Chaney who starred in "The Phantom of the Opera" / MON 1-5-15 / Priest's robe / Nickname for Catherine / Airport with the Tom Bradley Intl. Terminal / Passover meals / National gem of Australia
Monday, January 5, 2015
Roses are red,
Violets are blue,
It's Monday again,
The first one of the month, too...
Hi-ho, Annabel the blogger here!
Constructor: John Guzetta
Relative difficulty: Easy
THEME: Bird-brained — Theme answers are bird-themed terms for various types of people.
Word of the Day: QUATRAIN (11D: "Roses are red," e.g.) —
A quatrain is a type of stanza, or a complete poem, consisting of four lines.
Existing in various forms, the quatrain appears in poems from the poetic traditions of various ancient civilizations including Ancient Greece, Ancient Rome, and China; and, continues into the 21st century, where it is seen in works published in many languages. During Europe's Dark Ages, in the Middle East and especially Iran, polymath poets such as Omar Khayyam continued to popularize this form of poetry, also known as Ruba'i, well beyond their borders and time. There are twelve possible rhyme schemes, but the most traditional and common are: AAAA, AABB, and ABAB.(Wikipedia)
- LEGAL EAGLE (16A: Skillful lawyer)
- OLD BUZZARD (24A: Cantankerous fellow)
- SPRING CHICKEN (37A: Relative youngster)
- BUDGET HAWK (51A: Hard-liner on government spending)
- SILLY GOOSE (60A: Goofball)
The five-letter SORER and ENERO, plus the long LEGAL EAGLE, made for a much more interesting top left corner than usual. I also loved ONO and KIMONO being right next to each other in the bottom right corner. The puzzle may have leaned a little heavily on the plural nouns - I counted five - but it made up for it with OUIS, decidedly not a word you see every day. The clue for DRACULA really drove me batty, though.
The theme was pretty simple and fun, just right for a Monday! I actually used to have three chickens: Chicken Little, Little Jerry Seinfeld, and Ernest Henningway. Maw used to send me out every mornin' at dawn to feed the chickens; well, AIN'T that just the way on the suburban farm? Unfortunately, two of them died - in the spring, no less - and we had to give the last one away. But it was really fun - free eggs, and free fried chicken!
Interesting that you'd never see a "relative youngster" actually using the expression SPRING CHICKEN, isn't it?
|My mom LIZ with Chicken Little, may she rest in peace (the chicken, not my mom). Cluck cluck cluck!|
- 27A: "Can you ____ in a sentence?" (spelling bee request) (USEIT)— Spelling bees! I made it to 12th place in my county spelling bee before being eliminated on "taiga," which, as I'm sure you all know from crosswording, is a type of ecosystem; there are many taigas in Siberia. In my defense, a) the girl after me got "dreidel," and b) who expects a 12-year-old to spell "taiga"?
- 37A: Public mention (SHOUTOUT) — After all those bird-themed clues, I couldn't resist this particular shout-out: THE RAVENS WON LAST NIGHT! YAY!!!
- 56A: Urging from a dinner host (EAT) — All I can say is...
- 17A: "Evil Woman" grp. (ELO) — So my school is putting on Xanadu, and of course, being the ham I am, I had to try out for a lead role...and this was the song we were to prepare for tryouts. I practiced a million times - in my room, in the shower, in the car with my mom (the doctor says her eardrums will be just fine in a couple of months). Did you know that "Evil Woman" features a high D, and that my voice goes up to about an A on a good day? Totally nailed the auditions, though, somehow, and got the part of the Muse of Music, I'll let you all know how that goes...
Signed, Annabel, tired high school student.