THURSDAY, Jun. 26, 2008 - David J. Kahn ("UPIDSTAY" LANGUAGE)

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Relative difficulty: Easy

THEME: Yves Saint Laurent (7D: Legendary name in FASHION) - three theme answers plus four symmetrical "YSL" rebus squares

Wow, DJ Kahn (his hip-hop / street name) is good. This is an elegant tribute puzzle, befitting the purveyor of elegance that it honors. I do like it when common bits of crossword fill (YSL is one) get repurposed in new and interesting ways (see the "ERG" rebus a while back). Here's the only problem with this puzzle - it was too easy. Why? Because once you've got the first two letters of 7D, the other 13 letters are easy, and you've basically cracked the puzzle wide open. Add in the fact that YSL has been in the news recently because of his death, and everything becomes very easy to figure out.

Theme answers:

  • 7D: Legendary name in 31-Across (Yves Saint Laurent)
  • 31A: See 7-Down (fashion)
  • 43A: Product introduced by 7-Down in 1971 (cologne) - this answer feels kind of arbitrary and not particularly central to the life and times of YSL, but ... Germany advanced to the UEFA finals yesterday, so I'll give COLOGNE some leeway.

And the rebus squares:

  • 17A: Rube's opposite (cit YSL icker)
  • 4D: Knocks to the ground (la YSL ow)
  • 21A: New York's _____ Building, tallest in the world in 1930 (Chr YSL er)
  • 11D: Orchid variety (lad YSL ipper)
  • 54A: Check attachments (pa YSL ips)
  • 36D: "Ben-Hur" extra (galle YSL ave) - oh that answer is goooood
  • 60: Extra shuteye (beaut YSL eep)
  • 53D: Lock opening (ke YSL ot) - by far the hardest of these rebus answers to get. I guess I just don't use or encounter this phrase a lot

I am sure DJ Kahn meant no offense, but ... aren't there a lot of Satanic references in this puzzle, especially for a puzzle meant to honor someone who just died? I mean, did YSL make A PACT with the devil? (59A: Make _____ with the devil) Is he now SATAN'S Mistress? (46A: "_____ Mistress," 1982 horror flick) Is he currently enjoying a cruise in Charon's boat on the river STYX? (5A: It circles Hades nine times) Throw in a reference to "Paradise Lost," the most SATANic of all EPIC poems (33A: "Paradise Lost," e.g.), and ... well, you can see why I have to ask the question.


  • 1A: Omani's money (rial) - Here's the thing about RIAL - it's disturbingly close to RIEL (monetary unit of Cambodia), which is what I put here. Iran and Yemen also have RIAL as their currency.
  • 9A: Pro Football Hall of Fame coach who once played for the New York Yankees (Halas) - you could have stopped at "coach" - in five letters, I'm guessing HALAS. It's just good crossword sense.
  • 34A: "Upidstay," language (pig latin) - fantastic - goes especially, euphonically well with its symmetrical counterpart, TIRE IRON (39A: Tow truck tool)
  • 37A: Girl's name that's a butterfly genus (Greta) - that, I did not know. And will surely soon forget, but no matter. This was more original than a Garbo clue.
  • 38A: First name in erotic writing (Ana├»s) - her first and last names are both pretty crossworthy.
  • 50A: 1974 hit by Mocedades ("Eres Tu") - the modern counterpart to the equally popular Verdi aria, "ERI TU."

  • 56A: What may be paid when someone dies (respects) - this, sitting upon BEAUT YSL EEP, is kind of sweet. Turns BEAUTY SLEEP into an oddly apt euphemism for YSL's death. I'm not much for euphemisms, and this was likely unintentional, but I like it anyway.
  • 63A: River to the English Channel (Orne) - wanted ARNE, but that's the composer.
  • 66A: Liz Taylor's husband before Fisher (Todd) - The only memorable husband of any note in my adult life: Fortensky. Not great puzzle fare.
  • 3D: Potsdam Conference attendee (Attlee) - surprised I don't see his name more in puzzles. He was P.M., preceded and succeeded by Churchill, which makes Churchill oddly like Grover Cleveland.
  • 18D: Cyclades isle (Ios) - where they all drive IONs (40D: Discontinued Saturn)
  • 24D: Phone greeting in Central America ('alo) - most of us could not get away with this in our puzzles, but most of us are not DJ Kahn.
  • 30D: Word with brain or price (scan) - had SCA- and was still puzzling over it ... "scab?"
  • 37D: With 8-Down, one who grew up on MTV, maybe (GEN / X'ER) - i.e. me. When people talk about GEN X'ERs, they mean me and my friends. We are now old and not quite as hip as GEN X'ER makes us sound.
  • 43D: Whom Taylor defeated for president in 1848 (Cass) - 8 marriages, and she still found time to run for office. Amazing.
  • 47D: "De Oratore" writer (Cicero) - easy easy. The only Latin orator you need to know. I guess you could've been suckered into VERGIL on this one, but ... seems unlikely.
  • 60D: Actress _____ Ling of "Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow" (Bai) - again, if you are DJ Kahn, you can do whatever the hell you want, it seems. Actress no one knows + movie no one saw? In one clue? No problem.


Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld


Jeffrey 8:35 AM  

Wow, a timely tribute puzzle and a rebus. Very impressive. Note that it is a 15x16 to fit the name in.

Had my Thursday Rebus Radar turned on so got that pretty quickly; actually had the YSL before the long answer so that of course fell instantly once I reached it.

I heard ERES TU on an oldies station a week or so ago and I think it has been in 2 or 3 puzzles since then. It now replays in my head constantly.

Orange 8:57 AM  

I know BAI Ling thanks to the tireless blogging of her nutty fashion choices at Go Fug Yourself. I still don't know any of her work, but her outfits are...distinctive.

Technically, I'm in Gen X too, but when the term was popularized, I was already working in my chosen career and married, so I kinda missed the boat on Gen X slackerdom.

JannieB 9:01 AM  

Very very nice - a theme and a rebus - and very well executed. I didn't immediately fill in the full name on 7D because I rarely see "saint" spelled out. Made me reconsider for awhile. Stumbled around the northern hemisphere sensing a rebus but finally got it at the Chrysler/Ladyslipper crossing. Then I completed 7D and was off and running.

PS - "Shula" is also a pretty well-known 5-letter coach so don't be too quick to fill in Halas. I always try Don first since he's more current.

janie 9:04 AM  

sky captain... -- um -- i taped it during a "free hbo" promotion. barely watchable, but as curiosities go, this one *is* fairly curious, given that jude law's *father* appears in this movie, as well as [sir] larry o[livier] (well, archival footage -- but he does have screen credit) and someone named "angelina jolie"...

see it for the special effects. maybe.

"'alo" -- hmmmm. could be clued as "'eavenly band." regardless, best taken with the smile that was intended -- like the one that emerged while entering "piglatin."

lots to love here -- especially in the theme/rebus fill. wow.



Anonymous 9:23 AM  

I was like jannieb--I actually typed YvesStLaurent, then looked up (I don't type that well if I can't watch my fingers) and deleted it because it was too short. Yves Montand is even shorter, so I wandered off looking for some other Yves I never heard of. I finally got the YSL from LADYSLIPPER and figured out my mistake.

I still struggled a bit for the rebus in the SW--I tried gladiator first, then considered Galation and Gallilean before getting PAYSLIPS (again? who uses this term?). I have no idea if either of the latter two made the slightest sense, but I tried them anyway.

ArtLvr 9:40 AM  

Super Kahn puzzle, and it didn't take quite as long as usual for me to catch on to the rebus, which forced itself on me with GALLLEY SLAVE in the SW! Then I went back to the should-have-tumbled CHRYSLER building/LADY SLIPPER and everything else.

My last sticking point was COLOGNE, as I was thinking some kind of "line" with another YSL, but no such luck-- and my mind had blanked at the sports cross RGS. Mostly adored the tricky clues, but the ERIE canal near Rome NY? I got that one the first time we saw it, not so long ago...


JannieB 9:48 AM  

Not to beat a dead horse, but I just realized that Halas and Shula have 4 letters in common, making both very xwordy.

Anonymous 9:48 AM  

@ jannieb--Despite a slightly higher number of Google hits, the man and the company spell(ed) out Saint, as do most similarly-surnamed Francophones. I believe that Monsieur Saint-Laurent actually used a hyphen (later dropped it), as is the custom in French.

JannieB 9:58 AM  

@steve I - Merci!

Belvoir 10:10 AM  

Great theme- I just finished a book about YSL, "The Beautiful Fall: Glamour and Excess in 70's Paris", by ALicia Drake. Hard to put down. Orange, I love The Fug Girls too, and Bai Ling always makes a comic splash there..

Wasn't crazy about RICER- had Dicer. Ah well.

Anonymous 10:15 AM  

I thought this puzzle was very hard. Took ages for me to get the rebus and had Hays for Cass so cologne never really reared its head. I was sure that another YSL lay within that answer.
You are geniuses, the lot of you!

Anonymous 10:19 AM  

what's a rebus?

Scott 10:43 AM  

Lots of mistakes w/ confirmation for me today. Along w/ the rebus, it was very hard to bring things together.


Also really didn't like the clue for LAyslOW. To lay low seems like something one does voluntarily while to knock to the ground is quite involuntary.

Anonymous 10:58 AM  

I'm with Scott on lays low. Knocks to the ground should be lays out. Lays low is something a hoodlum does when the cops are on his trail.

Anonymous 11:26 AM  

@Marnie - A rebus is where a word or group of letters occupy one space in the puzzle, in this case YSL.

Suspect a rebus on a Thursday when no rational answer will fit.

Bill from NJ 11:28 AM  

Scott, I had the same series of missteps as you and, for the 3rd day in a row I was locked out of the North and had to start in the Midlands. I got COLOGNE FASHION by way of crosses and that combination along with what I had of 7D gave me that AHA! moment at the PA(YSL)IPS/GALLE(YSL)AVE crossing and I got the rebus and the rest of 7D in one fell swoop and moved through the rest of the puzzle.

I approached the NW from the South and got ATTLEE at last and corrected the rest of my mistakes.

This was a stout puzzle and I really enjoyed it. Took me a lot longer than a usual Thursday but:

What did I expect from a Kahn?

jae 11:30 AM  

Fantastic puzzle! Figured out the rebus fairly early and 7d did make the whole thing easier, although it seemed like more of a medium to me (BAI, ATTLEE, GRETA, ALO?, CASS). My only big hiccup was GLADIATOR which was kinda dumb because it ignored rebus symmetry and because I didn't check the crosses in Northern CA to see if it worked.

@belvoir -- I'm pretty sure there is no such thing as a DICER other than the knife you are using.

@marnie -- Check Rex's FAQs for what a rebus is.

Anonymous 11:33 AM  

If you're being grammatically precise, one LIES low. Only birds lay [eggs] in the present tense. Lay is the past tense of lie, which causes all sorts of confusion.

Anonymous 11:34 AM  

@Scott and jjj - would disagree about lays low. You LIE low if you are maintaining a low profile. LAY is a transitive verb - you would lay someone or something low. IMHO.

Bill D 11:50 AM  

Fantastic puzzle! Took me longer than usual because I foolishly continued my system this week of using Downs only - not a wise move when there is a theme AND a rebus! That dicotomy kept me from filling in CHR(YSL)ER for waaay too long - GALL(YSL)AVE, via "Gladiator" and "Gallecean", finally cracked it for me. I thought incorporating YSL into four words and phrases, without resorting to tons of lame-o fill or ridiculous abbreviations, was brilliant. Even without the rebuses, six of those eight answers are dynamite. This may be my favorite puzzle of the year. Congrats to Kahn.

Nothing affects my life less than haute couture, but this was the best YSL tribute of all. Thanks to Orange for pointing out that even Rex's unknown actress is related to the fashion theme!

Unknown 11:54 AM  

Chefbea, I want you to know I have a RICER and it hangs from my pan rack. I am using it today to make cold cucumber, yogurt and cottage cheese soup with tomato sorbet. A RICER has nothing to do with preparing rice, btw. On the streets, a RICER is a person who tries to make an uncool car look hot by adding decorations...think double chrome tail pipes and giant wheels on a Civic.

I found this puzzle medium and just because almost every clue was a trick. I had almost finished the SW before I caught the rebus and I had three errors (ala treedweeler) to fix from that. A very good puzzle. janie thanks for the link, but it looks like a flick to avoid. I am going to watch soccer this afternoon with my CIT YSL ICKER friends.

janie 12:14 PM  

"flick to avoid." oh yeah. ;-)

"layslow" always makes me think of the uncle remus stories and the oft-used phrase: "brer fox, he lay low..."

cheers, all --


Anonymous 12:17 PM  

Rex is right about the fact that it was fairly easy to get the 7D, but I must confess that, once I had the YV, my first thought was Yvonne DiCarlo, and I suspected a Munsters puzzle!

What can I say? I'm on vacation.


Anonymous 12:39 PM  

20A (UNLOOSES for Let's out) seems awkward but overall a clever puzzle....Bill

Anonymous 12:58 PM  

I love 23A "Submarine base?" Ans. Salami. LOL

SethG 1:05 PM  

I got YVES... very early, and the YSL rebus not much later, yet I still had a lot of trouble finishing this.

My NE was a mess. RECUSE took me forever, and I needed that to get the rest. RIAL was my first guess, but I'm not strong on Prime Ministers of the United Kingdom before and after Churchill. I had EllA for the pronoun, and just don't like UNLOOSES.

My other big problem was ERES TU crossing CASS (where the R could have been a D). The song, maybe I'll remember it _this_ time. And I googled (Lewis) CASS to see what he did that makes him memorable--the answer: nothing. In case it comes up, keep in mind that Cass was Buchanan's Secretary of State, Buchanan was Polk's, and Polk ran against Dallas.

I learned from Dragostea Din Tei that ALO is also Romanian.

Anonymous 1:22 PM  

I am enjoying this week - the past two puzzles were a ton of fun. This was a medium Thursday for me - not EASY at all.

Didn't know RIAL so I originally had STALIN for ATTLEE. I made A DEAL with the devil instead of PACT and that led me to GALLILEAN instead of GALLEY SLAVE (agree with Rex - loved that clue!)

The ChrYSLer builidng led me to the YSL rebus early on but I still struggled with a lot of the fill (easy for you literary types -difficult for a science teacher) which was uniformly pretty good.

My only complaint was COLOGNE which was clued to indicate a "new product" being introduced like a new fashion style so I was a bit disappointed.

Anonymous 1:23 PM  

The New Numa video shows the phone ringing which he answers..."Alo".

Hero fill=salami
Torpedo load = salami
Pannini stuffing = salami
Dagwood dido = salami


Orange 1:36 PM  

Anonymous 11:33, it's not just birds that lay in the present tense. There are more than 20 verb definitions not pertaining to birds. Lay railroad track, lay the baby in the crib, lay YSL to rest, lay your boyfriend, lay a bet...

archaeoprof 1:37 PM  

Saudi Arabia is another country that uses the RIAL as its unit of currency. Great puzzle today. GALLEYSLAVE was my favorite.

harlowe 1:38 PM  

Loved this - once I git the rebus at PA[YSL]ips everything fell. Puzzles like this one make me feel smart :)

One question for those in the know: are timely tribute puzzles like this farmed out by WS or does the impetus come from the constructor? (or both?)

Joon 2:02 PM  

maybe i should have twigged to the EAVE clue earlier, but i didn't, so i had only the Y and no tipoff. i knew from CHR__ER that there was a rebus of some sort, but YSL never occurred to me, and i'm only 1% familiar with LADYSLIPPER, so i had to keep plugging away. even after i figured out the rebus (from the NW), i had a devil of a time (so to speak) completing the SW, where i had GALLILEAN crossing ADEAL, and i could not for the life of me figure out where the fourth YSL square was going to go. it's always very tough for me to remember that galilee has only two Ls (total).

alanrichard 2:16 PM  

An Yves Saint Laurent puzzle - cool. Of course being the theme of the puzzle is the kiss of death. Once I got the name and realized galley slave this was an easy puzzle. But this was fun & clever. Another one where it must have taken way more time to construct than to finish. Halas played for the yanks - learn something new!!!!

mac 2:40 PM  

I found this one a medium, but I started out doing it away from home, sort of fractured. Then I got into trouble because I had 1A Real, filled in recuse and then abandoned that corner, never looking into a rebus. This sort of happened again and again until I was absolutely sure 36D should be galleyslave somehow and got the YSL. After that things fell into place quickly.

It's a great puzzle in every respect, with beautiful words and interesting clues. I have to admit I get a little intimidated when I see the name Kahn!

Anonymous 2:46 PM  

I thought this puzzle was actually pretty tough. I got the theme early on, but I guess I assumed that since this was a theme puzzle that it was not likely to also have a rebus. My mistake.

My sports trivia knowledge (limited as it is) shot me in the foot today. Although I got OTT and CHI right away, I thought that the clue for 9A was hinting at the fact that there was, at one point, a professional football team called the New York Yankees (not to be confused with the baseball team). Both Ray Flaherty, and the legendary Tom Landry were Hall of Fame coaches that also played for the football Yankees. Since neither of these would fit, this is what started to get me to suspect that there might also be a rebus (ironic since 9A ended up not being a rebus answer).

I finally figured out the rebus from CITy slICKER. I too fell into the GLADIATOR-instead-of-GALLEy slAVE trap. Also had never heard of LADy slIPPER, or either the band Mocedades or the song ERES TU. I also really liked the cluing of SALAMI, GALLEy slAVE (once I got the rebus), and LEVEE.

BTW, can someone explain 55D “Ne plus ultra” (APEX) to me? Got it from crosses, but still don’t really understand it.

Ronathan :-)

Anonymous 3:04 PM  

@ ronathan:

ne plus ultra

ArtLvr 3:15 PM  

@ ronathan -- "ne plus ultra" in our slang would be "(there is) nothing more super" i.e. top = apex.

Anonymous 3:31 PM  

@anonymous and artlvr

Thanks for the info. My non-existent Latin skills apparently need some improvement.

-ronathan :-)

miriam b 3:33 PM  

Back from CA - still jetlagged after a day and a half. To my delight, the Times puzzle appeared simultaneously in the Ventura Star this past Sunday. Somehow it wasn't the same on newsprint as on slick paper. The ink tended to sink in. Also, the clues were faintly printed. I finished it without incident and generally approved.

I'm not about to go back to read the Sunday messages now, confronted as I am with mail to sort, bills to pay, laundry to do, and a luxuriant growth of weeds in my vegetable garden to deal with when it quits raining (and gets hot and muggy). So I'll just comment on today's puzzle.

Just before working this great puzzle I visited eBay to replenish my supply of Rive Gauche cologne! Wouldn't be without it; it's my feel good fragrance. I also embraced YSL's Rich Gypsy look (no ethnic slur intended) in the '70s, and loved his predecessor Dior's New Look. Fortunately, I sew.

The laundry calls.

Anonymous 3:42 PM  

Liked this puzzle once I figured out that "Beauty nap" was, in fact, "beauty sleep". Everything fell in nicely after that except... I couldn't get past Truman, Stalin and Churchill at Potsdam. I knew about Attlee at one point in my life, but I think I stored that information in the brain cells recently erased by a mango margarita. I had to Wiki Potsdam to revise my version of history. Loved the way so many of the clues seemed tied to YSL. Even Cityslicker seemed to reverberate with fashion and cologne. All the rest seemed easy, though that's fine with me. It's only Thursday after all. Ah well.

chefbea 4:25 PM  

cant believe I did this puzzle with nary a google. Started it around 5am at laguardia whilewaiting to board the plane for St louis via atlanta. did more on the plane. Got yvs saintlaurent right away from the yv. Didnt figure out the rebus part til i was on the next plane from atlanta to st. louis.
Maybe we will have some good st. louis bbq ribs tonight.

Shaw 5:18 PM  

Not enough has been made of this - "graduated" and "scalar" are absolutely not the same thing. "Graduated" and "scaled"? Sure. But scalar is only used to mean a quantity which has only magnitude and no direction (as in, "not a vector"). This is one of those mistakes where, if we let it go for long enough, it's going to be accepted as a new definition for scalar ("synonym for scaled"). Kind of like how in ten years, the word "loose" is just going to be accepted as a synonym for "lose" because of all the people who don't know the difference when they write it.

Anonymous 6:11 PM  

Yeah, scalar is very iffy.

Doug 6:33 PM  

I refer to my BOARD FOOT comment from last week, in which RP's gimmees are others' tar pits and vice versa. I quote from today's blog:

"De Oratore" writer (Cicero) - easy easy" along with the gimmee on "Paradise Lost".

When the fossilized remains of my answers are dug out of the tar pit in a couple thousand years it will show a LOT of blanks. Man, I could not get TITO, GREAT, COLOGNE, TIREIRON, SATANS, ION, and ERESTU so the whole east to west trip to Wally World was just a wreck!

green mantis 6:34 PM  

Unloose is the ugliest word in the entire universe. Ever. Ever ever.

I am not bothered, somehow, by the fact that ravel and unravel, in an example of some sort of bizarre linguistic car crash, mean the same thing. Or flammable/inflammable. But I have standards. Lines must be drawn.

chefbea 6:48 PM  

@philly solver you are right about dicer. not a tool but the one who is dicing.
I use my potato ricer all the time to squeeze the water out of thawed frozen spinach. never use it to rice potatoes

Anonymous 7:29 PM  


Apparently not so. See either of these sites and you will see that there is a machine called a dicer.


Anonymous 8:00 PM  

What a great puzzle. Beautifully constructed and satisfying. But "Bai Bai"? Rex, you're a riot!

Anonymous 9:03 PM  

i thought I was brilliant when i filled in Hospital for (What may be paid when someone dies) with just SP in the middle. rather clever though, eh, eh? i impressed myself.

Pythia 9:17 PM  

Did someone say this was a great puzzle? Ditto that person.

Tis better to solve a tribute puzzle than to be the subject of a tribute puzzle.

Loved this so much that I didn't even notice until the after-the-fact inspection something that usually bugs me -- the NW and SE peninsulas with only a one-lane causeway in or out.

What was the cologne introduced in 1971? Something for men?

Opium is my favorite fragrance -- has been since the fabulous launch in 1977(?). Others have tried, but can't do as well, let alone better.

LAYS LOW is absolutely correct as clued:


50. lay low, a. to overpower or kill; defeat: to lay one's attackers low.
b. to knock down; make prostrate.
c. Informal. to lie low.

This is from RHUD 2006, which also gives the following definition for SCALAR:

3. ladderlike in arrangement or organization; graduated: a scalar structure for promoting personnel.

Finally, here's the poop on UNLOOSE:

1. to loosen or relax (the grasp, hold, fingers, etc.).
2. to let loose or set free; free from restraint.
3. to undo or untie (a fastening, knot, etc.); unfasten.

[Origin: 1325–75; ME unloosen; see un-2, loose]

Look at the origin dates -- it's an antique, so show it some respect.

chefbea 9:30 PM  

@steve1 dont think i want one of those used dicers - they probably dice trees
As for the dicer as seen on tv - I have never found anything as seen on tv that works. I'll use my trusty santuko knife

Anonymous 9:44 PM  

Now I've realized that something I like about crosswords, the loose associations and stretches of language use, is also the same thing I dislike in much of spoken and written English. I seem to be at cross purposes.

Doc John 9:55 PM  

I found this puzzle medium to medium-hard. I got the theme easily enough but many of the clues would just not gel with my brain. (The only one that I got right away was RESPECTS.) The NW corner was the last to fall, only after I got RECUSE and let go of "ella". UNLOOSE just didn't seem "Kahn-ish" (or maybe a weird word like that is exactly "Kahn-ish"). Finally, IS INTO popped into my brain and that was that. Fortunately, too, the rebus squares were symmetrical.

Interestingly enough, though, early on in my solving experience, I hit on the first YSL in the SE and thought that maybe there would be other designers like Dior, RL, Coco, etc. I had no idea that Mr. St. L had died.

Fave answer: PIG LATIN

Jeff 10:04 PM  

I'm a GEN-X'ER whose mother smoked Yves Saint Laurent menthol 100 cigarettes in the 70's or early 80's. As I did this puzzle at the kitchen table at 4:30 in the AM, I stared at _OLOGN_, and it made sense to me that, if YSL were whoring his good name on cigarettes, it stood to reason he probably would've put his name on BOLOGNA, too. And so I confidently wrote that in. (BASS and ERIA looked fine as crosses.) Still ROTFLMFAO about that one!

Note to self: doing a Thursday puzzle before the first cup of coffee of the day is not such a good idea.

misstrish 10:54 PM  

Unlooses= terrible answer IMHO
Loved the upidstay clue.
@Jeff- you also had me LMAO with your BOLOGNA.

Bai Bai (thanks Rex)

Bill D 11:02 PM  

@Jeff - Designer smoked meats! I hope you patent that one!

@Doc John - the rebus squares SHOULD be symmetric - another reason why this puzzle is so good!

@Jane Doh - I didn't notice the one-way "streets" 'til you mentioned them - usually that leaves a lot of three-letter, ticky-tacky fill, but not today. Sucessfully using an original grid is just another positive for DJ today.

I wonder, can any mathematician here figure out how many actual grids are available to constructors in the 15 x 15 format, using typical crossword symmetry and rules? (All letters must appear in both an across and a down answer, all answers must have at least three letters, and I think there is a limit on the number of blank spaces allowed.)

Anonymous 11:58 PM  

What a zippy eulogy. I thought it fell in the medium range. Befitting YSL (born in Algeria!), very international in scope. AMIE, SOIR, ANAIS (French-Cuban), ERES TU, etc.

ATTLEE and SCALAR screwed me up a bit. Didn't know ALO, but then again have never been to C. America. Wasn't there a BBC sitcom called "Allo, Allo" set in France?

Anyone notice "PALE RICER" (film starring Clint Eastwooc??)and BAI EATS SUEY down south?


Doc John 12:17 AM  

@bill d- the operative word here being SHOULD. Not all of them are!

Leon 12:28 AM  

Atwhay away onderfulway uzzlepay ! Ymay ongratscay otay Mray.

Anonymous 1:22 AM  

@green mantis re. unloose: I am fond of it when used erroneously in the spot of "release" in "Unloose the hounds".

luchenchan 1:04 PM  

I had OLO in COLOGNE, and naturally completed it into POLO. Surprised that not everybody had done that. I know my NYC history (well, maybe) so CHRYSLER gave me the rebus YSL. Loved the puzzle. Funny how our brain refuses to believe our eyes, the shape is so obviously not a square, and still I only noticed that the puzzle is not square when I could not locate the center square, which one might expect inside FASHION.

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