Civil rights pioneer Du Bois / MON 10-9-17 / Google viewer tool for charting word frequncy over time / 1974 John Updike novel / Homer simpson's favorite beers

Monday, October 9, 2017

Constructor: Joe Deeney

Relative difficulty: Medium-Challenging (for a M)

THEME: CALENDAR REFORM (52A: The change from Julian to Gregorian ... or what would be needed to make 20-, 31- and 40-Across possible?) — themers are just odd phrases related to days, weeks, months...

Theme answers:
  • "EIGHT DAYS A WEEK" (20A: 1965 Beatles hit that starts "Ooh, I need your love, babe")
  • "LAST WEEK TONIGHT" (31A: HBO show hosted by John Oliver)
  • "A MONTH OF SUNDAYS" (40A: 1974 John Updike novel) 
Word of the Day: NGRAM (28D: Google ___ Viewer (tool for charting word frequency over time)
The Google Ngram Viewer or Google Books Ngram Viewer is an online search engine that charts frequencies of any set of comma-delimited search strings using a yearly count of n-grams found in sources printed between 1500 and 2008 in Google's text corpora in English, Chinese (simplified), French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Russian, or Spanish; there are also some specialized English corpora, such as American English, British English, English Fiction, and English One Million; the 2009 version of most corpora is also available. // The program can search for a single word or a phrase, including misspellings or gibberish. The n-grams are matched with the text within the selected corpus, optionally using case-sensitive spelling (which compares the exact use of uppercase letters), and, if found in 40 or more books, are then plotted on a graph. (wikipedia)
• • •

This one felt unusually tough for a Monday, but my time was 3:08, which is only just "tough." I tripped right out of the gate—despite knowing very well who W dot E dot B dot Du Bois is, I would never ever have expected him to be used in a clue for WEB, so I thought "Whoops, a civil rights pioneer I don't know, probably an AVA or something ... next!" And then I could not see WIRE at all (1D: Electronic money transfer). So I was flailing from the jump. I follow baseball pretty closely, but in no way could I have gotten ROD CAREW from that clue without a bunch of crosses (17A: Only major-league player to enter the 3,000-hit club in the '80s). I've only ever seen REVERSI in crosswords, so I put it in only tentatively, and really couldn't commit to that last letter until the the cross went in (10D: Classic game with black-and-white discs). And NGRAM, forget it. I've (vaguely) heard of the Google NGRAM Viewer, but no way I was getting there from that clue. Needed every cross.

The theme ... well, the revealer doesn't mean much to me, so it was neither "aha" nor "haha." And the answers ... I think only "EIGHT DAYS A WEEK" really fits the (putative) theme. You talk about last week tonight, so that's not inconceivable. I guess one could imagine a calendar month where every day was Sunday, but that's not really what the expression is suggesting ... shrug. The grid seems oddly built. 74 words is pretty low for a Monday, which may be why it played harder than usual. There are some unpleasant plurals here, namely AHOYS and (especially) DUFFS (43D: Homer Simpson's favorite beers). Ugh, "beers," it hurts. It's his favorite beer, not "beers"! This is coming from someone who owns and wears a Duff t-shirt, so please trust me here.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

P.S. NEW YORK is the "title city" of "NEW YORK, NEW YORK" (7D: When repeated, Frank Sinatra title city); its being "repeated" has nothing to do with its being the "title city"; it's the "title city" and it's repeated; it's not the "title city" *because* it's repeated.

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Facebook]


Ethan Cooper 12:14 AM  

I guess it's possible that the second NEW YORK in "New York, New York" refers to New York State so that both put together is the city + state.

Rony @ catbird 12:16 AM  

Again with the Owie?

Casimir 12:20 AM  

Above average time for me too, so tough for this duffer, who's never heard of Duff's because I have never seen a moment of the Simpsons (don't like cartoons, can't explain why)! The toughest was "ngram," momentarily had "as" for a cross. I don't watch late-night TV either, but the John Oliver clue was gettable. For me, tough for a Monday, just like OFL rated it!

Trombone Tom 12:22 AM  

Found this easier than OFL says he did. But I never pay much attention to times.

The theme was interesting and I liked the theme entries a lot.

I agree with @Rex. "One of my favorite beers" is something I've said many times, but it doesn't work in the context of the clue.

NGRAM was a WOE, but fairly easy from the crosses.

I enjoyed this fun Monday puzzle from Joe Deeney.

Randy 12:28 AM  

NGRAM is fabulous and you owe it all to copyright’s fair use doctrine. Google copied millions of books, got sued and defended on fair use. NGRAM is the type of big data non-consumptive use of the copyrighted works that the copying made possible, hence a transformative use and a fair use winner.

Ben 12:31 AM  

Was expecting something much more critical from OFL. Theme is largely trash and NGRAM is inexcusable as an answer. Only redeeming quality was the excellent bit of trivia on ROD CAREW.

GHarris 12:34 AM  

Found it easy except for ngram yet took me six times longer than Rex who found it tough. The title of “the “ city is New York, New York and so it is written on every mailing envelope and every online order. It is also the title of Sinatra’s song so I don’t get Rex’s complaint.

Tom 12:37 AM  

Yeah, OWIE again? Isn’t it the third time this week? Agree with the difficulty, slower than my usual Monday. Like the overall theme, though. Had to sing the Beatles tune to get the answer. And who knows what STENOS are any more? And agree with Rex, NEWYORK as clued threw me off. Definitely a tough Monday, but a satisfying solve.

gourmand 12:46 AM  

I don't think this is the first time Rex has used the cover of Pink Flag in association with WIRE, but you won't hear me complain about it. Such a great album! If you're even vaguely interested in the late 70s British punk scene, do yourself a favor and listen to it right now.

janice 12:50 AM  

ONEMAN seems dated. ONEPERSON is more inclusive and proper.

Anonymous 1:20 AM  

If you can say "Buds" in reference to some bottle of crappy beer, then I guess DUFFS is valid.

Have to agree that REVERSI is something I only see in crosswords. The actual game that I've played is trademarked is Othello.

Also had the same problem with WEB DuBois. Should have known that one but had to back into it. Also had to get a few crosses before filling in ROD_CAREW.

Theme was okay. But it was a Monday, so I don't expect much.

Finished in pretty much average time.

Daniel 1:34 AM  

Right? 3x in one week, I'm ready to give this the old aloha-oe means goodbye

Larry Gilstrap 1:40 AM  

That was a sticky little Monday to those of us in this cabin. Sure, REVERSI exists only in puzzledom and NGRAM crossing UMS must work for some folks, but I balked. Hey, if you want to do the puzzle, step it up folks! Somebody out there will find it easy. Solvers are generally smart, despite some of the stupid nonsense you might see posted in this venue. OFL and yours truly excepted, of course.

I've closed a few properties and it's reassuring when that WIRE transfer is posted. Check's in the mail, not so much.

I've always liked Morrissey starting back with the Smiths. Funny, ironic, acerbic, melodic, etc. Didn't we just discuss Girlfriend in ACOMA? No one was actually hurt in the production of that music, I assume. He plays shows in LA for days and they are sold out immediately.

An ASS with no candy in it?

I have seen more than a few ONE MAN theater shows and more than once the star was a woman. I saw Katherine McGrath in the one-woman show Shirley Valentine; you may remember the movie about an British spinster having an idyllic mid-life crisis on the Italian Riviera. Amazing!

Larry Gilstrap 1:44 AM  

Also, I have a great story that involves ROD CAREW and a bag of Red Man chewing tobacco. He is in the Hall of Fame, deservedly.

jae 2:40 AM  

Tough for me and exactly what @Rex said right down to NGRAM, WEB and WIRE. I also had the same problem with reveal. I guess if you take the Updike and Oliver answers literally they work, but that's not the intended meaning of the titles. That said, I liked this crunchy Mon.

chefwen 2:54 AM  

Just got home from a four week trip. Three days to get home, sixteen hour time difference, husband decides on a pizza party tonight, eight people, and then I come to this "easy" Monday puzzle. NOT SO. Got it done, kinda, but had to come here to clean it up.

Going to bed!

Thomaso808 4:43 AM  

Welcome home, @Chefwen, you missed some major ALOHAOE!

Congrats to Joe Deeney for the NYTX debut, and awesome photo on the Xwordinfo site -- looks like you got the next generation of Beats by Dre! If you check in on this blog, please tell us what that is!

I agree the puz was on the hard side for a Monday. Totally agree with Rex on the 7D clue, which should have instead said, "City when repeated, Frank Sinatra title". Totally disagree with Rex on the DUFFS being plural. It's a good thing when guests arrive and say " I brought a case of _____" (Coronas/Heinekens/Sam Adam'ses/DUFFS).

I guess it's Aloha Oe to ALOHAOE, but at least OWIE is still here -- three days in a row now. Repeating answers day to day does not bother me at all. I think of it as a type of meta and I like it.

evil doug 4:50 AM  

On his birthday: "City where John Lennon was murdered"....

"What Homer has a few of at Moe's."

"Female friend for François"+"tongue"=

Quentin Hapsburg: Que sera sera... You do speak French, don't you?
Lt. Frank Drebin: Unfortunately no, but I do kiss that way.

Anonymous 5:09 AM  

You seem to be as mentally ill and as cruel as our current president. Get help.

Joe 6:41 AM  

I think the clue title city is referring to the song title, "New York, New York," sung by Sinatra.

Joe 6:52 AM  

@Thomaso808, Thanks for the congrats. That photo is from the Exploratorium in SF. I don't remember much about the headgear itself other than it made for a good photo.

Two Ponies 7:01 AM  

@ Larry Gilstrap, You are the only person I know who has seen Shirley Valentine. I love that movie. Didn't know it was ever done live.
I hope the blogger who commented on "one person" was joking.

Doesn't an inker work with a cartoonist?

Final bubble in 23A is an oddly phrased clue.

As for the puzzle.....circular file.

Hungry Mother 7:30 AM  

Played easy for me as I did mostly downs. The theme was mildly helpful.

Frank 7:45 AM  

The NEW YORK NEW YORK clue is correct, because the first NEW YORK is the city and the second NEW YORK is the state.

AlexP 8:01 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
AlexP 8:03 AM  

What does “OFL” mean in the above comments? I’m new to the blog, so forgive me if I missed something obvious.

Wm. C. 8:05 AM  

@AlexP --

OFL => Our Fearless Leader

AlexP 8:07 AM  


chefbea 8:17 AM  

Tough for a Monday...I agree. Never heard of Reversi, Web, or Ngram. And what does TMS stand for???

Anonymous 8:20 AM  

Own a Duff t-shir. Say no more.

Wm. C. 8:22 AM  

@chefbea --

TMs => Trademarks

Anonymous 8:31 AM  

Surprised that nobody has remarked on the duplication of "week". I see that as a fatal flaw.

As for Reversi, games experts will know that Othello is a branding of the much older Reversi.


I am not a robot 8:34 AM  

@Janice, With all due respect (admittedly, never a good beginning to a comment), what if it's one man? Is he allowed to be called man? If it's one woman, is she allowed to be called a woman? Is there something inherently evil about gender that it has to be eradicated in every possible instance? Of course, this is just the opinion of one woman.

Anonymous 8:48 AM  

Smiths and Morrissey in successive weeks. Rex is on his A-game!

Anonymous 8:50 AM  

Smiths twice in three days - I feel like you're writing this blog for me and only me.

Nancy 8:52 AM  

Cute, pretty clean, and crunchy for a Monday. Liked it a lot. Despite OWIE for the 3rd day in a row. That's not the constructor's fault. I'm wondering, though, if we're about to have A MONTH OF OWIES.

Had RAgING before RAVING at 10D and that gave me REgERS- at 10D. I knew that couldn't be right. Must say I never heard of REVERSI either, though. Nor DUFFS. And, as a tennis buff, when I had ROD -A--- at 17A, I wanted ROD LAVER.

Some of the wardrobe got fudged. Is an ASCOT really a tie? I think it's a scarf. And a jacket isn't really a COAT. If you go out in the pouring rain, you'll realize that soon enough.

QuasiMojo 9:00 AM  

I think it's technically "New York City" when referring to the metropolis and its five boroughs (there are only five, right?) But "New York, New York" is the common way of writing it on envelopes and in catchy song lyrics.

There is a big difference between an electronic fund transfer and a WIRE transfer. My bank charges for the latter but not the former.

Chewy, tough Monday. I liked it. The phrase "A Month of Sundays" surely did not originate with John Updike and I wonder how many Times puzzlers had heard of this particular novel. This is a good example of a tough clue that turns out to be fairly easy. A nice Monday touch.

I learned a lesson in politics today. I always thought (erroneously) that "statist" meant you favored the States over the Federal Government. I attribute that to my lazy approach to political science classes. Thank you Joe Deeney for setting me straight!
It amuses me that ELOI shows up so often in crosswords. I used to love watching The Time Machine when I was a kid (it played often on TV back then for some reason) but recently I rewatched it and found it more camp than classic.

Dan M 9:06 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
reza asadpour 9:18 AM  

So nice, you can also choose some from Wosports:
درب اتوماتيک
کرکره شفاف
طراحي سايت
جک پارکينگي
درب سکشنال
کرکره اتوماتيک
درب اتوماتيک شيشه اي
تاجران آريا دلفين
شرکت نوين گيت

mathgent 9:27 AM  

Did anyone try Boxing Match on yesterday's puzzle page in the print edition? Unless I'm misunderstanding the rules for the puzzle, the grid presented is incorrect. One of the 3x3 areas totals 35 and another must total either 36 or 38.

puzzlehoarder 9:31 AM  

Time wise this puzzle was not as tough as it felt. Being put off by WEB at 1A really set the tone. I've seen it clued this way but it hasn't reached the knee jerk level yet.

CYAN needed YARDS to pop up so there was a little of that needing a quick cross reference throughout the puzzle.

@Nancy apparel wise a COAT and a jacket are not the same thing but as coverings in a general sense they mean the same thing. Think " full metal jacket" and " chocolate coated."

This was a good Monday a little thinking outside the box and some obscure material.

jau 9:31 AM  

About "New York, New York" as a repeated phrase -- it's not really repeated, it's the city and state together which happen to be the same words. So its being repeated is not what makes it the title.

And at the risk of being nerdily picky, it wouldn't take calendar reform (like updating/changing Julian to Gregorian) to accomplish the three items; it would just be silly.

And owie twice in one week?? Really??

Which I suppose proves that I (and others?) take my crossword clues too seriously. I don't mind tricky or elusive cluing but I do object to borderline dumb ones!

@readDonaldTrump 9:39 AM  

What civil rights leader do I respect? Hmm... , let me see. That Web guy, Web Dubois. He's doing great work, getting more and more respect for all he's done. I bet he's against kneeling during the National Anthem. No disrespecting the flag for Web.

Sir Hillary 9:40 AM  

Crunchier than most Mondays. Cute enough theme, if a bit obscure. Major use of unfortunate plurals as a crutch -- UMS, YENS, EDS, TMS, DUFFS, AHOYS, GTOS, MRIS.

Are REVERSI and Othello the same thing?

OWIE must have compromising pictures of Will Shortz.

Anonymous 9:56 AM  

New York, New York, was written for the movie of the same name, music by John Kander, lyrics by Fred Ebb. New York is the city in the title of their song, not Sinatra's.

GILL I. 10:06 AM  

@Larry G...Shirley Valentine wasn't a spinster...! She was married to that boor who had to have his eggs and chips every Wed. I can't imagine it being a one-woman show though. Must have been tough to produce.
Speaking of tough...I loved this Monday with some meat. We usually get Monday oatmeal with some honey on it. Today we get a nice fillet mignon with sauted mushrooms in wine sauce.
I love it when I DON'T sail through a Monday. I actually enjoyed several sips of coffee when I was done. OWIE has the required vowels so I expect to see it often. What I'll be looking for is how its clued. Think of how many ways we see OREO clued or the fabulous ASS candy for pinata...
I enjoyed this fun romp Joe Deeney and NEW YORK is just fine.....

Chance 10:06 AM  

Why do so many of you not know W.E.B. Dubois?? It's because your heads are full of sports trivia taking up room.

W.E.B. DuBois is Spider-Man's favorite civil rights pioneer.

Anonymous 10:09 AM  

NW: ONEMAN is on a TIRADE and is RAVING , but he's my AMIE and I'm INAWE of hos power to REVERSI the crazy course this country's taken as WAGESWAR on the STATIST "progressives"

RooMonster 10:09 AM  

Hey All !
Liked the not-extremely-easy clues today. MonPuzs are often clued way too simply, this had some nice crunchiness to it. (Hi @Nancy!)

Not the most tight theme, but the gist gets across. You would definitely need CALENDAR REFORM to get the themers. And the revealer clue does mean the answer, so it's OK iny book.

Best answer: ROO :-P

No ALIHA OE today, but we get an ASS. No EEL, but a RRN, technically not really, as it refers to a clock. OWIE seems to be October's ACNE.

Nice cover on EATME. 5 F's, not too shabby. NE corner stack neat, TIRADE - ONE MAN RAVING. Won't get into SW stack . . . :-P


Anonymous 10:09 AM  

Am I missing something here? Rex's time was 3:08. Is that minutes and seconds? It would take me more time than that to fill X's in each square.

SouthsideJohnny 10:25 AM  

@ROO - What is an RRN ?

Anonymous 10:31 AM  

The puzzle has 186 letters to fill in and Rex's solving time was 188 seconds, almost exactly one second per letter.

Masked and Anonymous 10:55 AM  

Bein a Twins fan, RODCAREW was a gimme. This MonPuz had some 'tude. Enjoyed the solvequest, which entailed more gawkin and harrin than 3:08 would allow.

staff weeject pick: ETH. But … should give out a *spoiler alert*, before revealin this Biblical ending.

fave moment of ow de speration: BLDG. Astonishingly, this puppy still awaits Patrick Berry Usage Immunity. har

Some pretty feisty clues for a MonPuz [see EAR at 24-A, e.g.], but …

fave moo-cow eazy-E MonPuz clue: {Three on a grandfather clock} = III. Only becuz MICE answer wouldn't fit, tho.

fave fillins: NAILGUN. DUFFS (WAT's wrong with that?). TONGUE. RODCAREW. STATIST (Toughie unloosed for the first time, in a MonPuz).

Thanx and congratz on yer debut, Mr. Deeney. Luved that AHOYS clue, btw.

Masked & Anonymo4Us


Anonymous 11:04 AM  

To fill in a letter, one second, To think, even briefly on a few (say, 20 at 5 seconds), we're up to 4.6 minutes.Something is fishy with Rex's times!

Anonymous 11:10 AM  

@Anonymous 11:04, wow, that's quite a typing speed you have there. A letter a second! Good thing you went to secretarial school.

Plenty of fish in the sea.

jberg 11:14 AM  

@southside johnny, RRN = random Roman numberal.

I thought the theme was better than @Rex and others did. They were all things that were impossible with our present calendar, so you could get them only with a reform. I mean, it's a crossword! Let's not get too literl here.

I guess I knew the Sinatra/Kander and Ebb song, but the Leonard Bernstein one by the same title is what popped into my head. Hard to imagine Sinatra dancing in a sailor suit, so that slowed me down.

@Quasi, I think the clue was wrong about the meaning of STATIST. IMO, a statist is someone who wants government - any government -- to have a lot of power. Sort of the opposite of an anarchist.

Anonymous 11:15 AM  

@mathgent - you're mistaken. There's a legit solution that gives 35 for each 3x3 and those are the rules.

burtonkd 11:21 AM  

7D Reading and re-reading the clue to see if it works literally. Figuratively, it certainly made me come up with the answer immediately and was a no brainer. Clueing could work as just “Frank Sinatra song title city”. The official title of the song is “New York, New York” or “Theme from New York, New York”, so it does need to be repeated to be the song title.
Clue could be read as “city that when repeated is the title of a Frank Sinatra song”

Random memory of Rod Carew flirting with batting .400 for a season, a feat not accomplished since 1941

jessica cohn 11:31 AM  

I thought a statist would have been a person who believes in states rights over federal rights .

Regular Goy 11:57 AM  

W.E.B. DuBois was a communist. I guess with most of this crowd anything is OK as long as you're black.

Charles kluepfel 12:20 PM  

Couldn't complete NGRAM as I was fixated on UHs for UMS.

ghostoflectricity 12:37 PM  

"A Month of Sundays": 13 years before there was John Updike's novel, there was this episode opening the second season ('61-'62) of "Route 66," guest starring Anne Francis as a doomed young woman in a romance with Buzz (George Maharis). Also with the great underrated character actress Betty Garde, and of course Martin Milner as Todd. Try to watch this episode and not cry.

Larry Gilstrap 12:50 PM  

@GILL I. Of course, Shirley Valentine was married which added to the deliciousness of her passion. The production I saw was by The Old Globe in San Diego. The staging was in the round with minimal sets and props. Totally entertaining and believable. Willing suspension of disbelief and all that.

mathgent 1:05 PM  

@Anonymous : I double-checked my work and can't find a mistake. Please contact me at I'll show the 3x3 that I think doesn't total 35.

Teedmn 1:14 PM  

OWIE, pretty much what I've been saying since around noon yesterday. The yellow jacket (not COATs) wasps were out in force at the campground where I was staying. The first sting, on my right hand, was understandable - I put my hand right on one of them when I leaned against my cooler. But the second one, I call foul on. I was in the car going home and one that was hitching a ride managed to alight on my collar. Not my fault! So with both hands swollen and itchy, I'm close but not quite up to RAVING.

ROD CAREW is going to be a gimme for anyone who lived in MN in the '70s. I smiled to see CHART get clued as the "nautical map", CHART vs. map having been hotly debated here in the past.

I thought the revealer was fun. I was expecting a ho-hum, haven't we seen this before, DAY, WEEK, MONTH, "year" progression and instead got the Gregorian CALENDAR. Nice!

Congrats on your debut, Joe Deeney, on a far from DANK Monday offering.

BarbieBarbie 1:25 PM  

One x per second would be pretty darn slow.. “a thousand x, a thousand x...” a 15x15 with about 75-80% white would be 180 letters, and if you took an instant to think of each one, wrote it down, and never had to skip or go back, then voila: three minutes. I wonder what the human limit is.
@mathgent, I did the Boxing match. Unfortunately I don’t add up the 3x3s, just check all the complementary 1x3s, but those all came out fine. It went to the recycling bin after that. If you get any insight, please mention here.
This was an easy Monday according to my iPad, but that was mainly because it was easy to fill in the long themers (except for Updike— what kind of time unit has rabbits in it, i wondered) with no crosses. Not much puzzle left after that. Very enjoyable!

Z 1:26 PM  

Speed Solving Example

RAD2626 1:27 PM  

Liked the sort of weird theme, liked the slight difficulty and liked the long answers. Found two "weeks" to be jarring, but unobjectionable.
Nice debut. Congrats

Nice WSJ puzzle today with a Columbus Day theme. Also somewhat difficult for a Monday.

tea73 1:30 PM  

REVERSI used to come bundled with Windows. I miss it. It was actually one of those games that works better on the computer than in real life, because it's too easy to miss things you should be turning over.

Took me a while to remember Ngram, but it's very fair and fun to be reminded of its existence. Not to be confused with pseudoscience enneagrams.

I always have trouble as coming up with CYAN as a blue shade - it's not one we painters use, luckily the Y in YARDS was a dead give away.

While it's possible that the title of that song is NEW YORK (City), NEW YORK (State)- I've always assumed he's just repeating the name for emphasis. So no complaints from me.

Aketi 1:52 PM  

This one was definitely in my wheelhouse. Not quite an instasolve, but close.

I enjoyed the combo of WAGES WAR with RAID and OFF in the puzzle. Lately, everyone I know seems to have some unwanted bugs invading their homes. I'm also find watered down detergent in a spray bottle to be a very satisfying addition to my aresenal in the WAR on bugs. I'm leaving the spiders and their WEBs alone since their WEBs are better than fly traps.

Then we have the ONE MAN sandwiched between TIRADE and RAVING. Haha, I could see ANTEing up in a betting pool of the several different possibilities that certain regulars and anonymice might choose as the ONE MAN in the middle of that sandwich.

BarbieBarbie 2:08 PM  

Thanks, @Z. Does OFL solve from a keyboard or with a pen/cil? Different limitations, methinks. I’m no expert, since my fastest Monday solve is nowhere near as fast as either of them.
Darn, missed seeing CYAN, would have been in the wheelhouse for me since it’s a secondaty color. @Tea, you need to know about it if anything you paint is going to be reproduced in print. CYAN is one of the process colors for inks. CMYK!

Chronic dnfer 2:13 PM  

Tough puzzle but no dnf today.

Charley 2:15 PM  

I read the explanation of Ngram and I still don’t have a clue.

Suzy 3:02 PM  

My feelings exactly!!

Suzy 3:09 PM  

Nice debut, Mr. Deeny! Ngram-- learned something new today!!
Now that you're in the frying pan, good luck staying out of the fire!!

OISK 3:10 PM  

cyan is a primary SUBTRACTIVE color - it's how light appears when red is removed. I used to do color printing in my darkroom (from negatives); to add red to a print one used a cyan filter.
I have seen ads for a one man, or one woman show, never for a one person show.

Liked the puzzle except for ngram, lucky I changed uhs to ums. Also pleased to have finished Sunday's puzzle, despite its pop music theme. However, am stumped on one clue in the cryptic puzzle- French girl left one Canadian capital.

Sue in France 3:16 PM  

@Nancy: If a dress code stipulates coats and ties for men, wouldn't those coats be sold as jackets in men's stores?

Nancy 3:39 PM  

Hi, @OISK. I'll trade you answers (off-blog) on the Sunday Cryptic. I figured out 22D and I'll give it to you in exchange for 8D (the astronaut Collins clue). I assume you're only one answer short, as am I. Deal?

Anonymous 4:43 PM  

@mathgent - I bet your error is the same as mine was! Rethink the lower half middle & right. It will work out for n=35.

mathgent 5:01 PM  

@Anonymous (4:43): The 3x3 that I don't think totals 35 is the one in the upper right corner. The left column, top to bottom, is 4/2/4. The right column, top to bottom, is 5/1/6. The top two numbers in the middle column are 3 and 6, in some order. That adds up to 31. The bottom number in the middle column is either 5 or 7.

Joe Dipinto 5:06 PM  

The NEW YORK clue *was* kind of clumsy. The song title is the city and state together, so while the words NEW YORK do repeat, the city itself is not repeating. Probably would have been better to clue it in terms of Billy Joel's state of mind.

@mathgent 9:27 -- I usually do all the variety puzzles, but I haven't been able to muster any interest in the new-ish Boxing Match puzzle. I'll give it a try though.

Oh, and -- big eyeroll for OWIE. Again.

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Joe Dipinto 5:43 PM  

@mathgent -- okay I tried it. In the northeast corner 3×3 I have:

4 3 5
2 3 1
4 7 6

Joe Dipinto 5:46 PM  

I am coming up with 35 in every 3x3 area

Blogger 5:57 PM  


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Joe 6:10 PM  

Thanks Suzy!

Joe 6:11 PM  


kitshef 6:22 PM  

Having read it over several times, I have no idea what Rex is trying to say about NEW YORK.

Six pm and not a soul has complained about LAST WEEK TONIGHT. Never heard that combination of words in my life. I figured epic fail on a Monday, except that apparently everyone else in the universe knows what that is supposed to mean, so apparently it's on me.

Despite which, thought this was easy, even for a Monday.

mathgent 6:25 PM  

@Joe Dipinto (5:43): Thanks. I saw the line between 4/3/5 and 2/3/1to be a regular line not a heavy line. So I thought that the two 3s were in the same outlined region. That's why I thought that one of them was a 6.

This is the third or fourth Boxing Match they've published. I haven't gotten any of them. I may have to change my nom de blog.

Joe Dipinto 6:37 PM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joe Dipinto 6:44 PM  

@mathgent -- now that I see it, that line does look a little narrower than the other heavy lines. Thanks for inspiring me to try doing one! Up to now I had really no idea how to approach it, but the "solving hint" in the instructions helped considerably.

(reposted to add missing word)

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Nancy 8:52 PM  

@kitshef (6:22 p.m.) -- LAST WEEK TONIGHT is the title of John Oliver's HBO TV show of political satire. Like Colbert and so many other late night talents, Oliver was discovered and groomed by Jon Stewart on The Daily Show. It won't come up in blue, but I'm sending a link to one of his recent shows. Or just Google him on YouTube. I mostly find Oliver absolutely hysterical. Fair warning -- you may end up binge-watching.

Joe Dipinto 8:56 PM  

Just concluded Sunday's cryptic, for an all-seven finish. Whew! Time to eat.

kitshef 9:36 PM  

Thanks, @Nancy. Dadblamed HBO again. Don't get me started.

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Nancy 9:47 PM  

@kitshef -- I don't get HBO either. You don't need it for this. Just go to YouTube. You'll get long sequences of Oliver's show, not just fragments. You'll have fun.

Joe Dipinto 10:44 PM  

@jberg 11:14 -- Frank Sinatra in fact played one of the three sailors in the movie of "On The Town", so he sang both the Bernstein/Comden/Green song and the Kander/Ebb song.

Anonymous 11:21 PM  

@mathgent - here's the breakthrough I got for solving the Boxing Match. Take any 3x3 and a neighboring 3x3 such that there are 6 boxes they share. The two sets of three-in-a-row boxes that they _don't_ share must each add up to the same total no matter what the 6 shared boxes come to - even if the middle boxes are all empty! The thing solves pretty easily once you see the implications of that.
a+b = c+b therefore a = c whether you know b's value or not.

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Burma Shave 9:03 AM  


I'LL call EIGHTDAYSAWEEK ATAD of a plight,


rondo 10:01 AM  

Well, I guess you'd need CALENDARREFORM with mixed up DAYS and WEEKS like that. But OWIE, at least 20 threes and several fours were abbr.s.

ONEMAN I know in this puz is RODCAREW. In MN in the late '60s and the '70s we were all INAWE of his hitting talent, and RAVING mad when he got shipped to the Angels because Twins owner Calvin Griffith was an ASS.

One OTHER thing about this puz is a lack of a yeah baby. There's probably an AMIE I'm not thinking of.

I'LL say not terrible, maybe ATAD OFF.

thefogman 10:23 AM  

This one was very easy. Nothing particularly bad (or good) about it. Fine, but that's about all.

thefogman 10:43 AM  

@Rondo AMIE Barsky = Yeah baby

spacecraft 1:09 PM  

Every once in a while (if the dumpster trucks aren't clanging about) I sleep in. Like today. But, better late than never.

Right out of the gate, this one had me wondering: why? With all the complaints about too many PPPs, why clue a perfectly good word--WEB--as one? Then right below it: another one! ILL doesn't have to be Illinois, it could just be...ill. As in, maybe, how our debut constructor feels today.

Or how I felt. It was uneven to the point of jarring. Monday-easy in many spots but then: what's a STATIST, besides a one-pointer crutch? And what's NGRAM? And a NON-Rabbit Updike novel? Who knew?

This is not enough for me to go on a RAVING TIRADE, but as my Grammy used to say: III! It sorta sounded like "Eye yi yi!" You get it. The theme is original--I guess--and there isn't a whole lot of junk. No DOD. Par.

Bill Young 1:10 PM  

I would call one who is a believer in a strong federal government a "federalist" not a statist who believe in a strong state government
I think we settled this in the civil war

Diana, LIW 1:20 PM  

I, I, I thought it was Monday. Who stole Monday?

I know many don't care if a puzzle is day-worthy, but I do care about Mondays. I often mention doing Xwords to folks, who will then say, "Oh, I couldn't do the NYTP." And I always say, "Try Mondays - you'll get them after a while and then you'll just get better." If a novice tripped over this particular Monday, they would say, "Eek! YeGods! Oh Pshaw. Nae, I cannah do this. Bah!"

I was talking about crosswords with the clerk at our local indie bookstore. A few days later I went in to pick up a book and I also bought an "easy" WS puzzle book - probably all Mons and Tues. (Tueses?) 1-A in the first puzzle was "Coke rival," five letters. I showed it to the clerk (let's call her Nancy) and asked her to solve it. After stumbling over Sprite, she did get PEPSI. So I told Nancy "You just got started." And I handed her the book - "this is for you." I'll check in on her later in the week.

So Mondays matter in my book. (sic)

The Natick corner of DeFFS/erS/NGRAr did me in. And I did not know Rod C.

Theme was fine and Monday-worthy. Too bad the fill got in over its head.

Diana, Lady-in-Waiting for Crosswords

thefogman 1:29 PM  

@Spacey - Speaking of III:

I,I,I just found out...

wcutler 6:53 PM  

Nancy 9:47 PM, I also can't see that video (message is just "This video is unavailable"), maybe because I'm in Canada? Is it an HBO thing? An HBO in Canada thing?

rondo 7:31 PM  

@D,LIW - as the kids might say, that's so [sic]. We might say cool.

Teedmn 12:08 AM  

@Diana, Lady promulgating crosswords, way to go!

Scott McLean 1:38 PM  

Flew through the top half of this one, including WEB and ROD CAREW (which I got off the R-O). Then everything south of LAST WEEK TONIGHT (another gimme) started putting up a fight.

Not a huge fight, mind you, but more that the usual Monday. I liked it.

Nothing wrong with DUFFS, but the clue was clunky. “Homer might have a few of these at Moe’s“ maybe?

faraaz 5:06 PM  

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