Kentucky county in 1976 Oscar-winning documentary / SAT 5-10-14 / Prop for Kermit Frog / Profession of Clementine's father / Girl in Music Man with floral name / 2001-05 Pontiac made in Mexico / Org in 1950s-60s TVs Naked City / Melvin King of Torts
Saturday, May 10, 2014
Constructor: Barry C. Silk
Relative difficulty: Easy-Medium
Word of the Day: Ruy LOPEZ (46D: Ruy ___ (chess opening)) —
The Ruy Lopez (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈrwi ˈlopeθ/ˈlopes]), also called the Spanish Opening orSpanish Game, is a chess opening characterised by the moves:
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CRAZY BONE was. Is that the same as FUNNY BONE? If not … just how many of these wacky-type bones do I have?? Longer answers are just moderately interesting to me today, except MCMANSION and DREAMLAND, both of which are lovely colloquialisms. Fill is somewhat weaker and duller in the W/SW than in most of the rest of the grid. DSO / ETES / ALLES / MIES are all a little crosswordesey, and SALLIE MAE and DES MOINES aren't exactly scintillating as longer answer go. But most of the rest of the grid is solid and bouncy. Very nice job handling the fill in the triple-Z SE section. Normally against cramming Scrabbly letters into a corner just 'cause, but here the fill is strong despite/because of the three Zs, so hurray.
BANJO. With those letters in place, that NW section goes down almost instantly. This leads directly to the easy SEQUEL, and then up into the NE via the "K" in SHAK, which gave me AZTEK (Walter White's car for most of "Breaking Bad," btw). That "Z" made me think CRAZY- even though, as I said, I've never heard of a CRAZY BONE. My dissertation was in part on Chaucer, so MCD was a gimme and that essentially meant that the whole NE, across the top and around the corner, went down fast. Things got a little dicey in the SE section, where I briefly thought I might get stuck for a good long while. But I guessed AROMA correctly at 48D: Something from the oven. I had forgotten LOPEZ (despite knowing it from, I think, Chandler novels), but once it popped into my mind, I iced that section pretty quickly. That left the SW, where I had gotten stalled coming out of the NW (wanted NEON GAS instead of RARE GAS, didn't trust ELATED …). WEBSITE to HERS to HYPO put me in decent position. DES MOINES was easy from there. NAME PLATE was harder. AMARYLLIS was hardest of all, since I'm not the best with floral names, but to my credit, I did eventually get it off the -YLLIS. From there, mad dash to the end. Last letter was the "S" in MERGES (I'd had an "R" there before seeing Über ALLES).
OK then. See you tomorrow.
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld