Retired Steeler Taylor / SUN 9-4-16 / School in Oxford informally / Spanish prefix with lineas / Multicolored candy in yellow package / Beverage since 1922 / One of two in adidas logo / Surrounder of la grande jatte / Giggle syllable

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Constructor: Tom McCoy

Relative difficulty: Easy-Medium

THEME: "One By One" — I don't really understand how the title relates, but the theme is two letters in one square, functioning as sequential letters in a word, in the Down, and as "[letter] AND [letter]" in the Across:

Theme answers:
  • PEANUT M & MS / LEMMA (hardest one)
  • S & P FIVE HUNDRED (uh, "500," I think)

Word of the Day: la Grande Jatte (49D: Surrounder of la Grande Jatte = SEINE) —
The Ile de la Jatte or Île de la Grande Jatte is an island in France, in the river Seine, at the very gates of Paris, in the communes of Neuilly-sur-Seine and Levallois, Hauts-de-Seine. It is 7 km distant (in a straight line) from the towers of Notre Dame and 3 km from the Etoile. It has about 4,000 inhabitants and is nearly 2 km long and nearly 200 m wide at its widest point. Its name translates as "Island of the Bowl" or "Island of the Big Bowl". // It is best known as the setting for Georges Seurat's pointillist oil painting, Un Dimanche après-midi à l'Île de la Grande Jatte (A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte) (1884-6 and 1889) and also for the Stephen Sondheim musical, Sunday in the Park with George. (wikipedia)
• • •

Mixed bag. The theme feels old, and isn't terribly interesting. Not inherently, anyway. Some of the theme answers / intersections, though, are pretty inventive and colorful. I liked discovering QATAR, as I knew that they were the host country for World Cup 2022, but they didn't fit, so I got a little miffed, then doubted my own knowledge, *then* remembered the theme. Also, despite much flailing, despite its being the very last thing I entered in the grid, I liked finding PEANUT M&Ms. I can't say I *liked* finding LEMMA, as it's not a terribly likeable word, but I did appreciate the toughness there. Mostly, today, toughness was lacking. There are some nice longer answers, so I was in no way bored or put off by this. Conceptually it just felt a bit ho-hum, and there was more irksome fill than I can comfortably abide on a Sunday. OPEN ON can *&%$ off, IN A TUB needs to be drowned and eliminated from all wordlists, UNUSE hurts just to look at, and SMALLA is acceptable only as a colloquial form of "smaller" (and no, not even then). Some words were never meant to be pluralized; namely, PEYOTES and KEROSENES. Unfortunate, those. Further, I never met a [Giggle syllable] I liked. GET 'EM out of my grids. Please. Seriously. STOP IT.

Got the theme early because, well, there it is, a theme square, way up in the NW corner. Tried ELAN, then pulled it, then flailed around, then put ELAN back, and finally realized "BO" had to go in one square. With some crosses, got B&O RAILROAD, and that was that: theme, unlocked. One of the weirder things about this solve was my having so much trouble with 85A: Footnote material. I'm familiar with what goes in footnotes. My dissertation had scores of them. Naturally, I went looking for an answer that had something, anything, specifically to do with footnotes. But after getting 5/6 of the crosses and ending up with -ETAIL, I had to concede that the answer was DETAIL. You put ... DETAILs in footnotes. Apparently. Unless of course your DETAILs are worth reading, in which case they are in the body of your work, so ... I hate this clue/answer pairing on professional grounds.

Signed, Rex Parker, King of CrossWorld

[Follow Rex Parker on Twitter and Facebook]


jae 12:07 AM  

Maybe I've been doing too many metas lately, but the title of this one had me looking for more than just &s in the theme answers. Alas, there was no there there. Mostly easy for me too, but I needed to acclimate to UNUSE as a word.

Cute rebus, but I regret the time I spent looking.....still liked it.

gourmand 12:22 AM  

Bit of an odd experience solving this on the iPhone app.

In solving this, I included an ampersand in the rebus squares (starting with Q&A). After finishing, I got the "you've made a mistake" message, and after looking over the grid for typos, starting removing the ampersands. I removed it from B&O, then from R& which point the puzzle "solved," along with the message (I'm paraphrasing) "Only puzzles solved on the first attempt count toward statistics." Going to the calendar view, the puzzle was marked as being solved, but it wasn't part of my (now previous) streak. Weirdly, all the other ampersands remained...not sure why removing two of them triggered the puzzle to "solve," nor am I sure why it didn't count toward my streak. Oh well.

Trombone Tom 1:19 AM  

Pretty much what @Rex said. Got the gimmick with B(&)O_RAILROAD. I did have to reread the theme title a couple of times to square with dropping the ampersand.

I, too, liked how Tom McCoy worked in QATAR. Had eieiOs before MOOMOO, Stoat before SABLE and gulp before BELT, which slowed me down a TAD.

I agree that this was on the easy side, but the theme entries increased the joy. UNUSE, on the other hand, is forgettable.

chefwen 1:39 AM  

Got ELAN, LIVE ALONE, WASN'T and SST right away and wondered how EL - WS was going to pan out, stuck in B/O and was off to the races. Still took me quite a while to figure out the RAILROAD. DUH!

We just got five Rhode Island Red chicks, so I filled in HenS at 37D, didn't help me a whit.

This was the most fun I've had with the Sunday puzzle in quite a few weeks, loved it! Thanks Mr. McCoy

puzzle hoarder 2:22 AM  

Now I get it INCENT is the LEMMA that incentive never had only not.
The real title of this puzzle should have been "One and One." That's what the symbol actually stands for. Otherwise everything was fine no make believe words. LEMMA is odd but at least it looks familiar. That's no wonder this is it's 9th appearance in the Shortz era. Just remember you don't INCENT anyone unless you're a skunk.

wgh 4:48 AM  

I liked this one, good fill.

'mericans in Paris 4:51 AM  

This Sunday was for me (less so for Mrs. 'mericans, who did it separately on a flight) was a tale of two puzzles: the top 3/4 and the bottom 1/4. Like everybody else, I got the theme -- sort of -- at B&O. For awhile I assumed that the theme was railroad names, which could have offered a long list, though most now lost to history. Soon got it at R&B ALBUM, however, and then enjoyed being alert to theme answers that might pop up anywhere. (Doing it on paper, I left in the ampersand.)

What really threw me, however, was 79A, where I thought the answer was going to be "EMANDEMS" (M&Ms), which would have been a funny, ironic twist. In the end, I entered "bEANaToS", and railed against aBUSE as a synonym for "neglect" (80D). That meant "b.R.A." for the group that sponsors the Muzzle Loading Championship (84A). But it made perfect sense to me that the championship would be sponsored by the Blunderbuss Rifle Association.

So, I "finished" the top 3/4 in record time (apart from the aforementioned 79A), and then got bogged down in the bottom. Like some others, I wanted Stoat for the weasel relative. Didn't know Gertrude's family name, however, so eventually gave up and googled that. I was aghast when the only word that would fit in answer to 85D (Optometrist at times) was DILATER. An eye-drop solution that an optometrist uses can be a DILATER, sure. But has anybody out there ever said, "My Optometrist is a really skilled DILATER"? Yuck.

I agree, also, with @Rex that the puzzle contains too many forced plurals (my spellchecker doesn't even allow KEROSENES), and UNUSE is just wrong. One can not use, or neglect to use. But UNUSE implies a reversal of something that once done is done. If it is a real word, I would have expected to see used-car dealerships advertising their spiffed up jalopies (for which they have reset the odometer) as "UNUSED".

So, all in all: fun in part, but the puzzle could have been a lot better with a little more reworking in the bottom quarter.

@Chefwen: How are your dog (and cat?) taking to the new chicks?

'mericans in Paris 5:06 AM  

I just realized my mistake. I was reading the clue, "neglect" as a transitive verb. "Neglect" can also be a noun, as can "UNUSE". So, I apologize to Tom McCoy. Good misdirect (even if it wasn't meant as one).

Gregory Nuttle 5:15 AM  

Definitely on the easy side but I thoroughly enjoyed. Completely agree with chefwen, this was the most I've enjoyed a NYT Sunday in quite a while. I also wanted to point out the nice cross on BAJA and TIJUANA.

George Barany 6:44 AM  

@Tom McCoy's puzzle took me a leisurely hour, while munching on PEANUT_M&M_S, with several hits of the "reveal" button. NOT_TO_WORRY about the MANAGER, ATOMS, and ABEL clues, all of which I loved, and got me reminiscing about @David Steinberg's Space INVADERS puzzle from a few Sundays ago? Today, Calvin Coolidge got featured in two clues that reinforced each other; NO_DEAL was full of NOS; GET_EM seemed evocative of theme entry GETS_A_LITTLE_R&R. I only know LEMMA through it's math meaning, so today's clue expanded my knowledge base. Enjoy the middle day of the Labor Day weekend ... we resume classes at the University of Minnesota on Tuesday.

NCA President 7:46 AM  

Got to the end and didn't get the jingle...went back over the puzzle a few times and kept staring at LEMMA. LEMMA. That can't be right. LEMMA? Everything around it looked fine. I found the typo at the EDERLE/NOD crossing...I had EbERLE/NoB...which, evidently at 7 or 8 glances looks right. After way too many glances, it dawned on me that a positive sign would be a NOD. Fixed the D and voila...jingle.

I didn't quite understand the puzzle's title...and still don't. I don't think Rex answered if anyone can explain it, I'd appreciate it. Otherwise, I suspected a rebus early on but I was thinking "Barq's" for the ROOTBEER and "Fortune" for the FIVEHUNDRED so I thought the rebuses might be really ambitious. Then I remembered the S&P from my time listening to Kai "Let's do the numbers..." Ryssdal on NPR. Then all of the rebuses appeared, except for the LEMMA one. I mean PEANUTMMS was pretty obvious, but

Otherwise, not a bad Sunday jaunt. Not too much labor for this Labor Day Weekend...Hermine be damned.

Anonymous 7:54 AM  

If you're a mathlete then LEMMA has a whole different meaning.

chefbea 7:57 AM  

Not a fun puzzle. Got B&O railroad right away...but no fun looking for the rest. Never heard of lama...thought it would be word of the day

carole rabbett 8:05 AM  

The highlight of my week is doing the puzzle, which I receive on Saturday morning - I know, I don't have much going on in my life, right?

So, for me, the more difficult the puzzle, the happier I am. Completing it is the goal - completing it in record time is not.

I unlocked the theme (but not the theme title) early on - and thoroughly enjoyed it. So, no complaints from me.

Loren Muse Smith 8:09 AM  

Like Rex, I got the trick really early with B&O RAILROAD. I had fun sniffing out all the other rebuses. And I didn't mind SMALL A, but I liked your take on it. Yo, Bobby, pass me a SMALLA wrench, will ya?

I'm not a big ROOT BEER person, so I had "A&C" ROOT BEER crossing those "hack" neocons for a bit.

@'Mericans – thanks for the clarification that UNUSE is a noun, so the S is voiceless. Yeah, I was spent a lot of time chewing on the UN prefix, its "reversalishness" – you can't unuse a car or an emery board. Or a Kleenex. (Ever stop to really think about the question Can I borrow a Kleenex?) Loved your Blunderbuss Rifle Association.

The last themer to fall was PEANUT M&MS because 1) I kept wanting "Skittles" there even though I realize they're in a red bag and 2) it's the only themer with the rebus not at the beginning or end.
For 22A I wanted "zugzwang." Didn't fit.

I had no idea Coolidge was a man of few words, so I really, really liked his two clues.

Liked GOLIATHS crossing TITANIC and TRESS crossing RAPPEL (because a student and I were talking about Rapunzel on Friday – I swear).

NEIN, NAE, and NO(S). How many times do I have to say it?

First thought for 69D "basic form of a word" was "root." But faced with the dilemma of erasing the A or NRA and writing in T, I resisted.

With a masters in linguistics (brag, brag), I sure feel like I should know the word LEMMA. Sheesh. I just had one morphology class, but still. I've looked into it, and I think I get the difference between a LEMMA and a lexeme. There was lots of talk about lexical representations with respect to their sematic and syntactic properties, and some linguists argue that there isn't a true distinction between a LEMMA and a lexeme. Riveting stuff. Hey – I'm not going to complain about LEMMA because I'm glad I learned about it.

Silent Cal 8:40 AM  

President Coolidge and the First Lady, the story goes, were visiting a government-run experimental farm. Both were being shown around separately, and on passing the chicken run, Mrs Coolidge asked one of the staff how many times a day the rooster mounted the hens.

"Dozens of times," she was told.
"Please tell that to the president when he passes by here," she said.
The president turned up to see the chickens, and the hapless worker passed on Mrs Coolidge's message.
"Tell me," said the president, "does the rooster choose the same hen each time?"
"Oh no, a different one every time."
"Please tell that to Mrs Coolidge," said the president.

Roo Monster 8:43 AM  

Hey All !
Enjoyed this puz, even though it had alot of iffiness. Disappointed that PEANUTMMS was an outlier, as the rest had the rebus in first square or last square. At least they were symmetrical. Agree with whoever said too many forced plurals. UNUSE good word for M&A, but skunky for the rest of us. AT STUD wrankled a bit also, clue and answer.

Did like the long Downs. Like I said, I actually enjoyed puz. Sniffed out the rebus fairly fast, at AW ROOTBEER, then BO RAILROAD, then those PEANUT MMS.

Writeovers, SnAP-SLAP, grAb-SWAG, isnoT-WASNT, single-RB ALBUM, ELias-ELENA. Had an O in DILATER first, and had that outlier PEANUT MMS as MS in final square.

Did get a chuckle out of the fact I knew TOVE right off. After my face fall at not knowing Jabberwocky, now I know what a Slithy TOVE is! (Well, heard of it anyway...)


Anonymous 8:58 AM  

Two railroads are neighbors? Hmm.

QuasiMojo 9:01 AM  

I liked this puzzle about as much as I like the expression "It's all good." If only it were! I do love ampersands, however. And use them often. A one and a one chachacha.

Lewis 9:19 AM  

@rex -- With you all the way, right down to the DETAILs, and you expressed it with wit.

C&S (clean and solid) puzzle, that made me recall and made me reason, just what I look for in a puzzle. My favorite clue was for SLUSH ("Material in two states) and answer LAPEL_PIN, which has only been used one other time in the NYT). I think the title would have been better as "One Plus One", with the plus suggesting the ampersand.

I've come up with more theme answers (Tom has cornered the best), but fully half of them are on the salacious end.

The ASTOR/TITANIC cross is a reminder that John Jacob Astor lost his life on that ship, while his five-month-pregnant wife Madeleine survived.

Aketi 9:39 AM  

@George Barany, I solved in a leisurely hour only after the cats woke me up way too early and I feel back asleep on the iPad. So I racked up 2 hours of snooze time for a grand total of 2:59:34. It's a great way to keep my average solve time high so my ego is inflated when I solve much faster than PER USUAL.

I admit when I squeezed the BO into that square to make the ELBOWS fit it took me a moment of head scratching over the Body Odor RAILROAD until I remembered Monopoly. My mother nixed Oliver as a middle name for my brother so he wouldn't be saddled with the initials BO as a child. I think that's about when I drifted back to sleep.

Seriously, who can't love a puzzle with A(&)P ROOT BEER and PEANUT M(&)Ms? My favorite meal when I was working on inserting those pesky DETAILS in my dissertation was PEANUT M(&)Ms and coffee.

TonySaratoga 9:42 AM  

Illinois Ave and B&O Railroad on a Monopoly board.

Dan Steele 9:54 AM  

Great puzzle for me, in a way. I had virtually all the fill, and still somehow managed NOT to know what the theme was. When I finally had my AHA moment, I immediately went and completed ALL the theme answers at once, and I was done. Never completed a puzzle like that in my life. Great time, thanks to my mental density.

seanm 10:06 AM  

I felt like this was mostly easy but still took me decently longer than my usual Sunday time (90 min today vs usual 50-70). had a lot of trouble in the bottom left. while I had the BO rebus from elbows in the first minute I didn't get the & trick until I'd filled in more than half of the puzzle much later. having HEH instead of HEE had me staring at PHAN instead of PEAN trying to think of candies from my youth for far too long.

even after finally getting the MnMs and putting A&M right in there, had a brutal time with the ERIE EXPIRE SARA SEARAT group of four letters

Teedmn 10:24 AM  

I got the Rebus theme at B&O RAILROAD but still didn't understand it because I didn't (and still don't) get how that was a neighbor of Illinois. (Is it a Monopoly clue? I would Google it but I'm in a remote cabin where the cell coverage indicator on my iPad varies from "No Service" to two bars 3G and I'm not going to waste one of my brief moments of connectivity looking up the meaning of 23A!)

I'm also not sure how the title works with the X&Y theme but I didn't need it to figure anything out. A DNF due to not seeing 67D. I ran the alphabet a ways and ran out of steam somewhere in the neighborhood of G so I plopped in a B, thinking the candy of 79A would be some sort of jelly bean even though TAb and bAT are in no way synonyms. I still might have had a chance to pull out of it but UNUSE (what?) and LEMMA (online dictionary definition does not match "basic form of a word") were abUSE and LE?? I hit the reveal button, realized I might be a MORON, and have now gone on with my life.

Happy Sunday, all.

GILL I. 10:35 AM  

I really liked this puzzle. Got the B&O RAILROAD and then the R&B ALBUM and thought ooh, I'll never know when the One&One will pop up.
Did anyone answer @NCA Pres.? I too don't know why the theme is called One By One...
SLUSH? I still don't get that it's material in two states (94A).
Lets see..I liked the TIJUANA/BAJA. Why do Americans pronounce it TIA JUANA? Liked GOLIATH/TITANIC and A&W ROOT BEER. I don't drink soda pop but every once in a while I like a really cold Dad's.
Try pronouncing Chihuahua after ingesting some PEYOTE (no S please).

Carola 10:39 AM  

Not easy for me, despite getting the idea early on with ELBOWS & the RAILROAD. Messed up on NOT TOo bad, Swoosh, OvLATE. I thought the city was TIaJUANA (named after someone;s aunt, I guess), so struggled with BAaJA (more Old McDonald). I "knew" LEMA - confusing the spelling with Champagne Tony, so it took me way too long to see the PEANUT MMS.

I liked the puzzle's TERSE chattiness - STOP IT, I'M SET, I SAID, NO DEAL, YOU LOSE, I SEE, and "AVAST, SEA RAT!" (just kidding).

Z 10:47 AM  

West Texas gave me an issue because my weasel kin was a Stoat before it was a SABLE. I also NEEDed a ride instead of A LIFT at first. Otherwise, straightforward easy Sunday. I'm still hoping someone will provide some insight into the puzzle title. Rex's explanation is what I have, and it's a stretch to sensicality.

Archived Puzzle PPP Update
Pop Culture, Product Names, and Proper Nouns as a percentage of answers in the archived puzzles

it's been a busy month, but I've solved the first 25 puzzles and here are some numbers and observations.

Overall, there have been 639 PPP answers out of 2086 total answers, a 31% average. The lowest has been a 19% on a Saturday. I solved it in Monday like time despite having an unknown snowbird for an answer. There have been three puzzles at 41%, one at 40%, and one at 39%.

In typical PPP fashion, some of these high PPP puzzles have been incredibly simple for me because it is all stuff I know. But then there's the Muriel Cigar pitchman, the 19th century South African politician nickname, or Kate Nelligan's title role in a movie that had a $305,000 box office. Or my latest DNF in a puzzle with a food critic, French writer, and Yiddish writer. Blrrgh. (tbf - I've seen the Yiddish writer recently in a puzzle). There have also been some truly opaque trivia clues, "testify" cluing a word I don't recognize and a clue for "Japan" that was a head-scratcher here.

The archive puzzles strike me as generally high in PPP, bordering on too much as an average. I've not had much issue with most of them, but I strongly suspect that as your age goes down the relative difficulty will go up.

Linda 10:54 AM  

Maybe "One By One" means that the two letters are right next to each other (side by side), meaning you leave the "&" out...?

F.O.G. 11:07 AM  

Loved it. A great way to start Sunday, while getting a little R&R.

Still, it left me wondering...

Did Seurat ever paint a SEARAT?

Did Carroll treasure the TOVE?

Do FOOTMEN fetishize?

Wishing a safe and enjoyable Labor Day weekend to all.

jae 11:13 AM  

For those (like me) wondering how the title fits the theme you are in good company. Here is a quote from Amy's Crossword Fiend blog:

"I don’t get how the puzzle’s title, “One by One,” applies. Each rebus square contains 2 letters in the Down answer and an ampersanded X&Y combo in the Across:"

jberg 11:22 AM  

SEA DOGs last month, SEA RATs today. What'll be next?

I was slow to get the theme -- I could see some of the rebuses, but I was trying to fit them to the title -- like maybe they would work through the alphabet, one by one? I finally gave upon that, and the puzzle came along.

Is there really a Tex/Mex chain named BAJA? That seems very odd, but maybe there's a history.

I only knew the mathematical meaning of LEMMA, so that was tough -- I just had to accept it.

That's all for today.

jberg 11:33 AM  

Oh yeah, the footnotes. In some styles (which I dislike) you are supposed to put the citations in (author, date) form, and use footnotes for details that are interesting but don't fit directly into your argument. So that one didn't bother me.

John McKnight 11:34 AM  

i liked this one, especially as compared to recent sundays. clues were thoughtful for the most part and i got some enjoyment out of it.

Bookin' the Cooks 11:38 AM  

Today's puzzle was much easier for me than yesterday's, though not without its challenges. I admit it took me a while before catching on to the rebuses, even though Monopoly was a game played often many moons ago so BORAILROAD should have come sooner.

Ditto what many have already said, but am I the only one who winced at ASPERUSUAL? It hits me as does the use of "irregardless." There's no need for AS. 😝

Anonymous 11:40 AM  

Baja Fresh is a well-known chain restaurant in the PacNW, assumed it was nationwide, but perhaps no?

Bookin' the Cooks 11:42 AM  

@jberg Yes, there is a Mexican fast food chain called Baja Fresh. It's in California, but I don't know if it exists elsewhere. The one near me is pretty good.

Tita A 11:46 AM  

Had my usual ramblings, then lost them. Lucky for y'all.

Today is mom's 93rd birthday - she's busy baking her cake.

@lms - thought of you instantly when I got LEMMA - shocked that you had a dilemma over it!
I learned it recently - I was working with an Italian company involved in search and sentiment of the choices when searching was to use the LEMMA form.

Automated sentiment analysis is a fascinating topic. Companies pour out big money for systems that promise to scan the millions of tweets and other mentions of their brand and deliver a ranking of what people are thinking.
THanks to the complexities of all languages, that is an extraordinarily tough thing to do?

What is the LEMMA for "saw"? Is it "see" or "saw"? It's critical in properly interpreting
"I saw the deer."?
Or "I luuuuuuuuv the deer I saw!!!!" (What's the LEMMA for "luuuuuuuv"?
"FIOS does a great job at overcharging me."
"The Mets this season are about as good as a good muscatel."
Are those positive or negative statements?

Or one of my favorite actual tweets: when BofA posted about 2014 being the Chinese Year of the Snake - one disgruntled customer wrote "Every year is the Year of the Snake at BankAmerica!"

Anyhow, great puzzle Mr. McCoy.

Joseph Michael 12:00 PM  

Enjoyed it. Got the theme early on and cruised through most of this without a WORRY until I ended up stumped at the LEMMA and PEANUT M&Ms cross. So DNF.

Had trouble with the puzzle title as well. I can only surmise that it refers to separating the two letters in the acrosses that are joined by an smpersand so that you have to pronounce the letters "one by one" versus combining the same letters into one word in the downs.

Aside from LEMMA, my only complaint is the repetition in I'M SET and SET SAIL which feels like cheating.

Alan_S. 12:06 PM  

After five hundred peyote(s) one might like some A&W root beer and a large bag of peanut M&Ms. That's if you're not dead already.
Couldn't really decide whether I liked it or not so I'll give it a 116 across.

AliasZ 12:42 PM  

Interesting theme, if only the choice of the arbitrary X&Y letters made any sense relative to the ONE BY ONE title, or if their placement were symmetrical, or if drawing a line to connect them would have been an ampersand sign, or a dog, or a windmill or a heart. I discovered no logic.

Perhaps ONE BY ONE describes the rebus squares: one letter by another letter? Also, nowhere is a mention made of the importance of the ampersand in the themers but dropped in the crosses. Sloppy and incoherent.

Before discovering the rebus squares, I thought LIVE ALONE is a theme entry because it had the word ONE in it, as the title suggested.

The fill fared better. I liked LAPEL PIN, NEED A LIFT?, RAPPEL, and quite a few others. Let me not forget: heads, I win, tails, YOU LOSE.

-- LEMMA is ugly sounding because it's close to phlegm-a.
-- UNUSE should be disuse, like unrepair vs. disrepair.
-- WASN'T should have been clued "Lacked life."
-- Let me not waste time on unpluralizables already pointed out by @Rex.
-- AT STUD, AIMED AT, GAPE AT -- AT triple play!
-- Is it NOS or "noes"? NOS looks more like numbers. Obvious like the nos on your fac. Even better: Fantasy and Fugue on the chorale Ad NOS ad salutarem undam by Franz Liszt.

I discovered the secret of long life: DILATER.

Did you realize that the 1953 film "The War of the Worlds" was produced by our old pal, George Pal?

For both people who realized the link in my Friday post was broken, here is that FROLICsome Finale again. As a bonus, let us also listen to the Cantata "Nur jedem das SEINE" (to each his own), BWV 163, by J.S. Bach. You can never go wrong with old J.S.

Enjoy your long weekend.

Numinous 12:46 PM  

Drat, blast and dagnabbit! I blew my streak. IPad DNFed me and I searched and searched and finally gave up. Seems I had a 0 in place of an O somewhere. Even looking at the diagonal red line it took me a while to realize what I was looking at. Oh well. Such is life.

I don't know if the iPad would have accepted the ampersands. I didn't have them at first, then I added them, then, after reading @gourmand, I deleted them.

@Gill I, My first father-in-law, the Australian one, used to pronounce chihuahua "Chee hooah hooah" and then there was Alba kwear kway. I don't believe he even knew what PEYOTE is.

I, too, finished up after finally seeing PEANUT M&MS. For the life of me I couldn't think of any yellow candy wrappers. Just now, Butterfinger comes to mind. And now I want one. This was a long slog for me but I usually enjoy that and so I did today in spite of the oddly unfitting title.

Numinous 12:49 PM  

Oh, yeah! @Tita A's mom: Happy Birthday! It's so good you can still bake.

Masked and Anonymous 1:11 PM  


1. ONE crossword puz by ONE constructioneer.
2. ONE rebus use, BY ONE rebus unuse.
3. ONE direction has an implied ampersandwich, ONE direction don't, BY golly.
4. ONE AND ONE woulda made too much sense. Sorta like that "man-to-man" basketball clue, yesterday.
5. Typo. Was intended to read DONE BY NOON.
6. LEMMA think some more, about this whole "BY" orientation...

fave confusin (typo?) clue, the ONE BY 84-A: {Grp. sponsoring of the Muzzle Loading Championship}.

Easy SunPuz solvequest, at our pad. Done by noon, no problemo.

Thanx, Mr. McCoy.

Masked & Anonymo8Us

old timer 1:17 PM  

Footnotes that provide added information of interest are my very favorite kind. Classic 19th Century style, brilliantly adapted in "The French Lieutenant's Woman" from our own times.

I found myself wincing at a number of terrible answers that turned out to be not terrible when I got it right. (Example: I had "EIEIOS" before MOOMOO). I loved OLEMISS, having desperately run through a mental list of Oxford (England) colleges to no avail. And it was gratifying to finally come up with the S&P FIVE HUNDRED.

Anyone else write in "exhale" before EXPIRE? The root, or LEMMA is correct,, but no doctor ever told you to EXPIRE as a synonym for "breathe out".

I thought there were several clues and answers worth OFL's criticism. SEA RAT said no one ever. SMALL A is just lame. There are two two KEROSENES. "Gasolines", OK but not KEROSENES. And "They mind their manors" is almost always incorrect for FOOTMEN. Who were (and sometimes still are) to be found in the great London town houses or country houses. But only if "manor" were part of a house's name could that clue be correct. A "manor" is a feudal estate, not a house, though there often has been a "manor house" for the lord.

OTOH I did love the B.C. theme, including BAJA and TIJUANA. And I appreciated the nod to Maleska-era heroine Gertrude EDERLE. Which I remembered, being a veteran of that era.

Masked and Anonymous 1:42 PM  


Vowel Use Bar Chart No Respect Evidence:

* *
* *
* * *
* * * *
* * * *
* * * *
* * * *
* * * * *
* * * * *

[All vowels are "valued" at 1 Scrabble-point]

fave false alarm fill:
95-D: TRUMP.



Charles Flaster 2:07 PM  

Liked Rex' review and the puzzle.
Needed theme to solve as I thought puzzle was difficult until I realized R&R. Flowed easily from there.
I encountered LEMMA for first time in Analytic Geometry and did not know it had a verbal meaning.
Write over--NOD for anD.
No CrosswordEASE.
Thanks TM.

D.F Wallace 2:43 PM  

Footnotes are way overrated

TrueBlue 3:06 PM  

I have an issues with the TEXAS A&M clue. Isn't the library in Dallas in SMU? Or did I miss something.

old timer 3:27 PM  

@TrueBlue, that would be the George H.W. Bush library, right there in College Station.

I put down A&W because I am a lifelong Californian. I don't know if A&W got its start here, but you could find one in every town back in the day, and I long believed that A&W in a chilled glass mug was the very best drink ever made. (Little did I know that a love for sugar soft drinks would lead to a (then-unknown) likelihood of Type 2 diabetes).

Mohair Sam 3:54 PM  

No English majors (or Math) here, so LEMMA unknown. And we've both blocked PEANUT M&MS from our brains. Why would any sane person eat those things when regular M&Ms are available? Hence we dnf'd on an otherwise easy Sunday.

Overall we enjoyed the Puzzle, although we picked at most of the nits mentioned above. Great the clue for ABEL. Not so great for SMALLA and EXPIRE.

@Silent Cal - Loved the Coolidge story.

Been following stories of QATAR and the World Cup and how workers there are treated. Not pretty at all.

Numinous 4:07 PM  

@old timer, as a fellow Golden Stater (expat) my introduction, as a 12 year old, to A&W ROOTBEER came when I was visiting Oroville, Calif. with my grandfather. Not only was the ROOTBEER served in a frozen mug spectacular but they made absolutely wonderful burgers too. I never found an A&W in the Bay Area.

BAJA FRESH: I had to look them up though not exhaustively. I discovered there are two in the Atlanta area, one at the airport. All of the Florida franchises, according to one reviewer are closed. The have a branch in Abu Dabai. Reviews tended to be mixed but with the majority being unfavorable. In Los Angeles and in the Bay Area there are so many wonderful Mexican restaurants, why would anyone go to a chain? I am very sorry to say that, as a Californiano, I have not had anything I would regard as excellent Mexican food east of the Sierra Nevada. Not even in Texas. Oh, wait a minute. I did have good food in San Antonio but that was one out of four or five tries in different cities. And I guess there used to be a half-decent place in Jasper, Alabama where the carne asada was so large it draped off the edge of the plate and was tender and well seasoned.

Lurker Librarian 4:22 PM  

Footnotes containing DETAIL are common enough in critical editions of literary works, and typically explain obscure references (i.e. the PPP of the author's day) or comment on changes found in various editions. @Rex surely you've encountered the Norton Critical Editions in the course of your education and/or work?

Aside from the loathsome UNUSE, a word that deserves itself, I really enjoyed this one. The Coolidge mini theme was a bonus.

RAD2626 5:03 PM  

@Numinous. Screw the machine. If I read your comment correctly, your streak is intact. The puzzle is neither a tax return nor a check. Your 0 works just fine by me.

neilkd 5:17 PM  

Enjoyed it but don't get the title. Wonder if LEMMA clued in terms of its math usage would fly. I feel like you encounter math lemmas earlier than english lemmas in their respective course sequences.

Z 5:25 PM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Z 5:27 PM  

Did I hear something about a taco truck on every corner?

@Numinous - I've been to some "California style" Mexican restaurants east of the Mississippi. They've all been less than great. I have no idea if they replicate any good west coast Mexican restaurants. Growing up in Michigan we have SW Detroit, noted for great Mexican restaurants and even greater Taco Trucks (and the lesser known, but some say greater, Duly's Place Coney Island), but I've always been partial to West Michigan Mexican. There are places in Michigan where a good Mexican restaurant is more than a 10 minute drive, but no where I've ever lived.

GILL I. 5:32 PM  

@Tita...Your mom is a rock star. Every time I see an acorn, I think of her.....:-)
@Numi.....Ask your father-in-law how he pronounces Oaxaca !!!!
Re A&W. That was my first root beer experience. And yes, the hamburgers were delicious. They still have A&W's here in Sacramento and the pictures of the hamburgers look pretty good.
You want the best Mexican food? - if you happen upon a roach coach in California that has TACOS emblazoned on the side, run to that little puppy. Order carnitas and fish tacos. Lordy they are delicious. The only thing I ate in Texas was crow.

chefwen 5:33 PM  

@Tita A - fun read for you today, Honolulu Star Advertiser, Lee Cataluna, Sunday 9/4/16. Being a tita.

@mericans - Had to electrify the chick encloser to ward off chicken loving doggies, they are not to be trusted and besides there are enough wild ones, as you know, to satisfy their needs.

Alex 5:35 PM  

Hey! President and Mrs Coolidge at the Beltsville chicken facility is MY joke! (Of course it isn't, but I've been using it for so long that I feel it should be.) My late great father grew up on a chicken farm, so my family has a larger-than-average quantity of poultry-related humor. Plus my father really liked Calvin Coolidge.
Anyway, I had fun with the puzzle. I'm sort of embarrassed to admit that R&B was the last square for me. I had MinibIKES and then MOTObIKES and I kept wondering about a bALBUM. I received the Red Sign of Shame and I was looking around for where my error could have been and it hit me like a B&ORAILROAD engine.

RAPPunzEL 6:49 PM  

Seems to me the Prince could RAPPEL down Rapunzel's TRESSes, but he had to have belayed up them. Been a long time since I read that grim tale, so I don't remember how he got her out of there after he climbed up. Getting the both of them down would have been the di-lemma. Rapunzel must have had some powerful roots.

Aketi 7:04 PM  

@Mohair Sam, in answer to your question, because the Peanut M&Ms contain three of the four components of the alternate food pyramid developed by the International Nutrition grad students of the Divison of Nutritional Sciences in 1991:

Carbohydrates = sugar coating
Protein = peanuts
Chocolate = milk chocolate surrounding peanuts

The pyramid is not complete without the final group:
Caffeine = French press coffee

@Z, had tacos in Michigan two weeks ago, not from a truck, not the same as in the Golden State of my birth, but still quite tasty.

All this talk of A&W ROOTBEER is making me nostalgic for the summer road trips to Shasta Lake during my youth.

Mohair Sam 8:25 PM  

@Aketi - Love the pyramid. We're off to buy PEANUT M&MS now.

Nancy 9:02 PM  

This was hard enough and was taking long enough that there was no way I was going to be late getting to the park in order to finish it. Now, very late, I finished -- except for the LEMMA/PEANUT M&Ms crossing. I didn't know LEMMA; I had LExiA (as in lexicon). But I almost didn't complete a whole nother section. Like @Trombone Tom, I had EIEIOS, not MOOMOO at 21A. (MOOMOO?????. Give me a break.) I was also thrown by 24A. When someone flatters me, I don't say STOP IT. I say: Oh, please, do go on!

@Alias -- I agree with you that it should be NOES, not NOS. @Mohair -- I agree with you that who would want M&Ms with peanuts when you can have them without peanuts? (Yes, @Aketi, I read what you said, but I'm going to pay no attention. I eat lots of nuts, believe me.) And @lms (8:09 a.m.) -- You must have heard the famous Coolidge story. A reporter was told that Coolidge was dead. "Oh, really?" he said. "How can they tell?"

Tita A 9:23 PM  

@Chefwen...I am intrigued! But I can't access the article without being a subscriber...

@Numinous and @Gill...thank you...We just finished dinner and dessert. The cake was great! I read my mom your comments. She was touched.

Aketi 10:27 PM  

@Tita A, missed that bit about your Mom baking her own cake at age 93? Happy birthday to her!

Leapfinger 10:28 PM  

@oldtimer, I was waiting to exhale before I expire, but then I decided to be @AliasZ's pupil and live longer, dilater.

No way near being a mistress of linguistics like some others, but I did once know someone whose horse was named Lemma, and when he made Lemma neighed.

@Bookin' the Cooks, Thank you. It took me a while to accept the use of 'apropos' for 'appropriate', but (as usual) I still cast aspersions on 'AS PER usual'. Just to show I'm not an inveterate presciptivist, I don't eschew ASPERgum.

Noticed MOOMOO as one way to UNUSE 4 U's, wurse luck for M&A.

I'll remember this theme as the one got me started applying antiperspirant to the insides of my EL(BO)WS. Life gets more complicated alla time.

Michelle Turner 12:19 AM  

Slush is a combination of water (liquid) and ice (solid). There are three states of matter - solid, liquid, and gas.

Teedmn 12:27 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Teedmn 12:30 AM  

@Tita A, I have belated birthday greetings for your Mom. Baking her own cake is cool enough, but that she can still paint those bitty acorns too is nothing short of miraculous. Long may she rock steady!

Dolgo 12:36 AM  

I did this one late, saving it for my stay in an SF hotel in preparation for a flight to Sweden tomorrow, so nobody will probably read this. But I liked this one a lot. Often Sunday puzzles are just tedious, but this one had a number of clever and amusing clues. It was nice to work on it. I'm temporarily burnt out on my big bio of Wilhelm Furtwangler, the supposed Nazi conductor of the Berlin Phil, and the TV movies all looked terrible. BTW, I think WF has gotten a bad rap. Yeah, I know, he DID shake Goebbels's hand in a weak moment and all, but his recording of the Eroica is THE BEST!!! (and I've listened to tons of them in my day.

Dolgo 12:55 AM  

PS And what about Werner von Braun, fer crissakes!

Leapfinger 1:12 AM  

I though Lemmas were those cute little relatives of weasels that apparently want to be SEARATS and therefore periodically stampede off the nearest seaside cliff. In the 16th century, Lemmas were studied by the Danish natural historian Ole Worm, who was no way an Ole Miss. The Lemma's defense system is aposematic, even though very few of them know anyone Jewish.

Acornucopia of birthday wishes to @Tita's Mom. It's my sister's birthday, too, but she won't even look at a cake.

Peter Strauss 1:55 AM  

I was totally stuck for the longest time on this one, because the (extremely stretchy) title threw me for a loop. Then, in an inspirational moment, I grabbed a scoop+ of really good coffee ice cream, and it all fell into place.
And when I finished, I was really angry with the constructor. Too many funky/inept things, like "unused" (feh!). Agree that disuse makes a whole lot more sense. And once I got the gimmick, then PEANUTMMS and LEMMA worked well. KEROSENES???? PEYOTES???? (Double- and triple-feh!)
This was nowhere near 116A. Not even on the same page. Feh Feh Feh.

chefwen 2:10 AM  

@Tita- send me your mailing address and I'll snail mail it to you. It's really cute and you will will love it. My email is on my profile.

OISK 2:29 AM  

DNF. First of those in over a month. I really had no shot. First of all, I had HEH, instead of HEE. I didn't know lemma. Unuse may be a word, although the spellcheck here rejects it, but it is certainly unus-ual.

I never do well with product names, Baja fresh? There was no way I was going to get "peanut M and Ms", because I always called them "M and M peanut." That's how they were advertised; (I never bought them) the commercial went "M and M plain, M and M peanut..." Of course, they ARE peanut M and Ms...

The theme was cute, and well executed, but who or what is TLC? Alicia Keys - have heard of her, but have no idea what she does...the R and B was evident anyway. I guess I would feel less negative about this had I finished it correctly. Pah!

the redanman 11:16 AM  

Always late with Sunday ... Easy, but a couple of awkward spots especially Do to ATEE just looks and feels so wrong.

Tita A 11:20 AM  

Thanks @teed & @Leapy... and happy birthday to your sister!

@chefwen - email sent!

Anonymous 5:34 PM  

Very good and clever puzzle.
Title refers to the author's prediction that commenters will ONE BY ONE try to guess how title relates to the puzzle.

D and A

Anonymous 9:26 AM  

Bush Presidential is not at Texas A&M, its at SMU!!

Anonymous 11:19 PM  

Just got to the Sunday puzzle tonight (Tue), then went online to read your post and the comments. Did not scroll all the way down, so someone else may have commented on this already. But SMALLA is not a colloquial version of smaller. The answer is small a, as in lower case letter 'A', which both of the A'a in adidas are.

Anonymous 8:50 PM  

What a crab. Somebody needs to get laid.

Sarasota Su 3:41 PM  

I 've always wondered what the red square signifies in the finished crossword.

Burma Shave 3:24 PM  


SARA dropped her MOOMOO and said, “NOTTOWORRY,
THERE is no ALTERNATIVE, let’s MATE in a hurry,
ISEE, ASPERUSUAL, my HOTS make you squirm.”
SARA said, “ Get INATUB you MORON, and let me IMPOSE!”


spacecraft 12:06 PM  

Finally we get to remove those accursed "AND"s from between initials! I don't care that we have to imagine the ampersand; the "AND"s are gone! If for no other reason, that's enough to earn at least a birdie--or a first down. I had a TAD of trouble figuring out the "Illinois" clue, but this old Monopoly player wasn't in the dark for long, so the theme was nailed right away.

Overall, this played on the easy side for me, despite holding the grAb bag too long. SWAG bag? Never heard of it. SWAG is a decorative attachment for a ceiling light, or slang for a SEARAT's (??) booty. Your basic party giveaway is a grab bag, come on.

Also making an ink mess was EXhalE for EXPIRE, which could ironically have been clued "Breathe out one's last." The rest of my fill objections mirror OFL's, especially those plurals. These hold back a better grade; we'll leave it at birdie. Had TONS of fun doing it.

rain forest 2:30 PM  

Puzzle titles just can't win. Either they are so transparent they give the game away right off the bat, or they require the exertions of a curious linguist to fathom. If it is deemed important (moot), today's puzzle title indicates to me that the crossing words must be solved one by one; in one direction there is an understood &, and in the other the two letters are used normally. But, as I say, that's just my take, and in any case it isn't important, although you can't tell that from the comments above.

Whether or not the title threw you off, this was a very enjoyable puzzle which flowed smoothly, had a little crunch here and there, and which featured a cute theme. Except for UNUSE, the fill was good, as well.

As you can tell, I liked it a lot.

AnonymousPVX 3:05 PM  

Meh. And that's a high rating. Poor clueing. Nasty answers. Gimmicky.

More like "bleh".

Diana,LIW 4:00 PM  

I usually don't get the rebuiosity of a puzzle, but I'm beginning to understand their strange appeal.

I stuck with it, and solved it. All on my own. I think R&B was my first themer. Had a lot of puzzle filled in before I sussed out the rebus, but a rebus I knew it was, very early on.

Didn't we see SWAG recently? That WASN'T new to me. This puz did not say YOULOSE to me. HEE HEE.

Enjoy your afternoon!

Diana, Lady-in-Waiting for Crosswords

leftcoastTAM 4:40 PM  

I wanted to say only that the theme was a bit INFIRM, but the puzzle overall was good enough for a Sunday slog.

Then, seeing that all the "One by One" letters were either at the beginnings or ends of across answers EXCEPT for the MM in PEANUTM+MS, I had to throw up my hands.

I didn't expect symmetry of the theme words, which obviously wasn't there, but I did expect some consistency in the placements of the two theme letters.

LEMMA is legitimate, and the PEANUTM+MS should have forced the entry, but I just couldn't come up with it.

LEXA seemed more like a "basic word form", but of course that made for some odd and unlikely PEANUTxS that left me scratching my head.

On the positive side, I did learn to spell EDERLE's name correctly.

Also, went to my trusty Merriam-Webster and found that themes and theme titles like today's themselves may qualify as LEMMAs!

Ray o sunshine 5:30 PM  

Somewhat clumsy puzzle. Some questionable answers border on erroneous. Was this puzzle really edited by the famous WS before being printed or is that just for show?

Ray o sunshine 5:30 PM  

Somewhat clumsy puzzle. Some questionable answers border on erroneous. Was this puzzle really edited by the famous WS before being printed or is that just for show?

rondo 7:13 PM  

@rainy - that's cunning linguist.

Phillip Blackerby 7:58 PM  

Since I (DN)finished it the same Sunday it appeared in my local paper, it must be rated easy. Figured out the theme when A(&)WROOTBEER crossed the more obvious HAWKS, but that also required a revision from SLicK to SLEEK.
I also loved A&W as a kid, especially when Mom allowed us to order the frosty mug with a scoop of ice cream, a Brown Cow in our language. Their hamburgers, not so much, as they put hated mustard on them.
Had to look up what a Bareilles is, so DNF under my score-keeping rules. Thought maybe it was an opera term. The resulting R gave me what I needed to solve the SW corner.

rain forest 11:48 PM  

@Rondo - I was about to enter "cunning" linguist, but then I considered my audience. I should have realized that with Rando Rondo aboard, there wouldn't be a problem. Now I can't use it in the future.

Blogger 3:04 AM  

There's a chance you are eligible to receive a $500 Ikea Gift Card.

Blogger 6:01 PM  

Ever wanted to get free Twitter Followers?
Did you know you can get them AUTOMATICALLY & TOTALLY FOR FREE by getting an account on Add Me Fast?

  © Free Blogger Templates Columnus by 2008

Back to TOP