Round openings in domes / FRI 10-21-16 / Perfume named for Baryshnikov / Pre-buffet declaration / Gendered Spanish suffix / Occasion for dragon dances / Fictional title character who declares How puzzling all these changes are
Friday, October 21, 2016
Constructor: Martin Ashwood-Smith
Relative difficulty: Medium
Word of the Day: SEIDEL (22D: Large beer mug) —
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Didn't get 1A straight off ([Ones making the rules?]) but figured it had something to do with lines (like ruled paper?), so it wasn't too hard, after my first pass at the Downs, to pick up MEASURING STICKS. Having MESSINA at the back end of an entry had me thinking Loggins, but instead I get STRAIT OF MESSINA—new to me (17A: Passage between Sicily and the toe of Italy). Manage to get out of N without much trouble. Tried to make Shirley BASS(E)Y work at 2D: Shirley of "Goldfinger" (EATON). Didn't she sing one of the Bond theme songs. Yes! In fact, she sang "Goldfinger," just as I suspected. 10 points to Gryffindor!
Hardest part of puzzle for me was SEIDEL (what?) next to ALL UP (who?) two doors down from OCULI (really?) (30D: Round openings in domes). Otherwise, nothing too tough. That middle has a rather ugly east end (ISSET MERS), and also AHAIR, which would've been not so big a deal if it hadn't been followed shortly thereafter by AWIRE. Still, as I say, short fill stays pretty dang clean. Overall, a fine Friday outing.
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld
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