Eternal water-pourers in Hades / FRI 7-22-16 / Shakespearean duel overeseer / Enfantines composer / Book film title character surnamed Gatzoyiannis / Abstract expressionist who married Jackson Pollock / Big name in Renaissance patronage / Follower of diet system / Much-photographed mausoleum site
Friday, July 22, 2016
Constructor: Martin Ashwood-Smith and George Barany
Relative difficulty: Medium
Word of the Day: DANAIDES (36D: Eternal water-pourers in Hades) —
In Greek mythology, the Daughters of Danaus (//; Greek: Δαναΐδες), also Danaids, Danaides or Danaïdes, were the fifty daughters of Danaus. They were to marry the fifty sons of Danaus's twin brother Aegyptus, a mythical king of Egypt. In the most common version of the myth, all but one of them killed their husbands on their wedding night, and are condemned to spend eternity carrying water in a sieve or perforated device. In the classical tradition, they come to represent the futility of a repetitive task that can never be completed (see also Sisyphus). (wikipedia)
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ECASH), but there's not nearly as much bad short stuff in the middle as there is everywhere else. This makes almost no sense, as one would expect the reverse to be true. Quadstacks put strain on a grid, so that should be where the strain should show. Instead, ADM REA ELENI (!?) DENTE chunk is up top, in the place where the puzzle should be cleanest. And the bottom is even rougher, with PAREE MERLE AAS AREOLA NO FEES AERO being a cavalcade of blah, and ERY APEAR EAPOE (all up against the very tough DANAIDES) is a flat-out disaster. It's as if two different people made this puzzle. Oh ... look at that. I wonder if that had anything to do with this. I won't speculate. Martin's not usually so careless with the tops and bottoms of his centered quadstacks, is all I'm saying. The three 16-letter Downs do add perhaps somewhat more strain to the grid than one might otherwise see in a quadstack. Still...
JAPAN was wickedly clued (1D: Follower of a diet system), especially crossing JAGS, which for some reason I don't think of as [Sharp projections]. They're cats, for short, or they're crying spells, or maybe some kind of generically handsome TV military lawyers, I'm not sure. What "Gear" does OIL protect? Oh, the actual gear of a car? One of many gears? OK. I had many different answers where AHASH (blargh) is supposed to go. Started with A MESS, then went to A MASH, which worked swimmingly ... for a while. I've read a lot of classical literature, but the DANAIDES somehow got by me. Virtually no part of that answer (except the terminal "S") was inferrable to me—this made the (ugly) southern section by far the hardest. Oh, except for the [___ College] / [Cannery row?] crossing. I wrote in COE College, which is a place, and it worked, except ... CARS? Are there rows of CARS at a cannery? Turns out, there are not. JOE College, 20x ugh, who says that anymore? That's some '50s-era stuff. And again down there with the EGRET and ESTE and ORES—really weak fill where it shouldn't be. I did enjoy the longer stuff. I just don't get the quality discrepancy.
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld
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