Statistic method for checking means / SUN 4-22-12 / Adams with 1991 hit Get Here / Faddish 1970s footwear / Conditional construct in programming / Actor Paul of American Graffiti / Ali trainer Dundee / Chile de hot pepper / Frontiersman Boone informally

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Constructor: Paula Gamache and Ed Stein

Relative difficulty: Easy

THEME: "Letting Go Of" — shockingly, these are familiar phrases missing their "of"s. Hilarity ensues?

Word of the Day: T TEST (33D: Statistics method for checking means) —
t-test is any statistical hypothesis test in which the test statistic follows a Student's t distribution if the null hypothesis is supported. It is most commonly applied when the test statistic would follow a normal distribution if the value of a scaling term in the test statistic were known. When the scaling term is unknown and is replaced by an estimate based on the data, the test statistic (under certain conditions) follows a Student's t distribution. (wikipedia)
• • •

Weak theme, weak fill, no fun. Always hate junk like LEMAT (36A: Actor Paul of "American Graffiti") and really resent it when it runs into more obscure junk like T TEST (33D: Statistics method for checking means). And ARBOL as your 1-Down!? (1D: Chile de ___ (hot pepper)) Is there really no way you couldn't have drastically cleaned up that entire NW?? It's very rare that I see a grid with Nothing that I like, but this has Nothing that I like. I might like EARTH SHOES (39D: Faddish 1970s footwear) if I knew what they were. At least they're interesting-sounding, unlike the rest of the olden dreck in this grid.

Theme answers:
  • 23A: Diet? (BATTLE THE BULGE)
  • 31A: Be very successful at fishing? (LAND PLENTY)
  • 37A: Do a clerk's work at a morgue? (BOOK THE DEAD) — I'd've gone with something like [Arrange for Jerry's band to play at your party?] or the like.
  • 50A: Throw large bank notes around? (CAST THOUSANDS)
  • 67A: Take advantage of Good Samaritans? (MILK HUMAN KINDNESS)

  • 86A: Forge some personal notes? (DOCTOR LETTERS) — ugh, lame base phrase
  • 94A: Outdo one's buddies? (BEST FRIENDS) — UGH, THIS IS A NORMAL PHRASE!!! "Battle the bulge" might, conceivably, make someone, somewhere, laugh, or at least smile; BEST FRIENDS, on the other hand, will not.
  • 103A: Be a sadistic masseuse? (POUND FLESH)
  • 118A: Send for a special bridal accessory? (ORDER THE GARTER)
Some of these theme answers were mildly tough to get (BOOK THE DEAD), others I filled in without even looking at the clue (ORDER THE GARTER).  There's really not much to say here. I was annoyed at ESKIMO DOGS ("They're called SLED DOGS," I thought) until I realized that an Eskimo dog is a *breed* of dog—a breed sometimes used as sled dogs, I guess (44D: They're mushed). Well, the Canadian Eskimo dog (or "Qimmiq"!!!) is. American Eskimo dog looks far more ... domestic.

  • 64D: Adams with the 1991 hit "Get Here" (OLETA) — if there weren't so many ughy names, I wouldn't bother with her; but throw in PEREC (103D: Georges who wrote "Life: A User's Manual") and DAN'L (71D: Frontiersman Boone, informally) and LEMAT and come on.

  • 22A: Wife of Alexander the Great (ROXANA) — with one N? Sure, if you say so. Why not? She's fame...ish.
  • 82D: Veg-O-Matic maker (RONCO) — kind of odd / cool how this intersects BRONC (81A: It may be broken on a ranch). If you put them together, you have an actual word (and car model, and professional football player).
Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

P.S. It's possible that I'll be on the CBS News tonight during 6pm broadcast, UNLESS golf goes long, in which case, who knows? [UPDATE: just got official word—the piece is, in fact, airing tonight] [UPDATE: just got MORE official word that it is not, in fact, airing tonight] [I give up—just know that some Sunday in the near or distant future, CBS News will air a story about crosswords, featuring me. Maybe by Christmas?]


Anonymous 8:24 AM  

My, this was a very late post. Overall, thought the puzzle was quite easy. The theme answers were much easier than normal, and (true) not that enjoyable. Still, since there was nothing much to hate, it is a lot better than some that have been published. Less funny than clever. But not very clever.

joho 8:34 AM  

Not a lot of HEE HEE and HARHARing this morning.

I'm always impressed with anybody who can get nine theme answers into one puzzle, but I have to agree with @Rex today that this theme doesn't end our stellar week with the sparkle that preceeded it.

Anonymous 8:35 AM  

I agree with Rex.
Very disappointing.

Anonymous 8:38 AM  

Had raw 'emotion' for awhile. Only place where I was stuck

evil doug 8:43 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Bard 8:53 AM  

Macbeth > Act I, scene V

LADY MACBETH: 'They met me in the day of success: and I have
learned by the perfectest report, they have more in
them than mortal knowledge. When I burned in desire
to question them further, they made themselves air,
into which they vanished. Whiles I stood rapt in
the wonder of it, came missives from the king, who
all-hailed me 'Thane of Cawdor;' by which title,
before, these weird sisters saluted me, and referred
me to the coming on of time, with 'Hail, king that
shalt be!' This have I thought good to deliver
thee, my dearest partner of greatness, that thou
mightst not lose the dues of rejoicing, by being
ignorant of what greatness is promised thee. Lay it
to thy heart, and farewell.'
Glamis thou art, and Cawdor; and shalt be
What thou art promised: yet do I fear thy nature;
It is too full o' the milk of human kindness
To catch the nearest way: thou wouldst be great;
Art not without ambition, but without
The illness should attend it: what thou wouldst highly,
That wouldst thou holily; wouldst not play false,
And yet wouldst wrongly win: thou'ldst have, great Glamis,
That which cries 'Thus thou must do, if thou have it;
And that which rather thou dost fear to do
Than wishest should be undone.' Hie thee hither,
That I may pour my spirits in thine ear;
And chastise with the valour of my tongue
All that impedes thee from the golden round,
Which fate and metaphysical aid doth seem
To have thee crown'd withal.

The Merchant of Venice > Act IV, scene I

PORTIA: A pound of that same merchant's flesh is thine:
The court awards it, and the law doth give it.

SHYLOCK: Most rightful judge!

PORTIA: And you must cut this flesh from off his breast:
The law allows it, and the court awards it.

SHYLOCK: Most learned judge! A sentence! Come, prepare!

PORTIA: Tarry a little; there is something else.
This bond doth give thee here no jot of blood;
The words expressly are 'a pound of flesh:'
Take then thy bond, take thou thy pound of flesh;
But, in the cutting it, if thou dost shed
One drop of Christian blood, thy lands and goods
Are, by the laws of Venice, confiscate
Unto the state of Venice.

Sir Hillary 8:54 AM  

Decent theme. I especially like LANDPLENTY. Some pretty good 6's and 7's going across also. But the preponderance of godawful fill in the downs ruins it. DANL - are you kidding?

JenCT 8:55 AM  

Yup, easy. Couple of writeovers: LOCATE to LOCALE, RSVP to BYOB.

Liked Spider woman?/ARACHNE, They're mushed/ESKIMO DOGS.

Not much else to say. I'm going to go read the Tyler Hinman piece that I missed yesterday.

@joho: Not really an ending to a stellar week - it is a new week, after all. Doesn't bode well...

evil doug 8:57 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
evil doug 8:58 AM  

Pound this flesh....

Ecru: Fill as boring as the color. Then add ester, stere, Eyre, ars, Orca, arbol, ado, adore---don't these words all sound the same after a while?---and it asks: Why do you people bother with this busy-work? No good books to read? No church this morning? No heroin available to make the pain go away?

Earth Shoes: Uglier than corrective footwear, and the inclined sole meant you were always walking uphill. Part of the ridiculous fashion era of which they were an especially absurd part.

I don't waste my time solving Sunday puzzles (see: Titanic, and now this), but I still like to peruse them for vivid language and fresh new meat. If 'bidet' is as good as it gets, I really don't see much punch here.

On the seventh day, Will rested....


Z 8:59 AM  

Platform shoes anyone? The 70's are pretty regrettable in so many ways.

Best part of the puzzle were watching a very young Billy Bragg (with a CAPO on his guitar) and a little Belle and Sebastian.

miriam b 9:18 AM  

Chile de ARBOL was a gimme and my first fill. It's my go-to chile when I want an assertive and complex flavor that won't leave everyone gasping. This did not set the mood for the rest of the puzzle, which IMO was just OK and not really deserving of the lacerating comments of @Rex and everyone else thus far.

Anonymous 9:42 AM  

What's wrong with me?? I find myself agreeing with Rex more and more. This one was a bore.

JC66 9:45 AM  

@evil doug

When I solved 103A (POUNDFLESH) I immediately thought: "I can't wait to see what @evil doug's gonna say.

Texas Momma 10:05 AM  

Why does the clue for 1A Spiderwoman? have the "?" ? Same for 49A Something further?.

Is there a rule or guideline for non-theme answers have "?"s?

Lindsay 10:09 AM  

I'm more toward neutral on this one; a big step up from last week's connect-the-reflexion-of-the-rebus-dots.

A former chairman of our municipal planning board used to kick off policy development meetings by holding up a copy of "HORTON Hatches an Egg" and announcing that "The ordinance is an egg. We need to sit on the egg until it hatches."

Painful to recollect. Have a good weekend everyone.

jberg 10:16 AM  

I finished with an error -- HANo/LEMoT, which seemed just as good to me, though I guess the tennis star is famous enough if you pay any attention to tennis. Aside from that, what Rex said - though I was relieved to see that 42D, "Where Bertrand Russell taught ..." was UCLA. For a while I'd feared it would be U CAM, which would have been absolutely horrible (or AB HOR). Me too with emotion before FOOTAGE.

Seemed kind of boring to have HEE haw and HAR HAR crossing, too.

On the other hand, it was consistent to see both AMEOBA and OTOE bearing their optional Es!

jackj 10:16 AM  

After an easy Saturday puzzle, we are treated to a Sunday which might reasonably be called simplistic. A theme which calls for the dropping of the word “of” from familiar phrases to create new, punny ones is, shall we say, less than demanding and the cluing for the non-theme entries is as uncomplicated as a second grade student’s stick drawing.

Though easy to figure out, the theme answers still have a certain charm and items like BATTLETHEBULGE, ORDERTHEGARTER and POUNDFLESH are all nicely clued to produce a smile, if not a guffaw.

The fill is a bit more troubling and to test the statement that it is too straight-forward, the “pick a random number test” will show you that if you choose, say, 99 down, the clue is “Sot” and the 4 letter answer is the expected, LUSH. Try 16 down for “Go over” it’s EXCEED, 20 across is “Dwells” for RESIDES, 88 down, “Gang land” is TURF and so on and so forth. (Further testing is encouraged but, if you choose 1 down, all bets are off).

If there are solvers who are hesitant to try a Sunday NY Times puzzle, this would be one to recommend to them since it is totally non-intimidating and likely to inspire enough satisfaction from those players to make them new members of the daily solving fraternity.

GILL I. 10:33 AM  

Boo hoo..Saw the author, grabbed a glass of Cabernet Rex Goliath (best wines under $10.00 you'll ever drink), sat down outside looking for @Diri's stars, saw none, anxiously started puzzle and after BOOK THE DEAD I lost my MILK (of) Human kindness.
Everything @Rex said and I love to disagree with him!!
I wish 79A were a bathroom fixture here in the USofA. Great place to soak your feet while you shave.
Well, I did like DANL Boone because I thought Fess Parker was pretty handsome and besides, my Dad bought me a coon hat and I looked pretty spiffy in it.
Enjoy your Sunday all.

chefbea 10:35 AM  

Pretty easy.Never heard of arbol. Never owned a veg-o-matic, but do like tartar sauce.

Weird to have T-test and T-stop in the same puzzle??

Glad to see Earth shoe today in honor of Earth Day. Actually thought maybe we'd have a Green puzzle theme.

orangeblossomspecial 10:44 AM  

Bitter, bitter bitter. I enjoyed this even though I had to wait until after church to see how my responses compared to Rexie's. I guess I'm not sufficiently discriminating.

Bob Wills, the King of Western Swing, had a recording appropriate for 23A: Roly Poly. We all BATTLETHEBULGE. If not, you're just not old enough. Gravity always wins.

"In my ADOBE Hacienda" (72A) has been recorded several times.

Anonymous 10:53 AM  

Tough crowd!

baja 10:55 AM  

thought it was ok. T test not that obscure, especially considering some of the other stuff we see.

Ruth 11:02 AM  

I was never adept with statistics, but anybody who ever took an introductory statistics course learned about the "Student's t test". Pretty basic. But not if you didn't ever take statistics, I guess.

Glimmerglass 11:26 AM  

The theme was ok, but very easy. I could write in many after one or two crosses. The fill was poor and also pretty easy. The obscure names (LEMAT, ROXANA, DONEN, ABFAB) all came forth from crosses. Not a great puzzle.

archaeoprof 11:27 AM  

Re 121A, ESCAPE. Today's NYT obituaries include Alex Cassie, who forged documents for the famous escape from Stalag Luft III. It was the inspiration for the film, "The Great Escape." The character played by Donald Pleasance was loosely based on Alex Cassie.

Mel Ott 11:30 AM  

@Rex: That blurb on T Test - what language is that written in?

evil doug 11:32 AM  

The Great Escape---a fine book, way over-fictionalized in the movie as Mr. Cassie pointed out.

Even better: Escape From Colditz, by Pat Reid. Colditz was a POW camp converted from an old German castle, so the tales of escape have a lot of clever texture.


Anonymous 11:33 AM  

I agree with Rex: weak theme, weak fill, no fun. And to compound my disappointment there was no juicy 2nd puzzle today; just a boring old acrostic.

Rex, I do have one tiny bone to pick with you on 81A (bronc). It's a real word and perfectly acceptable out here in the west: rodeo cowboys ride saddle broncs, not saddle broncos.


jae 12:01 PM  

Very easy end to an easy weekend.  Better than last Sun.'s slog but that's not saying much. I too agree with Rex on this one.

WesIsland 12:09 PM  

"Weird to have T-test and T-stop in the same puzzle??" Actually, it was T-test (33-D) and F-stops (96-D).

And false alarm on the moving to Charlotte now looks like Charleston. My wife wants to be involved with the food scene.

Airymom 12:29 PM  

Has anyone noticed?...the NY Times magazine (with the exception of the ethicist column) has gotten trendier and livelier these past 6 months, but the puzzle has gotten duller and more predictable. What gives? It's a bad Sunday when you like the first answer (arachne) and then it all goes downhill from there.

chefbea 12:40 PM  

@weslsland..oops. My mistake, read it wrong. and sorry you won't be in NC

Anonymous 12:49 PM  

@rex, you're not familiar with earth shoes? How old are you? Argh, I'm old!

DickS 1:13 PM  

Shoe Perils of the Seventies!

Woman worried about falling backwards on 'Earth Shoes' or falling off of 'Famolare's'.

Arachne Clear Modogs 1:14 PM  

Earth shoes were meant to mimic the pattern you feet made while walking on the beach...something i had the pleasure to do yesterday...
I'm such a city girl i forget that i live but a few miles from wonderful beaches on the ocean...

Thanks @ bard for the " milk of human kindness " reference, I'm always surprised just how much comes from Shakespeare...

As for @anon 11:33am
Boring acrostic????!!!! I LIVE for those and emily cox and henry rathvon are such geniuses and give me such unspeakable pleasure! Fie!

Badir 1:50 PM  

I think I set a PR today (have to check my records), even though I cost myself a minute by not noticing a blank square for a bit.

As a mathematician, I had a comment on last week's puzzle that I didn't get to do til late (since I was out seeing _Titanic_!--which was kind of depressing, since Rose went back to get Jack, and all those people hung on the ship and managed to avoid falling off for so long or being sucked under, but none of it mattered, since everyone not on a raft besides Rose and five others died--but I digress).

So its dimensions, 31x17, give a grid size of 527, which is almost the same as 529 = 23x23. That is, the puzzle was basically a standard "jumbo-sized" Sunday in rectangular form, so the side lengths were not chosen randomly.

Wilbur Scoville. 1:51 PM  

Jalapeno; Mirasol; Chipotle; Poblano
2,500 - 5,000 Scoville Units

Chile De Arbol
15,000 - 30,000 Scoville Units

Habanero; Scotch Bonnet
100,000 - 350,000 Scoville Units

Tedequity 2:13 PM  

Can someone please explain 49A - Something further? ADO

Azbert 2:19 PM  

Tch, tch. Wrong side of the bed this morning, Rex? And the smug sycophants are out with you, in force. Here's hoping for a six hole playoff in golf.

chefbea 2:21 PM  

@tedequity So with no further ado, let's get on with the comments

syndy 2:25 PM  

@tedequity... with no further ado we will move to the next puzzle! *Rex please can we be a little less Human?? PLEASE?

Lewis 2:30 PM  

I figured it would be rated easy. I seemed to swoop through it, unlike many Sundays, with no Google, unlike many Sundays. But it's all in where we're coming from. As a relatively new solver, I felt mighty good about this puzzle!

Rex Parker 2:36 PM  

CBS News producer says I'll be on tonight—6pm (or check local listings. Mine say 6:30). Not sure who else will be on. I think Will was interviewed. I pre-apologize for anything offensive or stupid that I appear to be saying out of context (or actually did say, in context).


Rex Parker 2:36 PM  

CBS News producer says I'll be on tonight—6pm (or check local listings. Mine say 6:30). Not sure who else will be on. I think Will was interviewed. I pre-apologize for anything offensive or stupid that I appear to be saying out of context (or actually did say, in context).


quilter1 2:38 PM  

I led services at a two-point parish fifty miles away today so did the puzzle over lunch. Swiftly, yawningly, shaking my head at the tons of cliched and overused fill. There were a few good ones, like the chile de ARBOL and ROXANA. Once I caught the theme it went fast.

I'm going on a 7 day silent retreat tomorrow so won't be puzzling for awhile. See y'all when I get back.

mac 2:46 PM  

Well, I don't know, Paula's puzzles have a certain "je ne sais quoi";-)!
No real problems, fairly easy. No clue what an earth shoe is, and I consider myself a regular Imeldista.

chefwen 2:54 PM  

You know that commenter that has the Avatar of the MEH kitty? What she said!

miriam b 2:56 PM  

@mac: EARTHSHOES were an exercise in uglification designed to distribute one's weight in the most salubrious possible fashion, at least according to the lights of the manufacturer. The heels were essentially lower than the rest of the shoe. An aunt of mine swore by them, but then she did tend to swear a lot.

Amazing, my spell check didn't reject "uglification". Now to do the robot test.

CoolPapaD 3:07 PM  

I had to come out of hiding to say that I really liked this puzzle. I don't mind an easy puzzle every now and then, and I thought it had less "junk" fill than most. Lots of theme answers, and proper nouns that most have heard of! C'mon! Turn those frowns upside down!

Anonymous 3:45 PM  

Oh, how nice to do a puzzle without looking
anything up. It is a treat for this 87 year old.
And that is fun!

Lawprof 3:55 PM  

Most Americans don't know squat about BIDETs.

miriam b 4:05 PM  

@Lawprof: Your post is hilarious (though true). MANY years ago I managed to get a faceful of water while checking out a mysterious fixture in a ladies' room in a Puerto Rico restaurant.

Lakemantom 4:07 PM  

Can't remember ever getting a party invite with BYOB
Then again I am over 70.

Rex Parker 4:27 PM  

CBS killed the story *again*. It's so big a joke now that ... I don't know. I won't ever announce its airing again. Some Sunday, it will air. That's all I can say.

John V 4:36 PM  

@Rex: Sorry you won't be on. I had it on my calendar.

The puz: I had fun. It's raining in CT this afternoon. I enjoyed.

Anonymous 4:57 PM  

I had Earth Shoes in the early seventies. Loved them. I even had a pair in the early 2000's. I have saved the original burlap bag they came in.....but I swear I am not a hoarder.

Shelby Swayze
Montclair, New Jersey.

Ladyjane 4:58 PM  

My mother in law wore earth shoes in the 70s. Wish I could post a picture. Kinda like a wobbly soled sandal. They a were expensive and fairly ugly. Puzzle was ok.

Tita 6:15 PM  

Maybe a tad disappointing - I like more engaging themes, but I enjoyed solving it.

I did really like POUNDFLESH and LANDPLENTY.
Also liked ADAGIO & LARGO.
Unlike jberg, liked the paired laughs...

@Rex - love your DEAD clue...

@chefbea - you're right - Earth Day - another lost opportunity to have a great timely theme. Let's just be grateful it wasn't a 3rd Titanic bore...

@archaeoprof - thanks for the note about Cassie.

@mac - I have fallen off my chair laughing at Imelda Marcos wearing Earth Shoes!!!! Please google them so that you can laugh too. I am quite certain that even her vast collection would not have included them!

@Rex...Back in Westport, Will hinted at a CBS interview...I've been waiting ever since! Please DO continue to post potential airings.

mia thedoggg 8:25 PM  

Thought the theme would be more interesting when I combined "go" and "of" = goof, but no. Very literal. I remember Student's T-Test more from its association with the brewing of Guinness than its statistical application.

Never saw BYOB on an invitation, but more because the parties I went (go) to, don't have written invitations

michael 8:59 PM  

came here to see what Rex had to say about t-test.

Not surprised, not disappointed. Maybe topology will show up in the next puzzle...

sarahlee 10:06 PM  

I'm just a neophyte so I'm feeling full of the old "milk" as Jeeves would say.

sarahlee 10:13 PM  

...since I'm old enough to remember earth shoes but young enough to think for a moment that the special bridal accessory clue was "order margarita". Yes, I'm embarrassed.

jedlevine 10:54 PM  

I'm sort of new to puzzles and this blog, but really enjoying both. Lots of people complain about "weak fill", but some seem to think fill is weak because it's too easy and others because it's too obscure. Seems like two ends of the spectrum. Can someone please concisely define for me what "good fill" is?

chuchos 12:00 AM  

I never breeze through the puzzles. I'm a rookie and sometimes go all week with it. Finish only half the time.
Except for today's which I agree was a bore. I'm happy I made it save for a couple of letters, in a few hours, and except for Bunny man-HEF, it was joyless.

Deb 1:55 AM  

I begged for and received a pair of earth shoes in the 70s.

Fast forward to thirty-five years later, and I swallowed the BS about MBTs, too. Luckily, my husband and I wear the same shoe size, so he's getting some use out of them.

Anonymous 7:30 AM  

Pardon if this has been said already, but I'm a librarian, and library books are OVERDUE, both in my academic library and in every public library I've used in the past.

Bills are what I would call PAST DUE.

Bad clue.

nurturing 11:44 PM  

Earth shoes were also called negative heel shoes! I enjoyed the puzzle, the ease of it. Finished in just over an hour!

Also liked that there was more room to write in the letters than there was last week - although I was happy with the Titanic puzzle, too.

What I do hate are the words we have to decipher in order to prove to blogger that we are not robots. Sometimes I have to go through a dozen combinations before I find one I can make out!

Anonymous 10:59 AM  

Rex Goliath Cab = undrinkable

Fess Parker Chard = yum

Spacecraft 12:29 PM  

"Phantom rough on roughnecks!" Rex rough on condtructors! Yeesh! First off, let's have a little respect for Paul LEMAT: he who introduced to us a set-building buddy of his; you may have even heard of him: Harrison Ford.

Come on, this wasn't THAT awful. You gotta remember, Friday and Saturday are for aficionados, while Sunday is for them asses. (Oops, wrong spacing?) I did have to work clockwise around to the west, because I didn't think ESKIMODOGS was right. I thought they were (shout-out to Alma Mater Bloomsburg State!) Huskies.

I don't know how you spell Tartare sauce, Paula, but tartar is that gross crap that gets on your teeth. I don't think you'd want to be making a sauce out of THAT.

I liked the twin cluings of "cloudless" and "slowly." And finally, this self-admitted sucker for novelty songs was reminded of one of the most outlandish:

"chewing gum lose its flavor on the BEDPOST overnight?" Dreat stuff!

Huston 1:11 PM  

Some of you have hinted at this, but there are a lot of clearly intentional pairs here:

Two clues for "slowly"
Two clues for "cloudless"
Two similar answers: "fstop" & "ttest" / "bronc" & "ronco" / "hee" and "harhar," etc.

Dirigonzo 3:18 PM  

As I get on in years I notice that 14a is indeed a possible barrier to romance. The clue at 126a, Mrs. Romney, is about as current as a clue for ANN can be! Has Mitt showed up in a grid yet?

@Spacecraft - good point about TARTAR sauce, but who you callin' them asses?

So @Evil Doug doesn't even bother to do the puzzle, he just comes here to criticize it? That's harsh.

@Gil I. P., one of my favorite syndilanders gone over to the dark side, wrote, "I wish 79A were a bathroom fixture here in the USofA. Great place to soak your feet while you shave." It's finding gems like that is the reason I always read all of the comments (although I try to scan over the negative ones).

Astronomical update for @Tita and @Gil. I.P. - The Eta Aquarid meteor shower peaks on May 5; unfortunately it coincides with the full moon so shooting stars may be hard to see (but the moon will appear bigger than usual when it rises so that will be worth watching in its own right).

Spacecraft 4:48 PM  

Sorry, guys, I usually proofread better than that (constructors, not "condructors;" great, not "dreat"). The misplaced space? Oh well, I suppose "the masses" isn't that much more complimentary than what was printed. But in either case, I didn't mean you, @diri!

First word of captcha = tinkite: kinda hard to keep that baby up in the air!

DMGrandma 5:40 PM  

A Sunday puzzle I could solve! Knew it would be rated Easy.
@Ruth commented that "t test" would probably be obscure to anyone who hadn't taken introductory statistics. Well, I took statistics and it's an absolute unknown to me. Maybe I've just forgotten or it didn't exist back in the early 50's. And I found the definition provided was in some language I don't understand, so can anyone provide something lucid?
At last robot clues I can unwind: chinf deach! Deaf cinch. But not sure what that means. My spell check wanted them to be "china deter" - maybe it knows something I don't.

GILL I. 6:39 PM  

@Diri thanks for the heads up...I'll be looking for good ole Eta Aquarid.
@anonymous 10:59: I send you an unvoiced linguolabial trill - cheeks fully extended.

Dirigonzo 6:51 PM  

@Gil I.P. - I love it when you talk dirty like that.

Sharon AK 1:10 AM  

It wasn't my fave puzzle but I didn't expect all the negative comments. Thought most of the theme answers quite fun and liked the twin pairings.

Had a big laugh- at myself- when I finally got eskimo dog with half the letters in place. Before that all I could think of was mushed as in "mushy peas" (it's a British thing) Dog mushing is one of my favorite winter activities, along with x-country skiing. Haven't mushed for three years partly because we have to travel a ways to find mushers with big enough kennels and extra sleds to take clients out and miles of good trails (I like distance not race mushing. Eight to twelve miles an hour is fast enough for me.)
Well, hope the Monday puzzle five weeks ago made you all happier than this one since that will be my next.

Solving in Seattle 12:54 PM  

Posting Sunday's on Monday cuz the golf course beckoned yesterday.

I know I'm doing too many CW puzzles when I can fill in musical terms (ADAGIO, LARGO) with OMICRON of musical training.

@Deb, what else of yours does your husband wear?

Residing in Seattle, the location of the University of Washington, I had a little trouble with ESKIMODOGS when everyone knows they are Huskies. (Yeah, yeah, and Malamutes and Samoyeds, etc.)

@Diri, I concur that one should at least do the puzzle before one flames it.

Capcha: dsintit. Something, to the contrary, that I am interested in.

rain forest 3:48 PM  

Late, like the day after, but I just wanted to say that (a) I don't think it is necessary for people to inform us that they either agree or disagree with Rex. I, for one, am not interested to know that. (b) A theme needn't be hilarious or even risible, as long as it is consistent and not sphincter-clenching. This theme which takes a familiar phrase, changes the first word from a noun to a verb, and removes the "of" is pretty darned good, as I see it.
(c) Well, no (c), really. Sunday's puzzles tend to have more awkward or trite fill than other days, but this was an enjoyable walk in the park.

Anonymous 8:50 PM  

The only thing that came to mind for 90A Edwards or Andrews was Blake Edwards & Julie Andrews.

Anonymous 12:51 PM  

Fairly easy crossowrd. However, isn't this an "international" crossword in an international newspaper? If so, why ask questions like the name of Romney's wife or someone called Boone (irrelevant outside USA) and (my favourite annoyance), so many baseball players and other figures from US sport? These are not general knowledge. But then, I'm a Brit living in Canada.

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