Former Sanyo competitor / TUE 4-26-16 / Canyon Park running spot in Hollywood Hills / Ones helping public prosector / Aggressive manager for child star / Popular strength-training program

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Constructor: Finn Vigeland

Relative difficulty: Easy

THEME: words made into scandals — familiar words/names ending in -GATE are reimagined (in wacky "?" clues) as unlikely scandal names:

Theme answers:
  • DELEGATE (18A: Scandal surrounding copy editors' proofreading marks?)
  • ELONGATE (19A: Scandal involving Tesla C.E.O. Musk?)
  • APPLEGATE (28A: Scandal affecting iPhone owners?) (Christina! She'll like that...)
  • FLOODGATE (47A: Scandal in the aftermath of a tsunami?)
  • TAILGATE (57A: Scandal that implicates a detective?)
  • NAVIGATE (61A: Scandal depicted in "Avatar"?)
Word of the Day: RUNYON Canyon Park (33A: ___ Canyon Park (running spot in the Hollywood Hills)) —
Runyon Canyon Park is a 160-acre (65 ha) park in Los Angeles, California, at the eastern end of the Santa Monica Mountains, managed by the Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks. The southern entrance to the park is located at the north end of Fuller Avenue in Hollywood. The northern entrance is off the 7300 block of Mulholland Drive. The Runyon Canyon Road, a fire road that is closed to public motor vehicle access, runs roughly through the center of the park between the northern and southern entrances along Runyon Canyon itself, and there are numerous smaller hiking trails throughout the park. The highest point in the park at an elevation of 1,320 ft (402 m) is known as Indian Rock. Because of its proximity to residential areas of Hollywood and the Hollywood Hills, celebrity sightings are common. The park is also noted for having a fairly liberal dog policy, with dogs allowed off-leash in 90 of the park's 160 acres (0.65 km2). (wikipedia)
• • •

Simple, clever concept, very easy to solve (so many -GATEs to be automatically filled in).  For me, the highlight of the puzzle wasn't the theme, it was the sassy, polished grid. FRENEMY and STAGEMOM before I even got out of the NW? That's impressive. There's current and/or snappy fill all over the place. I particularly liked CROSSFIT, AIR COVER, LOST LOVE, LOW-RISK, and "WORD UP," though I'd've clued that last one via the 1986 Cameo song. People mostly actually just say "Word," if they use that expression at all. This is an incredibly minor point. There is hardly any junk in this puzzle. ADAS, I don't like. Any other problematic short fill is, at worst, overfamiliar, and even that is quite infrequent. No CHAGRIN here. The weirdest answer in the puzzle was RUNYON. Usually I'm giving sideeye to the hyperlocal *NYC* (or overall Northeastern US) fill, accusing the puzzle of its own special brand of provincialism. But a park in L.A.? When I see pictures, the park actually looks familiar, but I lived in Southern California for a while and I've never heard of RUNYON Canyon Park. It is a deeply weird proper noun to put in your *Tuesday* *NYT* puzzle, especially when a much more famous RUNYON is readily available to you (Damon, who wrote "Guys & Dolls" and was a hugely famous sportswriter and short story writer in the early 20th c.). But with this theme that essentially gives away huge chunks of real estate in the grid, maybe the thinking was that you gotta put *something* in there to slow people down. So ... some park! Why not?

My stumbles were not that noteworthy. First thing I wrote in the grid was PEONS, but I instantly knew it was wrong (1A: Medieval drudges). RUNYON slowed me down a bit over there in the west. I hesitated writing in SEAN Bean because even though it felt right, I couldn't picture him in my head. Only Mr. Bean popped up. And SEAN Astin. But no matter. SEAN was right. This one was perhaps over-easy, but highly pleasing for me nonetheless. Nice gridwork.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Facebook]


Loren Muse Smith 7:05 AM  

Six themers – fifty theme squares. Nice. My three favorite answers are the ones whose pronunciation changes – they just feel trickier. Especially ELONGATE – such a subtle change.

Too bad that MUSICAL couldn't have been a themer, too, because it's just so There, Center STAGE. But COLGATE (hey, Oliver North was a colonel) or FRIGATE would hinge on an abbreviation.

I've said before that it's cool to see a word become a full-fledged suffix. The father – Watergate – well, hah! My husband and I were just talking about the mess Brazil has right now with the polluted water the athletes will have to swim in.

Fun clue for SEAN. European Sean Dean. Not Chilean.

Rex - I was thinking there may be some groans about WORD UP. This past weekend when my son was visiting, I heard him say WORD to a friend on the phone, and I was surprised to hear that is was still hanging around.

I liked the, well, the staggered STAGS there in the northwest. And STAGEMOM right next to FRENEMY. (My mom was never a stagemom, but it probably never occurred to her; she didn't have much to work with.) And STAGEMOM crosses MUSICAL and NUDGE. I guess a stagemom doesn't nudge so much as shove, now that I think about it.

I also liked the clue for OIL. Boy, I remember the first time I was in a restaurant that had a tiny little dish of olive oil to dip your bread in. I felt oh so sophisticated and cultured. I Had Arrived.

And CHAGRIN right there by LOST LOVE. Plaisir d'amour ne dure qu'un moment and all that. That CHAGRIN, buddy – dure toute la vie.

One last thing – let's all pause and thank our lucky stars that TAILGATE wasn't clued as some Kim Kardashian Photoshop scandal.

Fun Tuesday.

Lewis 7:09 AM  

At first I was thinking Monday easy, but now I'm thinking easy side of Tuesday. Once the theme is figured out with the first GATE, that's 20 spaces automatically filled in. Learned WORDUP (which I'll remember, and, as Rex mentioned, I've heard it as simply "word") and RUNYAN as clued (which I probably won't remember). Liked NUDGE, CHAGRIN, and the debut AIRCOVER. When I looked at Xword Info to see if that word was a debut, I also saw that Finn looks like he's eight. I like the cross of STAGEMOM and MUSICAL.

It went very quickly; when I finished, the thought that popped into my head was, "So many gates, so little time".

Frigate! 7:24 AM  

Gate, gate, gate, gate, gate, gate. Solve the first one, fill in the other twenty squares. Two real gates, one person (but unfortunately not Rex Applegate), and three theme answers playing _ _ _ _ GATE as a single word.

Nice fill, yes, but more airline magazine fare than NYT standard for me.

Tita A 7:42 AM  

Cute theme that did make the puzzle pretty easy. Thought Mr. V. would have hell to pay to Rex for the outlying APPLEGATE, that one being "just" some proper name, and not a bona fide thing.

As long as One of the funniest activities here seems to be calling out mustiness, can we retire AVIATE in all its forms? I mean, has anyone who actually IS an aviator called themselves that in the past 50 years?
And when was the last time any of them AVIATEd? Or even piloted, for that matter. My pilot friends say " I flew my Learjet...".

thanks for a fun and timely idea, here on CT Primary day ... Fitting theme, considering the original GATE derives from an election-based scandal!

jberg 7:47 AM  

TSA, EEGS, IRT, seemed like a lot of crosswordese short fill -- but OK, @Rex has a point about the longer fill. Except AVIATE. And the CARE/CARA crossing was lame (same word, if you take it back to the original Latin). But OK, quick and fun. I was proud of myself for getting LOST LOVE from the L, despite my never having heard an Adele song, so there's that.

But enough of that, I'm off to work.

chefbea 8:14 AM  

Fun easy puzzle...though I did have to google Runyon. The gates made it easy!!!

NCA President 8:15 AM  

Not much to add. Definitely experienced the FLOODGATEs once I saw that -GATE was the theme. Not much resistance except that I had Going before GRIEF (don't ask me why) which added to the difficulty of getting RUNYON and IRT. But once I got the theme, I saw that F in FLOODGATE and GRIEF fixed my problems. So yeah, that was a good grief.

I've noticed some debate around the ridiculously hyper popularity of Hamilton. I've not seen it, and I suppose I'll see it eventually, but not once have I ever truly liked any show or movie or TV show that everyone raves about at the level of rave for Hamilton. Has anyone here who's seen it...and can you explain why the show is quite so over-the-top popular?

kitshef 8:38 AM  

Utilitarian was the description that came to mind for this puzzle, and I mean that in a positive way. Right difficulty for Tuesday? Check. Mimimize bad fill? Check. Theme that holds together? Check. Throw in a couple of curve balls to make it a learning experience as well as a solve? Check.

Symmetrical ICARE and ALLOK were the worst things in the puzzle, and they weren't terrible.

Some other interesting symmetrical pairings: Slow progress: INCH and TREK; FRENEMY and CHAGRIN: ETA and TSA. And the basis of a short, sad, story: STAGEMOM and LOSTLOVE.


Z 8:41 AM  

Hand up for Easy. Maybe a GATE rebus would have upped the challenge a little bit. Getting all those squares filled after solving one themer does push the puzzle into the Monday zone for me (@Frigate - Maybe you haven't noticed, but airline magazines often reprint easier NYTX - so don't be surprised if this one is on a flight somewhere in the not too distant future).

As for old, white, maleness - it is hard to accuse a puzzle with FRENEMY, WORD UP, Lin-Manuel Miranda, and CROSSFIT of being old (even if we are all reminded to get our FLU shot). Still, Adele and Cristina APPLEGATE only appear through tangentially and the STAGEMOM stereotype is hardly complimentary. We do get MUSICAL with a modern clue, but Hamilton is about as mainstream as you can get now. Definitely an improvement from yesterday in this regard, but still hardly a warm open invitation to non-OWMs.

Finally, the PPP is low. Just 16 of the 76 clue/answers have Pop Culture, Product Names, or Proper Nouns attached.

Nancy 8:57 AM  

A very, very easy, smooth puzzle that is leaving me with lots of time today to wrestle with the new Patrick Berry that someone on this blog kindly sent me. I haven't looked at it yet, but I know it will be highly challenging. They always are.

Roo Monster 9:02 AM  

Hey All !
Liked it for the fact that the fill is relatively clean despite shoving 6 GATEs in the grid. Like I've said before, any puz will have some dreck, but if it's low enough, all's good. Like @LMS, would've liked to see a GATE in the center, isn't MUSGATE some kind of something?

Ala @Lewis, AIRCOVER in the top of grid, CROSSFIT going Across. WORDUP down, though. Also, AWAKE and TIRED next to each other is neat.

Seemed a tad tough for a TuesPuz, maybe not quite awake enough yet. :-) So, thought puz was ALL OK, no POINT to SHEDS a tear, I CARE to CEASE being it's FRENEMY. Or something... :-P


Ben M 9:06 AM  

First time posting. Love your blog, Rex! How is "north south east west" POINT? Huh?

Charles Flaster 9:18 AM  

Similar to a movie or book that just grabs and continues to enthrall you.
REPO, STAGE MOM , and ELONGATE are clever, thought provoking, and a nice intro to remainder of puzzle.
AFT was well clued too.
Just finished solving a GEORGE B puzzle concerning a recent sad event. Try it- you'll like it!
Again, thanks to FV.

Ludyjynn 9:22 AM  

When Stannie, the rescue dog, arrived here two months ago, he had apparently never been exposed to cats. Much to my CHAGRIN, when I attempted to introduce him to Felix, his gut response was to try to eat my cat. No LOST LOVE there! So Felix spent much of his time upstairs, performing evasive maneuvers. After a week or so, Felix decided to assert his seniority status, slowly and carefully insinuating himself in Stannie's vicinity, and reclaiming his rightful place on my lap. Before I knew it, they had become FRENEMies! Today, they are true buddies, playing together and even sitting in my lap at the same time! When Felix has had enough of Stan, he bats his paw at him; thinking this is a fun game, Stannie does not retreat, but bats his own stubby paw at Fe. Laughter ENSUES as I shake my head in disbelief at the evolution of their relationship. I'm thinking of renting out Felix as a dog trainer. Not.

Very nice Tuesday. Thanks, FV and WS.

Anonymous 9:25 AM  

Hey Tita. Private pilot here. Cardinal rule of flying: aviate, navigate, communicate. Every day thousands of student pilots hear this expression or many more pilots remember it while flying.

Speaking of cardinal, Ben, north south east and west are the cardinal points on a compass.

Fun Tuesday puzzle. Filled in most of it from the across clues. Once you figured out the hook, everything fell into place.


cwf 9:33 AM  

@Ben M it was "North, south, east OR west"; the "or" means you're looking for a singular answer. These are compass POINTs.

(yes, I know even as I type this twelve others are typing the same thing.)

Wm. C. 9:36 AM  

I got trapped in the SW by thoughtlessly putting in "MAMA" Mia, then taking too long to question it.

"INCH" seemed like it shoulda been a gimme, but "CM" was an impossible word start, so no for "INCH."

Finally got "LOWRISK" from " LO....."this made "HAWK" from the "iNCH" rejection, so out with "MAMA," and I finally read the "CARA" clue carefully enough..

Oh, well ...

blinker474 9:55 AM  

for Ben M: each is a point on the compass.

John V 9:55 AM  

Do not understand APPLEGATE. Anyone?

Laurence Katz 10:01 AM  

Easy and lots of fun. Liked it a lot except for "applegate," which didn't really belong.

oldbizmark 10:08 AM  

still trying to figure out what the "NB" of the clue "what the N in NB stands for" means. Can someone help a brother out?

Anonymous 10:43 AM  

NB is an abbreviation of Nota Bene note well

Howard B 10:46 AM  

oldbizmark: Not sure what puzzle clue you are referring to. But in general, that clue for (N.B.) usually means N.B. = "nota bene", "note well", meaning in a text to pay attention to this important comment.

Joseph Michael 10:46 AM  

I usually like Finn's puzzles, but this one was a disappointment due to the repetition factor. And, except for NAVIGATE. I didn't find the themers particularly amusing. So low on the fun scale for me.

I did like FRENEMY (John Kasich's view of Ted Cruz in their recent pact?) but overall I expect more from a puzzle with this constructor's name on it. And WTF is WORD UP?

GILL I. 10:48 AM  

Best Tuesday puzzle in a long time.
I didn't care at all that GATE was just ripe for the pickin. It was just fun trying to guess the "Scandals."
RUNYON Canyon is pretty well known. I bet you any Japanese or Australian tourist can even give you a guided tour. I remember when there was a bit of a scandal with parking issues. The poor folk who lived in the Hollywood Hills would scream murder because "their" roads were all being taken up by cars and the looky-sees who wanted to trot around the mountain....
Agree with @Tita A (what does the A stand for?...hmmmm) about AVIATE. Although I don't know any who pilots a Lear, I can't imagine anyone owning one would AVIATE it...unless you're the private aviator of Trump.

old timer 11:03 AM  

Perfectly normal Tuesday time for me -- 14 minutes pen on paper. The GATEs made it easy, but some of the long fill was less than obvious.

I grew up in L.A. and once I had a good 10-speed (a Peugot) used to ride my bike from Brentwood to Hollywood, but I never heard of RUNYON canyon park. Maybe it didn't exist then.

@oldbizmark, N.B. stands for Nota Bene. Literally, "note well". A scholarly "by the way" meaning "you will want to take notice of this interesting fact."

N.B. About those bike rides to Hollywood, you can bet I never told my mother about them. My 14-year-old personal motto was, "ask me no questions and I'll tell you no lies."

Maskedgate 11:14 AM  

{Amish buttonless pants zipping scandal?} = PRO-FLI-GATE? yeah ... didn't think so.

Six GATEs. Whole day-um gated community. Pretty tight little theme.

TATATETETUTU sounds like a primo seed entry for somethin.

ADAS is about it, for pleasinly desperate fill. Didn't precisely know: WORDUP. ELON. RUNYON. LETO. SEAN. Otherwise, ALLOK.

Great TuesPuz. Fanx, Finn.

Masked & Anonymo5Us

Rabi Abonour 11:49 AM  

Really clean fill with some great answers, but I'm still not sure how I feel about the theme. It gives so much away, but I guess that's fine on a Tuesday?

I also don't love IRT. Finn and I are both NYC transportation nerds, so we know it. But it's pretty archaic; I don't know how many people are familiar with it even in New York.

Dick Swart 11:49 AM  

Refreshing fill (wink wink, nudge nudge)!

jae 11:53 AM  

Easy Tues. for me too except for the AIWA/WORD UP cross which required a brief stare. Other than that and the RUNYON WOE it went about as fast as I could pencil in block letters on the Across Lite printout.

Amusing theme, mostly smooth grid, some nice long downs, what @Rex said, liked it a lot.

@lms - thanks for your closing chuckle.

Gzodik 11:58 AM  

oldbizmark: NB stands for the Latin "Nota Bene" (Some refer to it as "Note Below").

Can anyone tell me what an ADA is? Google is clueless. Never heard of "word up", so I was naticked on 64 across.

oldactor 12:09 PM  

@oldbizmark: Nota it.

John 12:23 PM  

Point of compass.

Diana,LIW 12:24 PM  


Hi Loren! I'm Diana, Lady-in-Waiting for Crosswords, from the crossword past of Syndieland. I flew in my deLorean to acknowledge a post of yours from 5(+) weeks ago. You mentioned liking Chenin Blanc (which was part of a clue/answer). So...if you want a truly, lovely, amazing Chenin Blanc, try Heller Estates (from Monterey county in CA). I am a chardonnay lover, but one day I had only the option of this CB. Wow! It's one of my favorite, if not my favorite, wines. write wonderfully. I wrote my dissertation about writing voice, and I could tell yours a mile away. Others have suggested you write a book. Please. Do us all a favor. Write it. I'll buy it, and will spread the word.

I'll lift a glass of Heller Chenin Blanc - a toast to you, LMS!

Diana, Lady-in-Waiting for Crosswords

Anonymous 12:27 PM  

This puzzle would have been much more pleasurable did I not abhor the attachment of GATE to every. single. inane. pseudo political controversy.

@JohnV - Christina Applegate

puzzle hoarder 12:33 PM  

I need to stop commenting by phone. I don't know what I touched but my phone told me I was being published when I wasn't finished and I couldn't get back to what I was typing. I was just about to add that I solved last night and it proved that my imagination goes to bed before I do.

Teedmn 1:11 PM  

Easy except the 64A WORD UP. I can't remember Assistant District AttorneyS being clued as ADAS before and AIWA wasn't jumping onto the grid for me so I was staring at _OR_UP and thinking "Amen to what?" It was giving me fits being so close to finished. I was about to throw in the towel when I decided ADAS must be 58D so WORD UP finally came to me. Still took less than 9 minutes so not totally out of Tuesday range.

ELON-GATE and NA'VI-GATE were my favorites of the 6 themers. A nice puzzle and the GATE duplications seemed fine on a Tuesday.

I took a stab at the tribute puzzle @George Barany provided yesterday and I recommend it to anyone who is going to miss the artist of Purple Rain fame. Purple Reign

Mohair Sam 1:12 PM  

Agree with all that it was a smooth Tuesday. Might have been challenging for the day had not the theme been so gettable. Thought it was really clever, btw.

Never been to California but after a few letters I knew RUNYON Canyon Park, have no idea why. Rex didn't really complain, but hasn't WORDUP been just 'WORD' for about three decades now? @lms beat me to seeing the CHAGRIN/LOSTLOVE pairing. She also showed no shame in her TAILGATE remark.

@Z from yesterday - Thanks for the search. Any puzzle clued TEY with anything but "The Daughter of Time" had to be brutal! We've read all her novels in this house, a favorite.

@Ludyjynn from yesterday - You mentioned Cliff Robertson husband of DINA Merrill. My older brother owned a shop in Water Mill, Cliff's summer home - he got to know Robertson fairly well. My brother never (literally - never) went to the movies and rarely watched TV, he had no idea what Cliff did for a living. Several years ago my brother was reading a magazine article about Water Mill and was surprised to see a picture of his old friend Cliff in the article, then shocked to read just who Cliff was. Next time he saw Robertson my brother asked why Cliff had never told him he was famous. Robertson replied calmy, "Harvey, you never asked."

Chronic dnfer 1:14 PM  

I agree with roo monster. Easy but not an easy rating considering a Tuesday. Easy-medium I would say. No dnf but a took a while.

Anonymous 1:28 PM  

John V: Christina Applegate I think

oldbiz: nota bene N.B. is legalese

Hungry Mother 1:34 PM  

DNF for me. I thought AIWA was a root beer or an insurance company. Just watched "Good Wife" last night, so I though of ASAS. WORDUP is just not in my wheelhouse, nor do I want it to be. Very ticked off about this puzzle.

Hartley70 1:58 PM  

@LudyJynn, glad to hear that the Bickersons have decided to co-exist peacefully. It's not fun to be Switzerland in a domestic war. BTW, I can't do better than late yesterday's 3 degrees for you. I've tried.

I was absolutely sure Rex would hate this because of the multiple GATEs. He's a man of many surprises. So instead they just annoyed me. I like the idea, I Just would have appreciated a little variety in the scandal nicknames. The cluing was good and the answers nicely topical. I was only at sea with WORDUP. Even changing it to WORD, which some here knew, didn't make it at all familiar. And I thought I was so hip, fo shizzle.

Crash222 2:05 PM  

All naval pilots call themselves aviators

Kate 2:05 PM  

Disagree with you on RUNYON, Rex. It's the pretty well known and oft derided, people-watching, "running park of the stars".

Crash222 2:13 PM  

All naval pilots call themselves aviators

Masked and Anonymous 2:41 PM  

Whaddabout us?!?

Toto and the Titis for a Better America.


Brian's Thong 3:16 PM  

@oldbizmark "NB" is shorthand for the latin phrase "Nota bene" literally translated as "Note well" and typically used to draw attention to a specific point.

Anonymous 3:19 PM  

I have seen Hamilton and it was spectacular. The detail is impeccable. It took Miranda over six years to write-one song took two years. That he took classic theatre couplets and converted them into Hiphop is remarkable. I'm not a Hiphop fan, but I am a theatre fan. I actually cried during to show because I was so overwhelmed by the beauty. If you do have an opportunity to see it, I strongly recommend listening to the album at least three times. I mean, you know how it ends. It's very fast paced and if you know the music, you won't miss anything.
Just an aside, I found it really cool that people "dressed." It annoys me that people don't dress for the theatre anymore. I'm fairly young, but I do know of the sort of Golden Age when dinner and a show was worthy of putting on your finery. It had been open for quite some time when I saw it, but people were done to the nines. I suspect it's because so many of us paid an arm a leg for tickets. There were a lot of limos :)

Martín Abresch 3:36 PM  

Not much to add. Cracking the first theme answer was fun, but the -GATEs became repetitive. But the fill was wonderful and made this solve a very enjoyable experience. Loved the serendipitous pairings: FRENEMY & STAGE MOM, AWAKE & TIRED, CHAGRIN & LOST LOVE. Loved AIR COVER and CROSSFIT.

The SE sees TEE and TIE, as well as TATA, TETE, and TUTU (but no TOTO). Seems like there is a theme possibility here, e.g. TATA TUTU ("Goodbye, Desmond"). Hmmm...

Ludyjynn 4:05 PM  

@Gzodik, ADA is Assistant District Attorney. On "Law and Order", for many seasons, the DA was Adam Schiff, played by Steven Hill, and the ADA was Jack McCoy, played by Sam Waterston. In MD, we call it the Office of the State's Attorney, which has a staff of numerous ASAs. On "Perry Mason", the DA was almost always the loser; not so much in real life.

@Mohair, thanks for the Cliff Robertson tidbit and the James Arness trivia yesterday. You got me on that one.

@Hartley, 3 degrees works for me!

Margaret 4:39 PM  

Enjoyed this one; found all the 'gates' pretty easily, and thought they were great. Actually would rate this puzzle easily. I don't race through the puzzle. Sort of savor it over coffee, and get interrupted. But to me a puzzle is easy if the answers just come along as I read the clues, and I get that happy feeling of satisfaction when the acrosses and the downs work.

Did not know "Wordup" -- completely clueless on that one.

And "aviate' seemed very strange. Archaic or merely pretentious?

Anyway, a fun puzzle.

Honeysmom 4:42 PM  

"Word up" for "Amen to that?" Surely more than one other commenter was confused!?! Someone please explain how these go together! Had "so be it" at first.

artlvr911 5:21 PM  

DELEGATE is likely to become a DELEGATE-GATE scandal whichever way the GOP convention ends up.

Nancy 5:46 PM  

@Anon (3:19 p.m.) --There were no limos, to the best of my recollection, nor were people "dressed to the nines" when I saw "Hamilton," but because I was aware of the huge buzz when it was at the Public Theater, I moved early on getting tickets on Broadway. (We hadn't been able to get them at the Public.) I ordered them as soon as they went on sale -- at least a month before previews began and well before the opening night reviews. It was a superb evening the night I went, but it was not yet A Phenomenon. (Hence no limos or posh garb.) I'm also sure that the best seats cost much, much less than they do now, though it was hardly cheap. But I applaud and second your rave review and your urging everyone to see it; it really is exceptional. (BTW, why are you anonymous? Provide us with a handle, so we can all converse with you.)

@Rabi Abonour -- The IRT and BMT disappeared so stealthily from our parlance that I can't even say when it happened. For years, maybe even decades, these were the subway lines New Yorkers took. Then one day they weren't. The IRT had become the "6" or the "4" or the "Lexington". The BMT had become the "N/R", later the "N/R/Q". I changed my terminology along with everyone else, never giving it a second thought. What I don't know is whether the city eliminated the acronyms and the public followed suit, or whether people just changed their terminology and the IRT and BMT are still real lines that the city recognizes, but the public doesn't.

Franciscus van Munster 5:58 PM  

RUNYON Canyon was a gimme for me, because the Andrew Christian models keep posting on Instagram about their hikes there

Anonymous 6:31 PM  

I loved this, easy Tuesday for me, a lazy 20 mins with a cigarette and a beer.

I knew RUNYON, but I needed the RUN---. How? I have no idea and I have never set-foot in California. I think it was featured in a movie I saw recently. As an aside, I have never heard of Damon RUNYON, so, there's that.

Anyhow, I got the GATES right away, but the long downs held me up. FRENEMY took too long, but I liked it; agreed for WORDUP was my main write-over (also had DOpe for DOLT, but Jared LETO immediately set me straight); also wanted mama mia, but I already had inch.

Best early week puzzle in a while, but I hated the TAILGATE clue and APPLEGATE in general. Do you refer to a detective as a tail? Rarely, if ever. APPLEGATE is not a standalone word like the rest, a company or an actress, i.e. a proper noun. Rex was nice today, so someone's gotta hate! :-)

Carola 9:06 PM  

Waaaay late, just got to the puzzle. But I just wanted to chime in on how much a liked the zany scandals, especially DELEGATE - copy-editing, always life on the edge!

George Barany 12:00 AM  

Very easy puzzle, as @Rex has explained. @Finn Vigeland is a constructing star in his generation, and a big MUSICAL fan (watch this minute-long clip, a recent encore (4/21/2016) by the cast of "Hamilton").

Adding to @Rex's tiny misstep with 1-Across, I can contribute my own writing in ESNES. Quickly fixed in both cases, of course.

Thanks @Charles Flaster and @teedmn for shout-outs to Purple Reign, which also satisfies a wish expressed by @Margaret from the Monday comments.

MattG 5:16 PM  

I feel like I've heard of Runyon Canyon in crime/noir novels, possibly Chandler or Ellroy or Cain. Suprised it hadn't seemed into Rex's brain from that realm.

Z 7:54 AM  

@rain forest - Re: deleted post - I see similar complaints appear in real time as well, including a couple recently. I think it may be a Blogger issue, not you.

spacecraft 10:26 AM  

Easy one, but...OK, I am NOT going to THAT restaurant. Dip my bread in OIL? I don't think so. THAT sophisticated I hope I never get.

I howled at ELONGATE, and again at NAVIGATE. Great fun. The one outlier, as has been mentioned, is APPLEGATE, but Christina surely gets a pass from me--in fact she is my Damsel of the Day. No doubt she's "Married, With Children" herself by now.

When I saw her in her TUTU, I suggested a TETE-a-TETE, but she just said "TATA, I have to meet my STAGEMOM." Had I been @BurmaShave, I'd have made the foregoing into a poem. WORDUP (God, that's so '80s!).

I'm always amused seeing the name AIWA (or DAIWA). It sounds like a shriek accompanying a death blow in some martial art. AIWA!

Who the heck is SEAN Bean? Orson's kid? Didn't get the -shot/-season thing until actually writing the U for URL. Then: duh! I liked this one; it flew like a WREN. Which is...wait for it...a birdie!

Burma Shave 10:30 AM  


The STAGEMOM LOSTLOVE to the CHAGRIN of her mate,


rondo 12:08 PM  

I thought this puz to lean a bit toward medium with small pockets of resistance. The TATA TETE TUTU combo leaves us lacking TITI and TOTO and sometimes TYTY.

I worked with a guy once who seemed to appreciate the English language and detested any scandal that somehow ended up ending with -GATE. Or made up words ending in –aholic or –thon, etc., like chocaholic or Toyotathon. Much to his CHAGRIN I would make up new words with those suffixes.

Yeah baby for sure in Christina APPLEGATE who as I recall once starred in a MUSICAL. As I also recall it was a bomb. But she is just da bomb.

To AVIATE one must know how to NAVIGATE. Personal experience with small aircraft.

TAILGATE parties in the 1970s before MN Kicks soccer games are the stuff of legend in these parts. A lot of people also actually went into the old Met Stadium to watch the match. Imagine weekly parties of 40,000 or so of us boomers. Nothing off limits.

Nothing much to complain about so I will say TATA. NUDGE, NUDGE, wink wink.

Anonymous 2:34 PM  

Almost as easy as yesterday. Enjoyed the theme answers, but lament how quickly the series of GATEs filled up the grid. I agree with those who felt APPLEGATE didn't quite fit. (From children's TV: one of these is not like the others!)

I'm surprised at the questions raised about AVIATE; I live near a Naval Air Station, where it's not hard to find someone who is proud to be a Naval Aviator.

Diana,LIW 3:24 PM  

Solved in my usual rock around the clock fashion, trying to avoid the scandals. Glad I did, 'cause once I got my "sleeve fillers" around the gated community, it made much of what was left a walk in RUNYON Canyon Park. Was hoping for some punny stuff, or at least a "gait" or "grate" but, alas.

My only hesitation was the w in WORDUP - have only heard "word." The only other possibility I could come up with was "lordup" - That would have really annoyed me.

FLU eluded me for a while - wasn't sure if we were fibbing or LIEinh

I knew Rex would go gaga over FRENEMY, and the gates would be wacky. Surprised he didn't put a lock on them, or fall on his EPEE.

Yeah, just plain ole' oil sounds wrong for my bread. Most nice Italian restaurants have Olive Oil and Balsamic (or other) vinegar. Or other spices. I like butter better. My Finnish roots are showing. Find the white food on your plate, anoint with butter, eat. When Finns like something they say, "It tastes." Talk about low standards - it doesn't have to taste good or great or interesting, just achieving the level of having any "taste" at all is enough for high praise.

I see Sean Bean was (is?) in Game of Thrones - that's why I haven't heard of him.

Thank goodness Bill Butler indicates that the IRT is still called the IRT. I was about to have a CROSS FIT. I CARE. Now it's ALLOK. (Does anyone say that? Really? Word!)

Diana at the Gate

rain forest 3:28 PM  

Regarding-GATE - like @Rondo's friend (FRENEMY?), I too hate that suffix which originated with a name - Watergate Hotel - and was/is not a suffix. Same with -aholic and -thon. I demur when the opportunity arises. Call me a purist, or a "phrasic" if you must.

Given the above, ELONGATE was great, but then allowed the insertion of GATE into the other five themers. So, okay, easy, but pretty enjoyable nonetheless.

I worked in high schools and middle schools for 36 years, and when I heard the phrase WORD UP, I always thought it meant "listen up". Wrong, obviously. Weird phrase for "I agree".

Once, at a lunch with two other principals, when the foccacia arrived, they immediately started soaking it in an oil/balsamic mixture. I felt so unsophisticated, wondering what the heck was going on. I tried it, but didn't like it. I guess I'm not a balsamicic.

leftcoastTAM 3:35 PM  

Agree with Rex, except for the RUNYON issue. When easy crosses reveal the word, its relative obscurity is no vice. Such was the case here.

More vexing for me was WORDUP, having never heard of it, but again, AIWA and other crosses made it fit.

Can't complain about this one, except maybe mildly about all the easy GATES, as Rex noted.

Diana,LIW 8:16 PM  

@Rainy from yesterday

thanks! I have a theory about where your posts go when they disappear. As a Canadian, I know (no, I'm not the Canadian, you're the Canadian - pay attention) that you are always polite. You wait your turn. You say "thank you" to your server. You probably don't tailgate unless you're at a hockey party, and you'd never say a bad word about OFL. Altho I think OFL would publish that - I believe he kinda laughs when people get angry with him. He doesn't take himself as seriously as others do, IMHO. Perhaps he's DYEing to EGG us on. Oops, that, too, was from yesterday's frolic.

So on to my theory - your posts get pulled over at the US/Can border by the Border Patrol. You'll find them in a small room labeled "Evidence." Of what? You tell us!

Diana, Living in the Past, As Usual

Anonymous 8:34 PM  

Those are the four cardinal points.

rondo 9:39 PM  

@rainy (and @others including @spacey)re: posts - I've had a few early morning posts disappear,might be a problem with being next in line in Blogger. I've gotten into the habit of writing them up in Word and not saving, but just keeping them open until post time, which varies as we know. For the few times it has happened, I know that mine should should have already been in by noticing the time on others. If I re-post they have showed. I don't think it's intentional.

@D,LIW - yeah, the balsamic in the oil is the usual. St. Paul has a "sister city" in Italy, Modena, which is apparently THE place from which to get balsamic. Cosetta's ristorante on West 7th has a nice little market inside with balsamic, prosciutto, etc. Maybe we will get there. Walkable if interested. Lotsa Irish and Italian around St.P.

@Tower Kathy - will you be around?? More = merrier.

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