Actress Headey of Game of Thrones / FRI 12-23-16 / Rama's wife in Hinduism / Francis II dissolved it in 1806 / DeVos noted school choice advocate / Remaind stationary while facing wind in nautical lingo
Friday, December 23, 2016
Constructor: Robyn Weintraub
Relative difficulty: Challenging
Word of the Day: SITA (29D: Rama's wife, in Hinduism) —
Sita (also spelled Sîta, Seeta or Seetha [ˈsiː taː], listen (help·info) meaning furrow), also known as Siya, Vaidehi, Janaki, Maithili or Bhoomija, is the central female character of the Hindu epic Ramayana and daughter of King Janaka of Videha and his wife queen Sunaina. She was the elder sister of Urmila and cousins Mandavi and Shrutakirti. She is consort of Hindu god Rama(avatar of Vishnu) and is an avatar of Lakshmi(Adi Shakti of Lord Vishnu), goddess of wealth and wife of Vishnu. She is esteemed as a paragon of spousal and feminine virtues for all Hindu women. Sita is known for her dedication, self-sacrifice, courage and purity. (wikipedia)
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ETA, for instance (16A: It resemble an "n" when lowercase), or the "Z" in RESIZE (33A: Crop, e.g.), or RAMIE or SITA (neither of which meant a thing to me). My toeholds were hoary things like TCELL and CHITA and HRE and ODE and ACTA and ARAL ... so somehow all the decent stuff (e.g. many of the longer answers) got lost in the shuffle. Also this "Game of Thrones" obsession is getting very tiresome. Branch out. There are other shows that will make you current! Ugh.
Had COL for MST and NEAR for NIGH and EEG/EKG for IVS. Otherwise, I didn't have wrong answers so much as stare blankly. Why do I associate STARGAZER with "idle daydreamer" as opposed to actual astrononmer? Without that "Z" in RESIZE or the "T" in ETA, I couldn't make hide/hair of STARGAZER (13D: Copernicus, for one). CBATTERY just killed me—that was the one aha moment that really worked (20A: Toy car driver?). But I had to accept an answer starting CB-; once I did, the answer slapped me in the face *and* I finally got into the NE corner I was having such a horrible time working out (seriously, I had everything but the "R" and "Z" in STARGAZER and just sat there, stumped, for a while). Had ELK for RVS (7D: National park sights). Getting RVS was the most important turning point—that one little answer sent me from helpless in the NW and NE, to done, in about a minute. Figured out that the [Northeast nickname] (for what!?) had to end in STATE, and that "S" forced me to consider two-letter answers that could be pluralized as [National park sights], which gave me RVS, and that "V" sent the whole works tumbling down. Weird how one tiny answer can shift so much. And that was the issue today, really—the short stuff I rely on to get a grip just wasn't ... grippable, much of the time. I mean "nautical lingo" (LIE TO)? Ugh. Pass
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld
P.S. I see we're doing more normalization of the incoming admin today. If this is the NYT's attempt to be IN THE MIDDLE (51A: Like moderates, politically), they can stuff it. I'll take BETSY Ross, thanks.
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