Players last produced in July 2016 / 1-1-17 / Pope with longest reign between St Peter Pius VI / West coast city known as Track Field Capital of world
Sunday, January 1, 2017
Constructor: Matthew Sewell
Relative difficulty: Medium
- GROCERY (HA) STORE (102A: Farmer's market alternative)
- ORCHESTRA (HA) HALL (3D: Place for bows and strings)
- MOVIE (HA) THEATER (24A: Marquee locale)
- AIR (HA) LINER (72A: Passenger jet)
- WEDDING (HA) CHAPEL (50D: Hitching post?)
- U.S. (HA) SENATE (54A: Capitol group)
Pope Adrian I (Latin: Hadrianus I c. 700 – 25 December 795) was Pope from 1 February 772 to his death in 795. He was the son of Theodore, a Roman nobleman. [...] An epitaph written by Charlemagne in verse, in which he styles Adrian "father", is still to be seen at the door of the Vatican basilica. Adrian restored some of the ancient aqueducts of Rome and rebuilt the churches of Santa Maria in Cosmedin, decorated by Greek monks fleeing from the iconoclastal persecutions, and of San Marco in Rome. At the time of his death at the age of 95, his was the longest pontificate in Church history until it was surpassed by the 24-year papacy of Pius VI in the late 18th century. Only three other popes – Pius IX, Leo XIII, and John Paul II – have reigned for longer periods since. (wikipedia)
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MOVIE THEATER, possibly ORCHESTRA HALL), others not so much (though I'm sure I've laughed many times in the aisles of GROCERY STOREs). I thought AIRLINER was one word—weird to break that one into to parts, but it had to be done, I guess. I guess you can make a case for breaking the word, which you couldn't with AIRPLANE, and so that's why we get the LINER version? At least I think that's the logic. All of these themers are places with aisles, and there is laugh part in all of their gaps, so ... there it is. Love it or leave it.
Fill-wise, nothing much stuck out to me. We get another random pope. I don't know what any pre-20c. pope ever gets any clue besides [One of them there popes, who knows what they did, just get some crosses already]. Who'd we have yesterday, URSINI? And now ADRIAN I (not ADRIANI)? Fine. Maybe less fine if you didn't know the crosswordesey ODETTE (2D: "Swan Lake" role), but I did (and you should too by now, come on). I got my new "Star Wars" names are muddled, writing in REN at 29A: Companion of Han in "The Force Awakens" but then having ACHE at 14D: Sore for some reason, and then having to take some time to figure out ACHY is the much more appropriate answer for [Sore] and REY was Han's companion (whereas Kylo-REN was his son, long story, you should see the movie).
ORG CHARTS (82D: It lays out the lines of authority) are not things I think about ever—in fact, I know about them only from crossword— so that was one of the tougher answers for me to come up with. I still don't believe ROSE TEA exists anywhere besides crosswords, but it didn't cause me any trouble. Nothing else in the puzzle registered pleasure, displeasure, or eventfulness of any sort. Oh, I liked that my daughter's name was in the puzzle (her mom didn't want to call her "EERO," but I insisted) and I always like being reminded of Peter SELLERS (77A: Actor with the line "Gentlemen, you can't fight here! This is the War Room!"). I think I'm done here. Happy New Year!
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld
***the newsprint version has little aisle borders separating the HA from the word it sits inside. A nicer visual.
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