Mario with the 1951 #1 hit "Be My Love" / MON 10-5-15 / Part of the eye / Mounts for cowboys / Lightest coins ever minted in the U.S., used in the 19th century / Greeting in Rio

Monday, October 5, 2015

It's an Annabel Monday!!! Hooray!!!

Constructor: Mike Buckley

Relative difficulty: Easy

THEME: CHANGE IS GOOD — Theme answers included coins.

Theme answers:
  • 7D: Lightest coins ever minted by the U.S., used in the late 19th century (THREE-CENT PIECES)
  • 20A: Showtime series named after an old fiction genre (PENNY DREADFUL)
  • 38A: Charging for every little extra (NICKEL AND DIMING)
  • 52A: Mounts for cowboys (QUARTER HORSES)

Word of the Day: ARLO (18D: Guthrie of Rising Sun Records) —
Arlo Davy Guthrie (born July 10, 1947) is an American folk singer.[1] Like his father, Woody Guthrie, Arlo is known for singing songs of protest against social injustice. Guthrie's best-known work is "Alice's Restaurant Massacree", a satirical talking blues song about 18 minutes in length. His song "Massachusetts" was named the official folk song of the state in which he has lived most of his adult life.


• • •

Hi!!! I'm so excited to be back, especially since it's only been two days since my eighteenth birthday!!! I celebrated by getting tea at the campus cafe with my friends. We go very wild and crazy here at Wellesley. However, the anniversary of my birth isn't the only anniversary I'm's also been exactly a year and ONE day since I officially started blogging for Rex!!!!!!!!!!

Have I learned a lot about myself, grew and changed as a person, discovered all I CANDO as a blogger? Yes. Have I figured out how to solve a crossword puzzle in under 20 minutes?.....These things take time.

This was probably the easiest puzzle I've done so far. I've never gotten so many Acrosses (does...does Across have a plural that actually works?) on my first try! So, perfect for a Monday, IMO. NESS/NEST, RHEA/AMENRA, and ADEN/OPEN were nice little touches.

Theme was a Monday thing, not a lot more to say for it except that I loved THREECENTPIECE. This was the first puzzle that I've blogged with a Down clue in the theme.

(That part at the end is definitely still Spongebob.)
  • HOWTO (14A: Do-it-yourselfer's book genre) — Speaking of which, I have been learning HOWTO play rugby! Yep. I went to a random open rugby practice, loved it, and joined the team totally on a whim. It's so much fun, I get to tackle and maul people!!! No, seriously, "mauling" is an actual rugby thing. I love my sport. <3
  • NESS (65A: Loch ____ Monster) — also the name of an "Earthbound" character. Since ATARI was also in the puzzle (even though Earthbound is Nintendo), have some awesome music!

  • RHEAS (33A: Cousins of ostriches) — I was done with my writeup but then I was like, look at this bird.
Signed, Annabel Thompson, tired college student.

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Facebook]


jae 12:08 AM  

Fun Mon. Medium for me. Liked it. Lose change works for me.

Steve J 12:24 AM  

Pretty decent Monday theme, although I'm wondering where the half and full dollar are.

The two NE and SW long downs were quite nice. The rest of it flew by without much notice.

Mike in DC 12:24 AM  

Annabel Mondays are the best! Happy birthday.

I loved the double meaning of: "Have I figured out how to solve a crossword puzzle in under 20 minutes?.....These things take time."

btimnelson 12:40 AM  

I found the FERMIS crossed with AMENRA and RHEAS section to be a bit obscure for a Monday. All else was cheese.

bwalker 2:31 AM  

Very easy for me. I finished in under ten minutes, and didn't catch the obvious theme until I was done. I got NICKEL AND DIMING instantly, but had to use crosses to get PENNY DREADFUL and QUARTER HORSES. Didn't know there had ever been THREE CENT PIECES. Glad to see my dog with the toric tail, THOR, make the good fill.

Lewis 6:27 AM  

Very easy solve, even for a Monday, although I did learn two things (THREECENTPIECES and PENNYDREADFUL), which doesn't happen too often first day of the week. I would rather have seen FIFTYCENTPIECES going down the middle, which would have fit, and which would have fit in with the other theme answers better. I'm not sure THREECENTPIECES could be counted as a theme answer anyway, as it didn't follow the pattern established by the other three.

I enjoyed this quick romp, actually, and there are some good finds in the puzzle. A word ladder: NESS/NEST/ZEST. A rhyming trio: NEST/ZEST/CREST. A NARNIA by the SEA (better than that TAR by the SEA), a low-RENT district. A CREST on top, ROSE up, and a DIE down. Finally, I would like to have seen an "auld" to go with the GNU.

A nice little zippy start to the week.

Loren Muse Smith 6:31 AM  

Easy Monday right across the plate.

Too bad it couldn't have been simply NICKEL AND DIMe. But to get that fourth themer THREE PENNY PIECE to cross all three other themers (!!), I guess it had to be this way.

My only erasures were “oh la la” and "uey."

USAGES cleared “uey” up. The more I teach grammar, the more I investigate some of these rules we run around prescribing, the sillier I feel. I'm at the point that many times I say, "OK, look. This USAGE is extremely common, and it’s been used this way for a long, long time. So I'm fine if you want to use it this way, too. Just know that future English teachers will probably get riled about it and that many people will judge you." Heck, I do the same thing; I refuse to use whom, use the singular they, never make data or media plural, feel conspicuous when I make criteria plural, and don’t go out of my way to make the which/that distinction. I know people judge me. Oh, and, again, DIE - I call even one of'em a dice. Change the singular to douse, and maybe we can talk.

I tell you, the USAGE I'm really struggling with, though, is a pronoun following the conjunction and. It's a free-for-all out there, folks, even in London and Melbourne (if my ladies of Bravo TV are to be trusted). No one - and I mean no one - wants to put an object preposition after the word and.

No, no, no, Vicki. Don't worry; I talked to Heather and she yesterday, and they are still planning to bring the champs for the private jet.

Whatever the case, I liken the spectacle of some pedant publically pointing out people’s grammar “mistakes” to a person standing on the corner of 42nd and Broadway loudly calling attention to women’s panty lines.

Here's a little Japanese lesson: Say "tah DIME "ah" (drag out the DIME part just a bit and make sure that final “ah” is perkyish and not a schwa), and you've got I'M HOME! in TOKYO. Your day is now complete.

TaxGuy 7:23 AM  

Yeah, nice little easy puzzle until I almost DNF at RILE/REMORA. Only fish I've ever heard of that attaches is BARNACLE. And Cheese Off? Cheese Off? What the hell is that? Finally guessed at RILE while running the alphabet I suppose because of the Off.

joho 7:53 AM  

I agree with @Lewis that fiftyCENTPIECES fits better with the other theme answers. Is there a phrase PENNY ante____? If so the Ts in fifty and ante could cross there. I do have to say, though, it was fun to learn that THREECENTPIECES ever existed! And PENNYDREADFUL is an interesting, colorful phrase.

It's very cool that Mike got two coins in one fifteen with NICKELANDDIMING.

Thank you, Mike Buckley! And, you, too, Annabel!

Norm 7:56 AM  

Let's hear it for rugby! D and her teammates used to love standing in line at CVS saying, "I think I'll be a hooker this year." (Small/bad rugby joke.)

Lewis 8:20 AM  

@loren -- "Whatever the case"... perfect phrase for a grammar discussion!

chefbea 8:39 AM  

Fun puzzle and great write up as usual for the first Monday of the month, Happy birthday Annabel!! I did have one Natick...Rile and remora.

Anyone considering getting the Kurig-like machine where you can make your own coca cola???

aging soprano 8:47 AM  

I hope it is OK if I comment to yesterday's Sunday puzzle, which I have only just finished. Holiday again here, last one for while. So again no Monday paper.
Everyone seemed so obsessed with how to pronounce Israel, but no one pointed put that absolutely NO El Al security person would ask if you are for Israel. Sheesh. What a cr---y clue.
Did anyone else first put in Cadaver instead of ANATOMY for body of science?

John Child 8:53 AM  

Oh @Loren... I won't pick too many nits with you on your USAGE topics. Whom can come off as affected in normal writing. The singular they avoids "he and (or) she" which can become tiresome when repeated, not to mention the beastly he/she or s/he. I can live with Latin plurals like data being used with a singular verb.

But the difference between which and that matters. Which is a parenthetical expression. Leaving the whole clause out wouldn't compromise the meaning of the sentence. There are always commas surrounding the clause. That introduces information essential to understanding.

The new classrooms that have multi-media capability are better places to learn.

The new classrooms, which have multi-media capability, are good places to learn.

The first is restrictive: Some classrooms have multi-media capability and are better. The second is descriptive: The classrooms all have multi-media capability.

Billy C. 8:57 AM  

@Chefbea --

Speaking of Annabel and Natick: Annabel is just a couple miles down the road from Natick now. (It abuts the town of Wellesley on the West.). I know that inquiring minds here want to know these things. ;-)

Rabi Abonour 9:03 AM  

Happy birthday! Not that I'm biased, but early October birthdays are the best.

Nice little Monday with a competent theme and not too much aggressively bad fill (but "uie," ugh; that makes "uey" almost seem decent). Had no idea penny dreadful was a pulp genre.

Questinia 9:05 AM  

Isn't literary/verbal expression and grammar like art and material? Those who shrunk from Strunk and White stunk in certain English classes. But what is the grammar of the metaphor? What is the grammar of poetry?

Professor Rex?

The puzzle was cool cause of REMORA. The suction cups are on top of its head.

The Rhino 9:25 AM  

I've never liked the word 'cheese' to mean RILE. I don't think it's bad as a clue, but the phrase 'I'm cheesed off' or it's equivalents makes me weirdly uncomfortable. Like moist, I think, for some.

Otherwise, puzzle was fine and super-easy (for a Monday).

GILL I. 9:31 AM  

This was a very nice Monday puzzle. It felt fresh and full of beans.
I like QUARTER HORSES. I had one I named Hi Yo Silver but everyone called him George. (Hi GB!)...
I thought Mario LANZA was so handsome when I was a little thing. He made me want to listen to opera alongside my dad although my dad was not that impressed!
@Loren. Color me the wince wench whenever I hear "her and me." My grammar can always use lots of help but I ALWAYS feel superior after watching "Judge Judy."
@Z: So cheeky!!
Annabel...You're such a delight to read. The first year of much to do, so many places to go. Wishing you lots of fun and learning.

Ludyjynn 9:35 AM  

I learned two things: ARLO Guthrie's clever naming of his 1983 record label, Rising SON, looks to be an homage to his dad, Woody; and the history of Rice-A-RONI is the classic American story: Italian immigrant family in San Francisco creates a popular local recipe/brand that over time goes regional, then national, gets purchased by Quaker Oats in 1986, which in turn is gobbled up by PepsiCo in 2001. Only in America! CANDO spirit!

This had a lot of ZEST for a Monday. Thanks, MB and WS. Happy B-Day, Annabel. I love the contradiction between you taking afternoon tea--so civilized-- and playing rugby--so primal. Only the Brits would come up with that!

Greater Fall River Committee for Peace & Justice 9:59 AM  

NATO Alphabet? Maybe AlphabetIZING. But Zulu ain't a letter.

AliasZ 10:02 AM  

This puzzle looks like the insides of my pocket: some loose change and a CANDO attitude. If I dig deep enough, at times I may come across some CHIP and Rice-A-RONI remains, a ROSE petal, ONE dollar bills adding up to about FOUR toward RENT money, a SNAG or two, and an EVIL GENIUS curled up in the corner -- quite a DOCILE ANIMAL nowadays. I have developed some fancy TECHNIQUES to reach in and say "OOLALA, I'M HOME! What's GNU?" The only thing my pocket lacks is a THREE CENT PIECE, a Mario LANZA recording ON TAPE, and a suckerfish.

You should realize I am a LIAR.

Loved this one, with just enough theme answers to not break the back of the puzzle. I liked the NESS NEST on the SW, and the STANZA/LANZA rhyme. REMORA and AMEN-RA may not be exactly average Monday fill, but it was fun to have a little crunch added into the mix.

Thank you Mike, and Annabel, Happy Birthday to you!

Eduardo MATA (1942-1995) was a talented Mexican conductor and composer, but not a great pilot. He was Music Director of the Dallas Symphony from 1977-1993, and was appointed to the New Zealand Symphony starting with the January 1995 season. Tragically, he was killed in a crash while piloting his own Piper Aerostar twin-engine light airplane the same month. Here he conducts "Sinfonia India" (Symphony No. 2) by his compatriot Carlos Chávez (1899-1978).

Happy Monday all.

pfb 10:04 AM  

So happy to hear you are enjoying college, Annabel!

Bob Kerfuffle 10:05 AM  

Belated Happy Birthday and Belated Happy Blogiversary, Annabel!

Good Monday puzzle.

Andrew Heinegg 10:07 AM  

An easy-peasy romp; I had never heard of remora attaching themselves to the sides of boats, only other (larger) fishes but, upon checking, the Internet says it is so. Ergo, it must be true.

Gracie 10:08 AM  

Welcome back Annabel! Agree that generally was smooth and easy,, BUT for the first time in a long while DNF a Monday due to AMENTA/FERMIS and RILE/REMORA. These crosses not mondayish!

Z 10:13 AM  

I read a 538 article on names last week. ADOLPH wasn't mentioned. On the other hand, a fair number of people have been named Seven. I went with the wrong in multiple ways "editor" at the Ochs clue.

@LMS - Very important to impart the idea that language/communication is different in different settings. Funny thing about "whom" is that you can misuse it and people will think you're a "know-it-all." Still, those M ending pronouns should hang out together in a support group, "Don't hate me because I'm pretty correct."

Nice Monday even though GNU, ADEN, UIE and UVEA were unavoidable.

Wednesday's Child 10:18 AM  

Sundays are usually tedious puzzles. Like yesterday. Today was breezy, except for my guess at FERrIS and ArENRA. I don't mind a dnf when I learn something, but I don't expect to get snagged on a natick on a Monday.

Most of it I knew. ZOO ELSE GNU?

Nancy 10:22 AM  

It's hard for me to get excited about any puzzle this easy, but, as easy puzzles go, it was smooth and pleasant to solve. And I actually had to run the alphabet for 1 letter. I had never heard the expression "cheese off" and guessed that it meant to idle, to be lazy. I had -ILE, but couldn't think of any synonym for laze, loll, idle with that combo of letters. So I ran the alphabet to get to RILE and only then figured out that "cheese off" meant to tick off, to make angry. (Obviously, I never heard of a REMORA, either.)

Congrats on being at Wellesley, Annabel. Hope you have a great year!

quilter1 10:26 AM  

Happy Birthday, Annabel. Easy and fun puzzle with some original touches. I think "cheese off" is pretty common for making someone mad, but it may be a generational thing.

cwf 10:41 AM  

Happy birthday Annabel!

Very, very quick solve. Essentially didn't stop typing.

As @Rex noted last night on twitter, this theme nearly duplicates one published 15 years ago, a fact the author appears to have discovered too late.

oldbizmark 11:07 AM  

DNF. thought this was tough for a Monday. "Cheese Off" is not in my lexicon. Didn't know the cross, REMORA or M in the cross of FERMIS/AMENRA. Not very Mondayish.

Anonymous 11:11 AM  

Annabel - you're adorable and brilliant and funny. Good luck with rugby. My husband played and his fingers now point (at rest) in ten different directions :)

quince324 11:40 AM  

I was offended by the "grammer Nazis' concerns" clue.

Lewis 11:48 AM  

@aliasz -- This morning as I was working out, I was thinking about some of the regulars here, and when you came to my mind my brain immediately supplied the following: The Earl of Erudition. Which I can only assume is my subconscious's title for you -- and I like it!

chefbea 12:04 PM  

@BillyC I too went to college in Massachusettes . Wheaton in where near Natick

jberg 12:51 PM  

Hi Annabel, nice to hear from you again! Hope the studying doesn't keep you away!

Pretty nice puzzle, although I could have done without the UIE/USAGES (POC) crossing. And if I wanted to be really fussy, all the coins in the themers are clued as such -- except QUARTER. But that's too fussy for me.

As for grammar -- I learned the which/that thing in response to the copy editor of a book I published at the age of 51, I'd never noticed it up to then -- now it seems horrible when used wrong. Same thing with gerunds' taking possessive nous, and not saying "different than" -- one day the rule just starts to make sense, and after that you can't violate it.

I don't mind "everyone should bring their coat," though -- as I've probably said before, that's an attempt to rid the language of an archaic social distinction, the same way we did when we started to refer to everyone as "you."

With the Q forced by the theme, I liked the way we got all those Zs, but no X. I like a pangram as much as anyone, but deliberately avoiding one is also cool.

Masked and Anonymous 1:04 PM  

Happy Anniversary and B-Day, Miss Blue'bel. Good to hear from U, once again. Excellent write-up. Dare I say "scrummy"?

This MonPuz is great. Superb. Educational. Dejavulisicious and yet ground-breakin. Dare I say "epic"? (Well, maybe not.)

First of all, it has 6 of the UsUal sUspects. Then, it also has yer long, crossin themers, some of which were totally fresh phrases, as far as I can recall. (Never saw that other 15-year-old puz, or have forgotten it.)

Thirdly, it has a buncha Z's. That's a pretty brave fillin assignment, when you've already got those long intersectin themers. And yet, he did it, plus had stuff like TECHNIQUES and EVILGENIUS thrown in there, too. And, just to show he meant business, the dude only used 34 black blocks, leavin the grid wiiiiide open. All this on a Monday, when it has to be an easy solve (which it was).

Where am I? Sixthly? Seventhly? Anyhoo, nextly…
45 of the 76 answers in this grid have Partrick Berry NYTPuz Usage Immunity. (Sorry, not you, @UIE. But, good to see yer desperate lil weeject face.) That is an unheard of ratio, for everybody except maybe one guy… modesty prevents me from mentionin who…

But, best of all, consider this brilliant yet craftily subtle lil structure (situated out around 31-A's parts):
Day-um, people! This is just too good. Bound for glory. M&A is not worthy. I am (nearly) speechless! Amazin. Wowzers. [sputter, etc.]

This puppy is gonna be one mighty tough act to follow, TuesPuz. Better come up with a rebus+word ladder+anagrams+007 U+no pewits combo, or your ass is KOD liver oil.


**bUmper rUntz**

Tita 1:08 PM  

Happy anniversaries, Annabel - and thanks for the upfront warning that it's you - I'm liable to get whiplash from expecting Rex and getting upbeat.

I'm still surprised every time I hear an OOhLALA in France. All those Bugs Bunny episodes made it seem like an over-the-top stereotype, I guess, that it sounds weird to hear it actually used.

@chefbea - no to Keurigs of any form! More dedicated ampules (or whatever they call those throw-away cups) to manufacture and to toss, not to mention being beholden to a handful of suppliers to provide.
My homemade soda is some OJ, some cranberry or pomegranate or any other red juice, and some seltzer.

Puzzle was fine, thought the themers should either have been all references to the coins' names as coins (as in NICKELANDDIMING or THREECENTPIECES), or all non-coin-related (like QUARTERHORSES.

Speaking of horses, recent googling of the word "distaff' made me a metonymy for women, because only women spun wool, it seems an unlikely way to get to "Distaff races" as in horse races for only female horses...
I now have wonderful images of mares sitting by the fireside, spinning wool, holding the distaff with their tails.
Just seemed odd to broaden the word to cover animals, when it was taken from a decidedly human-only trait.

@Gill - I'm guessing George was not a distaff?

Masked and Anonymous 1:18 PM  

@Blue'bel: Primo Rhea Floof pic. I would strongly note that that bird could benefit from that there new 2G technology that @muse is now sellin, in her "spare time" away from teachin and bill collectin.

While I'm back, let's honor the best moo-cow eazy-e MonPuz clue. Our runaway winner is…

{Loch ___ monster} = NESS.

Also, just to keep a wary eye on this:
Longest French word, today: OOLALA. 6-letter-French is pushin the envelope of acceptability, but it gets immunity points for bein mostly nonsense syllables.


Lewis 1:21 PM  

Well, at first I was going to blast those for complaining about repeating a theme from 15 years ago, but I did look at the puzzle and two of the theme answers in the older puzzle were PENNYDREADFUL and NICKELANDDIME (the third was QUARTERMASTER). Had Mike come up with different answers for penny, nickel, and dime, I would have done the aforementioned blasting. But with two of those answers the same, now the issue is more fuzzy. I think a good theme can be repeated, even if it was last done as recently as five years ago, but the answers on the latter should be different from the answers on the former. This is not a rule written anywhere, but it feels right to me. Even with the THREECENTPIECES this seems like too much of a copy. Thoughts?

Leapfinger 1:48 PM  

Nice to have these Monday Money Talks, with neither Paper nor Plastic in evidence. NICKEL_AND_DIMING reminded me of Barbara Ehrenreich's book, but PENNY_DREADFUL was my favourite, from books read long ago, where they sometimes turned into the colloquial 'penny dreffuls'. Not a bad idea to have the PENNY get two mentions; we can always use more CENTs.
I also liked the QUARTERHORSES looking down on the NAG.

@John Child, nice explanation on the essential that/ which distinction.

I s'pose that TOKYO ROSE might have said "Honey. tah DIME ah!"

REMORAs (suckerfish) are the quintessential free rider, in my view: they sometimes attach to small boats, but usually latch onto large species like sharks and whales, and feed on the scraps that drift from the predator's maw. In exchange, they clean up the host's parasites and sloughing epidermis, which is why sharks and whales don't get dust-mites in their mattresses. Barnacles, otoh, aren't fish.

Did any of you hear that Chrysler absorbed a German auto manufacture? Went from IaCOCA to OPEL_COCA. (As a minor point of interest, OPEL started out with the manufacture of sewing machines in a German cowshed; somewhat unseamly beginnings, wouldn't you say? then later moved on up to bicycles)

There's a pleasant sprinkling of animal life in the grid, perhaps to offset the heartbreak of AMENRA-RHEA, not to mention the image of an OPEN THOR that just won't stop uzing. So what ELSE is GNU?

Weill the day is young, we may still hear a curt selection from the THREE_CENT_Opera.

I don't know if it was intentional, but this puzzle had interesting mirror-image pairs that added a certain ZESTNESS and gladdened the heart of this TARheel FAN:
*REGAL CREST, as may be found on a Hoopoe
*NEST STOP - Migrating birds thousands of miles without one
*MATA PSAS: Ms Hari's announcements
*ALI GNU I've forgotten
*When Z fall down, Z say ZOOPSI (sorry if that don't sound magnificently bestial)

Happy to leave humming a few bars of a LANZA STANZA (hi @FredRom/@Alias), but with all this wetNESS everywhere, it just IS NOT fair to take MI out of my DOmiCILE.

Y'allhave a nice dry day.

Teedmn 1:50 PM  

I nearly set a personal best on this one, since 38A and 52A pretty much filled themselves in, and PENNY DREADFUL wasn't much harder. I watched the first season of the Showtime series last year but haven't been able to talk myself into the 2nd one. It was pretty dark and had a lot of what I considered gratuitous sex and gore. I see it has been renewed for a third season, so it must have a halfway decent audience.

One writeover, Spar before SAIL. Just got the clue for 25A, a new GNU, cute. I always liked the idea of REMORAs sponging off their shark hosts but Wikipedia makes it sound as if the relationship might be more symbiotic than parasitic.

Rather dull here today at work, would like to click my heels and repeat THREE times @LMS' phrase in Japanese and find myself at HOME. But thanks for the write up, Annabel, and watch those scrums.

Numinous 2:27 PM  

Dear Annabel,

Happy Birthday and Blogversary! I love you, (well, I love your blogging) and I love your word "floof" which has no less than 28 definitions in Urban Dictionary (#22 being less than optimal, sorry to say). So glad you're having a "wild and crazy" time at Wellsley. Freshman year can be trying (coping with new freedoms, availabilities, and choices) for many college students who wind up dropping out. It's good to hear you're not wandering down that path. AMEN RAh!

Thruppence in the Fountain? Doesn't work for me. Yeah, what happened to the silver Half Dollar and the Silver Dollar? I keep one of each in my pocket. I love to hear the jingle that is now absent from our coinage (no, I don't keep them in the same pocket as my spendable change). I have to say that i'm sad the Susan B. Anthony and Sacajawea dollars never caught on here. Australia and Canada both have one dollar and two dollar coins which religates them to the status they deserve as being worth than less than a DIME in my youth when a DIME would buy two candy bars. I recall being scandalized with the price whent up to 10¢ (damn! I've really become an Olde Farte).

The PENNY DREADFUL, originally the Penny Blood was genre of serialized fiction popular in Great Britain in the nineteenth century. As an answer, it is saved by the TV show. These stories were as gory and grizzly as possible with publishers demanding from their authors, "More blood." These PENNY DREADFULs ran to hundreds and hundres of installments. Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street began life as one of these and was made into a play before the series was completed.

I like a puzzle that leads me to learn new things, ergo, I liked this one. I have to consider it eights minutes very well spent.

Paul Johnson 2:53 PM  

Unless you think pit bulls are DOCILE "Tame, as a pet" should read, "Tame, as a pet, sometimes".

Karen Munson 3:03 PM  

@Annabel: Good use of the word FLOOF in a sentence. 😜

John Hagen 3:25 PM  

How 100% totally refreshing to have your attitude and exuberance melded into the narrative again, today. You have my positive vote for: "Why not contribute every Monday?" Cheers. J

OISK 4:16 PM  

Almost a DNF for me, although I generally liked this puzzle. UIE? I guess that has appeared before, but is it UEY? or maybe UEE ? I was not 100 % sure it was Narnia and not Narnea, but I did get it right.

Always enjoyed Lanza's singing in Student Prince. Nice Monday puzzle.

Z 4:17 PM  

@Lewis - ½ of the themers not only the same but in the same order is too close. 15 years is a plenty long gap in Xyears (the original constructor hasn't published in the NYTX in 8 years, even). So I'm split. I do think a quick editorial perusal of the database before three whacks at improving g this happened would have been polite. I like the themers, so maybe a little reimagining would take me from split to saying "okay."

Joe 6:31 PM  

Annabel, you are a lovely respite from Rex.

GILL I. 6:56 PM  

@Tita....Breeders Cup Ladies Classic no less.....

The wheel has been reinvented many times.

terry 12:01 AM  

UIE? No way. KOD instead of KOED? Lousy.

Anonymous 7:56 AM  

If I were Annabel, I wouldn't enjoy my occasional appearance as blogger being an opportunity for some to whine about my friend Rex. Creepy.

Burma Shave 10:43 AM  


FOUR each bale of hay my QUARTERHORSES burn.
Even when prices ARLO, it takes all that ONE URNS!


spacecraft 10:54 AM  

Isn't that a picture of TWO RHEAS? Count the legs! TWO, incidentally, is the missing number in the grid; ONE, THREE and FOUR are all there.

A quite acceptable PIECE of Monday "floof." Love the coined word, @Annabel! Just a couple of short-fill misfires KOD the chance for an A. UIE, of course, was the other one. So, B+, and a solid start to Vteerans' Week. As a non-combat one, I salute all you brave souls who serve(d) under fire. We owe you more than we will ever be able to pay.

rondo 11:12 AM  

Decent enough for a Mon-puz, KOD and UIE notwithstanding. And there must be dozens of permutations of HOWTO spell OOLALA.

MATA Hari, an exotic dancing spy yeah baby from a century ago – infamously played on screen in that OPEN LACE costume by my grandmother’s cousin and yeah baby Greta Garbo. Am I allowed to talk about relatives like that? CANDO in this case. I believe she created many FERMIS in her day, makes me THOR to think about it.

MONICA could’ve been something other than a Santa. Second favorite Friend.

I’m missing the EVILGENIUS doug.

Always nice to read Annabel’s fresh perspective. Off to enjoy ONE fine MN Monday. AMEN,RA.

rain forest 12:53 PM  

Nice friendly Monday puzzle with some long entries, which is rare. Some commenters opined that the REMORA/RILE cross was "un-Monday". This implies that every single clue should be a gimme, which, if we're talking about beginning solvers, doesn't provide any opportunities for learning. Not that crosswords are educational vehicles (well, maybe occasionally).

Anyway, even if this theme was a copy of something from 15 years ago, I don't care, and I think it is a good beginning to the week.

leftcoastTAM 3:56 PM  

With answers like PENNYDREADFUL, TECHNIQUES, QUARTERHORSES, and especially AMENRA and REMORA (close to anagrams), this was not an "easy" Monday. Throw in KOD (there are many more non-KO "floor-ings" in boxing than KOs) and UIE, and this is at least a head-scratcher, IMO.

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