Desert of Israel / MON 1-12-15 / Friend of Stitch in movies / Beta preceder / Edvard Munch masterpiece / Illmatic rapper / Seller of Squishees on Simpsons / Disclaimer before some internet comments

Monday, January 12, 2015

Constructor: Jason Flinn

Relative difficulty: Easy-Medium



THEME: blank TO blank — familiar expressions that represent entirety and that follow the pattern "[blank] TO [blank]"

Theme answers:
  • STEM TO STERN (17A: All, for a ship's captain)
  • CRADLE TO GRAVE (23A: All, for a life insurance agent)
  • SEA TO SHINING SEA (38A: All, for an anthem writer)
  • START TO FINISH (52A: All, for a race organizer)
  • TOP TO BOTTOM (63A: All, for a house cleaner)
Word of the Day: Don AMECHE (67A: Actor Don of "Cocoon") —
Don Ameche (/əˈmi/; May 31, 1908 – December 6, 1993) was an American actor, voice artist, and comedian, with a career spanning almost 60 years.
After touring in vaudeville, he featured in many biographical films, including The Story of Alexander Graham Bell (1939). He continued to appear on Broadway, as well as on radio and TV, where he was host and commentator for International Showtime, covering circus and ice-shows all over Europe. Ameche remained married to his wife Honore for fifty-four years, and they had six children. (wikipedia)
• • •

So, Monday. This theme is super-basic, but works just fine for a Monday, I think. The middle answer is a little wonky to my ear because of the anomaly of two words on the other side of "TO," and also because it is not a generalized expression of totality. Actually, if I start to think down to that level, only 3/5 of these answers work. STEM TO STERN, START TO FINISH, and TOP TO BOTTOM are idioms that one might use in multiple contexts, whereas CRADLE TO GRAVE refers solely to a human life, and SEA TO SHINING SEA … that's just from a song, I think. You wouldn't use it idiomatically or metaphorically. Or maybe you would? To refer to widespreadedness? I see how the cluing wants you to think there's thematic consistency (every theme clue following the pattern ["All, to a ___"]). But the set isn't the tightest. And yet it's the two words after "TO" that bothered me most. And the repeated word (SEA). That's an anomaly too. Even so, I'm not terribly bothered.

[If you're prone to seizures, I wouldn't stare at his jacket too long…]

The grid has kind of a novice, hand-filled quality to it, with a lot of tired, workmanlike short stuff, but I will say this—those long Downs are well chosen. If you have a solid theme and can really stick your two long Downs, you're kind of home free on a Monday, as long as you don't serve up a heaping helping of gunk in the short fill. And while the short fill's far from ideal, it's not terrible. Just ordinary. And I do love "THE SCREAM" and PSYCHOTIC—they give the puzzle not just character, but a  serious, unexpected edge. My main question about this grid, from a constructor's point of view, is "Why weren't the second and fourth themers switched in the original design?" I say this only because that terminal "V" (here, NEGEV) really stands out as a very self-limiting design issue. I mean, it's a relatively inconsequential corner, and the fill there now doesn't stand out as particularly bad, but in general, when building grids, you try to avoid or seriously limit theme answer placement that ties your hands unnecessarily. "V"s are happy in almost any slot except the last one. In the last spot, you instantly limit yourself to abbrevs., foreign words, Roman numerals, and other less stellar stuff, and even that stuff's in short supply. Here, on a Monday, in a little corner, no harm done. But I'd think you'd at least try to fill the grid, initially, with CRADLE TO GRAVE and START TO FINISH flipped. Maybe he did that, and it just didn't come out as well. Entirely possible.


I solved this weirdly, in that I started in the NW and went diagonally all the way across the grid to the SE, without stopping. this is not always the most efficient way to do things, but for some reason, this time, I was able to burst out of that diagonal into the rest of the grid and polish it off fast. Once I got one theme answer, the others offered themselves up easily. Only hiccup was trying to write WIPED and WHIPPED simultaneously in the answer that ended up being POOPED (48D: Plumb tuckered out). I'm not a big fan of cross-referenced clues, but seems like the FETCH clue shoulda/coulda been linked to DOGS somehow, rather than continuing to perpetrate the lie that any dog anywhere is named "Fido."
    Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

    62 comments:

    Steve J 12:15 AM  

    ETUI, our old friend. It feels like it's been a long time since you've been here. Probably not long enough, though.

    Perfectly fine Monday. Simple but well-executed theme (I'm not bothered by SEA TO SHINING SEA at all; in context, it definitely points to the whole shebang, and as the one 15-letter entry, it gets to have a little extra verbiage). And ETUI was about the only bit of trite crosswordese or awkwardness. Not bad as far as Mondays go.

    Jill 12:17 AM  

    For me, short and sweet. Nice to have an easy one after last week!

    Pete 12:27 AM  

    Just in case people wonder, the Atlantic is the sea, the Pacific the shining sea. I don't know if Ms Bates originally intended this, but from here on the beaches of Staten Island there's no way the Atlantic is a shining sea. Unless you count the beer cans on the shore. They're shiny.

    Jim Q 12:32 AM  

    @Pete... I'm on the northeast coast, and what you're saying is just plain mean.

    We also have syringes.

    How dare you leave those out.

    And SNOOKI... she's on our side too.

    jae 12:34 AM  

    Medium Mon. for me which might have been easy-medium if I hadn't put GUNN where LUSH was supposed to go.

    Refreshing theme, Simpson's clues, HAL, PSYCHOTIC...lots to like.

    Casco Kid 12:40 AM  

    Longish for a Monday. Clues alternated between gimmes and WOEs. Guessed right at TIL/LILO. .

    IDEATE is 95% self parody and should be clued with hipster's sarcastic touch.

    Ultimately, I scratched at [Plus] AdD crossing the Israeli desert dEGEV, and I rent my cloak in shame.

    Moly Shu 12:54 AM  

    @Pete and @JimQ, aren't Atlantic and Pacific both oceans? At least here in Fla., that's what the shiny thing on the east side is called. Minor nit.

    "open the pod bay doors, HAL" awesome of course.

    Nice easy monday, liked it a lot, @SteveJ's ETUI notwithstanding.

    retired_chemist 12:57 AM  

    Medium here, and fun to do. Liked the theme. Laboriously filled in most of the downs in the NW to see the first theme answer, and then the rest were straightforward.

    bad time with actors. 68A TISH came entirely from crosses - wanted AUNT, just because it was four letters and I had no idea. Couldn't recall how to spell TIA LEON(e/I) but the cross was easy, so no problem. Wanted Don Knotts instead of Don AMECHE @ 67A, but a couple of crosses reminded me who it really was. Good movie.

    Thanks, Mr. Flinn.

    Carola 1:20 AM  

    Agree, nice Monday. I liked the way SEA TO SHINING SEA spanned the entire grid continent. The EMMA directly beneath this anthem line reminded me of EMMA Lazarus, whose poem is inscribed on the Statue of Liberty, standing "at our SEA-washed, sunset gates".

    DNF at TIm x mILO.

    @chefwen - Whew!

    chefwen 1:29 AM  

    Super easy here, not one write-over which even on a Monday is a rarity.

    A few months ago I was trying to tell our YOUNG renter about the movie COCOON, so many good movies he has never seen. Of course, being not so young I couldn't remember the name. DOH! Went to my friend Uncle Google and typed in "old people in a swimming pool" up popped COCOON. What the hell did we do before the internet?

    @Carola - I had to be resuscitated more than once during that Packer game, how 'bout you?

    With new puppy Bucky I would love to have my house cleaned TOP TO BOTTOM once a week, alas I'm not that rich, and I thought Skipper was bad. HUH, was I wrong.

    chefwen 1:33 AM  

    @Carola - Must have been typing at the same time. Good luck to both of us and all in the Frozen Tundra next week.

    Lewis 5:44 AM  
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    Lewis 5:46 AM  
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    Lewis 5:49 AM  

    Factoid: The practice of NAPping originated in Ancient Egypt. After observing cats sleeping during the day, Pharaohs began to practice the behavior as a means to emulate the culturally sacred animal. (Wikipedia)

    Quotoid: “When you are courting a nice girl an hour seems like a second. When you sit on a RED HOT cinder a second seems like an hour. That's relativity.” -- Albert Einstein

    Lewis 6:12 AM  

    Enjoyable blue collar puzzle and I love that beautiful spanner in the middle. And now, for the third week in a row, a Monday puzzle that doesn't insult the intelligence. Thank you Jason.

    It seems to me that Rex simply didn't want to like this puzzle. First it was about the outlying theme answer, but "Even so, I'm not terribly bothered." Then it was that two of the theme answers might better have been served if they were switched, but "Maybe he did that, and it just didn't come out as well. Entirely possible." Sandwiched in between is a one sentence compliment about the long downs. And a minor compliment about the "far from ideal" fill that is "not terrible".

    If the middle spanner is not terribly bothersome and the perhaps-switchable theme answers work, and the fill is "not terrible", why focus on these elements?

    Mohair Sam 7:00 AM  

    Medium Monday.

    Just like @retired_chemist we had to fill every letter of TISH. One benefit of spending the mid '60's overseas is that I missed every episode of the Addams Family.

    Liked the puzzle a lot more than Rex, it was a pleasant Monday solve for us.

    Aketi 7:08 AM  

    This puzzle was such a fun relief.

    @pete and Jim Q
    Having moved in the direction of shining ocean to ocean with shiny beer cans, I'd take the warmer water with beer cans over having my lips turn blue within five minutes of entering the water (at least where I grew up in Northern California). Plus at my age, I love Coney Island where you can feel completely relaxed about wearing a bikini no matter what size, shape, or age you are.

    On the other hand @ Molly Shu I do prefer heading south to the seas for scuba diving to avoid having to squeeze into a 5 mm wetsuit In the clear frigid ocean or use a compass to navigate in the murky warmer ocean,

    NCA President 7:36 AM  

    If I were a puzzle constructor, I would have included the word gamut in this puzzle. That was the first thing I thought of when I finished...where is gamut? Using that word might have been more inclusive of the outliers that Rex pointed out. But I am not a constructor...I know my place...and so I am left to post on a blog and just wonder.

    Very easy puzzle today...if it weren't for the cat on my lap aching for me time, it would have been a record or really fast anyway.

    I had YOU for 27A until I saw 29A and started to second guess myself. That's the danger of solving the way I do (acrosses first, then downs). Once I got to the downs, I saw the error of my way.

    ETUI and ennui...I don't know why, but I like those words.

    Apropos of nothing, I know John Mellancamp. He hates "Cougar." It was the record company's idea.

    Charles Flaster 7:44 AM  

    Liked this easy puzzle very much.
    Could become a nice Wednesday if "all" was clued by itselfl . We would have 5 "aha" moments.
    CrosswordEASE--ORO, APU, PSST.
    Liked cluing for TASER and GUNN.
    A unique way to clue " Peter" could be
    " Gunn with a jolt".
    I believe DON AMECHE started as a singer but morphed into a fine actor. Cocoon is on my list of underrated movies.Watch it if you've never experienced it.
    Thank JF.

    RooMonster 7:45 AM  

    Hey All !
    Cool, breezy MonPuz. Just a couple of minor hold-ups waiting for crosses to confirm. AGEE/EMMA was one. No complaints about Rapper NAS yet...

    Liked the theme, simple, but fun. Not alot of dreck, IMHO, Liked the two clues next to each other for NOT I & IM IN. Have to admit I've never heard of the NEGEV Desert.

    Nice to see ETUI back! :-) And no Baseball clues/answers for whoever keeps complaining about that. (Forget who that is!)

    HAZY, NOT I
    RooMonster
    DarrinV

    AliasZ 7:47 AM  
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    Danp 7:50 AM  
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    AliasZ 7:50 AM  


    Cluing error: the answer to 29A "Who is solving this puzzle" should be I AM. How do I know what YOU are doing? All I know for sure, I was entering I AM while YOU were pealing a grape for your loved one perhaps.

    Where is ATOZ when it actually fits the theme?

    Did YOU notice, there are three TO's in TOpTObotTOm (four, if you count the backwards one in bOTtom) while only one TO in all the other themers. Sloppy, sloppy, sloppy!

    Somehow the genius of Liszt was able to squeeze the span of a human life from CRADLE TO GRAVE into a 15-minute symphonic poem.

    Happy Monday!

    Danp 7:55 AM  

    I love the symmetry of THESCREAM and PSYCHOTIC with YOU (LUSH) and MOM (NOTI) in the middle, sez I to Pop.

    Leapfinger 8:38 AM  

    From ATOZ makes me think of only one thing.

    @NCAP, maybe you're looking for GAMUTlichkeit in all the wrong places.
    Etui and ennui are just nice wee words, mais oui. Also quite versatile: ETUI, Brute?

    [My apologies, NCAP; there's something about you that just inspires the punditry.]

    Thanks for last night, ED.

    Z 8:42 AM  

    @Carola and @Chefwen - I do believe that the entire State of Michigan is in a full state of schadenfreude. Not just the what, but the how and who is giving everyone on this side of the big lake not so secret glee.

    @Casco Kid - TIL Tuesday's lead singer was the crossfriendly Aimee Mann. Now you know.

    @Lewis - I think any constructor who gets a fully positive review from OFL is legally required to have their computer bronzed for posterity. Separately, I'm pretty sure people who study sleep have pretty much concluded that napping is a part of our natural rhythms from the specie's time on the veldt. That Wiki page needs some editing.

    Now I'm off to find more sources to support my point of view on possessives.

    OldCarFudd 8:43 AM  

    As a retired life insurance actuary, I had a mild hiccup at CRADLE TO GRAVE. Yes, a life insurance policy ends at the grave, if the insured dies while it's in force. But it starts when the policy is approved and the first premium is paid. Unless the policy is written on a newborn baby, it doesn't start at the cradle. Most policies are sold on the lives of adults, and the agent's interest isn't retroactive.

    That said, the clue is legitimate, because SOME policies are sold on babies. I bought one for each of my 12 grandkids.

    dk 8:46 AM  

    🌕🌕🌕 (3 mOOOns)

    Pleasent Monday. The answer to 29a is: It is I. But I quibble. And 36d should be clued as completly crazed in my professional opinion. All this quibbling over a puzzle that is almost an Acme.

    Send Rex Money. Love or hate the posts and comments but remember your 15 seconds of fame when someone acknowledges you. I am ready for my close up Mr. DeMille.

    -7 here in Wisconsin. Off to the slopes err slopettes

    mathguy 8:58 AM  

    Running through the clues in order, I filled in 97 squares with gimmes. That made the puzzle too easy with the only pauses at the five theme entries.

    I don't remember Cacoon very well but with I remember liking it. I'll put it on my Netflix queue. I liked the film clips of George Clooney movies on last night's Golden Globes, I was surprised at how many there were. I'm also putting Michael Clayton on my queue.

    Glimmerglass 9:10 AM  

    @OldCARFudd. You probably remember the tale of the three insurance agent pitching a single client. The first one says, "Our policy covers you from the cradle to the grave." The second scoffs, "We cover you from the womb to the tomb." The third says, "That's nothing. We cover you from the e-rection to the resurrection."

    Whirred Whacks 9:12 AM  

    The only expression that missing was "Soup to Nuts."

    And this reminded me of that classic B Kliban cartoon from 1977 entitled "Soup to Nuts." The picture shows a waiter serving soup to the residents of an insane asylum.

    Nearly forty years later, that image is still in my mind!


    @M and A Help Desk: thanks for your suggestions. Loved Carlos Danger.

    chefbea 9:25 AM  

    Fun easy Monday puzzle. I agree - A to Z should have been somewhere in the puzzle.

    OldCarFudd 9:26 AM  

    @Glimmerglass - Yup, I remember.O

    Ludyjynn 9:27 AM  

    TISH reminds me of the multi- talented Raul Julia (1940-1994) who played Gomez in two "Addams Family" movies. And of the durable actor, John Astin, who played him on tv for the run of the show. He has most recently been the Actor in Residence at Johns Hopkins, offering his decades of stage, screen and tv experience to young thespians.

    It warms my heart to see Don AMECHE in the grid and as word of the day. Thanks, Rex.

    ETUI! Sounds like patooey to me.

    LEONI would have been better clued as "Madam Secretary" actress. "Dick and Jane" was ancient history.

    Do Mondays get any easier than this, FROMSTARTTOFINISH? I think not. Thanks, JF and WS.



    quilter1 9:48 AM  

    Started with Tea LEONI and filled the rest in easily. She is very good on Madam Secretary. I own an ETUI and use it for sewing items when I travel. Gift from a former girlfriend of #1 son. Very enjoyable puzzle.

    ArtO 10:11 AM  

    Outstanding write-up. Constructive without attitude.

    Casco Kid 10:49 AM  

    In case you are in danger of thinking IDEATE is a word you should use seriously, I'll stop you now. This video, courtesy IBM, is safe for work. But you'll soon see why IDEATE is not.

    Casco Kid 11:00 AM  

    @dk I acknowledge you! But I rather like M & A's comment yesterday that he would send a wad of small, nonsequential, unmarkeds to Rex's private residence if Rex would only acknowledge him. What followed can only be described as radio silence. Rex had left the building. In the inimitable gruntz of Master & Articulator himself, har.

    mac 11:19 AM  

    Very nice Monday, workmanlike came to my mind as well.

    I took a friend on a drive along the CT coast last week, and the water looked very blue and shiny in the late afternoon sun. And of course in Westport/Southport the beach gets vacuumed regularly, no debris, flotsam or jetsam.

    Talking about water, I was on the shore of Candlewood Lake yesterday, to visit our friend Tita. Very pretty area, it's hard to imagine that the lake was created by a power company.

    Davis 12:00 PM  

    My first successful downs-only solve in several weeks. It turns out that a puzzle being easy doesn't necessarily translate into being easy as a downs-only puzzle. But on this one, it was simple to see what the theme answers should be with only about half a dozen of the crosses filled in for each.

    old timer 12:09 PM  

    Connecticut is not on the ocean. It's on Long Island Sound, which is why you see so few surfboards there.

    My only misstep was to confidently put down "St Mark" for STMARY, which shows I was raised a Roman Catholic and not an Anglican.

    Masked and Anonymo3Us 12:32 PM  

    @Casco Kid: har back, dude.
    Yeah, I'll probably send a donation to Rexville, just like I always do. But I thought I'd give old @63 an ultra rare chance to get the coveted bonus, authentic Letter from M&A, if he wanted one. He goes that extra mile snarkin it up on the blog so often, I thought I could put out a little effort, too. That there letter was a real doozie, too...

    Fave themer today: TO P TO BOT TO M.

    Fave moocow-easy clue: "Who is solving this puzzle". Wonder if @63 was suckered to put REX there? Highly unlikely. Fortunately, they normally don't take entries like "M&A", on a MonPuz, so I got the right answer, in mere fractions of a nanosec.

    fave weeject stack: APU-PER-ERE. Anagrams to "U R a peeper". But, I digress.

    M&A

    Z 12:37 PM  

    @oldtimer - being neither, your post confused me.

    Charles kluepfel 12:47 PM  

    I had guessed TIM and MILO. Not strong on current pop culture.

    LaneB 1:42 PM  

    Not the easiest Monday, but OK. Putting OCtO instead of OCHO held me up; things otherwise went quickly enough.
    It does help, I've found, to watch or read The Simpsons. Constructors refer to the series a lot. I've never watched the show so the references always slow me down.

    RooMonster 2:10 PM  

    3 things.
    1) Did anyone notice OHO & SOHO
    2) How about ATHOME & HOMER
    3) A little story for y'all (clears throat)
    I WAS drinking MERLOT from a PITH helmet in SOHO, all SET TO give a TITHE to DIANE & EMMA, TIL some RED HOT PSYCHOTIC ALPHA DOGS decided to AIM their AZURE EYES at me AND FETCH! I let out THE SCREAM, felt HAZY, & ran ASAP while yelling, "NOT I!" THEN ran to my house, & said, "IM IN!" Wanted to NOSH, but had the TAR scared out of me so, I POOPED ATHOME. OHO! YOU BET your HOE! At least didn't end up in bad SHAPE in TRIAGE.

    Good story, IMHO! :-D. :-P

    RooMonster

    Zeke 2:12 PM  

    I can't hear Téa LEONI mentioned without a flashback to many years ago. In the NYC broadcast area there was this one TV movie/theater/television critic, a woman of a certain age, I forget her name. She'd been around forever when I first became aware of her, and she's lasted forever since. This woman was reviewing Ms LEONI's first big TV show, and the reviewer started gushing over her. She showed the enthusiasm for her that Tom Cruise showed for his inamorata of the time, jumping up and down on the couch, shouting his love, on Oprah. It was more than mere enthusiasm, the tone more than abutted pornographic, it oozed beyond the border between civilized and pornographic, forming a slimy film I can viscerally feel whenever I see or hear of Ms Leoni.

    Larry Allen 3:07 PM  

    No love for GSA? I work with that agency every day.

    jberg 3:21 PM  

    Finished this one in about 10 minutes (on paper, fast for me), but had to rush off to play music before coming here. So almost everything's been said, except to point out that this is two days in a row for both EMMA (yesterday the movie, today the book) and GSA (yesterday the girl scouts, today the govt. agency).

    I just wasted 10 minutes trying to find an old pop song called "the greatest invention," which opened with the lyrics:

    "Do you know who invented the telephone?
    "Don Ameche...
    .. Oh that's peachy
    "It was Alexander Graham Bell...
    ....Do tell"

    But the greatest invention is the girl and the boy, etc.

    However, it doesn't seem to be on Youtube, or anywhere else on the web, so I can't give you a link.

    I knew neither LILO nor LEONI, but that pretty much had to be an L, so I finished ok.

    Doc John 4:26 PM  

    Fastest solve ever for me- under 3:30! Got most of the downs and only had to do a quick pass of the acrosses to finish up, so I barely even saw the clues.

    Hartley70 5:07 PM  

    Like last Monday, this was a cut above the usual. There was plenty of theme and it was well supported by the fill. I flew through it to my regret because I then had to backspace to correct my typos. My only hold ups were ETUI because it's news to me, and TISH because I couldn't watch that so never heard Morticia's nickname.

    I haven't thought of Don Ameche in years and my memories go back way farther than "Cocoon", but he always put a smile on my face. Nice to have a reminder.

    Hartley70 5:13 PM  

    Wow Mac, I've never seen that! How does one vacuum a beach? LOL! It's more likely the flotsam and jetsam wouldn't DARE land on the Gold Coast towns. It's nice to know I've got you on one side and Tita on the other!

    Teedmn 6:12 PM  

    I thought this puzzle was great fun but I can't exactly put my finger on why (brief eye-roll at IDEATE). It seemed fresh. I suppose it could be my return to paper solving - it flows so much better than AcrossLite on the iPad.

    I liked all the theme entries, and PITH, PSYCHOTIC, LUSH, MERLOT and HAZY.

    @old timer, I was wondering why the Madonna was being referred to as a mere saint, so thanks for that insight.

    Thanks, Mr. Flynn, it was SOHO nice!

    Tita 10:35 PM  


    I was POOPED after a houseful of friends and family yesterday, so late here again.

    @Casco...Thanks for the IDEATE video. I also dislike "commentator", even though it is supposedly legit...is a commentator so different from a lowly "commenter"? Does anyone "commentate"?

    Upbeat clue for AGES.

    @mac...lovely as always to see you!

    Candlewood Lake is actually a battery...a storage facility for excess energy, pumping water up from the nearby Housatonic River...


    @Hartley, are you a Nutmegger?

    Thanks, Mr. Fling for a fine Monday




    Tita 10:46 PM  

    Oops...Flinn...

    Anonymous 10:50 PM  

    Nas' Studio is closing

    http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20150112/hells-kitchen-clinton/midtown-studio-where-nas-recorded-illmatic-forced-close

    khuyen mai mobifone 9:02 PM  

    Chương trình mobifone khuyen mai mới nhất. Hướng dẫn cách nap tien mobifone online. Đọc truyen ngan online hay nhất.

    spacecraft 10:39 AM  

    That PSST at 1d loomed ominous, but it wasn't as bad as I thought it'd be. [That's akin to OFL's "It didn't bother me that much."] These are actually compliments; take them as such.

    I agree about the long down set: fabulous. Also great is POOPED; IDEATE, not so much. In fact, the latter just got red-lined by spell-checker.

    One entry troubled me: "Who is solving this puzzle." As I wrote in the obvious YOU, I thought, now wait a minute. It's I solving, not YOU. YOU means anybody BUT me. Can I be YOU? If I were YOU, I'd...oh, the hell with it.

    Theme simplistic but fine for a Monday; fill mostly good but with a few clunkers. Easy-medium, B.

    Burma Shave 11:56 AM  

    A PSYCHOTIC RAIDER
    On WAR’s TRIAGE list
    WAS burned by a TASER
    REDHOT on his wrist.

    The pain it did TAPER
    When STMARY he kissed.
    WAS ATHOME (thanks to HOMER)
    ERE he POOPED and he PSST.

    rondo 12:09 PM  

    This was a nice harmless Monday puz. Did it casually @ home due to Prez Day. Pleasant enough. Hardly noticed the SOHO, OHO, OCHO, ORO stuff, so the rest must've been decent enough to ignore 'em.

    Yeah, haven't seen ETUI for a while. Learned that one back in the Maleska era.

    Thanks to the missus love of art I've seen one of THESCREAM paintings "in person".

    A given that yeah baby Tea LEONI is REDHOT, IMHO.

    Brunch is on the way, so gotta go ASAP to be ONTIME.

    That is ALL, for me.

    Number today 508 = 4, a rare play day.

    rain forest 2:15 PM  

    Some good stuff in this puzzle, including a sound, straightforward theme.

    The Latin motto for Canada is "A mari usque ad mare" ie, from sea to sea, but nowadays politicians tend to say "from coast to coast to coast" in reference to the Pacific, Atlantic and Arctic oceans. Anyway the phrase was lifted by whoever wrote the pithy America to the tune of "O Mother, dear Jerusalem", possibly presaging the US's love of Israel.

    Bit of cultural history for you. You're welcome.

    New captcha today. I had to select all photos of a hamburger from a display of 9 pictures. I did good.

    DMG 3:20 PM  

    Enjoyed being able to complete a puzzle after Last Friday's and Sarurday's washouts! No writeovers on this one, but did pause at that YOU that bothered so many. Almost afraid to check Captcha after @rainforest's experience. So crossed fingers, here goes...

    Just a check!

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