Fur-lined cloak / 9-9-16 / Hideous foe of Popeye / Valve with disc at end of vertically set stem / Goddess who saved Odysseus / Adolescent program slangily
Friday, September 9, 2016
Constructor: Kristian House
Relative difficulty: Challenging
Word of the Day: PELISSE (40A: Fur-lined cloak) —
A pelisse was originally a short fur lined or fur trimmed jacket that was usually worn hanging loose over the left shoulder of hussar light cavalry soldiers, ostensibly to prevent sword cuts. The name was also applied to a fashionable style of woman's coat worn in the early 19th century. (wikipedia)
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GAZILLION. I mean, GAJILLION and BAJILLION and BAZILLION all seem like [Really huge (fake) number]s. And the J/Z thing keeps the ridiculous / no-one-says-that ZITCOM very, very hidden (3D: Adolescent program, slangily) (see also the REC / REW problem, which is also a ZITCOM cross). And then there's the archaism of PELISSE. What the hell? And it's not just a word in the puzzle—it's *the* word (well, one of two) that can get you into that NE corner. Literally no letter of PELISSE was gettable to me without crosses, despite the fact that it feels like a medieval word and I have some, uh, background in medievalism (it's actually a 19c. fashion, so I'm off the hook there, I guess). PELISSE is a Saturday word, if it's anything.
SPECS are a [Bridge pair, briefly?] how? Your nose? SPECtacleS on the bridge of your nose? Ugh. I got SPECS and thought of specifications, blueprints, architecture, who knows? None of this cluing stuff was amusing to me. Also, LENO is not "known for his garage." He's "known for" occupying a huge amount of time between Carson and Fallon (with that weird Conan hiccup in there somewhere). I get that he had some show with a garage because he collects cars blah blah blah. But he is not "known for" that. Moving on: No idea what a POPPET is. Own "Popeye" comics and didn't know SEA HAG. You spell HOMIES how? Also, we're still doing HOMIES? OK.
There were parts I enjoyed. In general, the banks of longer answers in the corners were good. Acceptable-to-good. But OUIDA is never good (61A: "A Dog of Flanders" author) and INO is never good (4D: Goddess who saved Odysseus) and ERGOT AIOLI, hoo boy, you do Not want any of that with your calamari. Nasty. Normally a couple of UPs in a puzzle don't bug me, but today, possibly because they're both short and near each other (DO UP / GAS UP), I was indeed bugged.
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld
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