and I thought I would pose it in this particular forum.

    Have you ever noticed the etching on all automobile passenger's side view mirror? *Every* car manufacturer during the last Umty-ump years has it:

    Objects in the mirror are larger than they appear.

    It has always been jarring to me. There *are* no objects in the mirror, they appear there. Without adding complications, a re-arranged expression more properly should be,

    Objects are larger than they appear in the mirror.

    So I ask myself, Myself, why is this? I know two professional linguists of emminent qualifications, degrees, pedigrees, filagrees, verdigris, whatever. I asked them both this question. They didn't bother to respond, probably thinking it unfathomable, or maybe too obvious for contemplation.

    However, this is a forum where folks evicerate every written triviality ad infinitum until it becomes a quivering mass. So I ask you all, Why is this strangeness in the side-view mirror perpetuated? Is this actually strangeness? Does anyone know if the German, Italian, Swedish versions are the same? I have never driven a car in Europe, so no experience there.

    Any thoughts appreciated.

    PS. I bring this up often while driving with my wife of almost 50 years. She doesn't bother to respond and hasn't for about 49 years. Maybe a reasonable response here will stop her from gnashing her teeth. But I doubt it.

    Melodious Funk 11:33 AM  

    Oops, sorry. Replace "larger" with "closer." My bad.

    Ray J 12:20 PM  

    Breaking Bad viewers may recall Casa Tranquila nurse saying to Hector Salamanca: “Dear? Deal? Honey, dea is not a word.” Final episodes begin Sunday.

    Yakima roof racks adorn my vehicle, but glad Ms. Lempel stuck with apples here.

    Fun puzzle.

    @Melodius Funk – no message on the mirrors of either my 22-yr. old Mitsubishi pickup or my 11-yr. old Subaru wagon.

    LaneB 12:31 PM  

    Like most of the posters, I thought the Tuesday edition was cute, tight and a bit easier than yesterday's. Always happy to grind through these things without erasure , google help or interruption. Enjoyed the lms lobster story, too. A little bonus in today's blog.

    Masked and Anonymo3Us 12:49 PM  

    @Melodious Funk: You reminded me of the Farside cartoon, showing a gal lookin at an image in her side mirror, with that "larger than they appear" message. Image was a giant eyeball that filled the mirror. har.

    Speakin of eyeballs, luved that "Type who wears..." clue, at 43-down. First of all it was darn near as long as "War and Peace", so more for yer money and thUmbsUp for that. Second, I evolved more bogus answers for that thing than any entry in quite a spell. A few of 'em that I still remember:
    HARLOTY
    HASBEEN
    HANSOLO
    HANGDOG
    HAMHEAD
    HALFWIT
    HAPPIER
    But I digress. Still, really wanted HAUNTED there. It's the one that has that lovely letter whose cUp is always half fUll. Anyhoo, M&A erased the bah-jesus outta that column of the puz.

    Extremely well-endowed puz. Wonder if the double-L-meister ever considered LIFTTICKETS, to get the that adjectivity that 4-Oh so craved.


    HAPLESS



    retired_chemist 12:57 PM  

    @ Melodious - the msg is clear despite being incorrect. My wife wouldn't respond either, except with an eye-roll or, if she is feeling particualrly petulant, THE LOOK.

    While we're at it, how do you regard the signs reading "Do not put anything in Toilet" in public restrooms?

    Carola 1:08 PM  

    @Melodius Funk - Not sure...I think we do say that things are "in the mirror: "I saw myself in the mirror," the song "Man in the Mirror"....

    M and A also 1:16 PM  

    p.s. Man, the tail end of my last msg was pretty... hapless. Sorry. Will try to do better. At least you can tell yer grandchildren that you once saw some yakima try to use "the that" in a sentence. snort.

    thUmbswayUp to Jeff Chen, for savin my fave U-countin website from windin down. Let's celebrate, and make cupcakes.

    UNTIE/UNZIP symmetric bookends were primo, btw.

    Questinia 1:21 PM  

    Re side-view mirror: my husband crossed out "larger" and wrote in "cuter" once. He also rearranged the letters on a sign that read "keep out no trespassing" to " peek out no traipsing". He oddly isn't into puzzles.

    Bird 1:24 PM  

    I liked the theme, but I never heard COP used as a synonym for “make off with”. COP (beg for) a plea, COP a squat (take a seat) and COP (sneak) a feel (which is the closest to “make off with”). I liked the long downs, but not the two UNs (19A and 59A) even if they are symmetrical and similar and UPs. ASS and SASS?

    SEALY before SERTA and RINSES before ERODES.

    @Norm C – I agree with you on STEINS

    John V 1:36 PM  

    Things in restrooms are smaller than they seem, or so I'm told.

    chefbea 1:54 PM  

    @Mand A I'll be happy to make the cUp cakes unless U really want to.

    Now I have to go look at our 2 new Toyotaa and see what's written on the mirror

    Lewis 2:32 PM  

    Lynn has the unenviable job of sending reject emails to the puzzles Will doesn't accept. Glad to see the love she's getting today.

    I really liked the cluing, which I thought was Tuesday-perfect. Unsophisticated, precise, and clear. A fun solve.

    Grid gruel: DAK, ITA, DEA -- in other words, a very pleasant dearth of gruel.

    Interesting cross of HIPSTER and LOSER, and I like LOLA, ALOHA and YAKIMA all in the same neighborhood.

    Good one, John V!

    I know my state, NC, has been getting a deserved bad rap recently. Hopefully we've begun to turn that around with a huge rally of 5,000-8,000 in Asheville yesterday. The legislature has gone nuts.

    M and A Help Line 2:46 PM  

    @Lewis... Please try to keep those NC legislators in the real world. I thought I heard the Shortzmeister say once that Paul Gamauche handled the puz correspondence. Hell, I don't know. My one reject letter came from a NYT attorney. Said somethin about it'd be better, if I got Therapy. Is that Therapy dealy one of them there computer crossword developin software packages? If it's got the "maximize U's" setting, I want that.

    Hapless 2:50 PM  

    PaulA Gamache. Day-um. Bad day.
    :(

    Lewis 2:50 PM  

    @m&a -- Oh my gosh -- I think you're right about that! My goof! Maybe I'm the one needing Therapy!

    Melodious Funk 3:04 PM  

    @JohnV: hah! Good one. But of course the sign in the restroom should be, Things in the rest room seem smaller than they are.

    Not to put too fine a point on it. So to speak...

    gifcan 3:34 PM  

    Nicely done @Lindsay.

    Easy puzzle, thankfully. Still reeling after Saturday.

    sanfranman59 4:28 PM  

    Midday report of relative difficulty (see my 8/1/2009 post for an explanation of my method and my 10/15/2012 post for an explanation of a tweak to my method):

    All solvers (median solve time, average for day of week, ratio, percentile, rating)

    Tue 7:19, 8:13, 0.89, 20%, Easy

    Top 100 solvers

    Tue 4:56, 4:58, 0.99, 46%, Medium

    ahimsa-NYT 6:08 PM  

    A very cute puzzle. Many kudos to Lynn Lempel!

    It was so much fun it made me want to come up with more theme entries. How about, "Make off with Kindles and Kobos?" = PALM READERS? Oops, those things are actually too big to steal by palming. :-)

    @Melodius Funk, what a philosophical question about mirrors! I can't answer it but I will pass on a comment from a friend. One time he looked in my side mirror and then announced, "Hey, I'm closer than I appear!"

    Z 9:24 PM  

    Camo CAMI is a thing.

    sanfranman59 2:13 AM  

    This week's relative difficulty ratings. See my 8/1/2009 post for an explanation and my 10/15/2012 post for an explanation of a tweak I've made to my method. In a nutshell, the higher the ratio, the higher this week's median solve time is relative to the average for the corresponding day of the week.

    All solvers (this week's median solve time, average for day of week, ratio, percentile, rating)

    Mon 6:50, 6:09, 1.11, 87%, Challenging
    Tue 7:23, 8:13, 0.90, 19%, Easy

    Top 100 solvers

    Mon 4:15, 3:47, 1.13, 89%, Challenging
    Tue 4:42, 4:57, 0.95, 30%, Easy-Medium

    Anonymous 11:06 AM  

    Is a spa really a "fitness facility"?? How could that be anything but gym!

    spacecraft 11:40 AM  

    @Melodious: You're right--but I wish that was MY biggest problem of the day! Deal with it. How about "This page has intentionally been left blank."

    No it hasn't; you have just intentionaly un-blanked it with that sentence!

    On to more erudite puzzles. Today's didn't seem to strike the same chord in me as in many others. I thought the theme was ho-hum, and the fill--outside of two very nifty long downs, its best feature--not all that moving. It was...okay. Weird clue: 43d. I'm trying to picture this person in tight jeans and thick-rimmed glasses. What, a fast-growing nerd?? A myopic Vinnie Barbarino??

    77 Sunset Strip:
    You meet the highbrow and the HIPSTER,
    The starlet and the phony TIPSTER [also recently appeared]
    You meet most every kind of gal and guy--
    Including a private eye!

    Yeah, I know: even back then, I needed a life.

    rain forest 12:56 PM  

    My favourite bugbear is the sign in the express lane at a supermarket that reads "12 or less items". Only the QFC in Sequim, Wash. has the correct "12 or FEWER items". Obviously the meaning is clear, but it bugs me nonetheless.

    Nice puzzle. Yakima grows wonderful Cabernet Sauvignon grapes, btw. Also, like many cities in Wash. and Or., Yakima is not as well known as smaller cities in the Eastern states. Regionalism.

    Ginger 2:54 PM  

    Reminds me of a Garry Shandling line about the mirror above his bed, "Objects in this mirror are larger than they appear".

    The fruit stands near YAKIMA have the most wonderful cherries in early July. Yum

    Quick, easy, fun puzzle. I like how 48-A, UNION Gap is a town directly adjacent to 46-A YAKIMA.

    @DMG Absolutely scintillating final yesterday. Hope you were able to watch it.

    Waxy in Montreal 3:13 PM  

    Am driving down from the Vancouver area to Salem, Oregon next week so all the extremely positive comments about Yakima suggest a worthwhile detour to be made en route.

    My bugbear (and I've blogged about it before) is "near-miss" which I think should be "near-hit".

    Fun puzzle but, as others have suggested, probably should have been flip-flopped with yesterday's.

    Solving in Seattle 8:44 PM  

    Wow! I came to Rexville late today and there is a SPATE of stuff to talk about.

    Only writeovers were irOny before STORY, and jaNE before ANNE.

    Really nice Tuesday, Lynn.

    @Ginger, yes on the Yakima cherries. We travel to Walla Walla every Summer to play golf and sample wine. Always bring back wine, onions and cherries. Wasn't Gary Puckett from Union Gap?

    @Waxy, if you're driving from Vancouver (my fav city in the world) to Salem (why Salem?), skip Yakima. Good town to drive through to Walla Walla but not a destination. Visit La Conner WA for the tulips and Newberg OR for the pinot noir tasting. Both right off I5.

    @M&A, Gary Larsen used to live directly across the street from Bill Gates. In his second story bedroom window he had a cow's skull. Apparently, they never met. The story has it that Steve Jobs was being interviewed at a conference and was told that Gary Larsen and Bill Gates lived across the street from one another and Bill Gates did not know who his neighbor was. Job's reply was "who is Bill Gates?"

    @LMS, absolutely love the lobster story. Have one for you. I was summering on Mt. Desert Island while in college and my host, Karl, was invited to a party in Bar Harbor at the Dorrance's place. I walked in to the room with the food and saw a pile of lobster claws over a foot high. No sign of the tails. I asked Karl what would have happened to the tails. He said they would probably have thrown them away. As we left the party we swung by the alley in back of the house and, sure enough, there were mounds of lobster tails wrapped in newspaper in the garbage. Well, not wanting to see such a delicacy go to waste, I dived in and retrieved the tails, throwing them in the back of Karl's VW van, and off we went back to Northeast Harbor. We got on the jungle drums and told people to bring beer, wine, clams and corn, and proceeded to have the biggest lobster feast on the beach you could imagine. I just wish I had had a live one to send back to the ocean.

    Waxy in Montreal 11:23 PM  

    Thanks muchly @SiS for the advice. Driving to Salem to visit with some of my wife's family who live down there - an area I like a lot - as part of a couple of weeks of vacation on the left coast.

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