Hawaiian medicine man / MON 2-10-14 / Nine-headed serpent of myth / Preppy party-loving egotistical male in modern lingo / Position between second third informally

Monday, February 10, 2014

Constructor: C. W. Stewart

Relative difficulty: Medium



THEME: REC CENTER (62A: Gym locale … or feature of 17-, 24-, 38- and 50-Across) — letter string "REC" sits at the center of familiar phrases:

Theme answers:
  • SCORE CARD (17A: Item accompanying a pencil in miniature golf)
  • SPARE CASH (24A: Money available for nonessentials)
  • CREATURE COMFORT (38A: Food, warmth or a cozy bed)
  • SCARECROW (50A: Stuffed figure in a cornfield)

Word of the Day: MYRTLE Beach (41D: ___ Beach, S.C.) —
Myrtle Beach /mʊrˈtəlˈb/ is a coastal city on the east coast of the United States in Horry CountySouth Carolina. It is situated on the center of a large and continuous stretch ofbeach known as the Grand Strand in northeastern South Carolina.
Myrtle Beach is one of the major centers of tourism in the United States because of the city's warm subtropical climate and extensive beaches, attracting an estimated 14 million visitors each spring/summer/fall. As of the 2010 census, the population of the city was 27,109, with the Myrtle Beach-North Myrtle Beach-Conway combined statistical area population of 329,449. […] The area is home to numerous golf courses and mini-golf courses along the Grand Strand and further inland. Myrtle Beach has been called the "Golf Capital of the World" because of the 100 golf courses located there, the record 4.2 million rounds played, and many miniature golf courses. 3.7 million total rounds of golf were played in 2007. The majority of the area's golf courses are public. (wikipedia)
• • •

This one took me 3:09, which is clearly not "long," but is longer than normal, for me (by maybe 20 seconds or so). I say this only because the puzzle felt incredibly straightforward—"difficulty" on a Monday can be very hard to gauge, because the slightest brain glitch can thrown you right off track. Hold-ups on harder puzzles don't mean much; ten seconds here or there aren't going to throw off your time much. But high-speed crashes, you feel. Today, nothing was terribly hard, but my brain failed to process things well on a few occasions. First, KAHUNA. That was the answer I wanted for 30A: Hawaiian medicine man, largely because I had the "K," but … "medicine man" just didn't compute. I'm used to the phrase "Big KAHUNA," meaning, I don't know, some kind of big shot or important person. Which, I guess, a "medicine man" is, in some contexts. But I balked at writing in KAHUNA until I'd checked a bunch of the crosses, which took a little time, as SPARE CASH didn't go straight in and HASTY didn't come straight to mind … little things, but they slowed me. Needed a ton of crosses to see CREATURE COMFORT, but I knew that was going to be the case pretty quickly and so didn't even relook at that clue until I'd crossed it with a bunch of answers. The next snag was a misreading. I had AHS at 60D: Response to a massage (AAH). Clue is clearly singular. Brain registered plural. Who can say why? But the worst hold-up of all was MYRTLE Beach. I have heard the name a million times, always (I think) in the context of golf coverage I'm not really paying attention to. But ___ Beach, S.C. meant zero to me, and the more letters I put in … the more letters I put in, i.e. didn't matter. I had MYR-LE and didn't know what I was looking at. MYROLE? Of course the T-cross wasn't hard to pick up, but somehow the cumulative effect of all these hiccups was a slightly slower-than-normal time. Since I don't think my hiccups will be typical, I just rated it "Medium" (i.e. average for a Monday, i.e. easy).


Quality-wise, I wasn't that thrilled. It's solid, but slightly dull, with the AZALEA / SOUS CHEF portion of the grid being the mostly nicely executed. I also want to high-five the BRO clue (61D: Preppy, party-loving, egotistical male, in modern lingo). Nice work, bringing that one up to date—and so vividly. I can't help feeling that there must be a ton of "REC"-containing answers (where the "REC" is broken across two words), and at least *some* of them have to be more interesting than these. [I take that back—these RECs are *dead* center, which makes options more limited] I was surprised to see that not only had this theme never been done (with this revealer, anyway), but RECCENTER hasn't appeared in a mainstream puzzle in recent memory, if ever (nowhere in the cruciverb.com database). Weird.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

124 comments:

jae 12:07 AM  

Delightful easy Mon.  Clever theme, a touch of zip...SNARK, YABBA, BRO, SOUS CHEF (I just like the term) smooth grid, what's not to like?

Just started reading The Goldfinch and at the bottom of page 17 was this exchange:

Mother:  "Up here on the weekends it was magical --wandering the museum -- lolloping around Central Park on my own----"

Son:  " Lolloping?"  So much of her talk was exotic to my ear, and lollop sounded like some horse term from her childhood: a lazy gallop maybe, some equine gait between an cantor and a trot.

wreck 12:12 AM  

This puzzle was beneath me ;)

Anonymous 12:13 AM  

Too much of the icky stuff for me. Things like ALEUT, OTERI, DICT, SSS and ARON simply do not belong on a Monday.

I know someone is going to argue with me, so I'll put it this way: Yes, Elvis may be world-famous, but his middle name...I'm afraid not.

Theme made sense, but the fact that 3 of the entries started with an S, and all of the second words started with a C undoubtedly deserves a demerit.

Overall, I put it at slightly below NYT average, which basically means it's a horrendous puzzle to me.

Garth 12:13 AM  

What @jae said. Very nice revealer/theme.

Steve J 12:18 AM  

Easy-medium here. Time was on the fast end for me, but I didn't feel like I was blazing through this quite as fast as I would expect on a Monday.

Thought it was a solid Monday. Theme's nice, the answers are good, and outside DICT, SOU, ETAS and ORTS, fill was nice and clean. Highlights: SNARK, YABBA, SNARK, SKEET.

The clue for 38A seemed a little odd. Food and warmth seem like essentials for life, not CREATURE COMFORTS.

Enjoyable Monday.

Bookdeb 12:18 AM  

There may be a ton of other "REC"-containing answers across two words, but how many of them will have REC smack in the CENTER as these do?
That's a nice touch.

crackblind 12:24 AM  

I'm pretty surprised you didn't notice (or at least comment on) the fact that the "rec" string was in the exact center of the theme answers. There are 3 letters on either side of "rec" on all of them except CREATURE COMFORT, which had 6 letters on either side.

Bonus points for the symmetry and truth in the theme revealer?

Ellen S 12:25 AM  

I liked it okay. I see we have ORTS back in play again When you're done eating your Dragon Rolls and there are some crumbs of EEL left over, them there are ORTS.

So I had mulES before ASSES. It made me wonder, back when there were farms, and barnyards, and farmers, mules were useful. But I'm told the are a sterile hybrid (this is important, so they won't get the girl pregnant in the porno movies). So they--the farmers--would keep horses and ASSES around just in order to make more mules? Judging from the movies (not the ones previously mentioned, but ones about "real" farmers), most were lucky if they had "a" mule, let alone a mule-breeding setup. Just wondering.

Just little wisps of thought Scraps. ORTS.

Z 12:44 AM  

I believe Leo XIII had an EEL ORT scandal. It really got his GOAT.

Fine Monday. If ARON is not in your Monday repertoire you might want to practice some more. Apparently you never heard that Elvis lives and we know this because his tombstone has aARON on it. I remember when he was spotted at the Burger King in Kalamazoo when I was in college. The Weekly World News wouldn't make stuff like that up.

Ellen S 12:55 AM  

@Z, you shouldn't believe things like that. Everybody knows The King is on Mars ... there have been photographs.

Anoa Bob 1:32 AM  

Agree having the REC exactly in the CENTER of the themers kicked this one up a notch or two. Throw in some ADORABLE fill such as HYDRA, AZALEA, MYRTLE, SOUS CHEF, & KAHUNA, keep the suboptimal stuff like the NE POC fest to a minimum, and, YES, you got yourself a pretty spiffy Mon Puzzle. Good job, C.W.

@Ellen S, as someone who grew up in TN farm country and has plowed with a mule, I'm wondering exactly what kind of porno movies have you been watching. Judging from what I've seen when a mule is, how shall I put this, in full tumescence, I can't imagine how that could happen. Maybe a donkey. But a mule? Nah.

chefwen 2:07 AM  

Super easy foe me, Jon (the big KAHUNA in this household) ripped through this one also. Great puzzle for a budding solver.

chefwen 2:08 AM  

FOR instead of foe might make more sense.

Thomas808 2:17 AM  

I think ENDORA is also worthy of mention -- perhaps as obscure as ARON. Having grown up on Bewitched reruns, it was a pretty easy get, but it was a nice little gem in what I think was a well built West that also included LENDA crossing HAND.

And not using a football clue for AFL was pretty good, too, especially since the term "C.I.O." is now probably more associated with "Chief Information Officer" than its labor union meaning. My first instinct was "CEO" or "CFO" until the crosses saved me.

An enjoyable, easy, and elegant puzzle!

Adorable Creature Myrtles 2:21 AM  

Yes, JUST right!
One should applaud that it's never been done and how well it was done instead of shrugging off this nice original idea.

A little nice crunch with four Ks... would have been fun if there had been another one was in ADORkABLE!

Only cross I would have redone to make it a just right Monday is OTERI/ARON, but OTE?? doesn't give you much wiggle room.

I guess she could have made ARON into son of Shem... ARAM changing ACNE to ACME! ;)

And that 4D/25D repeat for KOREAN AUTOS was cute!

Danp 5:17 AM  

I thought the BRO clue was more SNARK than "up-to-date". Then again, I think SNARK means sarcasm while "cattiness" is mean, nasty, malevolent.

Anonymous 7:01 AM  

jeff tough guy will be joining the cast of days of our lives jeff tough guy will be playing as shawn brady in days of our lives jeff tough guy will be replacing actor Brandon beemer in days of our lives

Anonymous 7:03 AM  

joey will be joining the cast of days of our lives joey will be playing as shawn brady in days of our lives joey will be replacing actor jeff tough guy in days of our lives

Anonymous 7:04 AM  

Anthony will be joining the cast of days of our lives Anthony will be playing as shawn brady in days of our lives Anthony will be replacing actor joey in days of our lives

Anonymous 7:05 AM  

aaron will be joining the cast of days of our lives aaron will be playing AS SHAWN BRADY IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES AARON WILL BE REPLACING ACTOR ANTHONY IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES

Anonymous 7:06 AM  

RAY WILL BE JOINNING THE CAST OF DAYS OF OUR LIVES RAY WILL BE PLAYING AS SHAWN BRADY IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES RAY WILL BE REPLACING ACTOR AARON IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES

Anonymous 7:07 AM  

BRAD WILL BE JOINNING THE CAST OF DAYS OF OUR LIVES BRAD WILL BE PLAYING AS SHAWN BRADY IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES BRAD WILL BE REPLACING ACTOR RAY IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES

Anonymous 7:08 AM  

RAY WILL BE JOINNING THE CAST OF DAYS OF OUR LIVES RAY WILL BE PLAYING AS SHAWN BRADY IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES RAY WILL BE REPLACING ACTOR BRAD IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES

Anonymous 7:10 AM  

TONY WILL BE JOINNING THE CAST OF DAYS OF OUR LIVES TONY WILL BE PLAYING AS SHAWN BRADY IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES TONY WILL BE REPLACING ACTOR RAY IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES

Anonymous 7:11 AM  

ZACK WILL BE JOINNING THE CAST OF DAYS OF OUR LIVES ZACK WILL BE PLAYING AS SHAWN BRADY IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES ZACK WILL BE REPLACING ACTOR TONY IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES

Anonymous 7:14 AM  

RONNIE ORTIZ MAGRO FROM JERSEY SHORE WILL BE JOINNING THE CAST OF DAYS OF OUR LIVES RONNIE ORTIZ MAGRO WILL BE PLAYING AS SHAWN BRADY IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES RONNIE ORTIZ MAGRO FROM JERSEY SHORE WILL BE REPLACING ACTOR ZACK IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES BILLY MILLER FROM THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS / RONNIE ORTIZ MAGRO FROM JERSEY SHORE WILL BE IN HOLLYWOOD KNIGHTS AS THE NEW SHAWN BRADY IN DAYS OF OUR LIVES

Danp 7:45 AM  

So much for the effectiveness of captcha.

Anonymous 7:51 AM  

I thought that it was fine overall, but for the amount of so-so fill, I'd agree with Rex and give it a medium FOR A MONDAY. Still, 4 seconds faster than my Monday average, but that includes all the times early on when I wasn't trying for speed so much.

Anonymous 7:58 AM  

Yeah, I guess the numerical captchas are not distorted enough--unless that's one brain-dead "rhymes with louche" actually typing all that in

Susan McConnell 8:05 AM  

I originally thought the S-C was part of the theme, and was thrown off by the CREATURE COMFORTS answer. Other than that, it was a speedy, pretty typical Monday.

Are there still soap operas on TV?

jberg 8:12 AM  

I'm trying to think of a REC CENTER where the second word starts with EC. All I can come up with is BUTTER ECLAIRS (or is it ECLAIRE?), which are not actually a thing. Maybe CLEAR ECHOES? Not many choices.

I thought the AZALEA color range was too restricted, but it's true that there are pink ones and read ones.

I have a vague impression that the big KAHUNA is a surfing term, and the surfers presumably got it from some real Hawaiian phenomenon.

Any puzzle with Ogden NASH in it is OK with me, especially a non-llama one.

NCA President 8:12 AM  

To those who think that ARON is an obscurity in the life of Elvis, the heated debate about it is a thing.

(Hopefully that HTML tag will work)

aARON is on his tombstone because his father knew that he had wanted it changed legally to match the spelling of Moses' brother. Why it was ARON in the first place is debatable: either his father misspelled it at the hospital or his father was trying to pay homage to Elvis's younger stillborn brother "Garon."

ARON was used all through Elvis's life until 1977 when he had it changed...and now it's etched in marble as Aaron.

I think this comes up in Trivial Pursuit a lot and all kinds of silly music trivia conversations. I don't know of any other pop singer whose middle name gets as much attention.

AliasZ 8:14 AM  

There is no reason to depRECate this fine puzzle, nothing in it needs to be corRECted because nothing in it is impRECise. The point was exactly the precision with which REC was placed in the center of each theme answer. We should try rediRECting our criticism, and make sure to let Carolyn W. Stewart know that her fine construction did not go unnoticed, and is not unappRECiated.

We should also make sure that we double check the moistuREContent of the pressuREChamber where the voiceRECorder is housed on the ship that will take us on one of our pleasuRECruises around ALASKA to MYRTLE Beach at DUSK.

There is much to like here. I especially enjoyed watching the SOUSCHEF SKEET shooting in her ITTY-bitty, ADORABLE polka-dot-bikini, and then jumping into one of the POOLS of the cruise ship, after which she ENRAPT herself in a TERRY STOLE. I think her name was ENDORA, or was it LENDA? She had the TALENT to deal appropriately with all the gawking, SNARKy ASSES.

But enough now. Happy Monday all.

Mohair Sam 8:25 AM  

Fun Monday. It seems that when I cook my wife ends up cleaning the kitchen. She complained the other day that she wasn't my kitchen helper - I told her she wasn't merely kitchen help, she was my SOUSCHEF. It worked - the kitchen is spotless.

Couple of months (give or take) until we see AZALEAs. Its been a nasty winter.

Z 8:36 AM  

For those of you wondering, I think it is obvious that The King only gets Days of Our Lives on Mars and just wanted to keep all of us up to date. I wonder how the EEL ORTS are there. I'm guessing deep fried with peanut butter.

Andrew Morrison 8:36 AM  

My daughters, 13 and 10 yrs old, know Elvis ARON Presley. Jus' sayin'...........

:)

joho 8:43 AM  

After finishing I went back over the puzzle and realized that REC really was smack dab in the CENTER of each theme answer and was duly impressed.

ALEUT next to ALASKA is nice.

And so is this puzzle, thank you, C.W.!

Sir Hillary 8:58 AM  

Question for the cognescenti...

I counted 12 plurals in this 76-word grid. That seems like a lot...but is it? Is there an "acceptable" amount of plurals?

Maybe the plural stack in the NE has me more attuned to this than I would otherwise be.

Any help here would be appreciated.

ludyjynn 9:00 AM  

Easy, breezy Monday. Theme was totally non-essential for the solve. Thanks for the Presley tombstone lesson, everyone.

JayWalker 9:01 AM  

This puzzle wasn't even worth getting up for this morning. Brain dead easy.

quilter1 9:15 AM  

I never see these things while solving. Now seeing REC in the middle of the theme answers I am feeling more friendly toward the puzzle. At first I thought it was a kind of boring Monday, but I now appreciate the effort put in. Congratulations, C. W. Stewart.

cascokid san 9:24 AM  

EARL of TACO. That is all.

loren muse smith 9:50 AM  

Without this blog, the fact that the RECs were dead center would have been lost on me. Elegant, CW! That rules out “fire chief,” ”Devonshire cream,“ and “treasure chest,” huh?

@Susan McConnell – yeah – I kind of was looking for SHARE CROP to fall somewhere, thinking some kind of SC theme.

@jberg – solar (or lunar) eclipse?

@joho – I had “inuit” next to ALASKA first. I always do that.

I can’t be the only one whose mind was derailed with ENRAPT? I stared off into space for a while wondering about ENRAPT vs RAPT.

MYRTLE BEACH – we went there every summer from the time I was an infant through my graduate school years. The drive from Chattanooga was at least 10 hours, and my sisters and I would go out to the Chevy Sedan That Was As Long As Our Driveway about 45 minutes early so that we could mark off “my spot” and start bickering before the car was even in gear. As we got close, we would look down long, flat side roads to see who would be the first to “see the water.” And we would lick our lips and swear we could already taste the salt. (I don’t think I ever really tasted salt that far out, but I assured my sisters I tasted it, too.) When I was about 10, my grandfather, “Bigdaddy,” trusted me with the dime to walk to the pier to buy the newspaper. I swear, that was one of my proudest moments as a child. And then every morning at 9am, my AUNT LaVerne would hold a thirty- minute “shell class” on the back porch, and our neighbors, Chris and Roland, were required to attend, too. We were all pretty good sports – but we weren’t ENRAPT and always beat a HASTY retreat.

Loved SNARK!

Surely, they use the Euro in Switzerland now? Anyway, we had FRANC and SOU.

Great start to the week!

cascokid san 10:04 AM  

@lms oh, oh, oh surely the Swiss are above the Euro., and will always be. Ever hear "kinda-special" spoken with a cutsie Swiss accent? It falls trippingly from even the least-practiced tongues. Unnerving. ;)

lawprof 10:04 AM  

I used to think that Elvis' parents had simply misspelled his middle name. (My brother's name is Aaron). Then it occurred to me to ask whether it is even possible to misspell a proper name. One's name is whatever it is. Suppose one's name is "Dwyane" (pronounced "Dwayne")or "Pflaznyk" (pronounced "Misha"), who's to argue?

AliasZ 10:06 AM  

"...

Abracadabra, thus we learn
The more you create, the less you earn.
The less you earn, the more you’re given,
The less you lead, the more you’re driven,
The more destroyed, the more they feed,
The more you pay, the more they need,
The more you earn, the less you keep,
And now I lay me down to sleep.
I pray the Lord my soul to take
If the tax-collector hasn’t got it before I wake."

from One From One Leaves Two by Ogden NASH (1902-1971)

chefbea 10:09 AM  

I know someone who will be pleased that the puzzle started of with 2 U's!!!

Fun easy puzzle. Of course knew Myrtle Beach. Go there all the time..It's about 50 minutes from Wilmington. Great shopping!!

Anonymous 10:10 AM  

mlle will be joining the cast of days of our lives mlle will be playing as belle black in days of our lives mlle will be replacing actress Martha Madison in days of our lives

Anonymous 10:13 AM  

anne will be joining the cast of days of our lives anne will be playing as belle black in days of our lives anne will be replacing actress mlle in days of our lives

Anonymous 10:14 AM  

marine will be joining the cast of days of our lives marine will be playing as belle black in days of our lives marine will be replacing actress anne in days of our lives

Anonymous 10:17 AM  

marie will be joining the cast of days of our lives marie will be playing as belle black in days of our lives marie will be replacing actress anne in days of our lives

Questinia 10:18 AM  

New Acquaintances of the day:

AZALEA DASH
EARL MYRTLE
ENDORA POOLS
TERRY SKEET
FRANC NASH
LEE SNARK


@ Ellen S Have you ever used an ETUI for your EEL ORTS? Then just toss it down the ADIT.
@ jae, maybe lollop comes from galloping with a lollipop.

Anonymous 10:19 AM  

melodie will be joining the cast of days of our lives melodie will be playing as belle black in days of our lives melodie will be replacing actress marie in days of our lives

Anonymous 10:21 AM  

Johanna will be joining the cast of days of our lives Johanna will be playing as belle black in days of our lives Johanna will be replacing actress melodie in days of our lives

Two Ponies 10:28 AM  

Fun easy Monday that taught me what kahuna meant.

What in the world is the purpose of the soap opera robot?

Now off to PBS to find out what happened on Downton Abbey.

@ jae, I read the Goldfinch but did not admire it as much as the critics.

Steve J 10:46 AM  

@Loren: Lots of places accept the euro in Switzerland now (especially places near borders or that cater to travelers), but the official currency remains the franc. Likely always will, since the Swiss are not part of the European Union and almost certainly never will be.

Bob Kerfuffle 10:47 AM  

Nice puzzle. New ideas are tough to come by, so always a joy to see one.

36 D had a nice tricky clue, with + and - referring to the shape of the slots rather than positive and negative as one might at first think.

Gill I. P. 10:56 AM  

Good lord, somebody go knock on OFL's door and tell him he needs to delete.....I'll never watch Days of our Lives again..
When my spouse finished this puzzle last night I asked him if he "got it"!!! He said YES, I see the RECs. I said now look closely and see if it's something special. He said "Oh, the REC is in the center, that's something..."
My AZALEAS have been in bloom since Jan...!
Went to MYRTLE Beach once for dad's 70th Bday. We rented a bunch of condos and played lots of golf. The only thing I didn't like about it was that you couldn't drink wine on a Sunday at the restaurant! What's up with that?
Congratulations Ms. Stewart...this was a perfect Monday puzzle.

Anonymous 10:59 AM  

veronikca will be joining the cast of days of our lives veronikca will be playing as belle black in days of our lives veronica will be replacing actress Johanna in days of our lives

Anonymous 11:02 AM  

Veronika will be joining the cast of days of our lives VeroniKA will be playing as belle black in days of our lives VeroniKA will be replacing actress JOHANNA in da

Anonymous 11:04 AM  

VERONIQUE WILL BE JOINNING THE CAST OF DAYS OF OUR LIVES VERONIQUE WILL BE PLAYING AS BELLE BLAck in days of our lives Veronique will be replacing actress veronika in days of our lives

Anonymous 11:07 AM  

sarah will be joining the cast of days of our lives sarah will be playing as belle black in days of our lives sarah will be replacing actress Veronique in days of our lives

Anonymous 11:08 AM  

sammi sweetheart giancola from jersey shore will be joining the cast of days of our lives sammi sweetheart giancola will be playing as belle black in days of our lives sammi sweetheart giancola from jersey shore will be replacing actress sarah in days of our lives

Carola 11:15 AM  

I found it a fine Monday puzzle, interesting all the way through, and (for me) a nice fake-out with the reveal: after the TEASE of SCORE CARD and SPARE CASH, I was also CONned into thinking we were dealing with an S-C theme, but then along came (the terrific) CREATURE COMFORT. Very nice that REC is right in the CENTER.

Besides the ALEUT - ALASKA pair, I also like these grid companions: Kitchen - SOUS CHEF and DASH; garden - AZALEA and ASTER; cars - AUTOS and NASH; spa - ACHES to AAH; track and field - DASH and RELAYS, currency - FRANC and SOU, farm - RURAL and SCARE CROW. I loved how the little leftover ORTS were consigned to the bottom corner.

Anonymous 11:22 AM  

greg rikaart from the young and the restless will guest star on Hawaii five o greg rikaart will be playing as mitch czuba in Hawaii five o

Anonymous 11:24 AM  

greg rikaart from the young and the restless will guest star on how I met your mother greg rikaart will be playing as ed lewis in how I met your mother

Pete 12:03 PM  

Screw it, I'm going to join the cast of The Young and the Restless just to meed all these crossword fanatics.

Anonymous 12:11 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will be joining the cast of general hospital thad luckinbill will be playing as Jason morgan in general hospital thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will be replacing actor steve burton in general hospital

Anonymous 12:14 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on Hawaii five o thad luckinbill will be playing as martin anstett in Hawaii five o

Anonymous 12:17 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on how I met your mother thad luckinbill will be playing as ed auger in how I met your mother

Lewis 12:19 PM  

And if the REC was NOT in the exact center of the theme answers, I do believe that would be a theme of the comments today.

I found this puzzle to be a little Monday gem, with not too much grid gruel, some zippy answers (as others have pointed out) and a good Mondayish theme (although it didn't help with my solve).

EEL:EllenS ; ORTS:me

Anonymous 12:19 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on blue bloods thad luckinbill will be playing as frank barnes in blue bloods

Anonymous 12:22 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on the big bang theory thad luckinbill will be playing as brian bin in the big bang theory

Anonymous 12:28 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on the millers thad luckinbill will be playing AS DICKY BRIAn in the millers

Anonymous 12:30 PM  

THAD LUCKINBILL FROM THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS WILL GUEST STAR ON LAW AND ORDER SVU THAD LUCKINBILL WILL BE PLAYING AS ANDY CANN IN LAW AND ORDER SVU

Anonymous 12:32 PM  

THAD LUCKINBILL FROM THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS WILL GUEST STAR ON CRIMINAL MINDS THAD LUCKINBILL WILL BE PLAYING AS TONY CARBONE IN CRIMINAL MINDS

Masked and Restless and Anonymo6Us 12:36 PM  

Spunky MonPuz theme. Might make a good 7x7 theme: could have SURECAN crossin DIRECTV. Good luck fittin the revealer in, tho.... ECCENTE is the center of REC CENTER, tho... And E is the center of REC... E is also the center of LEE and CREATURECOMFORT, which are centered in today's puz... But I wonder aimlessly...

Monday Moocow Watch:
* "Do ___ others as. . ." is very moo-cow smooth and creamy...
* "Leaky tire sound" ain't gonna have a lotta other 3-letter possibilities...
* 3-letter "Cloud's place". We have a winner! Gotta be FOG.

Highly funky MonPuz cluein that darn near stampeded the herd:
* That wild SCREW clue. Wanted DCELL.
* "Hawaiian medicine dude". Yep. Agree with 4-Oh.
* "Out of town?" Standin O, for trottin out the -? clue in yer MonPuz. Outta state. Outta body experience.

thUmbsUp.

M&A

Anonymous 12:37 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on under the dome thad luckinbill will be playing aS CHARLIE CONFORZI IN UNDER THE DOME

Anonymous 12:41 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on big time rush thad luckinbill will be playing as eddie Cummings in big time rush

Anonymous 12:43 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on victorious thad luckinbill will be playing as malcom Cummings in victorious

Anonymous 12:45 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on some assembly required thad luckinbill will be playing as shane dilello in some assembly required

Anonymous 12:48 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on sam and cat thad luckinbill will be playing as Michael donaghy in sam and cat

Anonymous 12:50 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on Wendell and Vinnie thad luckinbill will be playing as louie Duncan in Wendell and vinnie

Anonymous 12:54 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on law and order svu thad luckinbill will be playing as andy frieson in law and order svu

Anonymous 12:56 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on the office thad luckinbill will be playing as walter godry in the office

Anonymous 12:57 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on haunted hathaways thad luckinbill will be playing as andy godry in haunted hathaways

Bird 1:36 PM  

Good puzzle. Liked the misdirect in the themers – I thought it was first word “S” and second word “C”. Even at 10D. But got straightened out at 62A, changed the S to C at 38A/31D and continued on.

Could do without some of the POC though, especially SSS and ETAS.
Is SPARE CASH the new PETTY CASH?

Played golf down in Myrtle Beach some years back during a summer vacation. The golf was great, but it was very hot and very muggy that August. Cold beers at Ocean Annie’s were a relief.

Invasion! The anti-captchas have gotten through the first defense.

joho 1:46 PM  

OMG, it seems I've just joined the cast on "The Young & The Restless!" I hope I don't blow my lines!

AliasZ 1:50 PM  

Invasion of the bloody captchas.

Sfingi 1:52 PM  

Didn't know BRO had been updated; not that I use it. How about Sistah?

@Rex - can't you dump all those young and restless comments? Or am I missing something like with BRO?

Maybe Our Leader is teaching as we comment. Or joining the staff...yeesh,

@anon 1213 - Mondays are exactly when this stuff may appear.

Nameless 1:57 PM  

Re: Invasion:

Don't we have programmers on this blog? Maybe we should be looking at them?

Just kidding.

M and Young and Also 2:24 PM  

p.s.
Too bad REX-centered doesn't have much red meat, other than BAREXAM.

Yo! Gettin tired of readin the sap opera news? Here's the latest M&A grid and bear it:
www.xwordinfo.com/Solve?id=49913&id2=1161682121
har. Talk about yer junk blog comments. Clearly, 15-Across was the seed entry...

@chefbea: U have been promoted from SOUSCHEF to U-CHEF.

M&A

chefbea 2:33 PM  

@M&A thanks!!! Maybe I ought to change my name to ChefU…ChefU the U-chef!!…..That way Chefbea can get a job acting in soap operas!!

Bob Kerfuffle 2:37 PM  

@M and Young and Also - Another little gem. Muy bueno.

I must be getting better - 7:31, no help. Some great little clues!

Thanks again.

Acme 2:43 PM  

@Carola
Me too for thinking S-C was going to be the theme, wondering what clever reveal because that would be pretty thin without an oomph reason.

But ScareCrow, ScoreCard, SpareCash, SousChef
AND a clue about Myrtle Beach, SC was too hard to ignore.
It flashed thru my brain that the reveal would be southern state SOUTHCAROLINA or a hint to the postal code!

Can only the moderator delete the robot stuff? I think Evan, Matt or Puzzle Girl must still have keys to the castle.

Anonymous 2:59 PM  

@jberg, loren m-s

BUTTERECLAIRS works, as does SUGARECLAIR, but the ECLIPE ones don't CENTER unless it's A SOLAR ECLIPSE and A LUNAR ECLIPSE.

Other ones with a EC- starting word could be FAR ECHO, HARBOR ECOLOGY, BARTER ECONOMY. Would have really liked to find one with ECHELON; too bad that REAR and UPPER wouldn't make it CENTER. ECDYSIAST, alas, too long for a 15x15.

Domo Arigato, Mr. Roboto!

Evan 3:01 PM  

@acme:

So far as I know, I don't have the ability to delete comments -- I don't think I could do that even on posts that I published. The only things I can do are sign in to Blogger and publish new posts, and edit ones that I published previously.

sanfranman59 4:15 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)

Mon 6:04, 6:20, 0.96, 29%, Easy-Medium

Top 100 solvers

Mon 3:54, 3:59, 0.98, 34%, Easy-Medium

Anonymous 4:20 PM  

thad luckinbill from the young and the restless will guest star on sean saves the world thad luckinbill will be playing as buzz graham in sean saves the world

Anonymous 4:23 PM  

THAD LUCKINBILL FROM THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS WILL GUEST STAR ON THE BLACKLIST THAD LUCKINBILL WILL BE PLAYING AS BUZZ GREEN IN THE BLACKLIST

Anonymous 4:25 PM  

THAD LUCKINBILL FROM THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS WILL GUEST STAR ON THE GOOD WIFE THAD LUCKINBILL WILL BE PLAYING AS GUS HAMBLY IN THE GOOD WIFE

Anonymous 4:28 PM  

THAD LUCKINBILL FROM THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS WILL GUEST STAR ON CASTLE THAD LUCKINBILL WILL BE PLAYING AS BILL HICKS IN CASTLE

Anonymous 4:30 PM  

THAD LUCKINBILL FROM THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS WILL GUEST STAR ON MOM THAD LUCKINBILL WILL BE PLAYING AS LUTHER INGRAM IN MOM

Anonymous 4:33 PM  

THAD LUCKINBILL FROM THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS WILL GUEST STAR ON PERSON OF INTEREST THAD LUCKINBILL WILL BE PLAYING AS LOUIE IUS IN PERSON OF INTEREST

Anonymous 4:37 PM  

THAD LUCKINBILL FROM THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS WILL GUEST STAR ON DADS THAD LUCKINBILL WILL BE PLAYING AS ZEKE JONES IN DADS

Anonymous 4:41 PM  

THAD LUCKINBILL FROM THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS WILL GUEST STAR ON HOSTAGES THAD LUCKINBILL WILL BE PLAYING AS VINNIE LAFFERTY IN HOSTAGES

Z 4:59 PM  

48 of the most cogent anonymouse comments ever.

chefbea 5:23 PM  

I just googled Thad Luckinbill cuz I figured it was a made up name. Guess where he was born…..Enid Oklahoma. He also has a twin brother

Last Silver Bull Woot 5:45 PM  

@Uchefbea: Is it TRENT Luckinbill? Seems like I've heard about those twins before, somewhere. 'course, been hearin a lot more about bro Thad, lately. May need to put them boyz in a puz...

@m. b. Z: Don't forget the masked, anonymous cogent comments, in yer count.

@Bob K. I'm havin awful trouble stumpin U with a puz. Day-um. How on Earth did U ever get thru the mooning daimyo gauntlet? It was almost as unfair as M&A can get. U are a KAHUNA, dude.

M&A

chefbea 6:20 PM  

@M&A yes Trent and they appeared together on Law and Order criminal intent

chefwen 6:48 PM  

I knew I had a good reason for skipping over @anonymous comments. As @LMS says "it saves a lot of time.

Anonymous 6:55 PM  

If ARON was crossword-worthy I surely would have heard it in the last thousand times I've heard about Elvis, no?

Anonymous 7:32 PM  

@chefwen

Your loss, Laughing Dog

RnRGhost57 8:01 PM  

Just when you think all possible ways of being an a**hole are exhausted, along comes a soap fanatic wired on crystal meth.

Anonymous 9:16 PM  

Wow, way more comments than usual on a Monday, and overall they are much more interesting and clever than usual.

Numinous 9:46 PM  

Thad Luckinbill will join the cast of General Hospital. On the way, he will be involved in an accident between two KOREAN AUTOS. An EMT ZOOMS him off to the wRECk CENTER, where a big KAHUNA, attempts to cure him of terminal ACNE. Thad Luckinbill tries to SOU the driver of the other vehicle for some SPARE CASH with a view to providing CREATURE COMFORTs. Sadly, Thad Luckinbilll's demise is too HASTY. Not even House had the TALENT to save him, he looked like a SNARKy ALEUT SCARECROW on his death bed.

sanfranman59 10:02 PM  

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 6:00, 6:20, 0.95, 24%, Easy-Medium

Top 100 solvers

Mon 3:44, 3:59, 0.94, 17%, Easy

spacecraft 11:25 AM  

I've heard of Lawrence Luckinbill, who was very good as Sybok in "Star Trek V: the Undiscovered Country," but that's it. There might be an explanation for the ease of entry of this goofball. Glancing at my captcha box, I saw a small box with a red X, and the message "reCAPTCHA image." Obviously a glitch, but it's disCOMFORTing to know that there are any number of weirdos out there waiting to inundate us. To me, hell is defined as a place where there's only one TV channel: the Soap Channel--and you have to watch it all day every day.

I liked today's offering. Along the way I was trying to suss out the theme: let's see, high SCORE, high CARD? etc. Never saw it till the revealer. That to me is a great theme. And yes, I saw right away that the RECs were in fact CENTERed, which makes it even tighter. How does one stumble across these patterns--and NOTICE them? I'm amazed. OFL says the entries are "unexciting;" what does he want? These are perfectly good, EVERYDAY, thankyouverymuch, expressions. Nothing strained or convoluted. Spot on.

The fill is, comparatively to NYT fill, pretty good. It does get a little iffy in those NE and SW corners with SSS and AAH, but overall solid. Thumbs up.

Ah, there's my old captcha: a full house, 5's over 3's.

DMG 2:13 PM  

Needed this do-able Monday after Saturday's total drubbing. Only problem here was EuDORA which only lasted until FRANC appeared. Thought the REC idea was clever, and didn't realize it was centered until I got here, although the revealer plainly says it is!

@Ginger. How about that final game. I was so hoping Roger could,pull off another win, but apparently it's not to be!

Only two pair, 8's and 5's.

Dirigonzo 4:37 PM  

My initials are SC and I was crushed, absolutely crushed when that wasn't part of the theme. OTH, the "+" "-" clue for SCREW was inspired. I originally had "Not worth a SOo bucause I thought SOU/SOUSCHEF was ulikely - I was wrong.

All SNARK aside I thought the RECCENTER theme was inspired and very well done. Bravo, C.W. Stewart.

I'm glad to see others back at the poker table; I'm sad that all I have is 3 fives.

rain forest 6:42 PM  

Nice Monday. Easy, tight, crap-free.

Have I ever told you about the time my cousin TERRY and I pooled our SPARE CASH, and drove to ALASKA in his old NASH, a car lacking CREATURE COMFORTs and a reliable engine? Well, I just can't do it! I can't! Too SNARKy for the sweet syndi-ites.

After two ugly letter-capchas, I have nines full of eights.

strayling 7:17 PM  

Worth it for the wonderfully cryptic SCREW. I live in hope that cryptic crosswords will become popular in the USA.

Waxy in Montreal 8:31 PM  

@rain, my first car actually was a '57 NASH Metropolitan! And just as you described, CREATURECOMFORT-wise.

What I learnt today - the incorRECtness of confusing KAHUNAs and cohones.



Dirigonzo 9:05 PM  

Comment of the Day Award to @Waxy for "What I learnt today...".

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