Turkish bigwig — SUNDAY, Oct. 18 2009 — Old credit-tracking corp. / Jewelry firm since 1842 / School popular in 1920s / Lepidopterist's study

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Constructor: Elizabeth C. Gorski

Relative difficulty: Easy

THEME: THE SOLOMON R. GUGGENHEIM / MUSEUM (23A: With 29-Across, holder of the works named in the nine starred clues, celebrating its 50th anniversary on 10/21/09)

Word of the Day: "'DEED I DO" (108A: Jazz standard whose title is repeatedly sung after "Honey...") — "''Deed I Do" is a 1926 jazz standard composed by Fred Rose with lyrics by Walter Hirsch. It was introduced by vaudeville performer S. L. Stambaugh and popularized by Ben Bernie's recording. It was recorded by influential clarinetist and bandleader Benny Goodman as his debut recording in December 1926 with Ben Pollack and His Californians. Ruth Etting's rendition of the song became a top ten hit in 1927. (wikipedia)


Lovely, imaginative puzzle from Liz Gorski, who specializes in that sort of thing. Make grid shape relevant to theme and then execute it nearly flawlessly — no one does it better. The James Bond martini glass puzzle from last year comes to mind. This one may be better. Only down side was how phenomenally easy it was, and that was largely the function of the (necessary) abundance of three-letter words. The SPIRAL SHAPE is a brilliant conceit, and the theme density is astonishing — nine artist names and then long explanatory theme answers running nearly the length and width of the grid on all sides. Really, truly beautiful. It is currently my 9-yr-old daughter's life dream to go to the Guggenheim (it's good to have achievable goals), so when we showed her this grid, her mind was quite seriously blown.

Theme answers — the artists:

  • 1A: *"Before the Mirror" (MANET)
  • 14D: *"Seated Woman, Wiping Her Left Side" (DEGAS)
  • 34D: *"Tableau 2" (MONDRIAN)
  • 68A: *"Green Violinist" (CHAGALL)
  • 51D: *"Mandolin and Guitar" (PICASSO)
  • 97A: *"Composition 8" (KANDINSKY)
  • 103A: *"Peasant With Hoe" (SEURAT)
  • 101D: *"The Antipope" (ERNST)
  • 112D: *"Head and Shell" (ARP)

38D: With 43-Down, what 23-/29-Across was (Final major work of / Frank Lloyd Wright) — my only trouble with this grid was that I wanted BY instead of OF in this answer.

The GUGGENHEIM is the first place I saw more of these artists' work. ERNST stands out the most because I was like "WTF is that!? Is that a lady or a bird or ...?" Alberto GIACOMETTI was the artist that grabbed me most — simultaneously beautiful, thoughtful, and horrific. I really gotta get back there sometime soon.

One complaint about the grid, and it's a clue complaint: what the hell is with the clue on NOR (10D: "... should I"). How / when do you say that? That just feels like the randomest of random phrases, and RIGHT at the initial in GUGGENHEIM's name. Everyone knows GUGGENHEIM, some people know SOLOMON, but few people know that middle initial offhand, so please, everyone who makes puzzles, when you are crossing initials, make the clue ... not easy, necessarily, but solid. Solid. Worst clue for NOR I have ever seen, at the worst possible place. I wanted to put "W" in there because I could hear someone saying, emphatically, "... NOW SHOULD I?" way more than I could hear "NOR should I." I know the "NOW" version technically needs a comma, but since it's a rhetorical question (no one saying it would expect an answer), I thought maybe the question mark wasn't needed. Briefly. Then I went with the "R."

Some inventive fill today in order to accommodate this odd grid shape. Never heard of "DEED I DO," but as you can see, it's not just the Word of the Day — it's the first ever Song of the Day. A solid standard, so can't complain. SEMITRAILER, odd as it was, was highly inferrable (90A: Vintage Tonka toy). POTATIONS is butt-ugly, but legal (47D: Drinks of liquor). Always hate to see LAR, but whaddyagonnado? (113D: Roman household god). I had to look up TRW (98A: Old credit-tracking corp.) when I was done to see what the hell it stood for. By the time I started worrying about my credit score, TRW had already become Experian, apparently. TRW comes from Thompson Ramo Wooldridge, Inc. for reasons that are far, far too dull to relate.


  • 20A: Westernmost avenue in Santa Monica, Calif. (Ocean) — that's just a Great clue. You can infer it even if you've never been there. West of Santa Monica is, in fact, OCEAN. Shout-out to my best friend Andrew, who lives there.
  • 21A: Rewards of a political machine (patronage) — a word with serious art implications, thus appropriate for this puzzle.
  • 39A: 2000s TV family (Sopranos) — ah, TV. You make things so easy for me (usually). No problem here, or at MTM (66A: 1970s TV production co.) or at 74A: "Frasier" role (Daphne), and I didn't even watch "Frasier."
  • 49A: Game in which players subtract from a starting score of 501 (darts) — how did I not know this? I thought for sure it would be a card game.
  • 99A: Clytemnestra, to Agamemnon (spouse) — I believe I lectured about these two only yesterday, so you're welcome. I also believe that SUMAC was in the puzzle very very recently (78D: Shrub that may cause a severe allergic reaction). No?
  • 106A: Subject of the Joni Mitchell song "Amelia" (Earhart) — I didn't know this, and then was surprised/embarrassed by how spot-on / obvious the answer ended up being.

[Different song, but still cool]
  • 1D: Lepidopterist's study (moth) — "lepidopterist" is one of those words that looks difficult but now (to me) seems rather common. Maybe because Nabokov was a lepidopterist, which I've known since I was about 20. For a while I thought "lepidopterist" was the word in that Orwell title I can never remember, "Keep the ASPIDISTRA Flying."
  • 19D: Gospel singer Franklin (Erma) — learned, and then forgot, her from xwords.
  • 40D: Site of Spain's Alamillo Bridge (Seville) — never quite sure if this is going to be spelled SEVILLE or (Sp.) SEVILLA. Latter would require Sp. word in clue, but ... again, still unsure sometimes if something like "Alamillo" counts.
  • 42D: Jewelry firm since 1842 (Fabergé) — I don't think of FABERGÉ as a company. I always thought of those eggs as ... almost mythical. Not named after a company, but maybe after some exotic folklore backstory involving princesses and dragons and what not. On "The Simpsons," now-dead bluesman Bleeding Gums Murphy once had a FABERGÉ egg addiction.
  • 89D: School popular in the 1920s (Bauhaus) — nice architectural tie-in. I wanted this answer to be ASHCAN.
  • 100D: Turkish bigwig (pasha) — a favorite word of another crossword blogger. What was her name again? I forget. :)
And now, your Tweets of the Week — xword-related chatter from the Twitterverse:

  • brutalreality finishing the crossword in five minutes makes me feel smart. walking in with a kitten umbrella makes me feel like a geek.
  • stuckinsanity I love the girl that comes to my stats class every day and does a crossword puzzle...everyday!
  • ninja_naj Allergic to this lecture hall. Analyzing my prof's lecture voice and disliking it. Done with crossword. Planning my day to be productive
  • aaron_j_lewis Baguette toast, coffee, fireplace, and the crossword puzzle. I am addicted to cozy.
  • raford3 @rexparker You're the most hip-hop crossword blogger/English professor I know...
  • Paschspice Cant believe im making a marijuana crossword. oh lord.
  • MasOvaltinePls I'm so good at crossword puzzles. Wait. Shouldn't I be napping? Jesus. I need to set my priorities straight.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter]


Bob Kerfuffle 8:59 AM  

Agree completely with Rex, an easy but beautiful puzzle.

As someone who has always lived within sight of the Empire State Building, I found the full name of Solomon R. Guggenheim to be a gimme.

And yet, I finised the puzzle with one wrong letter and I knew it. Had to Google to resolve the "E" crossing of TEE and DEEDIDO. Just a blind spot; could not parse 'Deed I Do, and not sports-minded enough to think of the hand signal for "Time out!"

JannieB 9:06 AM  

Loved it - just a brilliant puzzle on many many levels.

Clark 9:06 AM  

This was fun fun fun. I was moving around the puzzle just filling it in. It gave me a taste of what it must be like on a normal day for you speedy types.

Me: Look it's an ampersand! Hey, semi-puzzle partner, What museum has all these paintings?
SPP: The Modern?
Me: (Counting) Nope.
Me: Dude!
SPP: That's no ampersand.

Jeffrey 9:09 AM  

Loved it.

I have no problem with easy Sundays. Maybe people (like me) started with the Sunday puzzles before doing the weekly ones.

Ray Greenberg 9:22 AM  

I liked this puzzle. Great to look at and mostly fun though easy to do with two caveats. I think she gets a pass on way too many abbreviations because it is so cool. Plus I think of hot tamales as sexy, spark plug types, some times not the best lookers but most vivacious in a sexy way. Any way this mislead cost me. And I've spent a lot of time around water fronts and noone ever said throw me a torus. Feels like I've seen it before so it must be good crosswordese but I felt gypped not being able to finish this otherwise easy ride.

Anonymous 9:23 AM  

beautiful, elegant, and easy - my idea of a fun Sunday morning. Dee di do.

Ulrich 9:29 AM  

I met EG at the ATCP tournament briefly and told her how much I, as an architect, loved her puzzles with their strong graphical/visual component. She returned the favor and told me how she admired the creativity of architects. Naturally, I took to this puzzle...

... I must say, though, that I would have liked the spiral to be more consequential for the arrangement of theme answers. As it stands, they have no relations to it; i.e. the spiral remains "pure decoration"--it's not a structural element.

And a quibble: The last major work of FL Wright is the Marin County Civic Center--a nice excursion if you're in San Francisco. To all friends in the Bay Area: shame on you if you haven't seen it yet! I'm told that it has been beautifully restored (I visited it 25 years ago).

Frances SC (formerly NYC) 9:31 AM  

LOVED the puzzle, love the museum, love all those amazing paintings.

I started late last night and got SO into it that I stayed up to finish all but one fill. haven't a clue who Joy on "The View" is, but finished it off this morning with the cross. I thought it was great that so many of the three-letter clues were solid and engaging.

Only downside... puzzle finished and four hours until football. BTW... GREAT Yankees game last night!!!!! Sure hope they wind up playing the Dodgers in the Series, would be like the days of my long-ago youth when the Yankees, Dodgers, and Giants dominated the decade from 1949 on.

But I digress... Thanks, Rex, also for all the Deed I Do links.

Unknown 9:41 AM  

Hmm... Have I found an error? Maybe you folks can help me out.

The clue is 64D: "Words from Charlie Brown." The answer was UGHS.

In Charles Schulz's masterpiece, Peanuts, Charlie Brown is not known for screaming UGH. He almost always screams, "AAUGH!"

(Many other characters share this cri de cœur).

Look into any recent volume of The Complete Peanuts, and you'll find multiple index entries for AAUGH, none for UGH. Further, the Web's biggest online shop for Peanuts swag is aaugh.com.

Or try a Google image search for AAUGH.

I'm sure that somewhere, sometime, Good ol' Charlie Brown grunted UGH -- but that doesn't seem to fit the purpose of the clue.

What do y'all think? What am I missing?


P.S. Had a lot of fun with the puzzle, too! Well maybe "fun" isn't the right word. But I smiled in admiration.

Anonymous 9:42 AM  

Amelia: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N6d2RG2Rl64

Greene 9:52 AM  

Like The Guggenheim itself, this is an architecturally stunning puzzle. Unfortunately, like The Guggenheim, it is an example of form overpowering function. Don't get me wrong, I love the museum and this puzzle, but they each feature significant compromises in function to support their vaulted structural concepts. In the case of the puzzle it is a huge number of 3-letter answers, in the case of The Guggenheim it is all those dark, recessed niches on the main spiral walkway. One can argue endlessly if the compromises justify the beauty of the structures, but I say yes in both cases. Bravo to Ms. Gorski and Frank Lloyd Wright.

@Rex, I hope you will treat your daughter to a trip to The Guggenheim on one of your puzzle trips. I think it is so cool that a 9-year-old has a dream of seeing one of the world's great museums.

foodie 9:59 AM  

Beautiful grid, lovely topic, vintage Gorski. The Guggenheim should frame it and display it.

It was easy for the most part but I had trouble spots, because of the short abbreviations being unhelpful... the form dictated some dysfunction. I knew about the Marin County Museum for Wright, so I eliminated FINAL. Could it have been FIRST? That seemed very wrong as well...

And for a bit I wrote SPIRALSTAIR instead of SPIRALSHAPE. That gave me WT- for Huh? I thought Wow! WTF got in the puzzle!

@Ulrich, I had the same thought about structure and theme. For a while, I imagined that the names of the artists would be curved...

retired_chemist 10:03 AM  

What a tour de force! Even the spiral, to celebrate the architecture of the museum!

Is it possible that the placement of the paintings in the puzzle approximates their placement in the museum? Now that would be awesome!

One error - like Bob K, knew mine-when I cried for help (which Crosscan kindly provided). 108A DEEDIMO made no sense but I just. couldn't. parse it. That's AMORE (104D - Just love)- not!

Agree with Rex on SEMITRAILER and POTATIONS - a small price to pay for such overall elegance.

I will never forget Mr. Hyldoft (1954-5, 10th grade Biology, reciting the phyla as if taxonomy were epic poetry. Lep-i-DOP'-te-ra was his favorite in the animal kingdom, followed by Mol-LUS'-ca. IMO the plant phyla are more rhythmic, however.

A Capriote 10:05 AM  

Loved it! I was Beguiled!

CoolPapaD 10:13 AM  

EG truly is the FLR of crossword architecture. This was an amazing piece of construction, fun, educational, and as satisfying as any puzzle I've completed. I'd never heard of Kandinsky or Seurat (both gettable from the crosses), but spent time reading about them after finishing last night. I learned ARP only from puzzles, and I learned MONDRIAN from my kids' "Classical Baby" videos (I like his grids as well).

I thought the northwest (starting) section was the trickiest - it was blank long after the rest was completed. I had to take a leap of faith with MANET (one of only a few 5 letter artists I knew), guessed on NEER, the only 4-letter poetic contraction I could fathom, and the rest popped into view!

TRW's national headquarters relocated to my hometown in suburban Cleveland in the late 70's, so that was a gimmee. I also managed to somehow get DEED I DO, but I thought it was DEE DI DO until coming here - thanks Rex!

Thanks, EG - hope this is NOT your final major work!

ArtLvr 10:14 AM  

Swirly, whirly work of art, both the design of the grid and fill celebrating the fiftieth of the landmark Guggenheim. Cannot carp, nor should I. Artful, masterful and so very memorable! Many thanks, Liz Gorski...

Anonymous 10:15 AM  

I don't feel guilty for knowing S.G.'s middle name... nor should I.

Rex Parker 10:16 AM  

I'm getting fan mail / interview requests for Ms. Gorski. If anyone has her email, please send it to me at rexparker at mac dot com, thanks.


Rex Parker 10:19 AM  

@10:15, a perfect example of why the NOR clue blows. Phrase "NOR should I" is only usable if you are a pompous dbag.

chefbea 10:22 AM  

Absolutely loved the puzzle. Thought it was great. Love the Guggenheim Museum and knew all the artists. Mondrian is one of my favorites.
Thank you Elizabeth .

PS - 10/21 is also my grandaughter's 7th birthday. I don't think she has been to the Guggenheim but I have a picture of her at the Metropolitan.

nanpilla 10:27 AM  

@crosscan : I too, started with the Sunday puzzles, thinking they were the hardest ones. Then I saw Wordplay, and the rest is history!
Loved the puzzle, and it was easy enough to solve while watching a very exciting Arizona/Stanford game with my father-in-law, who is visiting from Tucson.
Thanks, EG!

Anonymous 10:43 AM  

My only problem was with 116 down. The clue is "huh?" and the answer is "WHA" What kind of answer is that? This one clue and answer cobination disturbs me to no end.

Alex S. 10:44 AM  

I can't really think of when or why I would say it, but NOR was my first gut instinct for what would go there. So on my first pass through the top row I had ERN, NOR, and ANG all on their own.

The creating a sequence of NRG in long theme lead me to taking out NOR for a while. So, though I can't justify it, I guess I can't really complain about it since my brain went to the same place.

Pretty easy Sunday. The NW was a bit of a problem for me since while I knew it was the Guggenheim easily enough I was completely clueless to the SOLOMON R. part. Never heard of Midori Ito. The APOC biblical abbreviation did not want to show itself. I'd put T-BILLS where T-NOTES went and I was 100% certain that lepidopterists are gem collectors.

Alex S. 10:45 AM  

Oh, yeah. On the "Huh?"/WHA pairing. Based on the W I put in WTF. That was satisfying but very quickly shown wrong.

jae 10:51 AM  

Amazing puzzle. Loved it. This may be one of EG's best!

Susan 10:53 AM  

@Alex, me too! I was really surprised that WTF would be in a puzzle in a family paper...

I got Naticked on DEEDIO and TORUS. Torus was new to me.

Guess I'm a pompous dbag because I threw down NOR "... should I" without hesitation. Only later thought it could have been other things. But I don't take Rex's comments personally ... nor should I.

mccoll 11:06 AM  

Finally, a reward for being a diligent dilettante. Right in the old man's wheelhouse.I loved the artists, the museum, the works, and the shape of the puzzle. A true tour de force!
@Rex You hear English people say "...nor should I." as in "I never criticize others, nor should I."
It sounds stuffy to North Americans.

Peter S. I agree. I can't remember Charlie Brown saying UGH, but plenty of AARGhs. It is far more expressive.
I did have to spell check INEVITABLE which confirmed Mary Tyler Moore.
Thanks all, especially Elizabeth Gorski.

slypett 11:09 AM  

Started in the natural corner and quickly slewed around the East into the South. The hardest parts for me were the center of the spiral and the far Southwest.

After yesterdays disaster, I'm glad for this solid construction of light and air.

retired_chemist 11:15 AM  

In line with the subtheme of the week, I point out another parsing of 108A: DEE DIDO. If it counts, that is the third DIDO.

Hand up for another pompous dbag here. NOR not a problem, though HOW and NOW crossed my mind too. Didn't consider BROWN or COW. Nor should I.

Parsan 11:20 AM  

"NOR should I" not that uncommon years ago when I was a kid. "I will not pay your parking ticket, NOR should I!". I think the phrase was usually said in a huff.

A wonderful puzzle that I was able to finish - not always the case! Could actually picture some of the paintings in my mind. I remember the wonderful KANDINSKY exhibit in 1963. We took our children to the GUGGENHEIM (ages 4, 11, and 14) in the '70's and they loved it. We bought the puzzle of the exterior of the museum which was worked many times.

TORUS was new to me and I do not get ESP. Had to look up ELO after it filled in because I had not heard of the group.

Maybe someone will construct a puzzle of the Frank Gehry GUGGENHEIM in Balbo.

Rex, thanks for the music and terrific write up!

joho 11:22 AM  

@Crosscan and @nanpilla ... I too, started with the Sunday puzzle and thought it was the ultimate challenge until I started doing the puzzles every day of the week.

Now THIS is what a Sunday puzzle should be! Perhaps a little easy but filled with so much to admire and so fun much to solve ... all I can say is Brava Elizabeth, you've done it again!

Now I want to go back to the Guggenheim and wind around all the exquisite art.

Wonderful Sunday, thank you!

@Andrea ... Happy Birthday!!!!!

F.O.G. 11:37 AM  

Fun puzzle, very enjoyable. I have never heard of "torus" but an online dictionary defines it as an architectural term. Another subtlety in this clever puzzle.

Noam D. Elkies 11:45 AM  

Lovely puzzle. The NYTimes xword blog notes that the cluse for 94A:EDDY ("Water swirl") and 67A:ATS ("Symbols like @") also reinforce the theme.

The grid with its long corridors of three-letter words feels like a Diagramless construction, perhaps because we had a spiral-shaped Diagramless only a few months ago (May 31, F.Heaney). Pace Ulrich 9:29, the spiral does affect the solving experience, not just because of the corridors but also because there's only one way to connect the periphery to the center.

For once I actually knew one of those random Roman numeral years (52A:MDVI)! It also crosses another Latin word (33D:UNUM).

Our recent complaints about sectarian Bible clues were answered with the clue for 6D:APOC.

I thought 47D:POTATIONS was neato and 108A:DEEDIDO an unfortunate compromise, as was 57A:BEHAR — this puzzle deserves LÉHAR, not some random talk-show hostess. Well, ...non disputandum est.

Not sure what to make of Rex labeling the puzzle Easy for a Sunday and then noting tough clues and crossings as in 10D:NOR. I might add the 40D/74A crossing: I guessed SEVILLA inicialmente, and while I did change it eventually it was only because 74A:DAPHNE seemed a bit more plausible than "Daphna", not that I had any actual knowledge of Frasier beyond the title's existence...


JannieB 11:46 AM  

@Parsan re: ESP. Think of "Medium" as a psychic whose powers/strengths include Extra Sensory Perception

Georges Seurat 11:48 AM  

Merci! Check out my new website:


Van55 11:50 AM  

Mostly an excellent puzzle. "NOR should I" is beyond cavil in my book.

What is not beyond cavil is the random Roman numeral date of Columbus's death.

Otherwise, I thought it flawless fun.

Glitch 11:56 AM  

TORUS is a solid shaped like a donut or tire, which is how its been more often clued. (i.e. the e.g. in the clue means looking for the shape not function).

If I needed a four letter Charlie Brown expression (and I did), would it be RATS?


I believe RP uses time as his primary indicator, "toughness" as a modifier.


mac 11:59 AM  

@Andrea: Happy Birthday! And Fergus, happy belated birthday!

I liked this puzzle, easy but beautiful. Now, are the black squares at the end of 65A cheater squares? Another question, wasn't a "torus" a double donut? I always think of Piet as Mondriaan, did he officially change his name?

I never heard of Erma Franklin, TRW, and had Amore for 104D. I can't play those clips right now, husband is falling asleep in our hotelroom, we both woke at 5 this morning and watched the last few innings of the Yankee game....
Nor was not a problem, I think I have heard the term at least once in the last week, plus several times "nor I".

Love Donovan and love Giacometti....

mac 11:59 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Parsan 12:14 PM  

@JannieB--Of course! Trying to make it more complicated when it was so obvious. D'oh! Thanks!

poc 12:18 PM  

Anyone know why there's no Second Sunday puzzle today?

I find nothing objectionable about NOR. "Nor should I" is a reasonably common phrase, not only from pompous windbags.

I didn't like WHA one little bit though.

Steve J 12:27 PM  

Clearly 15+ years spent working in internet-related businesses has skewed my perception. I did the puzzle last night, and I still held the question in my mind this morning, "What does an @ sign have to do with the Guggenheim?" Wasn't until I read Rex's writeup that the light bulb went on in my head.

I admit, knowing that critical makes me enjoy the puzzle more than I did when I thought there was a big @ sign in the middle, but that really gets me to only lukewarm. While it was nice to beat my previous best Sunday solve time by a good 7 minutes, that also confirmed my impression this was a little too easy. At least there were a couple clues I needed to work at to get (the already well-noted "potations" and "deedido").

@Peter S: I had the same thought about the Charlie Brown clue. I remember lots of "auugh"; I don't remember any "ugh".

gg 12:31 PM  

Is the goal of a NY Times puzzle to be a beautiful work of art (not just visually, but the construction itself), as this clearly is, or is it to to provide a fun and challenging solving experience, which this clearly isn't? I'd much prefer the latter, and would prefer to see this puzzle grid hanging someplace like the Guggenheim.

Stan 12:35 PM  

Just loved this puzzle, and while solving didn't want it to be over. Awesome match-up of form to content. Thank you EG!

Lili 12:40 PM  

For an art historian who has had reason to study Frank Lloyd Wright closely, this was one easy puzzle. I don't think I've ever completed one so quickly.

A pleasure on a beautiful Chicago morning, but I do wish it had been a bit more of a challenge.

Anonymous 12:47 PM  

I like the puzzle, but I'm not sure about the answer torus. My understanding is that a torus is the surface of a doughnut shape. A life preserver would be a toroid, the solid contained within a torus. Even an inner tube has something inside it. I also think "NOR should I" is fine. Not being a pompous windbag, I would never use it, nor should I.

Anonymous 12:55 PM  

This is my first comment but I read this blog every day. Ever since Rex hinted that we'd soon be seeing his published puzzle, I keep expecting to see his name when I open up the paper. Then, I was SURE this Sunday would be a Rex puzzle, not that I have any complaints. This one was very good. Rex, can you give us a clue (ha ha) as to when your next puzzle will show up? Thanks from a fan.

Glitch 1:17 PM  


There is a cryptic on pg 54 of the dead tree magazine, didn't check the claim that it's also on line.


Anonymous 1:38 PM  

Georges Seurat at 11:48-your website address made me laugh out loud...

Anonymous 1:53 PM  

Help, please. What is an APOC? I filled it in correctly, but I couldn't believe my eyes.

Shamik 1:54 PM  

@Georges Seurat: LOL...good one!

@Rex: Put me in the pompous dbag category for NOR. But then I'm also in the DEE DI DO category...thanks for clarifying that one.

@Ms. Gorski: Brava!!!!!! Loved it!!!

No quibbles today on this beautiful, but easy puzzle. I don't look for Sundays to be super challenging, but more enjoyable and well contructed with tons of theme answers than anything else. This one fit the bill quite well.

I had a great aunt who lived near the Guggenheim. We lived in the suburbs and didn't get to visit her at her home very often. One time when I was 11 years old, we visited. My parents allowed me to actually walk out on the streets of NY by myself...daring back in those days if you lived in the suburbs.

And, did they ever worry when I didn't return for 3 hours! And why? Because I went to the Guggenheim. Brava to Rex's daughter for wanting to go!

....working now on getting time off for the ACPT in February. Now where did I put those old coats?

JannieB 1:55 PM  

@poc - I missed it too - it's a cryptic. You can access it online from the Wordplay Blog.

Two Ponies 2:02 PM  

George Seurat gets the award for best comment today! Ha!
Just yesterday Puzzlemate and I were discussing the Ashcan school and he suggested I remember it because it surely will come up in a crossword. He was so close! Not in the puzzle directly but in Rex's comments. I love it when things like that happen.
We tried to go to the museum recently with the idea that each of us would take our turn inside while the other walked the dog around the lovely grounds. Wrong! Dogs are not allowed anywhere on the grounds. What's up with that?

Anonymous 2:12 PM  

Never mind, I just answered my own question. APOC is an abbreviation for "Apocrypha".

Abbreviations just aren't my thing.

Marie NYC 2:15 PM  

Try the emphasis on the "I" in NOR should I...

A: I shouldn't have to take out the garbage. (or some such task)

B: Nor should *I*.

mac 2:22 PM  

Is it gramatically correct to use nor when neither hasn't been used before?

@Two Ponies: which museum is that?

Elaine 2:26 PM  

I think I have discovered a sly trick: Elizabeth Gorski has been reading the blog comments, collecting ALL of the things that are objects of complaint (agape; wha'; DIDO; ORR....and she put them all in this puzzle! Sly.

I really enjoyed this puzzle, even though I did most of it in the ER at 5:30 a.m. (waiting for 85-y-o mother-in-law to be told she is already receiving the correct treatment for shingles.) The NYT puzzle kept me from banging my head!

I had FINAL MAJOR DESIGN, which of course I had to change at once, even though I thought, "WHY should I?" I also got hung up on DEE-DI-DO...so I turned to the DH, a jazz aficionado, who set my straight. Do I feel pleased? DEED I DO.

I did not know all of the works listed, but when I drew a blank there, a single letter gave me the artist's name, which was fun. Thank you, liberal arts college!

@ Anon 1:53
APOC is a crummy abbr for Apocrypha, books of the Bible not normally included in the Christian canon. (Read them if you don't wanna miss some great stories!)

Anonymous 2:41 PM  

"Nor should I" is a common phrase used by pompous douchebags and regular douchbags alile. Had APOS instead of APOC (Apostle...)
Great great puzzle. Thought more of a medium than easy but thoroughly enjoyable either way.

artist networks 2:56 PM  

Van Gogh
/ear.com or



K & in sky.gov


Anonymous 3:32 PM  

Two "wha"s in two weeks? Wha hoppen?

Clark 3:33 PM  

@mac -- I think the preceding 'not' makes it ok to use 'nor' in "A: I shouldn't have to do X. B: Nor should I." (Hat tip to @Marie NYC.) Maybe any negative will do it. Not sure. Working on feel rather than rules here.

Anonymous 4:40 PM  

Georges Seurat at 11:48 -- You have a GREAT sense of humor! Your comment is priceless!


Two Ponies 5:11 PM  

@ mac, It was the Guggenheim in L.A. I should have been more specific.

poc 5:22 PM  

@Glitch and @JannieB: thanks, but I see no cryptic on the Wordplay Blog. No biggie (I don't much enjoy the NYT cryptics as a rule). Still it seems like an error not to have it on the main crossword page.

Unknown 5:34 PM  

this puzzle was absolutely fantastic. theme answers gave way at a steady pace even if you have never heard of the artists. anyone else have serum for torus at 105D?

treedweller 5:34 PM  

Like so many here, I generally start at 1A and go from there. Today I saw the grid and decided to start in the center. It's not really significant to anyone, I'm sure, but I like that it snapped me out of the rut. I also liked that it was fairly quick, since Sundays are often too much of a slog for me.

But I couldn't quite finish; NOR, ITO, APOC and TAU were just too opaque and so I missed PATRONAGE and ALIENATED (and Mr. Guggenheim's middle initial). Oh, well, still fun.

Anonymous 5:35 PM  

I would be happier if 58A AGAPE were clued as one of The Four Loves (Storge, Philia, Eros, Agape) rather than "openmouthed."

A propos of which, I just loved it yesterday when Cal regained respectability by trouncing UCLA, while Stanford was edged out by Arizona in a great game. (Cheers to @nanpilla @ 10:27 AM.)

Now which of The Four Loves is that? Only Philia (comradeship) for me, though I do know some folks for whom it would be Eros. :-)

Larry the happier Bear

Glitch 6:05 PM  


Not arguing, just curious, but I found the (same) cryptic online here:

Wordplay blog: Right side, second box down

and here:

Per Magazine: Left side, second box down

Or is it something else you are looking ... er ... make that ... for which you are looking?

.../Glitch [trying not to sound too pompous]

Anonymous 6:33 PM  

yes we had SUMAC recently ... like yesterday!

I was impressed with this puzzle too, well done!

retired_chemist 6:37 PM  

I think Pompous (D)bag sounds like an excellent name for a rock group. Or a rapper....

PlantieBea 6:45 PM  

Thanks Ms. Gorski for this imaginative puzzle. I want to take a field trip to the Guggenheim now.

@Rex: I enjoyed the song of the day feature--my favorite was the Donovan piece.

Funny comments with ...Seurat, etc.

jae 7:05 PM  

@Peter S. I'm also with you on the Charlie Brown clue. Can't remember ever seeing UGH.

chefbea 7:31 PM  

So tonight puzzle husband and I went down the street to our neighborhood hang out (seaside tavern) and a couple mentioned the nyt puzzle. they said they do the puzzle and read Rex Parker every day. I told them to join in, and mentioned my blog name. Hopefully they will join in.

Geometricus 9:43 PM  

More on torus from the Geometry teacher: Pacman and many other video games are played on a "flat" torus, since when you exit out the right side you re-enter at the analogous spot on the left. Same story with bottom edge and top edge of the screen. In the branch of math called topology, you get to take a flat screen, curve it around, glue the left edge to the right edge to make a tube. Now the top and bottom edges need to be glued so you curve the tube to make a donut shape.

APOC to a Catholic means Apocalyspe, which is sometimes called Revelation. The Apocrypha is properly things like the Gospel of Thomas which never were in any canon of scripture. Books like Sirach and Macabees were always a part of the Bible but Protestants took them out.

Elaine 10:13 PM  

I was in a hurry to get back to m-i-law's apt..... so I did not add this:
I only knew TORUS because there was such a formation on the cover of the textbook that my children had for..? calculus? (some obscure sci-math-techno course.)
I am very proud of my children, even if I don't understand a word they are arguing about....but I did get the TORUS part. I majored in the equivalent of the Opposite on the Color Wheel. Occasionally we find a conjunction and are amazed! by the event.

Today I invited someone to our local quilt guild. I have done this often...and only once has anyone responded by actually showing up as promised. I hope you have much better luck w/ the NYT puzzle!

mexgirl 11:35 PM  

It is really late on Sunday night. I just want to say: BEAUTIFUL, beautiful puzzle today. Crosswords and art in a clever Lloyd-Wright grid.
Who could ask for more?

slypett 12:19 AM  

Elaine: Ya1 Ya! for APOCr!

poc 1:08 AM  

@Glitch: Yes, I see it now, but only in PDF form. I wasn't familiar with the term "Variety Puzzle". I still think it should be on the main page as well, as is the case with every other Sunday puzzle I've seen since I started doing them 4 or 5 years ago.

Thanks all the same.

Blackhawk 3:23 AM  

What's interesting about the Guggenheim Museum is how the family was cleverly able to transform its oppressive, harmful business legacy into art.

The Guggenheim fortune was built on a brutal consolidation of mining and smelting in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. At every silver mine and smelting plant owned by the family, historians say that they turned to thugs and scabs to ensure that unions failed in their efforts to organize and obtain better conditions for workers. When Colorado became too expensive due to labor demands, the family moved most of its operations to Mexico.

Most philanthropists spend two-thirds of their lives clawing the guts out of society and the latter third either justifying their actions or, to put it more graphically, trying to stuff the guts back in. This was surely the case here, as the Guggenheim name is now known much more for art patronage than for the way the money was obtained to create the legacy.

It's always interesting to observe what tragic, humble and in many cases impoverished lives were led by the artists represented at the Guggenheim and elsewhere. To be sure, these philanthropists would never have wished to associate with the artists in their lifetimes.

Other than that, I really enjoyed the puzzle. Bravo to the constructor for the beauty of her idea and elegance of execution.

Michael A. Shea 12:56 PM  

I'm another one who was fine with the NOR answer. I hope I am just an ironic pompous windbag.

Weakest one, I say, was UGHS, indeed I do say. The only one that stumped me was TORUS, but that seems like a reasonable clue and answer.

Anonymous 5:28 PM  

It's a shame Rudolf Bauer wasn't included among the artist's hidden in the puzzle. It was really the work of Bauer and Kandinsky that drove Guggenheim to build the museum in the first place. Then Guggenheim screwed Bauer over, and Bauer refused to ever paint again because he didn't want Guggenheim to control the work. It's a tragic story, partly told here:


Also notable that Bauer didn't want Frank Lloyd Wright to design the museum. He thought it should have been someone from.... the BAUHAUS.

poc 9:55 AM  

@Glitch (and others): I see the Second Sunday puzzle has now appeared on the page, so it looks like it was indeed an omission.

PIX 8:37 AM  

Perfect puzzle for a Sunday.

Peacebird 2:26 PM  

In actuality, the apochryphal writings not included in the Protestant Bibles were not included in their canon partly due to those texts not being in the original Jewish Bible. So, they didn't really 'take them out' but continued the long tradition of them already not being included. The reasons for these exclusions go beyond the scope of this blog however.

kas448 3:04 PM  

If I can get done before lunch, I'm happy.

Anonymous 12:32 PM  

It's funny what we all find "easy" and "hard". As a scientist, torus was my first guess on which aspect of the life preserver EG wanted for 105D. Equivalently, as a scientist who has never been to New York city, and has very little experience with art, I couldn't know any of the art/architecture clues, but most were solvable with enough crosses.

Judy 9:32 PM  

Found this by googling deedimo--I also had amore instead of adore--this puzzle was too easy but it was fun. And the musical versions make it more fun.

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