Japanese mat / THU 3-5-15 / CSA general Stuart / Funny Silverman / Jean-Claude Van Damme film set in 1994 2004 / Kona catch / Jose to friends / Great Wonder Woman cry / Session meeting after legislative dissolution
Thursday, March 5, 2015
Constructor: Jim Peredo
Relative difficulty: Easy-Medium
THEME: FALLING BEHIND (38A: Lagging … or a hint to 17-, 19-, 56- and 61-Across) — several Across answers "fall" (i.e. go Down) at their tail end … the parts that "fall" are all synonyms for "behind":
- BABY AL(BUM) (19A: Record of infantile behavior?)
- DONALD T(RUMP) (17A: Who said about himself "Women find his power almost as much of a turn-on as his money")
- UNAMERI(CAN) (61A: Hating baseball and apple pie?)
- GORY DE(TAIL) (56A: Part of a story you might not want to know)
Word of the Day: DRAY (58D: Farm cart) —
• • •BABY AL(BUM) drop I was like "man, didn't we just see this idea? … answers that turn or bend or whatever … this better be good." I had no real hope that it would, in fact, be good. I could see that the Acrosses made nonsense but the Downs made real words—or, rather, that the Acrosses made sense if you threw in the Down bits. But I honestly didn't see the connection that all the Downs had until pretty late, because I didn't get the front part of the revealer until pretty late (3/4 done). This is all to say that when I did, finally, fill in FALLING BEHIND, I did, in fact, have a genuine AHA moment. (I think I'm going to call the opposite of an AHA moment an "AHI moment," as in "Oh … I get it … that's fishy.")
- 45A: José, to friends (PEPE) — José Le Pew?? I had no idea.
- 62D: Low (MOO) — last letter in the grid were those "O"s, both because I forgot exactly what James DOOHAN's last name was, and because (predictably) I misspelled DIARAMA thusly.
- 3D: "Hurray" or "alas" (IAMB) — very, very tough clue. I spend much of Tuesday explaining exactly what an IAMB is to my 17th-century lit class, and *I* didn't get this until virtually everything around it was filled in. Unstressed stressed. "Eclipse," "Today," etc. The opposite (stressed unstressed, e.g. "tailor," "panic," "Batter (my heart three-personed God…") is a TROCHEE, which we somehow never see in crosswords.