Cousin of a mallard / TUE 6-16-15 / Blues musician Allison / Brooklyn hoopster / Social reformer Jacob / Paintball cry / Hindu meditative rituals / Multilevel military readiness system / Cousin of catalan / Prankster's weapon
Tuesday, June 16, 2015
Constructor: Peter A. Collins
Relative difficulty: Challenging (**for a Tuesday**) (time: a bit over 4)
- 18A: Fast-food offering (BURGER) / 15A: 18-Across topper (CHEESE)
- 19A: Soda shop offering (ICE CREAM) / 16A: 19-Across topper (HOT FUDGE)
- 60A: Trattoria offering (RIGATONI) / 58A: 60-Across topper (MARINARA)
- 61A: Ballpark offering (HOTDOG) / 59A: 61-Across topper (ONIONS)
The New Zealand scaup (Aythya novaeseelandiae) commonly known as a black teal, is a diving duck species of the genus Aythya. It is endemic to New Zealand. In Maori commonly known as papango, also matapouri, titiporangi, raipo. [there are "greater" and "lesser" SCAUP too. I just picked the NZ one because if I have an opportunity to go kiwi, I'm going kiwi] (wikipedia)
• • •
POSSE of less-than-great answers, from the harmless and banal (ASNER, ERNIE, RIIS, CERA, PSA, ADA) to the somewhat more crosswordesey (SSN, SSE, ALEE, MRES, NOMSG, ONKP, INLA, URALS, ANO, CBSTV) to the aggressively partial (ATAIL) to the oddly arcane (LOGIA) to the how-the-hell-have-I-never-seen-this-duck-before!? (SCAUP—last known NYT sighting: 1998). It's also hard to imagine using REGALER in a sentence, straightfacedly. But the charm of the theme was enough today. Even the horrific image of a SCAUP CHEESE BURGER couldn't ruin the fun for me.
- 8D: 7-0 baseball victory, e.g. (SHUT OUT) — came at this from below and initially went with BLOW OUT. The clue seems designed to elicit that error. This is yet another reason the puzzle played harder-than-normal for me today.
- 41D: Cousin of catalán (español) — lack of capitalization threw me, but languages aren't capitalized in Spanish (it seems), so, fine.
- 2D: Doggie (POOCH) — was sure this was gonna be some kind of non-canine slang. Might've read it initially as "dogie." Whatever happened, I needed multiple crosses to see POOCH.
P.S. 39A: What a surfer catches (WAVE) / 49D: It might accompany a wave in Waikiki (ALOHA) — every one of you can fix this dupe in approximately zero seconds. Editing!
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